Landing a big catfish?

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by kyron4, Dec 17, 2006.

  1. kyron4

    kyron4 New Member

    Messages:
    185
    State:
    Indiana
    I hear a lot of talk from guys that use big baitcasting reels ,more suited for saltwater fish, that they like to use them because they can " crank in " the big fish and that their reels are like " a winch ". I was always told to let the rod do the work, pulling the rod up and reeling line in as you drop the rod to the 2 o'clock position, with only moderate tension on the line. All the while letting the drag work properly and the fish lead to how and when to pull and reel. I have landed some big fish with this method many times. How do you land your big cats ? Crank 'em in with the reel or pull with the rod ? Just curious how other people fish , no right or wrong way I guess.
    -Thanks :tounge_out:
     
  2. CJ21

    CJ21 New Member

    Messages:
    4,303
    State:
    Montgomery, Alabama
    U let the rod do the work, u really dont need saltwater reels they are big and little to heavy for me. Bass baitcasters works just fine.
     

  3. neocats

    neocats New Member

    Messages:
    2,130
    State:
    Steubenvil
    I don't use heavy duty dalt water reels either. Properly used the smaller reels work fine and are a lot more fun to use.
     
  4. bud1110

    bud1110 New Member

    Messages:
    1,096
    State:
    East Texas
    Don't need a winch, just a good reel and a great rod..
     
  5. MRR

    MRR New Member

    Messages:
    4,947
    State:
    Louisiana,Mo.
    Don't really know .Haven't caught a big fish as of yet:sad2: .Maybe next summer.Thanks for the tips on what to do if it ever does happen.
     
  6. CoonX

    CoonX Member

    Messages:
    737
    State:
    Oklahoma City O
    With me, it depends on where and for what species I'm fishing for.
    Blues and channels in open water, I'll let the rod and drag fight the fish.
    If I'm going for flats in cover, I'll go with the saltwater tackle. Lessen the chance of getting wrapped around brush and snags.
    Will
     
  7. Dreadnaught

    Dreadnaught New Member

    Messages:
    5,444
    State:
    Henderson,Ky
    I think that most of the folks that use those big reels are trying to make sure the fish doesn't get over stressed during the fight. It only makes since to get it in as fast as you can so when you release it, it has a better chance of survival. Playing a fish for over 15 minutes can possibley be detrimental to their health. I for one will release any catfish over 10lbs for many reasons.
    These bigger rods and reels, also allow you to control the fish (make it go where you want it to). It is hard to stop some of these bohemyths with small gear. I for one do not wish to lose a catch of a lifetime because of inferior equipment. The places that I fish have alot of down trees and stumps in the water and, these bigger fish will almost every time drag, you right into those snags. You have to have the proper equipment to stop this from happening and, that doesn't always work either.
    If you manage to hang into a fish over 50lbs, you will wish you had that big equipment. Fish of this magnitude are brutal fighters and will destroy most light gear on the first run, unless you get real lucky.
     
  8. coolarrow2

    coolarrow2 New Member

    Messages:
    249
    State:
    Texas
    It has everything to do with where you fish! My smallest reel I use in the river is a ABU 6000 but I use Shakesphere Tidewater 10L reels most of the time. They handle 40 and 50lb test line with ease and where I fish you need it for the flatheads, 30 lbs fish are very common. I use 30lb big game for most of my catfishing but on my two flathead setups the bigger line is always used. Now if I go up to the lake and fish a good bass rod will do the trick most of the time. I'll tell you this, if a 30lb flathead grabs your bait in a swift running river and heads south even with a big reel and 50lb test line your lucky to land him! With all the logs and tree tops in the river it's a wonder you can even land a 20lb fish. I caught a 18 lb fish one night and man what a fight on a rod and reel. I've hung several that I never even turned. They would never even know you were there on a bass rod!!! LOL So keep that in mind when someone tell you they use a boat winch for a reel! They might need it in the holes they fish. We use 5 hook throw lines alot and our main line is either #72 or #96 nylon and we use 9/0 hooks, so really 50lb test mono in ultra light tackle compaired to out big fish setup!
     
  9. Katmaster Jr.

    Katmaster Jr. New Member

    Messages:
    4,644
    State:
    Wilmington, NC
    JW already said it all! Don't take a knife to a gunfight.:wink:
     
  10. CatHound

    CatHound New Member

    Messages:
    164
    State:
    Missouri
    As a general rule, I am a lighter tackle angler. I am usually attempting to get the most play from the fish that I am targeting. I use the rod to do the work as much as I can by doing the pump and reel method that you refered to. I find the most enjoyment out of that technique and it was one I was taught at a young age.

    However, I also have several of the heavier duty "winch type" reels(Penns) and really long(9 Footers are my favorite) stout rods to go with them. There is definitely a time and a place for those.

    As was mentioned previously, when fishing for large fish in heavy current, the fish has a distinct advantage with leverage due to the environment. The angler has to employ enough force to counter that. Lighter gear is not designed to do that.

    If you look at the specs of your bass equipment, specifically the drags on the reels, you will notice that they typically only can generate a lower amount of drag resistance to the force exerted by the fish. Often, the drag is measured in the 8-14 pound range. Beyond that pressure, the drag on many bass reels becomes basically either useless, and/or will suffer mechanical damage. On the larger "winch type" reels, you can find drag measurements of 25-45 pounds, and some go even higher.

    Additionally, the typical bass rods do not have the back bone sufficient to handle the weight and strength of the larger fish, or the energy produced by the fish working in the heavy currents. And, those rods are also not designed to stand up to the heavier lines required for targeting the larger fish. If using a line sufficient to handle the large fish, it could easily become a case of the line outlasting the rod.

    By combining the pump and reel method with the appropriately heavier reels and rods, the angler can generate enough energy to turn even large fish in heavy current and cover in order to gain the leverage needed to control the fish.

    The main concept I am getting at is, that it is important to balance the rod, reel, line and terminal tackle for the intended fish and environment being targeted. While at the same time, using the techniques that make best use of the advantage supplied by appropriate equipment.
    My rule of thumb is this; Expect the fish to always have certain advantages and that it will use them as needed, but, try to mitigate that by gearing up towards the largest potential fish in the body of water.
     
  11. laidbck111

    laidbck111 New Member

    I concur, whew that word hurt coming out, lol
     
  12. jdstraka

    jdstraka Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,739
    State:
    Council Bluffs, Iowa
    Name:
    John
    You mean to tell Me that the Man down at the bait shop who sold Me that Snoopy rod and reel set up LIED to Me? Oh Bad Boy, Bad Boy
    J.D.
    :beat_shot:
     
  13. Mickey

    Mickey New Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    14,592
    State:
    Illinois

    I agree with this post and CPR. We don't need to stress the fish. Keep those big Boys alive for another day.
     
  14. CatHound

    CatHound New Member

    Messages:
    164
    State:
    Missouri

    Heck no ! That Snoopy set up will work just fine for big cat fish. In fact you can catch cat fish that are so big they're called BULL-heads.
     
  15. 223reload

    223reload New Member

    Messages:
    10,798
    State:
    Oklahoma
    I for one use those big reels but maybe for a completely different
    reason that so far no one has mentioned . I have a abu 7000 , a tidewater 30 L and a Satellitesomething or other that looks like a Pen and when I fish the Ark. river it isint allways about bringing the fish in as much as getting the bait out there so with these rigs which by the way are all 12 footers I can cats to the h
    oles from the bank even if they are say 200 yards out there
     
  16. gadzooks

    gadzooks New Member

    Messages:
    1,532
    State:
    Kingwood, Tx (Houston)
    I've gone to bigger rods and reels cause momma told me not to play with my food.:big_smile:
     
  17. kyron4

    kyron4 New Member

    Messages:
    185
    State:
    Indiana
    The bad thing with heavy tackle is hooking a 5 to 10 pounder , not much thrill :sad2:
     
  18. Dreadnaught

    Dreadnaught New Member

    Messages:
    5,444
    State:
    Henderson,Ky
    If you are trying to catch 5 to 10lb fish, light tackle will do just fine. On the other hand, if you want to catch bigger fish you need bigger tackle!!!
     
  19. splitshot

    splitshot New Member

    Messages:
    2,827
    State:
    Coxsakie,N.Y.
    JW and Cathound, pretty much nailed it. You've got to match the tackle to what your fishing for.
     
  20. gadzooks

    gadzooks New Member

    Messages:
    1,532
    State:
    Kingwood, Tx (Houston)

    Its fine if you like to play the fish, but time spent fighting a fish is time not fishing. Maybe I've just gotten to the point that the catching is the thing, get 'em in and get the bait back in the water. But, even a tiger stick will give you plenty of action on a 5-10 lb fish. And, if I want to play with fish, there is always bass fishing.