Larger J hooks for Big Baits

Discussion in 'Terminal Tackle Review' started by jculpepper05, Jan 5, 2020.

  1. MonFlatcat

    MonFlatcat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    173
    State:
    Pa
    Name:
    Beau
    Setups of course can and should be tailored to the way you fish and bait you use.

    I use drag so tight you can barely pull it. Line with little stretch, braid mainline but with a mono shock leader.

    Ive seen guys fishing with me, use smaller bait, medium size bluegills for example, that had limp setups, lighter drags etc. catch smaller mid twenty inch catfish with the bluegills half swallowed head first, lodged in their throats, with the hook still in the bluegills upper tail and never even touched the catfish.

    Swap out a larger hook and a big sucker onto their setup as is, and their whizzin' into the wind.

    I see no benefit to using light drag, or even medium in flathead fishing basically ever, unless someone wants to use light line, smaller bait and gear for smaller fish.

    Aside from hookups, the more you allow a big flat to run, the better odds he gets off or breaks off.
     
  2. 3rivers

    3rivers Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    408
    State:
    Pennsylvania
    Name:
    Gregg
    All good points.. when using a large bait you need all the force delivered to the hook to tear it out of the bait and into the mouth. Only time I loosen up on drag is if I'm in a boat and the fish get squirrley while trying to land it. If I'm targeting flathead I could care less if I feel the fight on a 5 pound fish, just my opinion.
     

  3. MonFlatcat

    MonFlatcat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    173
    State:
    Pa
    Name:
    Beau
    Besides all that, you get to feel the full power of the fish. lol

    The look on someones face the first time they ever hook into a big flat, with nearly locked down drag, feeling the full power of the flat and the "ocean pole".... even an xheavy, stiff musky rod bending like a wet noodle is absolutely priceless. lol.
     
  4. Rockabilly-Angler

    Rockabilly-Angler Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    443
    State:
    Michigan
    Name:
    Allen
    ^ That right there is one thing I look forward to every year ! I don't have any Musky Rods, but my all around best Rods, are my Big Cat Fever Rods, because they're pure S-Glass, and I'm not just a huge fan of Fiber Glass for Rods, but in particular, the S-Glass does have that nice bonus of 20% on average more strength / Backbone than Fiber Glass, and still has a lot of Stretch. That with the Mono I'm using generally allows a Circle Hook to be set before the fish can react to the pressure it's feeling on the line.

    LOL when I'm at the River and standing on the bank with my Rod standing up; I leave that Drag CRANKED down, and then, I just wait, because with VERY good VERY Sharp Hooks, the fish is either Hooked as it swims off, or it isn't, which is actually kind of nice.

    I do use Bells on some of my Rods at times, but if I get hits that don't hook up, I wait like maybe 10 or so minutes and then check the bait, because most of the time, it's been taken off, or like with a fish that still has scales on it, the scales may have landed on the point of the Hook, so I clear those off and cast it back out, and wait again.

    I've had bells go flying off into the River right in front of me from a bigger (10+ pounds) Channel Cat when it's mid Summer and they're aggressive, and normally I can sit and let them hook themselves, and when I grab my Rod, I pick it up, and start Reeling down as quick as I can, and once that rod is bent in half like you were talking about, LOL that's that awesome sauce right there haha.

    I love watching the Rod bend in half with a huge aggressive take, even though a few times I've come REALLY close to losing a Rod that way because it knocked over the Rod holder, or, like in one spot I go to, there's these huge steel walled in areas where I can just use the wall to stand the Rods up, and they're like close to 4 and a half feet tall, so normally I use that as a Rod Holder, but one time a particularly aggressive Catfish hit so hard it lifted the bottom of the Rod off the ground and almost pulled it in LOL. Good times though as long as you don't lose your gear haha.
     
  5. MonFlatcat

    MonFlatcat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    173
    State:
    Pa
    Name:
    Beau
    I lock my rods down in holders in the boat and use the bait clickers.

    Another thing i like is when someone goes with me and wants to grab the rod every time the larger baitfish gets lively and pulls out a short spurt of line on the clicker. When I explain and tell them to relax, the question always is: "well how do you know when its a BITE and when to jerk?"

    I just laugh and say, Oh, you'll know.... lol
     
    Rockabilly-Angler likes this.
  6. Rockabilly-Angler

    Rockabilly-Angler Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    443
    State:
    Michigan
    Name:
    Allen
    LOL yeah bro, my Fiance has two girls, and the oldest is now 9 years old, and we took her night Fishing for Catfish for the first time last Summer, and while we were showing her what we were doing, we'd get a hit now and then, and she'd be like "Oh set the hook!" and I'm like nope, not yet, wait until the Rod bends and holds, then we know it's on there and ready to go, and the "You'll know" speech I think is pretty universal LOL.

    I now have two Rods that have Conventional Reels on them, as all my gear I used was Spinning, and the Bait Clicker thing I'm starting to LOVE! The sound it makes...... Bro that sound, LOL, I could make that my ring tone and I'd love it haha.

    I don't have a lot of money for Reels right now, so most of my stuff was gifted, but I'm getting a pretty good selection going as of now because my Fiance managed to find an Abu Garcia Ambassador 6000 for 5 dollars! I'd never be able to buy one of those new, and the fact that it was an older early 80s model still in working condition I was blown away at the price she got it for. I don't like the small spool size of it, as I'm a Mono only kind of guy, so my plans with it so far are using it for Walleye and some other fish that I also go after, and probably Carp too, because I can get away with a smaller line capacity when I'm Carp Fishing since I don't use the same chunky pound test with those, and I'm pretty sure it's more than sufficient for a Pike or Musky as well, so I'm probably going to use that on a set up for the other fish I like to go after now and then.

    Her Dad gave me an old Penn 209 too, and that I currently have on my Limited Edition Big Cat Fever Medium Heavy, and that has the same amount of Drag as the Abu, but has a bigger Spool, and I totally loaded that thing up with that 50 pound test Slime Line LOL. It fits REALLY well on that thing, and I was surprised how smooth the Drag is on a Reel that's pretty old. After I tore off all the Braid anyway, LOL. I'm not sure what kind it was but he had been using it for Trolling and for a Down Rigger I think. But I put the Braid aside to use for something else, and loaded it up with the Mono, and I was super happy about the little "nub" that the Spool has on that which allows you to tie Braid directly to the spool without a backing, and I was even more surprised that it managed to have 50 Pound Mono tied on to that without it being too big LOL.

    My Cork Big Cat Fever Rod is also Medium Heavy, and that currently has my Okuma Classic CLX 450-LA on it, which I also like for the spool size on it.

    I have a preference for the little lever that turns on the Free Spool option over the button the Ambassador has on it, but that's just a Preference thing for me. I like little Levers on Reels, and I'm currently drooling over a Penn Fathom Lever Drag Reel, as that is my current favorite. I've noticed that the smaller Reels are a bit easier to cast, but I love that spool capacity of the larger sized ones.