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Hey all,
Been reading a lot of great discussions on this page and thought I would throw out a few questions for my first post. I really started getting into catfishing about five or so years ago and after buying cheap gear the past couple years I am finally ready to step up my game and buy some good quality gear for my new obsession. I will be targeting Flatheads mostly, but occasionally will be fishing for channels. Below is what I am considering buying, but am not married too. Would love any advice you all could give!

Reel: Abu Garcia 6600C4 - Always liked the push button line release like this one has, but heard with the high gear ratio you lose overall cranking power. Anyone use these for catching large cats?

Tangling with Catfish Extreme Medium Heavy - I want something that has the backbone to pull in a large flatty, but not something that is too stiff where catching channel's feels like pulling in baitfish.

Again, any advice is much appreciated. Looking forward to your replies!

Thanks!
 

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Welcome aboard, There are so many good rods any more to choose from. Your choice of reel is a good one but I will point out based on my experience that I would go with a c3 rather than c4. While the thumb button is nice I always break the line release on those reels with hard use. I may be the exception but that does not happen with the c3.
 

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I will agree with Captain Brad as for as the C3 goes but if your preference is strong, give the C4s a try.

My question on rod choice would be what weight flatheads do you expect to catch in your area. For Channels, I would recommend a Medium rod. I select rod backbone by the size fish I plan to catch. Since you do not list your state in your info, others can only guess what would work best.
 

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Thanks CaptainBrad and Tom. I will take that into consideration too when it comes to the C4 vs C3. I just updated my state info. I am from Wisconsin. I'd say the size range of Flathead around the rivers I most commonly fish would be in the 15-40 pound range in a fairly fast current. I will be making multiple trips to the Mississippi river too. So that could offer even larger fish. Thanks again for the advice!
 

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Thanks CaptainBrad and Tom. I will take that into consideration too when it comes to the C4 vs C3. I just updated my state info. I am from Wisconsin. I'd say the size range of Flathead around the rivers I most commonly fish would be in the 15-40 pound range in a fairly fast current. I will be making multiple trips to the Mississippi river too. So that could offer even larger fish. Thanks again for the advice!

My advice is go with 2 rods. One MH for the flatheads and MS River but consider a M also for your channel cats. To get the most out of it one size fits all is not necessarily the best policy.
 

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Welcome to the USCA. I was going to recommend the TWC Whisker Whip for your fishing but with you fishing the Mo River occasionally and possibly having to use 6-20oz weights the extreme would be my choice as well. I hear the Rippin Lips MH is nice as well. I've owned a couple 6600C4s and I loved them with sinkers up to 5oz. Didn't like casting more than 6oz with them. If you really like the push button and want one a little more heavy duty with a stronger drag and more line capacity then I'd recommend the Ming Yang MC600. https://www.ebay.com/i/161758993518...3D711-117182-37290-0%26rvr_id%3D1419176527745


The C4 should be fine for the fishing you'll be doing or even the C3. All great reels. Good luck on your choice.
 

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I love my c4s I have two both on whisker seeker rods they are my go to. I also have a Penn Squall 40ld on an ugly stik tiger jigging rod. I think you have the right idea... the game is to find a setup that works for 5lb channels and for 50lb flatheads... it's a lot to ask if a rod and reel. IMHO the rod is more important than the reel, and just like the c4 vs c3 it comes down to personal preference. I highly recommend that you find a friend who owns any rod you want to buy and try it out.
 

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Well, I can see some real thinking coming to you in the near future. :bruised: It really isn't that bad. The reel will be your choice. Either should do the job just fine. But there is some thinking to be done when deciding on a rod.

A Medium rod is the best choice for Channel Cats.

A Medium Heavy is the best choice for bigger Flatheads.

I am not sure about what current you will find in the rivers you plan to fish. If there is heavy current, go with the Medium Heavy rod. For rivers with slow current, a Medium would do fine.

You just have to decide whether to lean toward the heavy side or the light side in a rod.

Now to add just a smudge more confusion to roast a few more brain cells, you could go with a Rippin Lips Medium rod AND a Rippin Lips Medium Heavy rod at a cost of $39.00 each with free shipping. The cost would be the same or less that the cost of one TWC rod + $20 shipping.

This is just a thought that might cover all of your needs.

Good luck
 

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Nick, I think you have selected some excellent gear there. My preference would be a 6500C3 or 6500CS on a whisker whip and a 7000 size reel on the Extreme for bigger fish, though a lot of big fish are landed on the whisker whips. I think the Whisker whip is better suited for the 6500 size reel. Either rod works very well with braided line.

Good luck, can't go wrong with any of the equipment you have chosen.
 

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Welcome, Nick! I have two Extremes and find them very light in the hand and good action in the fight. I have a Penn Fathom 30SD on one and a KastKing Rover 60 on the other. Down the trail I'll be picking up the TWC Extender and that FTH30 will go on it, and I'll be getting a Penn Squall 15SD to go back onto one of the Extremes. Lots of choices in front of you- good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Welcome, Nick! I have two Extremes and find them very light in the hand and good action in the fight. I have a Penn Fathom 30SD on one and a KastKing Rover 60 on the other. Down the trail I'll be picking up the TWC Extender and that FTH30 will go on it, and I'll be getting a Penn Squall 15SD to go back onto one of the Extremes. Lots of choices in front of you- good luck!
Thanks Zigarro! How would you say the action is on the TWC Extremes when bringing in smaller catfish in the 10 pound range? The rivers I fish are fairly fast current so that would play into the fight as well... Thanks for the info
 

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Hard to say but I've enjoyed the action on those under 10lb that we take home as well as those over 12 that we release. Keep in mind that they have a 10-60lb line rating and are rated for 1-10oz. lure weight. They're strong enough to handle 75lbs+ and are my favorite rods. If you're on a budget though, I can also recommend RippinLips rods. I only have one but recently bought my son a medium and he loves it!
 

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Welcome Nick!

If you are looking for a good all around rig I would suggest the Warrior Cat M/H paired with a 6500C3. I know it can handle big fish, and it has also worked well for catching 4lb Channels. I don't fish in strong current, but I don't think the rod would have a problem with it. Also the Warrior Cats seem indestructable. There are some good videos on youtube about them.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Welcome Nick!

If you are looking for a good all around rig I would suggest the Warrior Cat M/H paired with a 6500C3. I know it can handle big fish, and it has also worked well for catching 4lb Channels. I don't fish in strong current, but I don't think the rod would have a problem with it. Also the Warrior Cats seem indestructable. There are some good videos on youtube about them.
Thanks Adam! I have been considering the Warrior Cats.. These seem like another great option for me. Sounds like they are a bit lighter tipped than the TWC, but still enough backbone! EDIT: The Warrior Cat Gen 1 are out of stock. I will have to wait for the Gen 2 to get in... Seems like they are having issues with their shipment of those.
 

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I would recommend a power handle for your abu. I also really like the bass pro muskie rod in the 2 to 10oz version. It is really light graphite, and feels great in the hand, but it is flexible and has a strong back bone. You can put quite a bit of pressure on the fish if you need to. It is also sensitive so you can feel the fight, which makes it more fun. I can tell as soon as the sinker hits the bottom. It will work for channels and the big boys. BEST OF ALL IT IS ON SALE NOW FOR $39. I bought a 4 to 10oz lure version too.

I also really like diawa j braid 8. Ive tried lots of braids and in my mind it best them all. Strong, more abraision resistance, smoother, holds color fairly well, and cheap.

Hope this helps!!!
 
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