Tightline vs Free spool for Flats

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by wolfman, Aug 16, 2005.

  1. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,081
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    Which do you prefer? Myself I like to free spool and let them run a bit before setting the hook.
     
  2. hookeye

    hookeye New Member

    Messages:
    162
    State:
    Kentucky
    I like to set the clicker and let em run.
     

  3. dafin

    dafin New Member

    Messages:
    1,461
    State:
    Manhattan,Kan
    I fish under a float most of the time for flats. i don't let them run far. I seldom turn the bait runner on even when tightlineing
     
  4. cross_their_eyes

    cross_their_eyes New Member

    Messages:
    156
    State:
    Show Me State
    Hey Wolfman,

    I have done it two ways. With my spinning reels I tighten my drag so they can pull out line when they start running but keep the drag set tight enough to allow those circles to hook them. I have also just set my clicker on my Penns and let them go, when they have taken out some line I'll slowly lift my rod, turn off my free spool and raise the rod and start reeling. They are usually hooked by then. If your not using circles just forget about what I said and cross their eyes when the rod loads up!
     
  5. tdfishhard

    tdfishhard New Member

    Messages:
    40
    State:
    Charleroi, PA
    Free spool with cricle hooks, let them run a bit than turn off the clicker and let the rod load up untill I feel the weight of the fish than start reeling
     
  6. MUDHOLE KID

    MUDHOLE KID New Member

    Messages:
    1,178
    State:
    Anderson,S.C.
    If I'm using circle hooks with cut bait,(99%)I leave the reel locked and leave just a little slack in the line so when they pick it up and move with it than have a little rope before they hang themselves.When I use gills I set the clicker and let them take it long enough to eat it good,not far though.
     
  7. LilRyjoe04

    LilRyjoe04 New Member

    Messages:
    2,432
    State:
    Indianapolis,Indiana
    I always keep the line fairly tight and no room for the fish to run when I'm using circle hooks. I will see my pole bend and then I know my hook is set. I swear by circle hooks, and I have lost very few fish with them. Good Luck Fishin!!

    -Later
     
  8. Dave53

    Dave53 New Member

    Messages:
    411
    State:
    Lonedell M
    dafin, when you fish under floats for flats are you fishing in the shallows and how deep will you fish for them?
     
  9. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    I fish pretty much identical to Bill. (Cross their Eyes) If you are using circle hooks and you have the "Bait Runner" feature engaged on your reel its not enough pressure to get the circle hook to roll into their mouth. That being said, If I'm using a very large bait, say a pound or bigger, I will use the bait runner feature as I really want that fish to get the bait in his mouth. As for conventional hooks, let them run just a little bit with it, and then IMHO, Rip their lips from their heads. :grin-big:
     
  10. cat4life

    cat4life New Member

    Messages:
    109
    State:
    Shawnee, Kansas
    I usually keep my line tight because at night I can see the pole bend because I cant see the line. What I really need is a bite buzzer. but i think I'm gonna try freespooling it sometime soon. never tried it before.
     
  11. cross_their_eyes

    cross_their_eyes New Member

    Messages:
    156
    State:
    Show Me State
    Yeah, I wanna do that some time...rip off their lips. Caught alot of Catfish but never really ripped their lips off. Guess I need a bigger hook :D
     
  12. fishfanatic

    fishfanatic New Member

    Messages:
    22
    State:
    Indiana
    I usually keep a tightline with maybe a little slack, but not much.
     
  13. barbel

    barbel New Member

    Messages:
    486
    State:
    Somewhere
    When using j-hooks (always for live bluegill etc...) what I do is freespool, but I reel in all the slack, turn my clicker on, and point the rod towards the water. Then when the fish hits, he runs for a little ways, and then I rip its lip. If I am using circle hooks (aka cut bait, night crawlers, stink bait etc...) I tightline. This allows the fish to load the rod up and help the circle hook do its job.

    -Travis
     
  14. muskie_hunter

    muskie_hunter New Member

    Messages:
    47
    State:
    New Martinsville, WV
    i love to hear those clickers sing!
     
  15. azcatman

    azcatman New Member

    Messages:
    97
    State:
    Arizona
    I'm with Muskie. Let em run with the clickers on then hit them hard and hold on!!
     
  16. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Good Advice Barbel. I think it depends on your setup, and your situation. I cant use the bait runner feature on my Penns with Circle Hooks as there isnt enough pressure generated to get the circle hook to rotate in. After a five foot run or so, the fish wises up and drops it. Now, I just keep the line tight and let the rod do the work. Works about 80 percent of the time on a quality bite, and those circles will be right in the corner of their mouths most of the time.
     
  17. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Hey AZCatman, thats a pig in your profile pic. What did he weigh?
     
  18. PARATROOPER

    PARATROOPER New Member

    Messages:
    32
    State:
    Waynesville, IL
    Free spool all the way. Alot of times a flathead will hit the bait so hard and fast that if you go tight line, he will either rip your bait right off the hook or jerk your rod in the water if your not using good quality rod holders. I like to let them run for several yards before I set the hook, 9 times out of 10 the hook is clear down in his belly and you seldom lose the bigger fish. Of course this is not the best method for those of you who like to do catch and release. Just my opinion.......
     
  19. azcatman

    azcatman New Member

    Messages:
    97
    State:
    Arizona
    Don't know for sure. Guessing around 60#. We had a scale but it only went to 50#. All I know is that we caught a 48# that night and he was noticably larger. For me to weigh him it would have meant killing him and I didn't want to do that. I have more pic's if you want to see them. I could e-mail them to you. We ended up with 6 fish that night with the smallest at 18 up to the one I am holding. Pretty impressive night!!!!
     
  20. willisjj

    willisjj Guest

    Dang, that was a good night. Did you pull those out of Roosevelt?

    Anyway, to stay on topic here, lol, I usually tightline if I am fishing ponds and if I am out at the lake, I freespool it for flatheads and usually have one rod tightlining with livers for channels. If I am missing some of the channels I will still keep the reel engaged, but leave more slack in the line. Can't give alot of advice on the circles as I have just started using them, so thanks for the above advice. I can't believe all these years and I was too stubborn to try out those circles, lol.