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Drift fishing SP - stayng in touch with bottom???

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    Posted: 11 May 2008 at 9:23pm
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Hi

I am a newcomer to SP and despite reading some recommended books on the techniques and some good posts on this forum I am struggling with the technique on the water. 

My biggest problem has been keeping in touch with the bottom. 

I have tried 1/2 ounce jig heads, and 1 ounce jig heads but neither can i feel in touch with bottom when trying to drift in hauraki gulf.  Generally around whanga peninsula and tiri etc.

Should I be using more than 1 ounce very often when in 20-30m water?

After I cast the SP and wait for it to sink. 10-15 seconds usually.  I can never really feel the bottom again.  Is this normal?


Any advice would be appreciated as I think the few fish i have caught are when I have managed to stay near the bottom.

Cheers

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote burwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2008 at 9:43pm
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depends on the water depth-personally I use 2oz in 40M and sometimes 3. If it is very calm(no wind and little current) I can feel the bottom but generally I an tell how much line ive let out by looking at the spool. Plus the rate of line running off drops a lot when it runs along the bottom
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Blue Legend Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2008 at 9:50pm
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We had 2oz sinkers in 40m yesterday and SP virgins were hookin into them. 2oz seemed to be plenty and at times we were drifting at a rate of up to 1.6knots
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote burwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2008 at 9:55pm
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I should clarify by saying i use 'worm hooks' with a running egg sinker on top. I dont use conventioned jigheads
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote _macca__ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 8:48am
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Thats very interesting.  Thanks for the replies.

Becasue from the books I've read it points towards 1 ounce is the MAXMIUM you ever really need unless in VERY deep water. 50m plus etc

So what you guys are saying is that 2 ounces is very realistic for the gulf sometimes if current / requires it?

Is anything above 1 ounce usually better with worm hook and running sinker?

cheers

Macca




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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Redfinger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 9:01am
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Just a matter of feel - macca. You will sort it out after a few trips.
I use 1/4 oz in rangi channel stuff - 10-16m.
In 50m don't usually need any more than 3/4 to 1 oz either. Then again due to the smaller boat i'm in I'm not out there in fresh winds and drifting fast.
I regularly use 2 drougues (sea anchors) - without a seaanchor you will struggle to reach bottom (or spend enough time in the red zone)due to speed of drift at times.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Amateur Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 9:12am
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Hi Macca and welcome to the soft and flexable world of soft baiting. Like you I fish in our beautiful harbours either side and north/south of Auckland.
Get yourself a pack of worm hooks, I like the VMC wide gaps and some 1, 2 and 3oz sinkers. I have never had any success with jig heads. Better yet, see the Synit guys at the Boat Show this weekend and buy some of their deep water rigs. I have used their sinker/hook rigs with great success in water as deep as 60m and as shallow as 5m, in fact they are about all I use. There is a thread with loads of pictures, I think it was called "show us your SB rigs" or something like that. Search it out, you'll get heaps of good info there.
I start with a slightly heavy weight to feel the bottom then reduce it to the minimum weight that achieves the same effect in getting to the bottom.
Good luck.Thumbs%20Up
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Badfish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 9:23am
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Like Amateur said, start out heavier and then once you get use to the feel lighten up. The lightest possible weight to get you down into the zone is preferable, it gives better presentation and its sinking in the zone longer IMO.
BUT in saying that its best to be down the bottom with a heavier sinker than not at all. 
 
In faster drifts there are times where more line will bring the bait higher up in the column if your dragging the baits behind you as apposed to throwing it them up stream. I guess thats caused by more drag on the line through the water.
 
Try some retreives with no twitches, effectivel dragging the bait along the bottom. Thats an easy way to tell your on the bottom as you'll feel the bumps in the sand and weeds etc. Obviously this isn't the go when your in a lot of foul ground.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mahiman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 1:50pm
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Hey Macca,
                  I use wormhooks and ball sinkers on top. If your not catching fish and think your not on the bottom go up in sinker size until you are confident your on the bottom. When the fish are feeding I reckon its better to have your bait in the strike zone for as much time as possible, which means using a sinker that gets your bait down fast. On charter we generally use sinkers around 2 oz and will go as high as 4 oz if we have to. I personally try to use Tungsten Bullet head weights(when I can get them) which are fantastic and give you an edge over people fishing with lead. When observing Charter guests fishing it is often the guys fishing with enough weight to get down quickly that outfish the guys that fish with "just enough" lead to get to the bottom. So my opinion is load up with lead or tungsten when fishing in the deep....oh yeah try and make sure your weight does not slide all the way up your line use a toothpick or some device to stop it happening. Another option that works well are Deepwater rigs....
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kezza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 2:01pm
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in the conditions you describe my 'go to' rig is a 2oz egg sinker on top of a 5/0 worm hook....very seldom go to 1oz....just don't really see the point unless the fish are well up in the water column feeding...even then they don't have problems eating 2oz weighted rigs.....get the bait to the bottom 3rd as quick as possible...

just a couple of weeks ago I got a distraught call from a newbie plastic fisho..."we're not catching what should I do?"......get rid f the 1/4oz and chuck 2oz on.....never heard back so can only assume he was too busy...Wink

jigheads have their place....I personally have just not found it yet!

PS...when you are casting...are you casting forward of the drift or out the back?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote KeenAs Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 2:14pm
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I've seen some people, one on the last trip i deckied on, not budging on weight after my suggestion of doing so. Drifting in 25knots it's a given that more weight is required.
 
When i made the suggestion of more weight his response was that he would loose action in his rod, to which i replied, very diplomatically, " you won't be seeing any action if your not on the bottom"....... I even put more weight on other peoples rigs to prove my point. . . 
 
be certain to use sinkers with the least resistance as well.
 
If your drifting in your own boat, do you have oppotunity to cast ahead of the drift? This is agood way of staying in the zone a bit longer.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Blue Legend Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 2:21pm
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Originally posted by Kezza Kezza wrote:


just a couple of weeks ago I got a distraught call from a newbie plastic fisho..."we're not catching what should I do?"......get rid f the 1/4oz and chuck 2oz on.....never heard back so can only assume he was too busy...Wink

 
Distraught my ar$e. The question  was "when the bait hits the bottom then what?"  We were still hitting the bottom with 1/4oz sinkers, just weren't getting any hits when the bloody baits were. Still only managed gurnard on that particular day.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kezza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 2:51pm
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anxiety performance issues?....Wink....don't worry we've all been there.

PS....I wasn't talking about you anyways.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Espresso Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 3:08pm
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Yo Macca
I live on the ever-sunny and always fish-filled Peninsula Smile, fishing around it and out in the Gulf 90% of the time. I use a spinning reel with 4lb braid mainly. The type of reel you use and braid strength affects your sink rate and this can affect weight required. With my nice-n-light spinning setup 1 and half ounces is needed in good i.e. slow drift conditions out in the gulf. I have tried 1 ounce and found it hopeless unless in quite close around the Noises for example - out drifting it's too light. 2 ounces when my drift is quicker, which in my boat with two drogues out means anything over 12 knots of wind.
Overhead reel - when using a jighead or worm hook with running sinker 2 to 3 ounces, with a ledger or captains style rig - go even heavier, the sinker dragging in the mud helps attract fish IMHO. I also tend to use heavier braid like 6 and 10lb on the overhead, this slows the sink rate even more, i.e. more weight needed. I don't use jig heads (unless they are Owner twist ons) as they are made only for Soft Baits with thick front ends and tend to ruin the presentation of many Soft Bait brands like Catch (I manufacture these),Slug Gos, Basstrix and others.
 
As always you gotta find what works best for you with your style and prefered brand(s). But yes a lot of literature and marketing out there use underweighted set ups which do not work in the majority of Snapper catching situations in the Gulf. To me using too little weight is the one of the most common problems with fisho's not catching fish on SBs...my first few months with SBs was learning this the hard way.
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote strx7 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 3:25pm
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larger SP's require more weight to get to X depth in the same time as a smaller SP
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Badfish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 6:07pm
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Originally posted by strx7 strx7 wrote:

larger SP's require more weight to get to X depth in the same time as a smaller SP
I might add that baits like grub tails can often need more weight than say a jerk shad too. 
I usually fish water less than 15m and still I use 1 and 2 oz sinkers.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote _macca__ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 7:01pm
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Originally posted by Kezza Kezza wrote:

in the conditions you describe my 'go to' rig is a 2oz egg sinker on top of a 5/0 worm hook....very seldom go to 1oz....just don't really see the point unless the fish are well up in the water column feeding...even then they don't have problems eating 2oz weighted rigs.....get the bait to the bottom 3rd as quick as possible...

just a couple of weeks ago I got a distraught call from a newbie plastic fisho..."we're not catching what should I do?"......get rid f the 1/4oz and chuck 2oz on.....never heard back so can only assume he was too busy...Wink

jigheads have their place....I personally have just not found it yet!

PS...when you are casting...are you casting forward of the drift or out the back?
 
Thanks for all the replies.  Really helpful.
 
Seem as though I just plain and simply haven't been using enough weight!!  The books I've read have talked about 1 ounce bing the "heavy" option so I have based my weights on that.
 
Clearly I've needed 2 ounces or more due to current / depth etc. Hence why even with 1 ounce I had trouble ever feelling the bottom.
 
I did try both casting in front and dropping straight down (to fish behind the drift).
 
The fact that you guys seem to use 2-3 ounces (even more at times) shows me I should have gone up in weight becaseu the curren was quite strong and water 30m deep.
 
 
Due to the great replies can't resist another question.............
 
Does a 2 ounce ball sinker (or bigger) affect the action of the lure?  Lots of what I've read in the SP books have said more than 1 ounce ruins the action - or somehting similar.
 
Because it sounds like you are all catching fish on 2 ounce + rigs at times so I'm guessing the answer is....it may affect the action but not enough to prevent fish taking it.
 
Cheers
 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Badfish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 7:20pm
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I'v not found that it makes to big a difference with heavier weights. I primarily use unscented baits so I rely pretty heavily on the action. Action or not, if your bait isn't where the fish are then the action is usless anyways.

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mahiman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 7:27pm
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Hey Macca out of interest what book are you getting info from?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote _macca__ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 May 2008 at 7:57pm
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Originally posted by Mahiman Mahiman wrote:

Hey Macca out of interest what book are you getting info from?
 
 
The books I have are The Complete New Zealand SOFTBAITS Fishing Guide and the one by John Eichlesheim.
 
Both i have found really good and possibly somewhere in them I've missed the key things about weight.
 
Both refer to using appropriate weights for conditions........BUT....they seem to talk little actual weights other than regulary mentioning  1/2 ounce for first cast of day type of thing.
 
I guess now I think of it...... its not only the message i've interpreted from the books but also the fact you dont see jig heads over 1 ounce which has made me try to no avail to get to the bottom with 3/4 ounce or 1 ounce weights in reasonable current.
 
 
 
 
 
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