POPPING VANUATU

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    Posted: 14 Apr 2024 at 1:08pm
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Any advice?

Was going to bring a grappler PE8 rod and Saragosa 18000 and thena 80lb monster mesh jig rod, spare braid.  Is TAS line oK??

what lures?  

5 night live abourd trip
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Fish Addict Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Apr 2024 at 8:12pm
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Are you on a charter boat or a private boat?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote jakepitsville Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Apr 2024 at 9:17am
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Hey Alan.

Currently i was thinking about buying the new 2020 Saragosa 18000 and a grappler stick bait rod, run PE 8 line. 150lb leader

The boat is Dropcast live about 5 nights.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Fish Addict Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Apr 2024 at 12:23pm
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I've been following the Dropcast facebook page for some time now.  They do very well which is probably due to them fishing the more remote locations.  I thought they would have provided all the tackle necessary, but I appreciate it's nice to use your own gear.  I'm no expert on fishing Vtu waters however the gear you have mentioned I believe is on the right track.  Nothing less than PE 8 line and reels that can apply at least 15kgs of drag are the order of the day.  
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote FarmerBrowne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Apr 2024 at 10:52pm
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I have done a couple of trips to the islands with popping gear (Vtu, Tonga (Vavau) and Aitutaki).
I think the rod and reel you have planned should do the goods.  I have generally taken a couple of 8000 stellas with me with jigging master 16000 spools.
I think I had JB 100 lb braid and 130 lb varivas trace.  I have not been dusted as yet but the drag on the reels has been well cranked up and I have only caught one really decent GT (which started of in about 7 metres of water, got the boat driver to drag me out deep ASAP).
Lures - I have tended to move away from the heavy cup faced poppers to stick baits which are easier to work, especially in the tropical heat.  You want enough weight so you can cast them into the wind as the vessel is quite often down wind of the structure for safety.  A few cup faced lures such as Heru Cubera in 130, 150 or 180grams are good.  Heru skipkack also good, less noise but easier (= less tiring) to work and good to cast and a few stick baits.
Make sure you have good strong rings and I have also used extra strong treble hooks.  A lot of people prefer singles, but I have stuck with trebles Owner  and ST76 and have still have had the odd hook straightened.
If you are going to be spending some good coin on the trip my main piece of advice would be to get your gear together and get out to the local park or beach and get as much casting practise in as you can.  You want to get as much distance and accuracy as you can and getting this practice on the first day of your charter is not the best time.  Make sure your braid to trace knot (FG) is sorted so you can easily retie this knot when at sea.  I tend to run a heavy ball swivel at the end of the trace and use a heavy split ring to attach this to the lure, makes it easy to change the lures.

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Grasshoppa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Apr 2024 at 9:43am
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Selling the following on behalf for a friend if of interest, purchased for same reason as yourself, used for one trip then been gathering dust, 
Feel free to make a reasonable offer and ideally if you have someone in Wellington to have a look over
Spooled with Jigstar PE8





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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote jakepitsville Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Apr 2024 at 7:31am
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we will be fishing on dropcast but would most def prefer to bring my own gear.  The new Gosa appears to have a fantastic review from AlanHawk  https://www.alanhawk.com/reviews/sgwa.html. which is the main reason im looking at these reels.  I have done very little stick baiting and still umming and ahhing about buying a stick bait blank or a popping blank.  

I've done a lot of popping for kings back in the day, my fitness and grip is pretty good as I train 3x week grappling BJJ etc and although not used to hours and hours of casting have caught a few game fish/swords this year.  but great idea to go and get the casthing back up to speed

Farmer - I was wondering about trace as some other I have spoken to are using 200lb and that seems so huge .
I have also been told to bring spare braid incase of being spooled, its hard to believe 300m with 22kg of max drag would be in danger??

Those Heru lures look good.

I have also heard of squashing barbs?  Safety etc.


keep the advice coming




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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Fish Addict Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Apr 2024 at 1:43pm
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Poppers vs stickbaits for dogtooth tuna.  The Nomad website comments that stickbaits are preferred as poppers result in less hook ups at strike.  I have also read elsewhere (can't remember where) that when popping for doggies don't have the usual plop and pause retrieve.  It said use a steady wind retrieve.  Good luck.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote FarmerBrowne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Apr 2024 at 8:59pm
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Halco Rooster Poppers and River to Sea Dumbell poppers  are also commonly used and effective where I mostly fish now days (Aitutaki).  I personally find the River to Sea Dumbell poppers cast better than the Halco ones.

Make sure you change out the rings and hooks for something sturdier.

If you are taking a popper rod over I assume that you are paying for an extra bag and taking a rod tube over (or a piece of PVC pipe with caps).  Personally I would take over two rods (a stick bait and popper rod).  Bit of extra outlay but looking at the cost of airfares and charter it may open a few more options for you.  

The same reel will work on either rod.

I have some 200lb trace as well as 130lb trace over in Aitutaki but don't think I have ever used the 200lb.  I think if you end up with jonah on the end of the lure and it takes you into the reef you will probably get dusted regardless of whether it is 200 or 130lb.

Looking at a couple of old videos I noticed another thing I take over is some casting gloves - good to save the hands from the braid when casting all day, I also take over a good pair of pliers for the split rings.

I have one 16000 reel spooled with 100lb braid and a spare spool 10000 size also spooled with 100lb braid.  I also have another two 16000 spools spooled with 50lb braid which I use for trolling and live baiting around Aitutaki.  We have access to a small stabicraft boat over there when we go over for our annual trip.

I have not bothered squashing barbs on the hooks but the charter skipper may have some preferences around what he wants happening on his vessel.

This fish was on a stickbait


This one was on softbait gear


The beauty of stick baits is that you can let the rest of the crew do the hard work raising the fish with the noisy harder to work poppers and you can then sneak a dirty little stick bait in behind their lures and catch their fish.






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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Keith C Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Apr 2024 at 2:14pm
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Awesome fish FB. Excellent work on the softbait and 10lb braid. How long was the softbait battle?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote FarmerBrowne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Apr 2024 at 8:34am
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I think we would have had that fish on for about half an hour before we got it to the boat. 

We generally fish on the sheltered side of the island and have an offshore wind blowing us away from the reef.  That way if we do hook up to something reasonable it does not take very long before we are blown out to several hundred metres of depth.  

We have caught a few reasonable GTs and Neopolitan Wrasse on the lighter gear there over the years.  We are usually targeting smaller Mu which is a good quality eating fish.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote jakepitsville Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 May 2024 at 7:09am
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thats some  great footage there!  Ive just picked up some poppers and stickbaits to go with my small collection of bubble dip and ocea baits.  so pumped.  
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Fish Addict Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 May 2024 at 9:33pm
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When is your trip scheduled for Jacob?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote jakepitsville Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 May 2024 at 1:30pm
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Alan L Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 2024 at 12:22pm
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Just found this thread.
Dropcast's base is 5 min down road from me. He does well on the LoB trips - because he is fishing away from home - which is fairly hammered by other charters day trips. 
200lb mono leader is common. Because lots of those fish have sharp teeth and live in gnarly country. I had a Sargossa 1800, but that got knackered and I now use the 20,000s. Good reels capable of most what you need. But usually you will be putting max drag on most stuff. Firstly to pull them out of the rough stuff, and then there are the ......sharks. Lots of the good spots also hold sharks and it is often a race to see who gets the fish.
Good luck, should be a good trip. I should be there at same time.
Regards
Alan
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