Topshots

Discussion in 'Tackle and Rigging' started by TeamOso, Dec 22, 2006.

  1. TeamOso

    TeamOso Senior Member

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    I know you should use them when fishing braid, but I have always wondered why its necessary, when you may be puttin 20' of 50# mono topshot while using 65# JB? Whats the poiint of a topshot? And wouldnt it make sense to always use a higher test mono topshot?

    Just lookin for a little clearin up, I mean Im gonna use em just wondering why.
    My dad was askin me what Im gonna use it for and I couldnt really tell him why except that everyone uses em.:confused: :p


    Kevin
     
  2. Grescobia

    Grescobia Senior Member

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    Mono acts as a shock absorber.
     

  3. BIGFISH4YOU

    BIGFISH4YOU Guest

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    WE 200 LB GANOUN LEADERS ON 100 LB. SPECTRA..... THESE FISH HERE WILL EAT YOUR LUNCH WITH MONO TOP SHOT....
     
  4. Snagged

    Snagged Senior Member

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    Kevin,
    Please copy to a note book.
    A topshot is a shock asorber, a handling line for the gaffer, and something that can be tied easily.
    The reason you use a lighter topshot is so the mono will break and save your expensive spectra. Spectra does NOT need to be replaced every year or after a strong fight, mono does.
    By using short topshots you can easily change mono after every hard fight and eliminate that possible failure.
    Topshots allow you to change line size to heavier or lighter as needed if your in a finicky bite.
     
  5. BIGFISH4YOU

    BIGFISH4YOU Guest

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    WE JIG AROUND HUGE ROCK PILES IT IS COMMON TO GO THROUGH HUGE AMOUNTS OF SPECTRA..... WE DRIFT FISH..... IF ONE OF YOU GENTS HAVE A GOOD PLACE TO BUY IT IN BULK I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW..
     
  6. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    The idea of having to use lighter top shots in relation to your spectra is a misnomer. The mono is infact a shock absorber to a point as is the flex of your rod. Top shots are generally chosen based on conditions and type of fish being sought. If abrasion is a concern then a heavier top shot may be the ticket. If stealth is the concern then a light top shot or wind on would be prefered. The point is you can easily change on the fly as conditions change. You can change from mono to flouro without tying mono to flouro knots which many folks have trouble with.

    Spectra eases through the water better than mono and does not get a coil break. We on the west coast, especially in the long range sector, have been going to shorter and shorter top shots with wind ons now being 25 ft. or less.

    The greatest advantage to spectra and top shots is you only have to replace the top shot portion when the mono stretches or abrades. With hollow or solid spectra the connections are made with a very simple and strong cats paw to the looped wind on which can be purchased or made at home. The switch out can be done very quickly with almost no chance of a bad connection.

    Spectra can last for decades. Many of us havent found the maximum time the spectra can last especially if put on secondary spools, designed for cleaning, and let sit in clean water for several days, then put back on the reel. Depending on how often you use the gear once a year is a good schedule however your nose will be a good indicator as the spectra will start to stink after a while. Many folks have never washed their spectra but we usually know who those folks are.

    Best of luck on your trips. Enjoy the topshots and windons.

    Jamie
     
  7. mcgolfer

    mcgolfer Guest

    great first post jamie (fishordie). welcome to the site and we look forward to getting the west coast perpective on things. i have also gone to shorter top shots and use windon leaders tied my spectre. the ability to switch out leaders quickly and securely is the main reasons i fish with them. there are lots of problems with fishing spectre but the sensitivity of spectre and its small diameter more than make up for any of its short comings....rick
     
  8. MrBill

    MrBill Senior Member

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    Fishordie,
    I've noticed that smell many times but you are the first person to bring it up. I guess I need to give some of my spectra a bath. I don't want to be known as the "B.O." spectra guy. Do you just soak it in a bucket fresh water?
     
  9. BIGFISH4YOU

    BIGFISH4YOU Guest

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    ALL WE DO IS SPRAY IT OFF WITH FRESH WATER
     
  10. Ragman

    Ragman Moderator

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    Hi Jamie!

    Welcome to 360!

    Hope your and Buzzy's YFT/Topwater West coast conversion is doing well!
     
  11. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    Happy Holidays to all and thank you to all the well wishers and welcomers.

    I have heard many ways of cleaning the spectra, all of which use some form of holding reel like the plastic Swifty, including soaking in a bucket with some even putting a small amount of bleach in the water but the one that works for me is a no brainer. I have a number of plastic reels and am able to put 5 at a time in each of my toilet tanks. Thats right, the toilet tanks, not the bowl. That is fresh water that comes in every time we flush and of course some agitation. You don't have to think about them for around 3 or 4 days depending how bad the smell is.

    The only concern is for those of us with CRS we might forget where the heck we put them.

    The use of the plastic spool only has one draw back. When you transfer the line from your Reel to the plastic spool the line goes on loose to allow fresh water to get inbetween the layers. We all know the line has to go back on tight when replacing it back on the reel. The washing spools, which are spoked to allow water inside, are not very sturdy. This becomes a two part process as you will need either a line winder, with a metal or heavy duty plastic spool or a second empty reel big enough to handle the line. Either way you now transfer the line from the Swifty Spool onto this second reel which is then used to apply tension to the line as it goes on the intended reel. The best way is to have a great relationship with your local tackle store and let them do it for you which is my method of choice with BoB Sands Tackle... LOL

    I have had the good fortune to learn a ton of information from some of the industry insiders as well as developing methods of my own. Interestingly enough I am one of the few folks I know to use coated spectra for my dry fly fishing for trout. It is awesome as again the line size is under the normal diameter for standard lines and very gently lays on the water and is a bit less susceptable to current.

    The opportunities afforded us using hollow or solid spectra combined with looped top shots/windons had revolutionized the industry. Giant reels are no longer required for giant fish as line capacity is increased with spectra. Those of us using Hollow can remove and resplice any abraded portion of the spectra that has been nicked or abraded with 100% strength splices that cannot be felt when running through our fingers. They stuff is just plain amazing.



    Jamie
     
  12. MrBill

    MrBill Senior Member

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    Fishordie,

    On the SD long range boats, is there a limit to the amount of tackle you can bring onboard for a 14-21 day trip?
     
  13. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    Yo Mr. Bill,

    Technically 10 rods is the accepted limit. Some boats hold to it and some do not. It will also depend on the number of passengers. Those longer range trips generally are limited in number of passengers so extra gear should not be a problem. I would check with the front office of the boat your choose.

    I just got off the Excel from our 16 day that started the day after Thanksgiving. The trip was limited to 24 and one had to drop out. It was great having all that extra room as the boat can hold 32 - 36 passengers comfortably.

    I will be leaving Tuesday on a 10 day on the Shogun with Both Norm and Bruce on the boat. The bigguns have been showing their faces so we can only hope they will stay for the season. This trip will be limited to 24

    Have you chosen a trip yet and if so what boat and when??

    Enjoy your fishing

    Jamie
     
  14. MrBill

    MrBill Senior Member

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    No, I haven't chosen a boat or picked a date. My problem is time. I need more spare time in my life. I understand the boats are slow but what's the hurry when your gone for a couple of weeks. I gather consuming fuel must be a problem unless you have fuel stops during the trip.

    The long range style boats here in Texas are short 2 day trips. They will run hard and suck up over 1500 gallons in that period. We only have to travel from 100 to 150 miles to hit pay-dirt. The Tuna are here year round but aren't very big. I would pick 70 pounds as the average size tuna. You are allowed 3 per trip per person. Of course, you will also catch amberjack, grouper, and all the stinking barracuda's you desire.

    The shortest trip I ever did to a floating rig took 16 hours dock to dock. We covered 320 miles according to the GPS. I was on a very fast fuel burning machine with 3 other guys. We all caught limits of tuna.
     
  15. ALW

    ALW Senior Member

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    Fishordie

    What do you take on those trips for tackle? What do you think would be a minimum? How are the fish kept for such a long trip? Are they frozen? Thawed out at the dock cut up and refrozen? When I fish Alaska my fish are fillited vacpacked,frozen each day and put in a 50 lb box to go back on the airline. I live in Houston so am some what limited by the airlines. My airline tickets are free but the baggage isn't.

    Al
     
  16. MrBill

    MrBill Senior Member

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    Fishordie,
    I was reading where the shogun just returned with 5 toads over 300#'s. I think they had 20 over 200#'s. Hope you have a 50W packed. Doe's anyone on the west coast use a 80 or 80W for stand up fishing? I use 80W's in the GOM standing up for marlin. I not exactly a light weight so it doesn't bother me.
     
  17. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    Yo Mr. Bill,

    I havent fished a wide reel in many many years. My cow reels for smaller baits including macks are Accurate 30's with High speed gearing. I will use my Accurate 50's, also with high speed gearing on skippies or small yellowfin baits. With the advent of spectra, better connections, higher drag settings and better rods, I just don't find it necessary to have a 50 wide. I do use an 80 on the kite only just because I want that fish done quick and a new bait in the water. A 50 wide, two speed would be fine for the kite but I happen to have the 80 and it is designed for kite use. The thought of fishing the larger reels all day and night gives me no pleasure at all and I have never come close to being spooled on my 30's on any of the cows I have caught or for that matter any of the very large sharks I have brought to boat while fishing for tuna, including an estimated 800 pound thresher. I am also now fishing 12 size reels, both Accurate and Cal's super 12, which should be fine on cows as well. I have caught big fish on them, just no cows yet as I only recently got them. I hope that situation will end this comming week as I leave on a 10 day on Tuesday. Admittedly, I would not recommend those 12's to new commers, as they are specialty reels for cows and really are fantastic for tuna a bit smaller.

    Each of use needs to fish that which makes us most comfortable and for me the 30's are the ticket.

    Happy holidays

    Jamie



    Fishordie,
    I was reading where the shogun just returned with 5 toads over 300#'s. I think they had 20 over 200#'s. Hope you have a 50W packed. Doe's anyone on the west coast use a 80 or 80W for stand up fishing? I use 80W's in the GOM standing up for marlin. I not exactly a light weight so it doesn't bother me.
     
  18. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    Yo ALW,

    Happy Holidays.

    You may be asking the wrong person on the minimum tackle required as I bring twice as much as most folks. But then again, many people ask to borrow or I need to give away items as well.

    When fishing for cows I have 6 rods set up specifically for them. I Have 5 Calstar 755XXH's and one Calstar 760XH.
    One is dedicated as a kite rig, 3 (My main go to rigs) are set up with Accurate 30 High speed reels and 2 are set up with Accurate 50's one of which is a High Speed. Both are dedicated for bigger baits.

    My name is Jamie and I am a Jig A Holic. So I have 3 or four rigs set up for this application as well as big poppers but only one is set up for casting jigs/poppers to cows and It is not quite right so I am having a new Super Seeker 6470XH built just for this need.
    If I see the tuna are mixed with wahoo or the tuna are under 150 pounds, then I will go with these setups.

    I have one rod dedicated to making mackeral or squid.

    So far that is 11 rigs but somehow I manage a few more.
    I now have a Super Seeker 10 ft. Ulua I am using on big fish just because it is different and a blast to use. This is set up with a 12 size, two speed reel and lots of spectra.

    Last trip I was testing a couple of new rods so that took me up to 14 but that was not necessary yet I managed to use every one of them.

    Most of the Long range San Diego boats are now equiped with both freezers and RSW (Refrigerated Salt Water) holds. The RSW's keep the fish just above freezing providing for Sushi Grade fish upon your return. Unfortunately, the RSW's can only maintain the quality of fish for around 6 days max. This means on a ride down, fly back to the Hurricane Bank, you can only use the RSW for the last day and sometimes 2. If you are doing a ride down ride back you can generally get 2 days or more if you continue to fish on the return trip back to San Diego. What is great about the RSW is Crew Generally removes the Gills and much of the guts before placing the fish in the hold so there is NO blood contamination of the meat.

    Lately, the big fish have been found closer to home so we are getting around 3 or 4 days of RSW at the big fish grounds.

    The earlier caught fish are placed into the frozen holds. The temperature and brine solutions are checked fairly regularly to assure the best quality of the fish upon thawing.

    The processors are waiting at the docks and generally trade frozen for frozen and fresh for fresh but that is negotiable. You can also trade either for cans.

    The organization for long range fishing out of San Diego has truely matured. Just about everything is provided for and is generally first class. The Crews are generally the best in the overall fleet and have been trained to provide customer service. The experience the angler gets on these boats is nothing short of phenominal.

    Many times you can fish 24/7 but few folks would want to miss the dinners. Most of the chefs/cooks are creating dishes associated with fine restaraunts not fishing vessels.
    It is easy to over eat and most fishermen come home a few pounds heavier but infinitely more relaxed and happy.

    As far as gear goes, when you come from out of state, many of the boats can provide loaner gear, generally free of charge. These will usually not be old gear as many of the boats have sponsers. They will be packed with Spectra and a top shot so you only pay for additional top shots you actually use. You can ask the front office to reserve what you need when you book your trip. If you wish to bring your own, that can be done prior to your own departure and can come by freight or ?? Again, talk to the front office and they can advise you on the most cost efficient means of transportation and how they will store your gear until you arrive.

    Short or long range fishing is a blast anywhere you do it regardless where in the world you do it. San Diego, however, may be the best of all the locations short of running yachts out of a mother ship.

    Enjoy the day.

    Jamie

    Fishordie

    What do you take on those trips for tackle? What do you think would be a minimum? How are the fish kept for such a long trip? Are they frozen? Thawed out at the dock cut up and refrozen? When I fish Alaska my fish are fillited vacpacked,frozen each day and put in a 50 lb box to go back on the airline. I live in Houston so am some what limited by the airlines. My airline tickets are free but the baggage isn't.

    Al
     
  19. MrBill

    MrBill Senior Member

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    "My name is Jamie and I am a Jig A Holic."

    Great info Jamie. You must know Ksong. He is a jigging nut also. I believe he went to Kona for Christmas with his family. I'm sure that he will do some jigging or toss poppers to GT's while he is in Hawaii.
     
  20. ksong

    ksong SPONSOR

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    "My name is Jamie and I am a Jig A Holic."

    Great info Jamie. You must know Ksong. He is a jigging nut also. I believe he went to Kona for Christmas with his family. I'm sure that he will do some jigging or toss poppers to GT's while he is in Hawaii.

    I am in Big Island now. I arrived at Kona with my family on Sat and am staying at Sheraton Keauhou Bay. Our room is right in front of rocky shore, but I couldn't cast my poppers yet. :) I spent the whole day yesterday driving around the island and visited Valcano National Park, Hiro and Waipl'o Valley.
    Dinner at Huggo's was very nice.
    I told my family that we need a rest today (Christmas) so that I could go fishing. :) But everything goes wrong. The plan to cast poppers in front of my room at night had to be given up due to strong waves at night.
    The plan to rent/charter a boat had to be given up also as most boats don't sail on Christmas. I just drove to Honlkohau Harbor. The entrance of the harbor looks good for casting. I might try there tonight.
    As I fly to Kauai tomorrow afternoon, The chance of fishing on a boat is slim.

    view from my room
    [​IMG]
     
  21. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    Hey Mr. Bill,

    Though I have never had the pleasure of meeting Kilsong in person we have exchanged numerous Emails and threads. As you know, we jig fisherman have a commeraderie that goes beyond just regular fishing. Even if we never meet, though that would be a shame, there wil always be an underlying affinity for the sport and jig fishing in particular.

    I will know in January the cost for the artificial only, 8 day trip out of San Diego. This will truely be a unique experience and I hope to meet Jig and popper fishermen from around the world to discuss and implement all forms of non live bait type fishing. We will film the event and send out CD's to tackle shops and OEM's everywhere. I do not doubt the info gleaned on this trip will be anything less than fantastic with the general fishing population having access to latest techniques.

    Jamie

    "My name is Jamie and I am a Jig A Holic."

    Great info Jamie. You must know Ksong. He is a jigging nut also. I believe he went to Kona for Christmas with his family. I'm sure that he will do some jigging or toss poppers to GT's while he is in Hawaii.
     
  22. fishordie

    fishordie Senior Member

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    Yo Kilsong,

    Just how do you sleep at night knowing the sea is calling for you to throw a popper at it??? You must be one tired fisherman. LOL

    The view is fantastic. I lived on Kauai for a while when I was a teenager and it too is magnificent. What a great way to spend the holidays. Aloha

    Jamie