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Old 03-05-2009, 02:04 PM   #1
wavechaser
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Default Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

This coming summer will be my third tuna fishing season and I would really like to catch something other than albacore. I have a couple of buddies on Maui who always talk about fishing the FADs (Fish aggregating/attracting devices), so I started doing a little research.

The link below contains the research papers detailing the design, deployment, and fish species attracted to FADs. Tuna and yellowtail really love the FADs.

http://www.spc.int/Coastfish/Fishing...oy/FAD_Boy.htm

DO NOT CLICK ON THE POP-UPS ON THE LINK BELOW- ONLY CLICK ON THE "DOWNLOAD" BOX

http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=4...4e75f6e8ebb871


I fish for tuna around the Guide Canyon and Willapa Canyon areas, usually between 30-40 miles out. There is a peninsula that extends between the two canyons that is around 1200 ft deep with either side dropping well past 3000 ft. I would deploy the FAD anchor on the peninsula at 1200 ft between the two canyons.

After watching terrafin shots the past two years, I wanted to find a spot that was usually in blue water and somewhat close to the green water. The spot also needed to be shallow enough to not break the bank on a couple thousand feet of line.

My plan is to first research the legal implications, design, deploy, catch YT, then eat hamichi.

I plan on making a 2' x 2' x 4' box of PVC pipe with a bunch of shiny streamers attached to a couple thousand feet of 3/8" polypropylene spliced to nylon rope (for elasticity). The line would attach to a couple hundred pounds of concrete blocks. All the design details are in the pdfs in the link I provided.

This type of FAD would only cost a couple hundred bucks and it would easily last from July to September. Probably no chance it would survive the winter.

Anybody else thinking about doing this? It could increase the chances of landing exotics on a regular basis.


Last edited by wavechaser; 03-09-2009 at 08:12 PM.
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Old 03-05-2009, 04:52 PM   #2
ron m
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

My computer is old and the operating system doesn't seem to be able to open the link you provided. Sounds like it's something you would deploy and leave there for the season. I'm not big on the idea of a bunch of us putting anchors and lines to buoys out in the ocean, seems like they could or would become a navigation hazard. Might be a good idea to also check the loction of the shipping lanes and any "transit lanes" for ships coming into or going out of port.

Sure would be nice though to know a place where the tuna or YT aggregate!

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Old 03-05-2009, 05:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

Quite the complete diagram on building and deploying them. Not to sound to cynical, but 30 to 40 miles off shore seems to me it could become a hazard. Like Ron mentioned above I think checking the shipping lanes would be a very good idea. Also, building a large enough buoy with a radar signature I think would be important.

I have yet to catch a yellow fin ..... so let me know when you have it deployed.
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Old 03-05-2009, 07:55 PM   #4
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

Ron- you need to click the "download" link on the left, then it gives you 4-5 pop-up ads with the real download box mixed in. It's a free doc storage site...what can you do

I would definitely put one of those cheap radar reflectors on the top. It would help me find it when I arrive before sunup . As far as shipping hazards go...it's a possibility, but I always see the big ships coming to and from the Columbia out many miles west of the spot I'm thinking of.

One more thing...most design plans call for about 50/50 poly and nylon rope. The poly attaches to the anchor and floats so it doesn't get hung up on the bottom. If I spliced stronger nylon onto the poly, I could cleat off the nylon at the end of the season and retrieve most of the rope after it breaks at the poly/nylon splice. No garbage littering the ocean.

I'm surprised no one has done this before with all the hysteria regarding exotics.
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Old 03-05-2009, 10:23 PM   #5
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

I love the idea, I have been working on a rig for 2 years. I think if it can work for in the deep offshore in Hawaii, it can work here. . Its a proven system around the world, we should be able to figure out how to make it safe (and productive) here.


http://www.fishingislandhawaii.com/fad.htm
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Old 03-06-2009, 07:07 AM   #6
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

When I went fishing off Maui last year at this time the skipper took us out to 4000ft, we left at 3:30 to get there at daybreak to find two weather buoys, in one hour with three guys we had landed 9 Mahi Mahi that ran from 35-45#. the skipper said the plankton that grows on the lines of the bouys attracts bait fish and he said that's the only reason those game fish hit the brakes and hang out.

Best fishing of my life so far so I think it would be an interesting experiment but not sure of the ramifications.

I found this link that talks about them in the waters off Australia and it seemed pretty popular.

http://www.bluewatermag.com.au/dec02feature2.asp

The best fish eating so far also...

FD
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Old 03-06-2009, 01:36 PM   #7
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

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Originally Posted by Fishing Dear View Post
When I went fishing off Maui last year at this time the skipper took us out to 4000ft, we left at 3:30 to get there at daybreak to find two weather buoys, in one hour with three guys we had landed 9 Mahi Mahi that ran from 35-45#. the skipper said the plankton that grows on the lines of the bouys attracts bait fish and he said that's the only reason those game fish hit the brakes and hang out.

Best fishing of my life so far so I think it would be an interesting experiment but not sure of the ramifications.

I found this link that talks about them in the waters off Australia and it seemed pretty popular.

http://www.bluewatermag.com.au/dec02feature2.asp

The best fish eating so far also...

FD
Pretty good info on your link. It says that something as small as one PVC pipe can attract fish.
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Old 03-06-2009, 01:47 PM   #8
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

I don't think a FAD would be much of a shipping hazard due to the sinking nylon rope and the radar reflector.

One more thing that must be mentioned is that FADs are very good at attracting mahi mahi. Was it last year that someone caught one off the Columbia?



Here is the price estimate so far:
  • PVC pipe and connections to build the buoy- $50
  • Chain, shackles, thimbles, various connection pieces- $100
  • 1800' 3/8" poly, 600' 3/8" nylon- $200
  • Cement for anchor, eye bolts, etc. - $50
  • Guaranteed cost overruns- at least $100
  • Gas to deploy the thing 20 days in advance of 60 degree blue water- $200
Picture holding a YT or dodo on ifish- Priceless

FYI- FADs in Hawaii also attract BFT, BET, Marlin, the list goes on and on.
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Old 03-07-2009, 08:54 AM   #9
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

If it works I bet it wont be long before our coast looks like a giant under water disco ball. Where do I chip in so I can have the numbers.
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Old 03-07-2009, 09:16 AM   #10
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

Submarines do not necessarily follow shipping lanes. They go wherever they want. Submarines sometimes take out tethered bouys that are not on anybodies charts. Can't see underwater!

Sounds like an idea but I would not be surprised if it didn't survive very long.
As far as navigation hazards, I am more worried about crab pots lost from the commercials a little closer to shore.
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Old 03-07-2009, 09:18 AM   #11
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

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Originally Posted by still floatin View Post
If it works I bet it wont be long before our coast looks like a giant under water disco ball. Where do I chip in so I can have the numbers.
They're guaranteed to attract fish, but who knows what type of fish they'll attract off our coast...mackerel...various types of sharks...who knows! I'm keeping a wetsuit, mask and fins on the boat so I can jump in and check out the wildlife after it's deployed.

One of the research papers says that throwing a scoop of bait next to a freshly deployed FAD will speed up the habitation process.

Splitting the cost with a couple people is a great idea. You could build a bigger buoy or you could build a couple of them and set them a couple miles apart.

The buoy I'm building will have a bunch of 20' shiny streamers and pieces of floating and sinking rope attached to simulate a kelp patty. Imagine having GPS coordinates to your own patty! Increased odds of YT at some point in the season.
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Old 03-07-2009, 09:38 AM   #12
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

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Originally Posted by pijon View Post
Sounds like an idea but I would not be surprised if it didn't survive very long.
I wouldn't be surprised if it didn't survive very long either. A shark could bite the line, a bunch of floating debris could get caught on it and increase the tension past the breaking point, submarines, etc. That's why it would be good to split the cost with a couple people.

There is a very good paper that details specific design techniques to increase the lifespan of FADs. http://www.spc.int/Coastfish/Fishing...oy/FAD_Boy.htm
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Old 03-07-2009, 05:53 PM   #13
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

take a deep deep breath. just head up to the edmond ferry docks and slip into the water if you want to see crap dumped in the water and left to attract fish.

deep breath. deep cleansing breaths. remember the amoutn of line you would need to just touch bottom out where we fish. that would be a lot of anchor line. don't forget current alone would put a heck of an angle on the line that would send it very deep.

best of luck with that one.
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Old 03-07-2009, 07:54 PM   #14
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

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take a deep deep breath. just head up to the edmond ferry docks and slip into the water if you want to see crap dumped in the water and left to attract fish.

deep breath. deep cleansing breaths. remember the amoutn of line you would need to just touch bottom out where we fish. that would be a lot of anchor line. don't forget current alone would put a heck of an angle on the line that would send it very deep.

best of luck with that one.
I take it you've never fished a FAD in Hawaii, Socal, or Mexico...

2400' of water x 1.5 (according to research papers) = 3600' of line = $300

Sounds pretty doable to me. Doubters/haters are charged extra for GPS numbers.
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Old 03-07-2009, 09:06 PM   #15
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

If anyone wants to do a FAD out of the CR (Dean, this sounds right up you alley) count me in for whatever it takes.

How about a half dozen pallets in the CR Canyon?

Mike C
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Old 03-08-2009, 11:56 AM   #16
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

Took a charter off Kauai last year - the boat captain lamented that the FAD's had been changed recently - seems the old ones had a whole bunch of cargo netting attached on which fish-food-things would grow, and therefore attract little fish and big fish. Because of concerns with turtle trapping, they had to remove the cargo netting, leaving just the buoy and chain. They still work, but not like they used to. Those FADs have been around for years and are marked on charts.

I don't think that building a FAD is a matter of duplicating anything natural. I think what you want is something to provide shelter and a place for fish food to grow. The cargo netting seemed like a good idea for that.

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Old 03-08-2009, 03:01 PM   #17
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

ATTENTION.
Wavechaser I went to your link on the first post and pulled up the first document and the FAD. My computer got attacked by viruses from that link. Please be cautious, I was fully protected my Macafee and it still got me, it only took me 3 hours to kill the bugger.

Watch out guys.
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:03 PM   #18
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

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Originally Posted by Fish Hawk Adventures View Post
ATTENTION.
Wavechaser I went to your link on the first post and pulled up the first document and the FAD. My computer got attacked by viruses from that link. Please be cautious, I was fully protected my Macafee and it still got me, it only took me 3 hours to kill the bugger.

Watch out guys.
That's pretty weird about the first link. Mediafire is a legit site and I only got one Realtor dot com pop-up the last time I clicked on the link. Make sure you only click on the pop-up that actually downloads the file.

Vek- yeah my buddies in Maui told me the same thing about the netting. It can trap turtles and also gill small fish, which in turn prompts shark bites. The netting can be replaced with numerous 20-30 ft lengths of floating poly line, sinking nylon line, and shiny metallic plastic streamers. You can attach the line to the actual buoy and all the way down the 20 ft of chain. Throw a scoop of chovies next to the buoy after you deploy it to speed up the habitation process.

The anchor, line, and connections are pretty straight forward, but the actual design of the buoy is something I'm still debating. The three main problems are a) creating enough bouyancy, b) reducing the drag (streamline the design), and c) durability.

I'm thinking about using 4 lengths of 4" PVC pipes somehow strapped together that are wrapped around a steel bar with an eye connector welded on the bottom to connect the chain, which connects to the nylon line.
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Old 03-09-2009, 02:11 PM   #19
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

I'll chip in $100 for one off the Columbia. I mean heck thatís about what Terifin cost, we won't need there service any more if know where the fish are likely to congregate. I'll even help build it. How about tying 50-100 crab buoys together into a raft, ghosts pots seem to float around forever.
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Old 03-09-2009, 08:51 PM   #20
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Default Re: Want to deploy a FAD? (fish aggregation device)

I am pretty excited about this experiment because I think it could open up a whole new fishery. Imagine the anticipation of deploying the spread a couple miles before reaching the FAD and the possibility of hooking something other than albacore!

Even if the FAD was located in green water 50% of the time (due to the shifting blue/green line), I bet it would still hold fish that cruise back and forth from the blue to the green. We've all caught pigs in murky green 58 degree water on the troll home. FADs might require rewriting the rules to the OTC.

The largest expense of a FAD is the line. Research papers call for 1.25 to 1.5 times the depth, depending on how sure you are of the depth. For 2400' of water you would need somewhere around 3000' to 3600' of line.

A poly and nylon whipped splice works the best, with enough poly to float several feet of chain off the bottom, but not enough to reach the surface. You also want a large portion of nylon (for elasticity), but not enough to sink to the bottom.

In 2400' of water, I would use 2400' of 3/8" 3-strand poly and 1200' of 3 strand nylon.
  • 2400' 3/8" poly- 2700 lb test- $150
  • 1200' 3/8" nylon- 3300 lb test- $180
I'm sure there are cheaper line prices out there, but 10 minutes of surfing found the above prices by googling "net-tech distributing inc."

Anybody have any ideas how to dump a 1000 lb block of concrete off a little boat without rolling it?
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