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Old 12-07-2003, 03:46 PM   #1
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Default Pilar's topics that have been made permanent

Handlines

Tuna Gear Handlines

Tuna Pictorial

I don't know much about this, so I hope it is in the right order. I think these should stay posted to the top, so that you can find them.

Thanks, Pilar!
Jen

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Old 12-08-2003, 02:20 PM   #2
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Thank you Jennie!
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Old 12-09-2003, 11:04 PM   #3
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Thank you Jennie and Pilar [img]graemlins/applause.gif[/img]
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Old 01-04-2004, 10:58 AM   #4
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Primo stuff...thanks.

I have never been Tuna fishing...don't have the craft for it...but this is still fun stuff to dream about! All in good time, eh?

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Old 03-20-2004, 12:17 AM   #5
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Ok Dan .. about TUNA! First let me say that my name is John and that I am a tunaholic.

The fish are juvenile Albacore and they range in size from 4 to 40 lbs. Very few over 35 and not many under 10 are caught by the sport guys. These fish come within 20 miles of our coast most years and several times have been caught less than 10 miles out. Mixed in with the schools of Albacore are Big eye and Bluefin. From what I have read the Big eye is almost never caught on hook and line and only a few bluefin have been landed. Albacore feed all night near the surface and can be found there at 1st and last light and for short times during the day. There is some research on telemetrically tagged fish that show an all night feeding behavior near the surface and a diving and rising behavior believed to be sleep during the day. The fish rise to within 30 meters of the surface and then glide back to depths approaching 300 meters before rising back up again.

The mostly albacore fishery might change this year as we have some new Salty dogs who have done the Big eye and Bluefin on the East coast. The technique they use back east is deep water jigging and bait at night.

What we do here is mostly trolling during daylight hours. Handlines and rod/reel with feather jigs, cedar plugs and also some casting plastic swimbaits with light tackle. The wolf pack is made up of boats of various sizes from the small (19') but tough 'Pilar' to the luxurious 'Julie Rose III' at 47' and all sizes and types in between. We hunt in groups and use this website to hook up for trips all summer on most any day of the week. Weather conditions and the infrared satellite photos on Terrafin determine the best days to fish. Trips start in early July and go through September and sometimes even into October. Many believe that the fish arrive before then and stay till after the effort ceases.

A typical trip lasts 12 hours. We leave before 1st light (0500) and run out 30 plus miles to seamounts and other known locations near the continental slope and look for blue, clear water at 60 degrees or better. 62 is about ideal. Fish can be found near sudden temperature changes called 'breaks', near floating debris and I believe they habituate bottom structure like pinnacles and seamounts even hundreds of feet down. Trips end due to the boat overloaded with fish, the ice all used up or fuel use or weather changing for the worse.

The pack arrives on the fishing grounds at 0800 or so and the hunt begins. Usually scattered over many square miles until the deal goes down. Once fish are located the radio starts squawking and we converge on the location. Nothing can adequately describe the chaos of a full on TUNA! bite but many fishers here on this website and others have made good tries at describing it.

I typically drive at cruise speed until I see birds sitting or working bait, cobalt blue 62 degree water or a temperature break of a 1/2 degree or more. Sometimes you will see airborne albacore, 'jumpers' in cooler water and getting them to bite can be a real challenge.

When the location is fishy enough we deploy our gear and troll at a fairly high rate of 6 to 10 mph. Most boats use a combination of handlines, divers and rod/reel aka standup gear. Some use all of one or the other. Standup gear is a 4/0 sized reel with four or five hundred yards of 80# spectra line and a 30 to 50 lb rod, typical. Many other combinations are used but that is pretty common. A handline or meatline is a line tied to the boat with a bungee shock absorber on the boat end. Most handlines are made of Ashaway 200# TUNA! cord which is about 1/8" and bright blue when new. Handlines come in various lengths from 30 to 100 feet and have a heavy duty swivel on the end for easy rig changeout. A diver is an orange surfboard like contraption about 10 inches long (Yo-Zuri 9.0) that runs on a short length of TUNA! cord and dives down 10 or 15 feet below the boat. The big line does not seem to bother the fish and albacore are in my experience not the least bit leader shy.

I use 200#, 7 foot mono leaders on all my feather jigs so that they can be used on handline or standup gear. Cedar plugs are on 7 foot, 100# or 150# mono leaders. I only use cedar plugs on standup gear because the fish will break the leader on the handline.

Whatever you fish you deploy in either a mass at the same (50' or so) distance from the boat or in a vee pattern with the lines at the corners of the boat farther out than the middle. I use diver boards, handlines and standup gear all together and deploy 5 to 8 lines total. And I use the vee setup with the corners at 150' for standup gear, 100 feet for the corner handlines, 30 feet for the corner diver boards and 50 feet for the middle handline. Some guys on the larger boats also use outriggers for standup gear.

Ok, so you are fishing now and there is no need to watch the standup rods at all. Just set the drag pretty loose and the clicker on. There will be no doubt at all when you get slammed. Handlines need to be watched at all times because they make little or no noise. Divers pop up in your wake and thrash around so a bite there is pretty easy to spot. In any case multiples are common and there have been days when everything gets slammed at once. 8 lines and three fishers quickly turns into a one legged man at an *** kicking festival.

These fish are nuclear powered and can swim at speeds approaching 40 mph. Nothing sounds like a 4/0 with 30 lbs of albacore peeling the line off of it. They do not tire very quickly and often sound in water that is over 1500 feet deep. Once we start getting slammed, the trick is to keep the boat moving and haul fish to the boat. I often throw handfulls of chunked herring into the wake and pump the blood over with the bilge pump on a strike to encourage more strikes.

TUNA! bleed like crazy and if not handled properly can trash around in the boat at blinding speeds, flinging blood and scales everywhere.

It is a very primal experience and will bring out the cave man in you in short order.

Sound like fun?

But wait there is more .... you quit at 14:00 and run in, bloody and sore armed. The boat looks like a tuna suicide bomber exploded inside the cockpit. You get back to Dopey bay at 16:00 or even 17:00. It is pretty hard not to have a huge S.E.G. painted on your face and you then spend 4 to 6 hours cleaning your 20 plus fish at the cleaning station. Much story telling, consumption of cactus juice and gear swapping goes on all evening. Someone fires up the barbq and the wasabi makes an appearance. Crews drag boats off for a refuel and ice stop. Some go home and some come back to the parking lot to spend the night.

About midnight you find a shower and a place to sleep. Some of you will overcome your common sense and fatigue and go again the very next morning.

My name is John and I am a tunaholic. I admit I am helpless with my addiction and there are only 120 or so days to go before the rodeo begins again.
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Old 04-13-2004, 04:36 PM   #6
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Pilar,
Amen tuna fishing is like heaven!!!! Just being out there looking for 62-63 degree water man I am drooling as I write.
Finally you come to a scum line with birds and then you see a couple of finners through your line out. Wham fish [potty mouth] on!!! Nothing better. Where do you fish out of? What have you heard about this year tuna fishing?
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Old 04-13-2004, 07:34 PM   #7
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Pilar, I think that was the best discription I have ever heard, now I want to be a tunaholic. You make me want to go right now.
Thanks,
Bob
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Old 04-19-2004, 06:10 PM   #8
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S.E.G. :smile: :smile: :smile:
YEAH BABY!!!!!!! THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKIN' 'BOUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
YOU GO PILAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!
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Old 04-20-2004, 08:42 AM   #9
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Hey WildHawg ... We got Halibut here too. Here's the 'No Excuse' Halibut rig in pictures.

Thank you Ocean Blue for the photo expertise. I couldn't do much without your help.

To do this rig you need some parts. This all came from Fishermans in Oregon City. Buy the swivels in the bulk pack, you get a better deal.


You need, per rig ...
~ (3) 2/0 250 lb stainless swivels.
~ (1) #7 60 lb stainless swivel.
~ (4) Crimps, American Fishing Wire # 7F8.
~ (2) 24 inch sections of 170 lb vinyl coated 7 strand stainless leader.
~ (1) Glow in the dark hootchie white, Chartreuse or whatever.
~ (2) Craft store plastic beads.
~ (1) 16/0 Mustad circle hook.
~ (1) Small cross lock clip.

Notice the swivel on the eye of the hook. They don't come that way and you'll have to open the eye of the hook by using a vice and driving a tapered, small punch through it. Lay the eye of the hook across a 1/4" gap in the vice jaws and tap the punch with a hammer. Just enough to slip the swivel through the gap. The pinch the eye closed using the vice.


To start out, form a flemish eye in one end of a wire with a swiveled hook in the middle of it. Get in the habit of sliding a ferrule on the wire before forming the eye. You can tighten this eye too tight, so pull it and roll it around until it is about 3/8" in diameter with 1/2 inch of bitter end sticking out. This takes practice so be patient. If you go too small the hoop will lose it's round shape.












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Old 04-20-2004, 08:44 AM   #10
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Position the ferrule on the bitter end with none sticking out the back side. If you have too much end and cut it off, you create a perfect place for line to get cut. If the ferrule is too far away from the eye when the bitter end is buried .. back the ferrule off and reshape the flemish eye so there is less bitter end. You can roll it in a circle and get that end to the length you want.


I use a 'Sta-Kon' crimper on wire leaders. Push in the groove down the middle of the double ferrule in several 'bites'. You can buy the more expensive ones and I would if you are crimping MONO leaders. You can over crimp and seriously weaken MONO.


Slide on a glow hootchie. 3.5" is ideal. Anything that glows will work and you can opt out of using one. Before fishing 'Zap' the glow in the dark with a camera flash for extra glow at 600 feet.


Slide it down to the hook. If you slide it straight down (hook hanging) you can avoid getting the fronds sucked up the leader and out the nose of the hootchie.


Crimp the barb down a little with the pliers. Some folks also offset the point on the hook so it is not directly in line with the shank. This is best done when you swivelize your hooks in the vice. Both tricks are reputed to make the hook more effective.


Add the middle swivel. Note the ferrule. If you forget ... you get to take the flemish eye apart and put the ferrule on.


Form the eye as before and crimp the ferrule.


Get the other wire and do the other side of the center swivel. Crimp again.



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Old 04-20-2004, 03:05 PM   #11
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Add parts to the last wire section to make the weight slider. Plastic beads prevent the slider from hanging up on either crimp.


Last crimp


Finished product.




Tight lines and sharpen those harpoons
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Old 04-21-2004, 11:12 AM   #12
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More carking technology. The deadly circle hook mooching rig. 'Puffin' won't fish the Pile without it. If you know big Jon and you know he has adopted a fishing method that is all you need to know.

This one works and so far I have boated every fish the sea offers with it except TUNA!

I aim to change that this summer.


Ok so now for the mooching rig. This was very hard to photo because Mono is invisible. We can improve on it later. Hopefully there is enough here to show you guys how to make a rig.

You will need some stuff. Take an empty line spool to the fishin store and buy 100 yards of 100lb Maxima or Berkley big game. This is cheaper by far than getting a leader pack. I have not found 8/0 circles in a bulk pack yet. RSKs come in a bag of 100 for about $1 each.

Per rig
~ (6) feet, 100 lb mono.
~ (2) 8/0 Gamakatsu circle hooks
~ (1) Rotary Salmon killer, clear with green fin. The big fin is preferred but the small fin works too.
~ (1) Trolling weight or banana sinker, 16 oz shown. Only Fisherman's in OC has the 12 and 16 ouncers. The smaller ones are everywhere.


Start rig by pushing about 2 inches of line (tagline) through hook eye and lay flat on hook shank.


Grab hook by shank, pinch tagline against hook shank and turn long end of line around hook shank and tagline counter-clockwise (viewed from eye end of hook). This is to avoid the seam between the shank of the hook and the eye, a potential failure point if there is a sharp edge.


Continue turning line around hook shank and tagline for 5 turns. Keep the line tight and the loops even and side by side. You may have to pull on the tagline to tighten the loops.


Hold tension on the coiled line and hook with the one hand (do not let go!) and feed the end of the line through the eye of the hook with the other. Pull the line through until a 3 to 4 inch loop remains.


Hold the line you put through the eye flat against the shank and turn the loop around the hook shank, tagline and the new line in the same direction (counter-clockwise) as before. Make sure the new line stays on the shank flat and you only turn the loop. It will twist as you do this but force the twist out and keep tension on it.


Go 5 turns like this and keep the loops even and side by side.



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Old 04-21-2004, 11:13 AM   #13
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When you get 5 on there pull the loop out of the line by pulling on the free end. It will form a tiny loop like in the blurry picture and then dissappear inside the knot. Tighten the knot by pulling on the tagline against the main line. Trim the tagline to 1/2".





Slide hook number two down the leader so it is in the same orientation as hook number one. Space the two hooks with your hand. The width across the average man's hand is four inches. This should be the distance between the eye of hook number 1 and the curve of hook number 2.


Repeat the snelled knot as you did hook number 1. Once completed tighten the knots by holding the curve on hook 1 and pulling on the leader end. It should look like this when done.


Slide the RSK on as shown. Use the trolling sinker bead chain end for the leader and the swivel end for your main line. To bait, jam the herring head into the clip and lay the upper hook (#2) on the back of the bait with the hook curve behind the dorsal fin. This will show you where to punch the hook through the bait to have the hook point end up just behind the dorsal fin. Punch the hook through with a circular motion and allow the trailing hook to swing free. Or you can try to thread hook #1 through the wrist of the tail to keep it near the tail of the bait. The spacing of the hooks should be such that the trailing hook ends up behind the tail to take care of any short striking Salmon or Halibut.



Have fun and ask questions.....I think we will revisit this one with better pictures.
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Old 08-31-2004, 02:39 PM   #14
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I think this deserves to permanent enshrined in the Tech section. How much longer should it stay here before it gets moved?
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Old 05-10-2005, 05:04 PM   #15
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Great thread! I have 1 question. With the double sleeves, do you crimp between the 2 wires or from outside in. If that makes sense. My crimping tool has flat lands not pointy grooves.
Help is always great.
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Old 05-23-2005, 06:39 PM   #16
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There have been reports of the crimps failing on the upper section of the rig. I think the weight beats the crimps apart.

So maybe try a plastic slider (Sturgeon slide-o) instead of a swivel and use a commercial grade crimper instead of the stake-on elecrical lug pliers I show above. Also I have been using plastic beads on the lead slider part of the rig to cushion the lead from the crimps.
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Old 07-12-2005, 12:07 PM   #17
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I am new to the board. Exciting place.
I went away from the circle hooks because I was missing strikes. Was not straightening the hook or pinching the barb.
Also we have been rigging with the weight at the bottom and a single Gamagatsu 10/0 J hook (because of the c-hook issues) about 18 inches from the bottom. I have made weight slider setup similar to this but they don't seem to work as well for me. Feedback on they way I am doing it now?
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Old 07-16-2005, 07:45 PM   #18
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Nice work..........Thanks Guys
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