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    Nantyglo, South Wales

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poleaxe21's Achievements

  1. I don't go fishing to lose carp, so it's barbed for me always. I do genuinely belive that barbless cause more damage, however, the potential for damage with a barbed hook is greater if used incorrectly. Most damage is not caused during the fight at all, but during hook removal. With a barbed hook, if you are struggling to remove the hook, simply push it all the way through (depending on where the carp has been hooked of course!) and snip the end including the barb off with a pliers. There is nothing worse than someone just ripping the hook from the carp's mouth, taking half the mouth with it.
  2. Hi there guys and gals. I'm looking for some information on the Kennet and Avon Canal. I've been doing plenty of legwork myself over the last couple of months and have a few areas i've been baiting but any information to help me fill in the blanks would be much appriciated. The idea behind fishing the canal is for overnighters between work. So ideally i'm looking at the stretches around Pewsey, Marlborough, Wooten Rivers, Brimslade ect. Although i am willing to look a bit further afield towards Newbury and Reading if needs be. Now judging by how little information i've come accross online i'm guessing that the few who do know anything about the carp on the canal like to keep things very close to their chest. So PMs if necessary please. I am only interested in the canal as a winter water as come march I'll be heading back to the gravel pits. Also, while i'm on the subject, there are a few small lakes just past the second canal bridge west of Wooten Rivers. They are just over the railway line. Does anybody know anything about these? Any help would be much appriciated. Cheers
  3. Needle knot for mainline connection. Leave long tag end in mainline (shorter tag end will be stiffer and can trap components). Only ever use in a rotary set up. No need for a top bead (fix ring desired length from lead with PVA tape for the cast). No leader should ever be used with a leadclip, inline, or running set-up. I.E. no leader should ever be used whereby the hooklink is attached directly to the leader via a knot. In the event of a breakage (of mainline or leader) the hooklink should be able to pass off completly. Also, prior to tying a leadcore leader it should be pre-stretched. This lowers the diameter of the leadcore making in less obtrusive, and easier for the hooklink to pass over it. Also, once leader is stretched, hold it underwater and sqeeze between your fingers to remove any air from within the fibres. I've seen leadcore condemed all too often. Carp safety is a matter of opinion and of fishing style. Snag fishing with leadcore if often condemed. I often use leadcore leaders when snag fishing. The train of thought being a landed fish is safer than a lost one. I've fished a lot of waters with highly abrasive snags and leadcore results in more fish on the bank. Simples. I also set up the lead with either a "choppa droppa" style set up, whereby the lead is lost on the take, or a "rotten bottom" wherbey the lead is lost if snagged (which depends on the amount of weed / snags in the vicinity of the swim). This means there is less for the rig to snag up on, and generally means the carp surfaces early on in the fight, thus lessening the chances of loss to snagging / weed. I will use leadcore with a drop off inline set-up when PVA bag (solid) fishing, but then i only use approx 6" of leadcore, for quick attachement purposes. The common argument that leadcore can kink and thus mean components cannot pass over it is rediculous. Any amount of tension on said kinked leadcore would instantly straighten it back out again. I don't buy into this! Leadcore is far from being the be all and end all. But it does have it place. As does everything.
  4. I caught the fish of a lifetime in Cheshire, 22lb of fantastic mirror carp, directly descended from the original stocking from The Surrey Trout Farm. To some people their fish of a lifetime is not necessarily their biggest.. Couldn't have said it better myself. Carp fishing would be better off without the likes of Pavyotts, and without the people who wish to fish there. Somebody has said above that it suits their needs due to age. It is true that many people do have to compromise as they get older. However, there are lakes up and down the country which can accomodate people with these issues, and DO NOT contain foreign / diseased abominations. We, as a sport, do NOT need it.
  5. poleaxe21


    Love the stuff mate. Still use it for hinged stiff links and combi rigs....
  6. When hooklinks are concerned it's often not so much an issue of breaking strain, but an issue of stiff / supple. Different brand of fluorocarbon have different properties (I.E. Rig Maroles is ultra stiff whereas ESP's Ghost is comparitively soft....) It'll be a case of having a play around with different varieties and eventually you'll find your favourite. Go with any reputable brand and you won't go far wrong. If you've never used it before then i would say go for a 15lb breaking strain or even a 12lb bs to start with. Tying rigs with a stiff material can prove difficult at first so you may encounter problems with an 18, 20, or 25lb....
  7. poleaxe21

    360 rig

    The 360 rig can be made safe by tying a very short (1") piece of stiff flurocarbon to the hook. Thread this through the eye of a mini ring swivel, then thread on a 3 or 4mm tungsten bead. Tie a knot in the end of the fluorocarbon and blob with a lighter. Basically you will end up with the same mechanics as a 360rig, but there will be a 1" section of fluorocarbon between the hook and swivel to minimise the chances of mouth damage. It's very difficult to explain well without a diagram to be honest, but i'm sure some of you get my just...
  8. With regards to leaders only ever being fished rotary style...I can accpet that a hooklink tied directly to a leader can be made safe, but only when said hooklink is of a lower breaking strain than both the leader and mainline. Even then, great care would need to be taken to ensure that you mainline has not suffered any damage during playing a fish or the retrieve. Any damage, however subtle could instantly make your mainline considerably weaker than your hooklink regardless of initial breaking strain. This would once again render the entire setup very unsafe. Due to this, i would always suggest a rotary setup (this includes fluro leaders, casting leaders, snag leaders ECT ECT ECT)
  9. Granted it is easier to fish leadcore in an unsafe manner than most rig components we use.... However...with a little common sense it can be made as safe as anything else on the market. I will only every fish with leadcore in a rotary set up, and i never employ a top bead. To set the hooklink during the cast i secure it with some PVA tape or a nugget of PVA foam folded over. I do not buy into the theory that leadcore can kink and that this will stop the hooklink becoming detached in the event of a crack off / other mainline breakage. Should this happen, any tension on the leadcore from a hooked fish, or encounter with a snag would immediatly straighten out the leader and remove said kink. Without the use of a top bead of any kind the ring / heli swivel will come off every time. If there is any weed present then i also employ a choppa droppa system whereby the lead is discharged on the take. If there is no weed in the immediate vicinity of the rig, but other areas close by are weedy and / or snaggy then i tie my lead on using 1.5lb bs mono, and once again secure this with PVA tape for casting. It is worth noting also, that due to the high abrasion resistance of leadcore, it can be a damn sight safer than anything else when in the presence of pea mussels or other abrasive snags. A water i've fished extensively in the last few years had a very productive far margin in front of some of my favoured swims. This margin was very snaggy, and these snags and bars we littered with pea mussels that made short work of most mainlines. Had i not switched to using long leadcore leaders i would not have landed the fish that i did. I would have, without any shadow of a doubt, lost fish to mainline breakages. This would have left carp trailing potentially long lengths of mono / braid, and in the vicinity of some serious snags. Is this acceptable? I think not. But whilst using leadcore i did not lose one fish (or suffer any crack offs which is another topic altogether...). Hence, no fish trailing anything, and no casualties.... I guess those of you who do not advocate the use of leadcore would have chosen not to fish that area at all then? Or maybe you would have accepted a few loses to mainline breakages, under the false impression that as your rigs are "safe" there wouldn't be any issues? I put that to you all.... The bottom line is simple. Leadcore (no....leaders of any description) should never be used where the hooklink is directly attached to the leader (i.e. leadclip arrangements, inline leads, running leads ECT). They should only ever be used in conjunction with a rotary set up. Also, leadcore is perfectly safe in the right hands. What i do accept however is that in most cases, it is in the wrong hands (the same could be said of fishing rods these days). Thirdly there are scenarios whereby leadcore, and any other component, harbours properties that make it the SAFEST option. Just one thing to add....as i stated previously i do not ever use a top bead in conjunction with leadcore leaders.....i see absolutly no need for this EVER. There is no excuse for employing a top bead of any description!
  10. The same could be said for barbed hooks, particles, boilies, sacks then. The only reasons people can give for banning it is via the use of hindsight and a few selective pictures published in magazines. It's no more dangerous, if set up correctly, than any other leader. Even mono straight through can tackle if a fish is left trailing it. I'm guessing you'd advocate the use of them dreadful "Safe-zone" leaders marketed by Korda? You know, the ones with multiple tungsten sections for the bead to get caught on? Hardly ideal is it. Secondly, what do you mean it offers no advantages at all? It does actually help the last 3-6ft of your line sit pretty (better than anything else, providing you prestretch it) flush to the bottom, although it does "tightrope" if angled on debris (the same as EVERYTHING else). It's durable, so the advantages are there if bars, mussels etc are present. I believe (I say believe as I don't know what it looks like through a carp's eyes) it is quite inconspicuous. It provides the best balance as to why leaders are used in the first place. It just seems people are jumping on the bandwagon recently, regarding the dangers of leadcore, even though it has been used for years. Why are people only just starting to make a fuss about it now? Was it not a problem before? Also, whilst I'm rambling. Why are tackle manufacturers still selling the same size leadclips even though they tell you, at every concievable opportunity, not to push the tail rubber all the way on, as it may cause the lead not to eject? Why not make the bloody clip smaller then to eliminate idiots doing so? I'm glad somebody else has some sense.... Leadcore as a componenent in no more dangerous than anything else we as anglers use. We are afterall dragging these poor things from their watery home. We will never eradicate all associated risks without giving up our pastime altogether. Nick, Leadcore used as a hooklink component..... The guy noticed abrasions on the cheeks / flanks of the carp as a result of the leadcore? This is unfortunate....i can see how this may happen....but then when i think back to the damage ive seen caused by supple braid as a hooklink material in the past i wonder if it's such an issue afterall... Slight abrasions (which carp suffer on a regular basis through the rigours of spawning) or deep, potentially fatal lacerations caused by what is in essence cheese wire....i know which i'd choose....
  11. Who sais that you cannot use leadcore as part of a "rig" (as in "rig" not lead setup....) Leadcore can and is used in hooklink construction.....
  12. The water that gave me my first 20, first 20 common, first 25+, and first 30.... Very good memories. Bit of a circus these days unfortunatly. Carp Society have ruined it by allowing day tickets but each to their own. Despite this i would fish there again. As said above...best looking fish in the country (i'm sat here in work and i actually have that first 25lb+ in a frame staring at me as i type - proper looker - just don't tell the missus it a fish on my desk not her)
  13. I used to be an advocate of maxima hooklinks with knotless knot and line aligner. Simples. That was until i actually witnessed two carp well in excess of 30lb feeding on my spot. One by one they picked away at my free offerings and then swam off leaving my hookbait (identical to the free offerings) in lone situ. I still belive that a simple mono rig will score well at time. But i have now settled on a rig that i am happy to take anywhere. I don't belive it to be complicated in the slightest. I basically wanted a rig that did the following things well: Low vis Good anti-tangle properties Allowed plenty of movement in the hookbait Avoided the attentions of bream Straight away my preference was for fluorocarbon to play a role to tackle the first two requirements. The thrid requirement was achieved by tying a very supple hair (actually very fine cotton) to a rig ring and mounting this, sliding, on the hook shank, stopped at the bottom of the bend by a hook bead (thinking anglers). To avoid the bream i decided to try going back to the days of the original hair and use 2-3"+ of seperation between hook and hookbait. This the bream find very difficult to deal with, and due to their small mouths, rarely get hooked. However, this in itself presents problems. Because i use critically balanced hookbaits, through the attentions of nuisance species it is possible that the hair may become tangled whilst in situ, and ruin the presentation (also a problem where crayfish are present - as in most of the waters i fish). This can be rectified by using a stiffer hair but then i would once again be sacrificing the natural movement of the hookbait. This rig is finished off with a piece of shrink tubing over the eye of the hook, line aligner style, and connected to about 8-12" of soft fluorocarbon. Sounds complicated? It's not. As you can see the rig is far from perfect. I do have to make alterations and sacrifice certain properties in different situations. When fishing marginal spots where crayfish are an issue i do stiffen the hair thus sacrificing natural movement in the hookbait. Also, this rig was designed with carp of 30lb+ in mind. Very large mouths to say the least. all of the large carp i hooked on this setup were well hooked, 2" back in the bottom of the mouth (this can't only be attributed to the rig, but to bait application...something to think about). However, towards the middle of October i dropped off my regular water for various reasons and i am currently fishing a water where the average carp is in the low doubles (but fin perfect, dark old creatures!). Suddenly i started receiving aborted takes, and even with the carp i did land, the hookholds left something to be desired (outer edges of the lips). This i could only attribute to the size of their mouths, and thus i have had to shorten the seperation between hook and hookbait considerably (also, shortening the length of the hooklink...). This has resulted in a few bream on the bank (but at 13lbs+ i'm not complaining), but since the tweaks i am yet to receive an aborted take, or lose a carp through a hookpull. Also, hookholds have been considerably better. The point that i am trying to make is that while very simple mono or braided hooklinks definatly still do the buisness, and yes some rigs are designed to catch the angler (excessive items of terminal tackle needed = increased profits) not the carp, there is still a place for the understanding of rig mechanics (something that requires an understanding of bait application and patterns...). I firmly belive that the analytical angler, who understands the mechanics of his rig, and who is willing and able to adapt to conditions and scenarios, will, ultimatly, perform better in the long run. Blindly following the latest trends in rigs is one thing. Being aware of what is out there, and formulating ideas of your own based on simple requirements, is another thing entirely, and not something to be ignored. Tight lines all. Happy tinkering!
  14. Right so am i the only one who has never had a single problem with korda hooks? Use both the Wide Gape, and Choddy a lot and since using one i have never had a single hook not be ultra sharp straight out the the packet, never had one open out, never had one snap, and never had one blunt without reasonably cause. I don't use Korda hooks exclusively, but i do use them a hell of a lot. Other patterns i love: Kamazan B175, original Raptor G-4, and Carp 'R Us short shank nailer.
  15. No such thing as a complicated rig....only an inept angler
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