Un-buttoned troll fish

Discussion in 'Fishing Chit Chat' started by wils, Jul 9, 2007.

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  1. wils
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    I have PBed marlin but never tuna. I am reading a LOT of reports about un-buttoned troll fish/tuna. With marlin and straight mono, we always hit the throttles to compensate for mono stretch and then let the boat set the hook. No light line here. 80# all the way.

    How are you guys reacting to your albie jig strikes? Are you immediately shutting down? or are you leaving it in gear - possibly speeding up - to let the mono "stretch" to get taken up and have the boat set the hook?

    In the sport boats, it takes quite a while for the boat to slow upon backing off the throttles so the stretch factor is easilyl being compensated for via 80# and stiff drags settings. Not so in a PB. PBs slow quickly and stop. What size line are you guys trolling with? Maybe that is a major decision maker as to gassing or backing off?

    I'm not looking for a discussion on what's the right way to react upon the strike, because there never is just ONE right way to do anything in fishing. (or internet perfect way, anyway ;))

    I'm just curious as to why there are so many missed jig fish so that I don't duplicate what is NOT working when its time for me to step up to the plate.
  2. Saluki
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    Great question Bill, I was wondering the same thing.
  3. Bottom Line
    Online

    I always keep going for at least a 5 count - clears the tuna away from the rest of the gear and gives his buddies a better chance at joining in on the fun.
  4. Limits
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    We also heard of a lot of fish coming unbottoned on Friday while we were out. We didn't have that many missed fishes as out of 13 jig strikes and we only lost 1 fish.

    I was at the wheel during most of those strikes and what I did was give it a little gas after each strike.

    We were also using 65-80 lb test and had the drags tightened pretty good. From the time we'd get a strike to the time I put it in neutral, it was about 5 seconds.
  5. Bigpondonly
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    10 count turns singles into quads...and it's really cool to WATCH the fish come up and wack the feathers
    Dave
  6. BiggestT
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    I agree, a good 10 count to hang even more fish, drop a bait or two back and start a chum line. We had one come unbuttoned on a Rapala XRap that we left hanging while working the live bait. It came unbuttoned at the boat after we finally started reeling it in. It rolled and twisted out the treble hooks. That's what can happen with trebles and those double tuna hooks. For meat fishing (i.e. non-IGFA legal), I rig my feathers with two single 7/0 hooks, points facing each other. It's called a scissor hook rig. It's deadly and you'll never have a problem with pulled hooks.
  7. locobro
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    I troll with spectra to feather/jethead leaders, not alot of stretch. Give it about a three count and put it into neutral, by then it's all said an done, double or triple....or single. I switched the double hooks to 4x treble hooks because I had had fish come unbuttoned at boatside, took care of that problem. Just one person's opinion.
  8. red_teppin
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    It could be circumstantial that those who decided to report just happend to pull hooks. We are making assumptions based on incomplete information.

    That being said, with the tuna so close there are lots of inexperienced anglers out there.
    Improper drag settings, bad rigging and fighting techniques are sure to take its toll.

    Almost every report contains "They bit the small black and purple jet head..." Maybe some people are rigging their small and "micro" lures with improperly sized hooks? A micro lure rigged with a small hook on 80# with drag settings to match? Your going to here stories like "Bullshit! The whole boat fished cows with XXX hooks and we did'nt loose any!" Don't try to convince me that you won't pull more hooks on 80# with a 3/0 hook. I go with a minimum of 5/0 double (tuna style) or 6/0 single hook.

    One theory suggests it takes a certain amount of drag pressure to take most of the stretch out of the mono. Thus one reason to set drags to 25-33% of the lines rating. I troll with 80# but with only about 12-15lbs of drag. Many of my friends troll 40# (P.B) and do fine. Becareful though, albies have brittle mouths and I can't see it taking much pressure to drive a SHARP hook home OR rip some lips with improper hook size to drag ratio.

    You could make the arguement that if a "belly" or "arc" forms in the line (billfish) the drag of line in the water has enough pressure to pull drag but not set the hook on hard mouthed/billed fish; thus throttle hook setting. I feel if your troll fish pulls drag, that albie is hooked.

    IMHO
  9. 1:11
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    Sharpen those hooks. A good file from home depot will put a good sharpen on them, not just a little hook file, but something you can shave metal with.
  10. wils
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    Thanks for the tips and suggestions, guys. I've known most of you for a few years now and know that you have the "fish on board" to back your advice.

    Sharp hooks and give that fish a severe case of whiplash is a good start. Matching hook size to jig to fishies mouth means re-rigging the pre-packaged trolling jigs in some cases?

    I guess it looks like there is a "learning curve" involved here, even if its only trolling for albacore. With the cost of fuel and boat maintenance these days, the cost of losing "easy fish" adds up. I'm hoping the albies pop-up behind the channel islands this year and I want to be as prepared as I can be.

    BTW: Getting "short-bit" causes me to utter bad words at myself.
  11. Scrapper
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    On Sunday I had two knock downs that did not stick. Both were on the outriggers. Was it the slack in the line caused by the rigger releasing that let the fish go?
  12. Captain Curt
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    One problem that I see on Sport boats is that people are pumping the troll rod when they are reeling in the fish in. You need to keep preasure on the fish at all times. When you pump it and let slack in the line, you wear a hole in the lip and the fish can turn and get loose. There is a reason the deckhands are yelling "Reel........Reel........Reel."

    Curtis.........

    The boat Hanna.......
  13. Limits
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    Hmmm...thats true. Our lone lost fish was on the single speed troller which was getting pumped in. The other rods had 2 speed reels which made horsing the fish in mucho easier.
  14. Chas'n Tails
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    Just another opinion. At 7kt troll speed you are covering approx. 11.6 ft per sec, if you wait for a 10 count to pick up another jig fish you have covered an additional 116 ft away from biters. Not many of you can throw a jig that far, not counting line set back and drag and slide. I believe that a 5 or 10 count raises odds of more jig strikes, but reduces odds of bait fish.

    I like 60# min line double 6/0 hooks, drag setting firm, immediate to neutral with a shot of bait on your way to the troller, reel in steady and quickly no pump if possible, reel in other gear as fast as possible with clickers off to possibly pick up another on the slide, bait poles in as quick as possible = better oppotunities to pick up bait fish which is what fishing is about for me. Jigs to me are just a locator, bait fishing is the real deal. This the way I was taught 36 years ago and this the way it has always worked for me. I was on someone elses boat on Sunday and we lost both fish on a double doing it with a 10 count and loose drags. I was devistated, only for a minute or 60. Couldn't say much, not my trip, not my boat.

    Just another "Old School" opinion learned from one the best fishermen I ever met.
  15. Laukia
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    On Sunday we had 17 jig strikes and they all stuck, but we did dump 2 of them. One was on the gaff and got off as it was coming over the gunnel and broke off. The other loss was after a quadruple hook-up and at some point the lines must have crossed because the next jig strike broke off and the line was rough and nicked up were it broke. I checked more closely setting the lines after that. We fish 3 50lb. outfits and one 40lb. We started with 2 smaller jigs rigged with single owner open-eye 6/0 hooks crimped to a Sampo 150 lb. ball bearing swivel. The other 2 were standard sized 6" jigs with regular double hooks also with the swivel in the eye of the hook. We switched over to 3 smaller jigs and one regular sized jethead towards the end. Red and black seemed to be the ticket, but we did get one on black and purple and one on lime green. I was trolling around 6.1-6.3 kts. I took it out of gear after about 5 seconds.....maybe less than that a few times. Pretty tight drags......but not stupid tight. The 2 corner jigs are a little heavier and set out shorter. The inside 2 are staggered with one about 10 feet past the the corner jig and the farthest back one just inside the end of the boats wake. This setup allows me to turn on a meter mark or whatever and not cluster all four lines. It worked Sunday. It sure helps when the fish want to rumble!
  16. gecsr1
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    Yes I agree with the 6/7 kt troll speed, then a 5 to 10 count before pulling the throttles to neturel.... you will definetly increase your odds for additional jig strikes, and setting the hooks .

    This is what works for me, I also know there are many other ways of accomplishing the same task at hand....

    ps this is a great post... good info here....
  17. Smudge
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    Yes jigs are the locator. TURN THE BOAT! Don't cut the throttle. You can still get the in-gear 10 count and load up the other jigs, and get your baits in the zone of biting fish and the jig outboard of the turn actually speeds up a bit.

    If you just keep driving straight after the first hook up, you might load up the jigs, but essentially you'll be driving away from the school, like you said. So turn the boat imediately while still in gear, the boat is still moving but not directly away from the fish.

    As far as dumped fish goes, I can almost gurantee it has to do with what Cooter said more than anything else. You can pump the rod if you know what your doing and you know how to keep steady pressure while doing it. If not, just keep that tip high and grind. On 60-80lb you should have those jig fish at gaff in about 45 seconds. With two people on the boat you should be able to have one guy clear all of the trollers and the other guy hooking fish on bait. These are mostly albacore, treat it like a dog on a leash, lead it where you wnat it, you're in charge. On trolling gear, I can bring an albie to the exact spot you want to gaff it, every time.
  18. skifisher
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    Above all else, check knotts and line for abraision. I think more fish are lost to poor knott tying and line damage than anything. Knotts, like other things, should never be done dry.

    On one of our fish Mon. I forgot to set the clicker (DUH!) and got a strike and it must have been like a 30 count on that one, landed him tho. no other takers.
  19. Chas'n Tails
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    I'll give your Turn during 10 count method a try. I am always willing to modify/try something new. If it doesn't work for me I can always go back to what I know. Thanks for the info.
  20. red_teppin
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    "...bait poles in as quick as possible = better oppotunities to pick up bait fish which is what fishing is about for me. Jigs to me are just a locator, bait fishing is the real deal."

    :beerbang:

    Yes, sometimes your pump quits and your bait rolls. Yes, sometimes your desperate and all you get are troll fish.
    But baitfishing is really why I get up way too early for that exhausting, all day/night ass kicking! There's nothing like soaking a bait and getting ripped!

    again IMHO