Custom rods for Blues

Discussion in 'Strictly Billfish' started by FM-Outside, Jun 28, 2017.

  1. FM-Outside

    FM-Outside Newbie

    Name:
    Frank
    Boat:
    A little river boat that I irresponsibly take to sea from time to time.
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    Some buddies and I were down in the East Cape for the first time last October and we stumbled into some awesome blue marlin action. In the 3 days we targeted billfish we raised 15 fish and hooked 9, of which 5 were nicer blues in the 300lb range and 2 of them looked like they were over 400. In the end we only managed to land 2 small stripers. We're pretty sure the weak link in our tackle was some off the Wal-Mart shelf 50lb big game that we spooled up right before the trip. However, In the spirit of not letting a good tragedy go to waste we're using our failure as an excuse to spend some money on heavier gear.

    We're getting some custom rods made to handle heavy drag on 100-120# line. I'm looking for suggestions on what blanks and components to use. glass or composite, what length, uni or slick butt etc. I've been looking at some XXH composite blanks from rainshadow and United Composites that are popular with the west coast big tuna guys but haven't found much info on what the billfish guys are running.
     
  2. FAT CAT

    FAT CAT FAT CAT

    Location:
    Baja Sur, MX
    Name:
    Bill Burkett
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    Blue marlin fishing was awesome last year. No matter what rod you use, if you're fishing lures you can expect to loose half your bites. If you know how to bait and switch you can up the catch ratio significantly.

    I'm a rod builder and it sounds like you're looking at blanks designed for fishing tuna on the rail. That would not be a good choice for stand-up blue marlin fishing. You want a blank no longer than 61/2 foot with a different action than the "rail rods" use.

    There are good blanks for the job from Baston/Rainshadow, United Composites, Pheonix, Seeker and Calstar. Your builder should be able to help you with blank selection.

    You might want to post this in the rod building section here for more opinions.
     
  3. J.A. Dunnigan

    J.A. Dunnigan Newbie

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    J.A. Dunnigan
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    Don't waste your time. Seeker makes the best rods you can buy--all of which come w/ a lifetime warranty. Haven't bought anything else for the past 20 years.
     
  4. soopaflyjm1

    soopaflyjm1 Member

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    J Money
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    Reel Fun
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    Or you could go with the guy that was seeker and broke off to make the best rods period. United Composites
     
  5. Joe Mancinone

    Joe Mancinone thunnus69

    Name:
    Joe M.
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    The Crabby Hooker
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    Randy Penny designed the Hercules line while he worked at Seeker. Great blank, they sold Seeker and no longer make their rods in house, they're made in Washington state. I switched to United Composites and have been very happy with what Randy has done since buying United Composites. I still build on Calstar for my stand up and trolling needs.
     
  6. SouthBayKiller

    SouthBayKiller I've posted enough I should edit this section

    Location:
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    Robert
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    Listen to Bill, not only is he a spectacular rod builder, but look at his location, i think he knows more than he is leading on to here :D.

    Don't get caught up in brand loyalty, get caught up in rod build and action that works best for your purpose. As Bill said, a rail rod is gonna kill you big time trying to fish it stand up off a moving platform with no fulcrum point to leverage it against. Lots of short blanks with softer actions from all the major manufactures for exactly what you are looking for.
     
  7. bays90

    bays90 Member

    Location:
    Kailua-Kona HI USA
    Name:
    Chris
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    46' Viking, Mi Novia, Quepos, Costa Rica
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    Bill has some excellent advice we have all of ours made on Calstar blanks, we use Connley fishing out of Florida. We have put ours through the trials and have had nothing but good luck with them. We tagged 39 blue marlin in 3 days on our best trip last year. Over 200 blue in 2 years on them, and some big fish as well a 654 pounds blues and some in the 700s in Hawaii in Cabo in 2015. I would say that the rod is important but for more so would be to get a good harness, we use the black magic harnesses for stand up fishing there are several other quality harnesses out there. We usually average right around 35-40% catch to bite ratio while fishing lure just like Bill said.
     
    blowncar and FM-Outside like this.

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