Thursday 01 NOVEMBER 2012

Tackle specials and angling politics

from Downrigger Shop

G’day lads,


Kingies! If I ever tire of thinking about them or fishing for them, drop me over the side at Brown’s. Dave Gardiner writes:


Hi Andrew, received my jig order and have already put them to good use. A really good week for big kings & special things, last week.

Most caught on jigs, except for the Emperor.


Mate, only one thing pleases me more than hearing of clients’ success with our tackle. And that is, when they send in pics too!  Thanks so much for the great report, the clients look really happy. As they should be!

Bob Penfold fished Norfolk Island:


Had rain and high wind for a couple of days but finally got out for a morning fishing Saturday.  The sea was just a light swell with cooling breezes. Launching and retrieving the boat was a pain.

We caught a bunch of red throat Emperor and some other bottom fish.  I caught a nice 7 foot bronze whaler on the Penn rod fitted up with my 6500 Shimano reel and your 50 pound braid.


Fishing in 107 metres of water is not my kind of fishing, but that is where they fish all around the island drop offs.  They fish with massive deck mounted fixed Alvey reels, 200 pound mono with 5 hooks attached to a chain that is dragged around the bottom while Wayne and I were happy fishing two baits fixed to 40 pound mono trace. The red throat emperor were good fighters and simply fabulous on the barbecue.  Close to the best fish we ever ate.

We used Steve Ford, a local fishing guide. His boat was really great to travel in and to fish from with short half cabin and two115 Johnsons.  Cost was $120 each for a great half day on the water.  We did not try for kingies or snapper as there were sharks simply everywhere taking fish, jigs and gear.  There are a few snapper 24 miles run to the north but we did not bother chasing them in the short period we had to fish.


Excellent news Bob, and glad everyone enjoyed themselves. A trip with the womenfolk to a renowned fishing spot requires some care and diplomacy, which we all know you have in spades.

Grant B is still on a high, after a big trip to 1770:

This trip is the Power Boat Anglers Club yearly trip. This year about 20 boats made it up to 1770 from Brisbane. We were reasonably lucky with the weather, although there were a few days where the wind was from the NW, which never fishes well.

We got out to the reef a few times, the best effort was an overnighter Thurs/Fri last week. Anchored up overnight in Fitzroy Reef lagoon. Up early next morning and straight into some big pearl perch, reds, maori cod, rosy jobfish.

Home after lunch, with an esky full of quality reef fish.


Trust you. What a great result Grant, and haven’t you had a few of those this year. Had some HTML glitches trying to post on the PBA site, but will give it another go this weekend.

David stopped by our stand for a downrigger at the Newcastle Boating and Tackle Show on Sunday, then sent a query about getting started:


It was nice to meet you on Saturday at the boat show. I hope the down rigger works. You said you will send me some bait needles when you have time, this would be much appreciated .Can you also forward the fishing marks off Port Stephens we talked about, that would be fantastic.  Please let me know next time you are fishing this way would like to meet up if that’s ok.


No probs at all Dave, but that’s a pretty big topic! Let’s divide it up, starting with bait gathering? Here’s the best bait grounds in your back yard, the western corner of Cabbage Tree Island. Check marine parks regulations before fishing it. It’s a declared bait ground, for yellowtail and slimy mackerel only:

Here’s the marks for a top bait spot. Save them to your GPS if they might be useful:


If your sounder screen looks like this, you're in the right place:

Managing sabiki bait jigs can be a pain, the little hooks stick to everything. I take them out of the packet and cut each one into two pieces, then rig with sinker. When you get to your spot you want to rig up fast, catch bait fast, then stow the sabikis away fast. Wrapping them on those little rig holders works well:

If all goes well, the result should be a tank full of these:

Here’s a top spot to downrig slimys off Port, the south west corner of Little Island. Kingfish stack up here in their hundreds on a run out tide, in summer:

Mark C is keen for the WA demersal fishing ban to be lifted in mid December, so he can get back to chasing samsons:

G'day mate here are a few pics of our last trip to Jurien bay WA. We booked a house there for three days and the weather was on our side this time. All the prayers to the fishing gods paid off and we managed to get out 30 km in my little boat, first drop resulted in a double hook up that put smiles on our faces from ear to ear and resulted in 6 kg snapper for my mate and a back busting 17.5 kg sambo for myself.

Can't wait for the demersal ban to finish so we can head out again. Keep up the good work regards Mark


Too right I will Mark and thanks, for your support.



Hoping this Karratha bloke’s a stranger (!):

Graham sent an order for carbontex, and included a great pic of his beaut Spaniard:

Thanks for letting me know that you have 0.5mm sheet in stock. I have ordered a sheet a few minutes ago. I will also post on a forum where others have been chasing 0.5mm sheet.


Photo attached of a fish caught on the spinning reel that I previously replaced the drag washers with carbontex. Was a mate on the other end of the rod and he was wrapped about catching a 10kg Spanish mackerel on a spinning reel but it is the rod that I use all the time for mackerel.

0.5mm carbontex in stock now, that’s the one often used for overhead and bait casting reels.

To order, click below.

George needs our readers’ suggestions:

A friend was fishing on Cuttagee beach just south of Bermagui and caught a salmon, which spat out many of these tiny little fish each about 20-25mm long. Does anyone know what they are? Some were still alive and swam off quite happily.


Interesting! You can bet one of our readers knows, George.

 Lads, imagine an island sited in the middle of strong currents, and surrounded with reefs and steep undersea drop offs. On big tidal runs there are whirlpools and over falls but unlike say, North West Australia, the water is clear. The sea around the island swarms with some of the world’s most sought after game fish including green job fish, Spanish mackerel, huge GTs, and sailfish. Now imagine the place has had no sport fishing whatsoever, has no virtually no commercial fishing at all and the fish have never seen a lure. Yes you guessed it, Socotra Island of South YemenJ This trip report from 360 tuna definitely worth checking out:

Doug writes in, re Lowrance fish finders:


Hi Andrew, I recently purchased a down rigger off you at the eastern creek 4wd show. Still waiting to try it out but other commitments are stopping any attempts. I thank you for your prompt action on sending the DVD, lead weight and manual out. You enclosed a note to send you my email address so you can send me information about setting up my Lowrance depth sounder for full affect. I will appreciate any help in setting up the sounder, the manual doesn't help much at all.


Doug, I can barely change a light bulb, so I’ve become expert at tracking down advice from the experts. In the case of HDS sounders, if you follow this advice to the letter, the improvement in performance is incredible. Just entering the ID number on your transducer cable lifts Lowrance performance by 30% +

Wayne from Sydney went chasing blackies, and had a lot more success than I have lately:

Well thought I'd better get back to dangling a line so I ventured up the coast to some rocks near Avoca. Totally not equipped with either shoes (with spikes), clothing or tackle. But I had a couple of floats that must have been in storage since uni days. (really!!!) , a 7 foot spinning rod with egg beater and I was off. A couple of casts latter whilst standing next to the locals who had 15 foot carbon fibre rods and centrepin reels, I latch onto this little beauty. Did everything wrong even dead lifting him up the rock face. (no net or gaff!!) Well I told you I was not equipped. 45cms and 1.1Kgs.


Magic, mate. I have not cracked one bigger than 25cm this spring, it’s been pretty frustrating.

Tim and Jim scored big on Port Jackson sharks AKA Lion Island jewfish:


We tried for the squid first and caught 3 squid within the hour, size would have been around 28cm not bad for a feed, we had to move due to the wind and get some cover and the plan was to come back and continue catching squid, this did not happen.


So we went around where the wind would not hit us and thought we would try some fishing for a while and maybe the wind would die down, we got the pillies out well i was using them, Jim’s reel goes off and stops then a bit of a fight as he starts pulling his line in he caught a Port Jackson Shark not a bad size and it was some fun, we tossed it back in, mind you i still haven’t had a bite.

Once again he brought up another one, all up catching 3 Port Jackson Shark, i guess that’s something.

It was still a bit windy so we decided to call it a night, I went to get the squid to take some photos of our catch, I worked it out he was not using the pilchards, now we will have to do it all again.


They’re one weird looking critter, Tim! Not even one squid left, for the BBQ?

Matt Reid is stunned no-one booked his charter boat, on Saturday. So am I:

Hi Andy. What a great day out on the water on Saturday. The weather could not be better and the same goes for the fishing. I still cannot believe that there was no one that wanted to go fishing. Well my mates had a great weekend with heaps of Kings landed both days. I must say Saturday was the better day with the squid playing the game as on sunday a lot harder. The kings on Sunday were smaller but still fun on the light gear.

Saturday we landed around 20 Kings over the 70cm mark and lots of smaller ones. I must say we lost just as many to very light leader 8lb on 70cm Kings is good fun. We had 4 triple hook up with only landing all three once. I think this is the start of a great session.


Lads, if you haven’t caught a kingfish yet, get a few mates together and book with Matt, aka the King of Kings. You’ll learn more in a few hours with him than you will in six months, on your own.

Michael booked a charter and it worked very well for him:

Just a short note, we had an outing with Trial Bay Fishing Charters (South West Rocks) in September, weather was great couldn't say the same about the water temp very cold. No need to guess who caught the best fish, the larger Cod was a tad over 9Kg clean weight and we had a very happy lady at the end of the day.

The lady with the Pearl Perch was on her first trip out, Saturday she was a bit seedy  but came good on Sunday when she caught  the Pearly.


Top report Mike, I really am missing the place.

Marc sent in a motivational pic, showing kingfish stacked up east of Ballina:

Check out this picture. Look at all of the kingfish hanging on the front ledge.


Strewth, if that doesn’t get your blood racing you’re beyond hope.

Same with this, from Rick in Brazil:

That's an attack of a big Peacock Bass. Can you imagine the sound of this attack? Sounds like a grenade being blowed up. *G*


Thanks Rick, my ECG needle just went OFF THE CHART.

Rod passed on a pic from his mate on the mid north coast:


Andy a picture just in from Cory. His mate jigged these off their local reef. The big one weighed 12 kg


Thanks Rod, wish we’d seen some of that action on Wednesday J.

Herb got out on Port Phillip Bay, for yet more success:

3.2 kg fish    this morning... a  seal robbed me of another..This morning 23/10/12 3.8 kg fish....Bob Cerisara my fishing partner for the morning.. Seal took another one as I was lifting it into the Boat. more to come.


Beautiful. Keep the pics coming Herb, I want to track the progression in size. J

To politics, and it never fails to fascinate me how low the greenies will sink, for attention. At the start of this year some greenie no-one’s ever heard of declared that the common yabby was in danger of extinction. Have you heard of anything more ridiculous?

Six months later a bumper yabby season is predicted for summer, with a bag limit of 200 yabbies a day, in South Australia:

Lads, a request? Please send a line or two to NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell, urging him not to back down. You don’t have to be from NSW to do it. Nothing big required, here’s my effort:


Dear Premier,


Glad to see the EDO’s budget has been cut. Please ignore their tantrum, the public’s had enough of Green extremism. Best wishes, Andrew Hestelow


Just do it my friends, tiny efforts like this can be quite worthwhile if done at the right time. Which is now.

Here’s the email address, click and send:



Thanks once again to all our readers and contributors. This is the one hundredth weekly report and it’s amazing how much it’s grown over the last two years. But without your pics and reports there’d be nothing worth reading. So please – keep them coming! Cheers,


Andrew Hestelow

Managing Director