Wednesday 17 APRIL 2013

Tackle specials and angling politics

from Downrigger Shop

G’day lads,


In the interests of ‘species diversity’, here’s a top report from Dan Selby:



Gday Andy, been getting a few nice Jewies of late. The season has kicked off nicely with a few respectable captures by my clients. You've been getting a bit of species diversity going on in the report so I thought i'd add a little more eye candy!! :-)




That’s a great result Dan because quite frankly, the last week or so off Sydney has been one of quiet desperation for most clients and friends. I got out on Saturday morning for just one sub legal, taken off the wreck on a jig:



Really interesting to see these blokes. They were using their electric motor hooked into the plotter to keep the boat on station over the top of the wreck, while jigging:



And yes that is Dr Mark to their starboard and Matt Cassar, off the stern. It’s a small world, this jigging caper J. If ever proof were needed that luck is a key part of fishing, Ryan Hayes’ experience on Saturday is it. A marlin, off a bait ball and out of a tiny trailer boat, straight out the front of South Head:



Hey Andy. caught this Black Marlin off sydney this weekend. went about 2m and approx 100kg. Caught on Shimano Stradic 5000FJ + Shimano Terez with 40lbs powerpro and 80lbs jinkai leader on a 30cm yakka. Here is a video I put down



The video is fantastic, do check it out. Well done Ryan, what a great angling moment.


Dave Price took this beautiful sail last week, further details not available:



Mark sent in a Blowhole Tournament update just in time, for the report:



Blues, Stripes n Blacks in the Mix-Kiama Leagues Club Blowhole Big Fish Classic 2013


We usually have Big Blue Marlin and Striped Marlin in April for our Comp, but this year we had a run of Black marlin as well. Despite several big girls (Blue Marlin) in the 200kg plus category none were brought to boat with 2 sightings of 300kg Big Blues going right through spread without striking! Probably the unluckiest angler was Kiama's Steve Banks who tagged an est. 130kg Blue (see pic) and missed out on a count back for Tag n Release with Snoop n Round tagging a Black Marlin first up to scoop the Tag n Release pool with Champion Boat, Angler and Most Marlin. Several boats all tagged one Marlin but none could add to their score. There were 2 marlin weighed on Sunday (Black n a Striped) that both went 2kg's under at 78kgs!



In the shark department, Outcast (Mitch Ryan), again came up trumps with a 78.50kg Mako on 6kg to Trevor Dowse that took out Champion Boat Capture, Angler and Heaviest shark


Your drag has to be perfect when a big fish jumps on your light gear. Not that this has happened to me lately J. But after selling at least ten thousand carbontex drag washers I thought it was time I manned up, and tried doing it myself. Here’s what happened.



First of all, the reel. The Daiwa Seagate 3500H Light is perhaps my favourite reel. Light yet powerful, it’s a beautiful piece of engineering. Mine’s seen a lot of action, so I was pretty sure it would benefit from a set of carbontex drag washers.


First job was to remove the drag tension knob, and then the little spring clip that holds the drag stack inside a recess on top of the spool. I then laid the washers out in their correct order. There were three metal ones, and three made from a synthetic material:



The gear needed was assembled. Firstly, a $20 sheet of carbontex. In the case of the Seagate, it appeared that 0.5mm thick was the best match for the existing washers. Some drag grease. Checked with various drill bits and found that the inside hole of the Seagate washer was pretty close to 23/64 inches:



I pinned the washer to the sheet of carbontex, using a stationery clip. The pic below gives you an idea of how many reels can be upgraded from one $20 sheet. Plenty. Next up was drilling the centre hole. Lastly, cutting the outside ring, using braid scissors:



Finally, a quick brush up with sandpaper and the new washer looked close to the old one. Original on right, home made one on left:



I repeated that twice, smeared both sides of the washers with drag grease, and reinstalled the drag stack in the reel. Too easy. The reel feels fantastic, and I have enough carbontex left to do another five or even more reels, depending on the size of the washers needed. So don’t be nervous about giving it a try because quite frankly if I can do it, anyone can. Click here if you’d like to try a sheet, almost all spinning reels need 1mm thickness:


Simon Milne had an encounter of the beakie kind too, but way off shore:



Hi Andy, nice stripe today about 120 kg on Goliath off Sydney - skippered by Dave Disney Willis.   Anger on the reel was Richard Szabo.    Quite a few blues hooked today...a few tagged. Awesome weather today. All the best Simon


Good one Si and thanks for the news. Bruce Rayment writes to remind me of the Hacking 100 comp, end of next week. With what looks like a strong finish to the season, this tournament could produce good results:



Can you include the attached in next week’s kingfish;) report. The Port Hacking 100 is the second biggest and final Central Zone Tournament of the season. Bruce Rayment


He he, ‘kingfish report.’ What nonsense! There’s been like, two kingfish in this week’s report. SO FAR, that is. Moo hoo ha ha haaaa. Shannon, from Shannon Outboards at Hornsby, says Mercury has a top promotion going which readers could take advantage of:


& go in the Win a Go Pro promotion, one drawn every week

Regards, Shannon Stocks, Shannon Outboards Service


Thanks, Shannon! One every week, that’s pretty good odds. Professor Jack, who has been of immeasurable help setting up the new folding boat, trolled a Head Start off the Hacking:



Hi Andrew, went out yesterday, fishing all the way south to Curracurrang (past Wattamolla). Just one bonito on surface popper and 39 cm tailor on trolled gar rigged on your Ballyhoo system. Look at the picture, the gar was almost the size of the tailor!

Love that rig, gar swims like alive at up to 4 knots.


Yeah, they’re so good. You know what, mate? I am thinking they would be so good for trolling and casting into the washes for winter tailor, starting soon. They cast a LOT better than the old four hook rig setup. Will give that a try when things cool down. Let’s face it, lads. Wives are the practical ones, in a marriage. David Bakker:



Hi Andy thought you would like this one when my wife makes good use of my spare fishing rods


Pink pegs. Could she be sending a message, Dave?


J We sent a jig order to Bill Pedemont last week. They arrived just in time:



Hi Andy, nailed this one off Montague Island on one of the new jigs I received in the post this week. She went 71cm.



Kings at 12 Mile until the jackets swarmed in! Flew out to Browns when on the way we saw some flotsam with bait around it. Pull up and dropped a spread of little cockroaches and jet heads hoping for a dolly. Ended up with 2! Then we had micro dollies jumping around the spread. They couldn't have been bigger than 20-30cms!



Anyway, hit the mountain and the strong currents predicted on the SST's were non existent.  We were drifting at half a knot from North to South. First drop resulted in a blue eye of no more than 5kgs. Next drop had us onto the biggest for the day at around 25kgs. Then a double and another single to round off the day. Bolted home at 28knots and we were inside the heads in under an hour. Great day, great company, BRILLIANT city!!


Good on you Mart that’s a top report. Looks like it’s nearly time to pull out the electrics, inspect flare expiry dates, do a radio check and prep for the winter time Browns runs. As to ‘the jackets swarming in’, here’s what happened to poor Geoff down south:


Hi Andrew, thanks for sending the line down to me so quickly. It arrived on time to go on the trip. Unfortunately the week can be summed up with the word leatherjackets. They completely ruined any fishing including off the rocks and wharf. So unfortunately no pictures to show from the trip. These things must be in unbelievable numbers as we could not find a place without them. If you were lucky you got 5-10 minutes before a school of them turned up so you were losing gear so fast it made it unbearable. They covered the sounder screen from 20 foot below the surface to the bottom in places. The thread line reels got a run on some blackfish in the estuary I am very impressed with them.


If it’s of any consolation Geoff, our Man in the Sand AKA Dave Tweedie from JB is fighting back:



This is about all there is around the Bay at the moment, little leather jackets in 1000's and green toads, making finding a few flatties a real jackpot. Everyone seems to be losing line or the bait is gone before it hits the bottom so the bathtub and a few goldfish might be better for fishing.






On such a high this week, over some new product feedback.

Regular readers will remember previous mentions of our ten inch SP squid lure project:



It’s taken ages to get the thing just right, correctly weighted, and swimming cleanly across a wide range of troll speeds. But we are getting there. Anyway, I sent out a few samples to our field testing crew, and feedback is starting to come in. Andrew Westlake writes from SW Victoria:


Hi Andrew, here is a story for you from the weekend out wide from here. I rigged all the tuna rods on Saturday ready for the Sunday trip out wide, but for some reason chose to photograph one of your trial soft plastic lures.



Some fish have been taking large white soft plastics cast into the schools, but we didn’t locate any of these Sunday. Well we only managed one fish from the very long day on the water, but you won’t believe which lure running in the shotgun position at 7 plus knots, out in the wilderness came up trumps !!



So the next question is, do you have anymore or can you get some similar ? The 20 Kg tuna was full of pencil size garfish by the way. The next email pic is of the happy angler with his very first Southern Bluefin.



Yes mate I do! Mick kindly ran me up a hundred nine inch ones which he’s delivered already:



and I’ve ordered 5000 from the factory to come with the May order. Popping 20 in the mail to you tomorrow and congratulations, on that nice bluefin. To politics, and I was flattered to be asked by Chris Wallis from the Fish Rock fighters at South West Rocks to attend a briefing, on rec fishing:


On behalf of Dr Wendy Craik, Chair of the Marine Estate Management Authority and Dr Andrew Stoeckel, Chair of the Marine Estate Expert Knowledge Panel you are invited to meet with them on Tuesday 16 April at the Sydney Institute of Marine Science (SIMS), Building 19, Chowder Bay Road Mosman NSW.


This meet and greet is being offered to key marine estate stakeholders as an opportunity to find out more about the new approach to marine estate management. Several sessions are being held and you have been invited to attend the session for recreational fishing stakeholders at 11:30am to 12:30pm. Please arrive 10 minutes prior to your session commencing.


Their offices are at Chowder Bay, in the old naval facility. The first shock was finding how palatial their HQ is:



Absolute Sydney Harbour waterfront which looked more like a resort, than a place of work:



A stack of hard core green bureaucrats were there including Graeme White and Bill Talbot, who is now Director of Aquaculture & Conservation at NSW DPI. I murmured under my breath to Rob Smith from the Fishing Party, ‘back to the future.’ Governments come and go, civilisations rise and fall, but the bureaucrats never change. Our host was Dr Wendy Craik:





Did you get that?


‘Multi-decadal ocean change.’


‘Ships of Opportunity.’


Seriously, what planet are these people on? Well, we do know they’re on a good wicket. Check the budget:



Eleven million dollars, at 30th June 2012. Now that’s what I call a Ship of Opportunity.


Dr Craik’s expertise in the jargon of red tape is phenomenal. Wendy wants a ‘holistic approach’ to the ‘assessment of risk management.’ Buzz words like accountability, stake holders, resolution, and data acquisition flowed from her like flood water from the mighty Tweed. As my eyes glazed over, I fought desperately for you blokes. ‘Must … stay awake … for the weekly report readers.’ The good thing was that, excepting the one or two fishing representatives who have a vested interest in spinning out the procedure, it appeared no-one was fooled. In amongst Wendy’s words there were a few red flags, which I hope my colleagues picked up on. Here’s a direct quote from Craik:


‘In the amnesty areas, which beaches need to be protected?’


Here she is referring to the Governments’ recent decision to open beaches and headlands in marine parks, for shore based fishing. She means her team will assess what sections need to be closed again. ‘Protection’ means protection, from you and me. As we filed out I saw the next briefing group assembling on the lawn, and wondered whether they were White and Talbot’s greenie friends.


In summation,


Same old bureaucrats

Same old agendas

Same old ivory towers


I am not disappointed, because I had zero expectations. When you see names on the list of people known to hate anglers, who would hope for something positive? The real question is, who put them on the list. We’ll explore that in next weeks’ edition. Thanks for your contributions and, if you haven’t sent in a pic or a paragraph previously, why not give it a try this weekend? Anything. An old image from thirty years ago, tell us about your boat, how marine parks or lousy boat ramps are making your fishing difficult. Until next week, thanks so much for your support,


Andrew Hestelow

Managing Director