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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The difference 0.5g gram can make is tremendous.

This post is aimed at HRF/ LRF and Eging all of which utilise a falling lure as a basic or fundamental methodology.

However:

We've had a decent amount of time to figure stuff out now and I know I keep saying line diameter is paramount. Well, it is but, lets suggest we are all using PE 0.8 8 strand for this post. Simplifies it somewhat.

For this discussion, there is no wind and no current, not yet anyway.
The braid is floating and we have 3ft of 12lb FC leader.

Let me tell you, HRF often relies on bottom contact. It is vital to feel the bottom and know when, and how far OFF the bottom a lure is at any time.

This is known as, finding your range.

Then we have 2 basic falls, free-fall and curve-fall.

Free-fall:

Cast, lure hits the water, we spool line off the reel by hand to assist a zero drag situation as much as possible. Try to send all the line down the drain (one hole).

Curve-fall:

Cast, lure hits the water, we close the bail and get the rod 90 degree's to the line. The line forms a VEE WAKE in calm water. Drag slows the fall but it falls back towards our position and takes are easier to detect. With a heavy enough jig, paddle tails can activate on such a fall.

The Lift or Jump:

Your lure is on the bottom, no take yet so we decide to move it. If jig fishing HRF or LRF we might jump the lure or, slow roll it. In fact, Eging is similar except that a decent Egi will sit on the floor at a 45 degree angle with it's kanna (hooks) in the air so to speak. Look at Egi's to understand the difference between basic, live and jumping and....

You might notice the weights are angled slightly differently but, the biggest difference is in the body profile. Jumping Egi's have wider, flatter underbodies.
ah-ha....

Go back to French rigged Xlayer, rigged upside down, HRF deadstick for Wrasse. Flat side down, wrist flicked, lure JUMPS up and drops back down. I can attest to the fact that the fall is sliding in nature and, the lure jumps up at a higher angle than a xlayer rigged standard. It re-falls slower with planing too.

Basically, think about weight and overall shape and size.

3.5g with a very thin tailed sp is going to rocket down freefall. On a curve fall it might fall very straight back toward us. Paddle tail might swim down, or, it might spin on a freefall if the tail is too wide for the weight it is carrying. This is why it is important to match jig weight with tail width. Zander men have known about this stuff for ages and Savage-Gear lures are matched, tail and weight.

Think it doesn't make a difference...

Yamashita Naory Basic #1.8 5.5g fall-rate 3 to 3.5 seconds per meter.
Yamashita Naory Shallow #1.8 5g fall-rate 10 to 12 seconds per meter.

Amazing eh, same body, same density, 0.5g difference in jig weight and nearly 3 times the fall time for 0.5g difference.

Think back guys to all those times one bloke was getting Pollack after Pollack, we all though it was just overall size and colour. Maybe it was much more.

Remember, not all jigheads are equal and one 5g head could be wider than another, one SP wider bellied, thinner tailed etc..

There is much more to this stuff than you might imagine and only now are we starting to unlock the mystery.

I wish ALL lures had a sink rate.
They are going to pretty useless as printed right now because both saltwater and it's temperature make a huge difference. Colder means slower falls, warmer means quicker.

Think about that.

Pollack or Bass might prefer a fall rate of 6 seconds per meter. You find that combo in late April is working great. However, by late August the same combo just doesn't catch so many Bass ?

Is it the Bass or the fact that the very same combo is now falling much faster ?

I hope this post opens up a debate on this topic because it is one largely ignored and one I place great importance upon...

So, there's the opener...
 

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Keith. Can't thank you enough for the stuff you write about, really has opened my mind to many new possibilities. Soft plastics are growing on me every time I fish them. Wish I had more time this year to implement everything I'm learning, but quite simply, I don't have the time. Can't wait for next season already. Keep it up mate!
 

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Great post Keith. Now I just wish it was easier to get lighter heads with decent size hooks!! Been a struggle to find them, or make them infact.
 

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Thought provoking as always Keith. Not sure I will ever get my head around all of it but fascinating and helpful. Thank you for all the time you take in passing on this info, great stuff!
 

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Would love tyo live and fish somewhere that I could actually SEE what my lure was doing. So that on those times where I cant feel the lure reach the sea bed, I can see the bloody thing! As Matt said tho, Thanks loads Keith. Stuff like this makes the grey matter work. Especially when actually fishing because I have the habit of going off into "Andy World"...

Andy....
When dealing with such small weights and decent hook sizes (Do I take it we are talking 3/o and up???), then would you not need to know the weights of your hooks to begin with? Also, rather than trying to make tiny lead heads for the hooks, would it not be handy to have your regular hooks sizes and weights written down. Alongside of which, you can then write down the weights of given lengths of soldering wire. IE 2cm = 4g or whatever. That way you can just use given amounts of soldering wire on the hook to weight it at the desired amount??
Another thought being that the wire can be used around the worm as it sits on the hook, whilst also being used to peg it in place (Just cut the wire at an angle when trimming it and it becomes sharp enough to go thru any SP's I have. If not, use a tiny amount of fuse wire on the eye). If fishing weedless, then it can go around the body of the hook and twisted tightly to attempt to grip and stay in a given position on the hook too. As I am sure I read somewhere, Keith saying that the weight all on the nose of the lure will make it sink faster and in more of a vertical dive, than set further back towards the bend on the hook.


Speaking of bends in hooks, I wouldn't be at all surprised that if when you have worked out how everything falls and works using your normal hooks, then when you start bending hooks to impart specific movements to your SP, you are going to be faced with an entirely new set of "figures" to work out.....
 

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Another thought being that the wire can be used around the worm as it sits on the hook, whilst also being used to peg it in place (Just cut the wire at an angle when trimming it and it becomes sharp enough to go thru any SP's I have. If not, use a tiny amount of fuse wire on the eye). If fishing weedless, then it can go around the body of the hook and twisted tightly to attempt to grip and stay in a given position on the hook too. As I am sure I read somewhere, Keith saying that the weight all on the nose of the lure will make it sink faster and in more of a vertical dive, than set further back towards the bend on the hook.


Speaking of bends in hooks, I wouldn't be at all surprised that if when you have worked out how everything falls and works using your normal hooks, then when you start bending hooks to impart specific movements to your SP, you are going to be faced with an entirely new set of "figures" to work out.....
andy,

it's not just about sink rate,

it's about matching, sink rate, size of lure, the angle lure sinks at whether you need a head down or parallel fall, angle of fall whether straight or curved depending on where in the water column your fishing, also wind, depth and speed of current come into play,

kev
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have a few guinea pigs to do a 'bottom finding' session and, I'm going to record the session with words, video and stills to see how each guy copes with each skill.
Not only do I think it'll help them, it'll help me understand how to help them and others.

I think, such a simple thing as a lure falling through the water should be easy to comprehend. In reality, like Kev points out, it's actually quite complex especially if you want repeatable performance.

So, I'll add to this thread when we've done that session cause unfortunately, words, and I, can have a tendency to make something sound quite difficult when in actual fact, when shown, it's really all quite easy.

It's a task I must succeed at, keeping things simple whilst still covering all the bases. One day.
 

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great post keith, thought provoking, straight away im thnking conditions sometimes dictate, alot of combining issues, like you'v said before like the effect of the line falling, maybe sometimes a slow sinking line heavier head(to keep contact) might work, thanks
 

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Was reading a loy of stuff by the SP snapper fisherman in Oz earlier this year.And one of the fundamentals to catching bigger fish was to use a light jig head as possible.I think Keith has coverd this somewhere but the reason being when food sinks through the water column it doesn't fall but almost floats down.
One of the reasons why I enjoy fish with the red gill evolution.Its weighted at
 

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Was reading a loy of stuff by the SP snapper fisherman in Oz earlier this year.And one of the fundamentals to catching bigger fish was to use a light jig head as possible.I think Keith has coverd this somewhere but the reason being when food sinks through the water column it doesn't fall but almost floats down.
One of the reasons why I enjoy fish with the red gill evolution.Its weighted at
Sorry about that,getting trigger happy.Yes its weighted at 17 gram I think but due to the tail action almost swims down.

Cheers for that Keith,do enjoy your stuff
 

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In what situations do you guys finding yourselves fishing a free-fall, and what conditions for a curved fall? Is it just to do with the depth (water level) you're targetting fish at? Curved fall must effectively slow the vertical descent, but I'm guessing its not used entirely for that reason, when a slightly lighter jighead could just be selected for the same fall rate? Or is it most useful when you need a certain weight to maintain control yet get a slightly slower fall from the same weight? If the sink rate is the trigger, how do you view the angle? I have most success with the free-fall personally. Is this usually the ideal/starting point, with curved fall's coming in as plan B? Or does the curved fall sometimes get your pick? What guides the decision?
 

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Keith this is a great post and, as you know, really brings to life one of the key challenges I've had as a newcomer to this.

I heard a joke recently about someone "who couldnt find their own bottom with both hands, a map, and a mirror. ..."

FInding "bottom" at night, with tide, with swell, on an unfamiliar mark, and when you've losing a leader and plastic most casts is quite different and I'll hold my hands up and say that I've found it tough going and probably the main hurdle to success.

Anything that gets this knowledge across, I feel, will be a big jump forward.

Game on. And I'll throw away the map and mirror...
 

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very thought provoking m8 but as always will have to re-read a few times to digest a bit of it

and am I one of the guinea pigs? - sometimes I know where my lure/bottom is all sesh , sometimes I struggle to find it once , a confidence rollercoaster as I've realised when I know where it is I catch fish ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Yes its weighted at 17 gram I think but due to the tail action almost swims down.
Some pre built SPs are very good. I think the Savage-gear stuff is matched too (tail / internal weight).

In what situations do you guys finding yourselves fishing a free-fall, and what conditions for a curved fall? Is it just to do with the depth (water level) you're targeting fish at? Curved fall must effectively slow the vertical descent, but I'm guessing its not used entirely for that reason, when a slightly lighter jig-head could just be selected for the same fall rate? Or is it most useful when you need a certain weight to maintain control yet get a slightly slower fall from the same weight? If the sink rate is the trigger, how do you view the angle? I have most success with the free-fall personally. Is this usually the ideal/starting point, with curved fall's coming in as plan B? Or does the curved fall sometimes get your pick? What guides the decision?
I tend to freefall on Wrasse in very weedy or reef strewn ground. Curve fall would just stitch the lure and braid under such terrain.
Harbours, swinging on headland races etc....curvefall can be good to maintain both a horizontal and vertical balance.

to be really honest, both work in most circumstances. Fish often prefer one over the other. There are great questions in your post to which I personally don't have all the answers but, I think they do need looking at. Obviously, we WILL learn as we go and, as usual, I think it important to record it all so others can learn and, we can remember.

Keith this is a great post and, as you know, really brings to life one of the key challenges I've had as a newcomer to this.

I heard a joke recently about someone "who couldnt find their own bottom with both hands, a map, and a mirror. ..."

FInding "bottom" at night, with tide, with swell, on an unfamiliar mark, and when you've losing a leader and plastic most casts is quite different and I'll hold my hands up and say that I've found it tough going and probably the main hurdle to success.

Anything that gets this knowledge across, I feel, will be a big jump forward.

Game on. And I'll throw away the map and mirror...
Really good post Neil. You will get it. It isn't easy, nothing worth learning ever is. btw, you are one of the G-Force team too.
Just to highlight, me and Kev fished the gutters last night. Conditions were awful, coloured 18" vis, weed everywhere and free-floating in the current.
We both opted for Senko's. Kev went with a prepared, custom pink over green Senko at 4", me a chocolate 5" with a quarter twist to make it wobble in the fall. Why ? because, weed is drifting neutrally, my Senko was doing something different but, still very slowly.

Kev rigged his 4" with 1 SSG making his rig 4" @ 7g + 1 X SSG @ 1.6g = 8.6g + hook.
Mine was plain 5" Senko @ 10g so, a 1.4g difference. We were both fishing very similar terrain.

Initially, I swung my Senko around on a freefalling trajectory to gain depth, then pick up the slack, shake and lift gently and let it tumble along. 4 or 5 casts in and a really good HIT. I missed it...damn.

Minutes later, water had dropped maybe 5" or so, Kev was mid pool, i was in the tailwater.
Fish ON ! Kev's rod was keeled over, drag running. He was getting a perfect balance of length, weight, bottom taps and a curved fall swing maintaining both horizontal AND vertical water column contact.

My lure was just a little heavy as Kev hooked the fish and I was about to bite 1/2" off the tail ( there you go, another secret let out) LOL


very thought provoking m8 but as always will have to re-read a few times to digest a bit of it

and am I one of the guinea pigs? - sometimes I know where my lure/bottom is all sesh , sometimes I struggle to find it once , a confidence rollercoaster as I've realised when I know where it is I catch fish ;-)
Yes, G-force for you too.
Neil is great at bottom finding LOL, he just can't get it back off the bottom.....

Next week, we are going to do this. I think it is really important and I might invite some other guys along too as we line up along St Caths or something.
There, we can find the bottom progressively in differing depth along the slipway on hard bottom.

I know this stuff is hard, I remember last winter, Mark Sleep struggled with it. 7 weeks and he tried really hard to perfect it. One night, the switch went on and his catch rate increased exponentially. He actually turned out to be really excellent at the method so it's worth persevering.
 

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Great posts Keith very thought provoking thanks for sharing. One thing I have been experimenting with is some tungsten tubing that is a tight fit on the hook. A small bit say 5g can be slid along the hook shank to effect the way the Sp falls though the water. From nose heavy to belly weighted it', amazing just moving it 3mm along the shank how much in effects the fall though the water.
 

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Nice one Keith.

If you were going out with the intention of fishing one or the other (free or curved - depending on conditions described above), do you go as far as increasing or decreasing the braid diameter to suit? I.e. finer braid when you know you're fishing free-fall, thicker (neutral or floating) braid for slower, curved falls? Or do you just use the finest you can get away with in both cases? Or even a finer braid with a thicker leader to slow the fall? A mono leader even?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yes Ben, line selection makes or breaks it sometimes.

Slower falls, thicker braids, easier to see V wakes, and thin lines, less surface tension, cast further, cuts a V faster.

We've experienced situations where a braid will actually stop a plug working at all in high pressure, mirror smooth water.
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you can't get the line under the surface tension.

Fairy liquid and now, sinking or neutral braids cut through, hence the like of a light surface chop to break this tension.

It all makes a difference and a 2g head, mini xlayer might actually get suspended in conditions like experienced above.
 

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What a great thread. I was searching for something else when I found it from nearly a year ago...

Seems like the way you search the layers while fly fishing on large reservoirs. Slowly vary the weight till you find the fish? Swinging the lure round in the tide?
 
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