Capt. Bouncer's Tip-of-the-Month
In the February issue we are looking at our deep water bottom fishing rig. I did a Coastal Angler Magazine Field Test of the new Hooker Electric Reel and the Reel Tease lure and teaser system with Pat and Mack McKinney, publishers of the Fort Lauderdale Area Coastal Angler Magazine, and Clay Barker, the inventor of Reel Tease. Fishing out of Government Cut, Miami, we caught black belly rose fish in 1,200 feet of water, golden tile fish in 625 feet, and a 29 lb. gag grouper in 325 feet. All of these fish were targeted using a 4 hook vertical deep drop rig. This same rig works great for deep water snappers and many other fine dining fish throughout the oceans of the world.
We start with a spool of 100 lb. monofilament line, 18 inches of 40lb. test monofilament line, appropriate circle hooks for your target species, appropriate weight (we used a 6# lead this day) and 2, 1/0 swivels. We slip all our hooks onto our spool of 100lb. test line. We then tie the 1/0 swivel to the end of the line. Now about 15” from the swivel we secure one circle hook on the loop of an in-line dropper loop knot, about 1” long. We then secure our next hook in the same manner 18” further up the 100lb. line. We continue every 18” till we have all our hooks secured on the line. We now pull 10” of line o! our spool and cut the line. We tie on our second 1/0 swivel. To this swivel we add our 18 inches of 40lb. line. We tie a 4” loop in the end of this 40lb. line with a double overhand knot, or perfection loop, to attach the appropriate lead.
Note #1: If world records are in your dreams, you must restrict yourself to 2 hooks no more than 18” apart.
Note #2: If you use 5 hooks, this is called a Hoffa rig. When I fished Jimmy Hoffa in the 60’s he insisted we fish 5 hook rigs to play poker while he fished.
Our baits are always cut square to the appropriate size for the hooks in use and the size of the targeted species mouths. You want the fish to grab the whole bait in one shot for best hookups. Popular baits are squid, bonito, and ballyhoo and in the Caribbean they use chunks of shark.
We now want a small water activated strobe light secured on the snap swivel of our rig, followed by a Reel Tease Game Fish Candy. The candy’s snap swivel is then clipped to the 1/0 swivel on the top of your bottom fishing rig. Bait you hooks and add your weight to the loop in the 40lb. line. Be sure to add a marble and menhaden oil to your Game Fish Candy and you are ready to fish.
You need to know that scientists tell us that the farthest reaching fish attracter is sound, hence the marble in the Candy. The second fastest fish attracter is light, hence the strobe. And finally, smell is very effective and that is where the menhaden oil comes in.
The 40lb. monofilament at the bottom of your rig is a real tackle saver. If your lead gets caught in the bottom the 40lb. line breaks and you get your rig back.
I have arranged for your local bait and tackle shop, Atlantic Bait and Tackle, 900 East Atlantic Blvd., Pompano Beach to have all the components for this rig on hand. Steve Decoulos and Carey Sachs, owners, or their expert crew are on hand to help you build your first rig. Steve reminded me that his tackle prices are cheaper than your favorite big box stores. Please support your local business – they will give you the personal service you deserve.
Capt. Bouncer Smith