A month or so ago, I discussed how I'm on a seemingly endless quest for the "perfect" N.E. Florida Float-rigging rod.
Attributes I'm looking for:
1. A parabolic bend....(definition: http://www.answers.com/topic/parabola)
2. Soft enough action that a 2 pound Trout is fun, as well as a 12 pound Redfish.
3. True fiberglass durability...many people are rough on my tackle. And F'glass is more durable than graphite. Although Graphite is lighter.
4. EVA grip & heavy duty trigger reel seat. Float fishing is a visual technique type fishing. Sensitivity isn't a quality needed as much as a bottom rod or jigging rod, with maybe cork grips.
5. 8 feet long...has to be. Long rods are easier to "lob" a float-rig, and easier to "mend" your line behind your float.
I have searched high and low and commercially the rod described above does not exists in this state/country. So, it has to be CUSTOM build only.
And while I'm searching, I end up having the people I believe, that can build these rods right under my nose.
Biscayne rods, in Hialeah, Florida. If you shark fished with me this summer behind the shrimp boats, or trolled big Drone spoons over the inshore reefs. You used Biscayne's K.C. Fiberglass rods, that I originally bought for bottom fishing big Reds. But really shined as a potential Tarpon/Shark rod. And shined they did!
LOOK AT THIS!
It's my Biscayne rod in action.
And yep, that was a monster 7-8' long 200 pound shark, that absolutely kicked Bruno Burnoski's butt!
And the shark won.
Here you can see a Fiberglass rod really shine, a K.C. "Biscayne" glass rod. Matched up to a
ACCURATE twin drag 870 reel, and 65# Berkley Big Game Braided line.
As I write this story, Eddie Carman owner of Biscayne rods (the 3rd generation) had called me after a email inquiry I sent him. Eddie called me!! That's right, he wanted to talk more about what I'm looking for, and remembered my name from my shark rod order a year ago. That's why Biscayne rods has been in business for 48 years. K.C. Fiberglass rods, were designed by Karl Carman, Eddies grand father. And Eddie's building "hopefully", the first of many perfect float-rigging rods.
I'll never forget what my buddy James, manager of B&M bait and tackle said when I showed him one of my 4 Biscayne shark rods. "White rods, man these are old fashioned looking...."
"Yes", I said. "before your time there was this tough kinda rod called fiberglass..."
The rods may look a bit "retro", but boy they are tough.
You maybe asking yourself, "Dave, why do you like the attributes of fiberglass, for float-rig fishing?"
Which is a really good question.
I have a thorn in my butt about using too stiff of a rod when float-rig fishing, because I like to use really small hooks. I do not want my customers to have the ability to "over-power" the size of the hook. Which means, pulled and bent hooks. I've read and heard about other guides/fisherman using what I'd refer to as a "gargantuan hook" pinned through a shrimps horn when float-rig fishing. How can a 2" live shrimp look and swim perfectly when it has to carry a large heavy hook? It can't!
Presentation, presentation, presentation!!!! Your hook has to be small, light and sharp. Big hooks tear a Trout's tender mouth, also. Simply put, I want my shrimp to swim as if it's barely carrying anything. I want my shrimp to swim to the surface, and dance across the surface if it wants too, when I'm fishing super shallow. And my shrimp do!
Like fly fishing, when it's all about making a fish bite that fuzzy feathered covered hook. In Float rig fishing, it's all about your shrimp fooling the biggest baddest trophy Speckled Trout, and that happens when the shrimp is un-encumbered to do whatever it wants. In turn looking as natural as possible.
End of story? Not yet.
Your hook matters, your floats action matters, and in turn when that Trout is on the hook the rod matters. At least it does to me. And if I'm your guide.....I MATTER!
Today there's no argument that there is less 10 pound Trout....or even less 5 pound Trout, than 30 years ago. So if you want more shots at them, you better have all your "shit in one sock."
I don't know how else to say it. Why use fluorocarbon leaders in clear water? Why use sensitive graphite rods? THE EDGE....get as much of it as you can.
So, Eddie Carman is working on a proto-type K.C. fiberglass float-rig rod for me. And like a kid in a candy store (walmart candy isle, these days) I'm excited!
I already ran through one rod company that I tried this idea out on. And it was a nightmare.
I'm very impressed with my 4 - Biscayne K.C. rods I use for Tarpon, Sharks, and big Reds. I hope I'm equally impressed with what he came up with as a fiberglass blank for my Float-rigging rods.
You can see my Biscayne's in use on my Video bar down the right side of this blog. The first fish I ever caught on one was a Black Drum followed up with a few 20 pound class Reds.
I'm all about G. Loomis, as you may know. But Loomis is a graphite company. And one of the best. I just keep "tweaking" as much as I can, out of my tackle. It's a sickness.
I'm just not happy going to Q-mart and buying a handful of Shakespeare F'ugly sticks, and matching pot metal reels and call myself a professional angler. That's never been my style.
Yes, I know that probably 98% of all the people who step on my boat, will never know the pain staking details I go into when selecting my tackle. But I do all this to make myself happy, as well as that 2% of fisherman that can see eye to eye with me and my philosophies in tackle selection.
Like I said, It's a disease. And you are the beneficiary.
As of reels to be used on these rods? You've used them already. I'm using the Shimano 200-Citica DSV (deep spool, high line capaciity, high speed gearing).
Fast and with smooth drags, and light weight, and easy palming and casting and 12 pounds of drag capacity. I'm all about Low Profile reels, now. They WORK.
As I told a guy the other day, who used to be a float-rig Trout fisherman 25 years ago, when he asked if I used the 14" Balsa floats and 2oz. trout leads, as he used too. I told him, "NO, I don't."
And he gave me a funny look as if I didn't know what I was even talking about when it came to float-rig trout fishing....
I said, "I'm taking some of the traditional tackle, and mixing it with today's more high-tech tackle."
And then I told him...."I don't even use a balsa float." His eyes widened....Then I described the west coast style float that I'm using, which is definitely not your ole fashioned "Trout Cork". But rather a better reacting, higher floatation, more durable Float.
Give me a call. (904) 642-9546
And you can be one of the folks who I can show the fruits of my tackle quest too. And we'll go catch us some fish on tiny hooks, with long fiberglass rods, with high speed-high tech low pro reels, with high tech line, and high tech floats......
In the only all welded custom "Plate Alloy" 26' Center console charter boat in the whole area or even the whole state! A wonderful mix of old style, mixed with different materials and high tech style.