Tag Archives: bass

GONG LEI

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Hi Gong Lei it’s a pleasure to have you here on Spineri.

Thank you for having me here.

On your Facebook profile we have a chance to see that you catch a lot of big fish! Can you say how did your love for lure fishing start, and what pushed you to develop yourself more as a fisherman through the years?

Yes, I love to chase after monsters and keep challenging myself for big fish.  It all started many years ago.  I find using lures to “trick” fish to bite is more challenging than using real baits or trolling. It’s the thrill I get from casting, working and fooling the fish to bite.

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If we judge on your videos, you have a wide range of very aggressive predators that like to attack your surface lures. Do you prefer some species rather than others?

I choose my target species.  I travel very far, as long as 2-3 days to search for my target species.  I go after the strongest or the fastest ones.

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It’s seems that you fish some untouched waters. Is fishing with casting reel and lure something usual in your place or are you an exception? How is the situation with catch and release approach on your waters?

There are not many lure anglers where I live but the number of fishermen is quite significant too.  Therefore, the fishing grounds around here have very high pressure.  Many anglers here don’t release but throughout these few years, the number of catch and release anglers has increased quite rapidly.  I have been trying my very best to educate them.

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We can see that you prefer fishing with a casting reel. Is that because you like fishing with this gear or is that just simply the best setup for fishing these big fish in hard cover?

Using a casting reel to fish is more challenging.  You get better accuracy and sensitivity.

Plans for future?

At this moment, I am concentrating in Papuan black bass but I do have plans for other species also.  What are the challenging species around where you live? 

I think that every species of fish is challenging if you chase their record breaking specimens. So we have big pike that I think you would like cause they are very aggressive. Big catfish that are very strong and unpredictable. We also have large brown trout and hucho hucho salmon. Catching a trophy specimen of any of these can be really hard and challenging. There is more, and I would like to use this opportunity to invite you to Croatia to chase whichever you like. We would be very happy if you would come. You have everything here… You only need to buy a ticket and take some gear that you prefer :)

If somebody from Europe would come into your neighborhood looking for some advice about lure fishing. What would you tell him? What fish is present in all the waters?

There are Europeans coming to where I live to fish from time to time.  The common problem I saw is casting skill and understanding the lure action problem and hence my advice to them is to practice the casting and understand the actions of lures before coming over.   Since the fishing pressure is high, brushing these skills certainly helps.

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We know that you have caught one of the most popular sport fish in the world “black bass”… But we also see on your wall that you catch a lot of real black bass. More precisely papuan black bass. How powerful and aggressive is this fish? Between black bass and Papua black bass, which do you think is more agressive in attacking your lure?

The common black bass or large mouth bass is a lot easier to catch compared to Papuan black bass.  One is among the weakest fish and the later is the strongest freshwater fish I have ever encountered. Do note that I can’ find Papuan black bass in where I live. I have to travel 2-3 days by flight and sea to some remote rivers in South East Asia to get them.

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DUO has some great lures, can you tell us which are your favorite models from this company?

I am the Pro Staff of DUO.  I would say all their lures are designed for a reason. I don’t have any specific preference but I tend to sway more to top water because I like to use top water more than other. 12038437_444419445760172_4279503765643418363_n

And if we ever come near your fishing spots for black bass, except fishing gear, what is important to have with you if we would go to such remote places? Something against bugs, snakes?

As for black bass, it all depends on where you fish. There are places medium heavy setup would suffice but there are also places you need to use the heaviest casting setup you can find on the market.  I have been using my own custom rods recently, custom to suit my style and target fish at specific places I fish.  Snakes have not been an issue but insect repellents against mosquitoes and sand flies are essential.

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We saw you caught giant trevally… Are you impressed how strong this fish is?

Giant trevallies are strong without a doubt, but fresh water is my forte. I only spent less than 5% of my time during such trips on saltwater species.

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Do you have a brand of rods and reels that you prefer to use? Can we know the names of brands? If you have them?

As I have mentioned above, I have been using custom fishing rods and design them from scratch, i.e. from the blanks for all these expedition and adventure fishing. They are solely for my personal use and I don’t have any plan to make it commercial at the moment. However, nobody knows what will happen tomorrow. Who knows one day I may cooperate with some company to develop them for the mass market.

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That is it. Big thanks for this interview and for letting us into your world of fishing. We’re looking foward to see more of your fishing adventures and great catches. And hopefully you will come here to Croatia someday and we will take you fishing :). Tight lines!

Spinning vs casting

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I fish for bass with lures and became a true addict of this fish since I was a teenager, I mean from the beginning of the 80s. During all my school course I avidly fished for bass with traditionnal spinning tackle we could find in french shops. Since I started to work as fish farmer at the end of the 80s, I got some american fishing tackle catalogs and discovered the modern era of lure fishing. After a year of study and practice I tried to bring baitcasting fishing and tackle closer to the French fishermen through different media and animations field. I was an author in a wide spread fishing magazine so it was easy for me to share with other fishermen.

From the second half of 90s, I decided with some friends to found Black Bass France, a non lucrative association, to protect the Black bass french population and promote this game fish offering to anglers the joy of an amazing catch.

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In the same time, the presence of specialists such as Hiroshi Takahashi, amplified and reinforced my goal to popularize modern lure fishing tackle. We created a real movement thru all the country and proved many times in predator tournaments that this tackle is even able to win versus natural baits, in various conditions.

Today we can see and affirm that the use of this technique is perfectly mastered by many fishermen, regardless the age and initial level. This technique has become so popular that we sometimes even tend to forget or even denigrate traditional spin rods and spinning reels in France for fishing as they did in USA. Because of the tough conditions, Japanese bass anglers never forgot to use spinning gear, when necessary.

However, my message has always been clear : One technique does not exclude the other one, but are totally complementary. Depriving yourself of one of those two would be a technical foul, in sports terms, it’s like starting a golf course with only one club!

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Let’s go straight to the point and leave aside the exceptions: spinning is better recommended for delicate presentation called “finesse” and/or to cast light and teeny lures with thin lines. When you need to cast far or fish deep and vertically, spinning should be the best choice too. Zander fishermen know that very well when they use soft baits, like shads, close to the bottom in more than 15 m of water. As a bass fisherman in rivers and lake with heavy shore cover, I really like to skip my lures underneath the tree branches to reach hidden spots where the biggest bass like to ambush. Even if some fellows use casting to do that, believe me it’s far more easy with spinning tackle (talking about soft baits, hollow frogs).

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One more thing you must know about spinning advantage is that under high winds (saltwater fishing or bad weather in freshwater) you could throw your lure with minimum difficulty while with casting equipment it’s nearly impossible or you may spend most of your fishing time to untangle the bird nests made in your reel due to spool overruns. On the other hand,you will better use a baitcasting equipment for heavier lures and stronger lines, practicing a run and gun strategy named “power fishing”. You will be able to make repetitive and quick casts to different targets, keeping your boat or float tube in ovement.

Some lures I like to use for power fishing are deep crankbaits and spinnerbaits, but both pull on your rods and offer big resistance when you crank the line. That’s why, here again, baitcasting gear is a better choice. The multiplier and compact baitcasting reels can handle the efforts applied to mechanics while a spinning one can’t.

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Let’s come back to the heavily covered banks we talked about before and let’s notice that baitcasting rod and reels perform more accurate and discrete presentation of rubber jigs or texas rigged lure in small pockets of reeds or close to dead trees. To do this properly when fish are inactive and stay close to cover, you will use short pendulum casts named pitching or flipping, to send the lure just in the nose of the fish. Because casting equipment is often more powerful and stout than spinning one, you will be more comfortable to pull a fish and extract it from heavy underwater cover with thicker line. That point gives you another advantage if you catch a bigger fish than you imagined, for example catch a big catfish when fishing for bass !

To sum up, if you want to own a complete equipment for bass, perch or pike, the proportion is generally shared like 60% in baitcasting gears and 40% in spinning. We are not so far from parity, keep this in mind … The pleasure and the results depend on it !

Franck Rosmann

Easy shiner

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Some people use 3-4 lures all their life here in Croatia. They keep it simple. When they go for a zander, they throw white, or yellow grub. For pike, there is inline spinnerbait with willow leaf blade.

Now and then, they put a Rapala Original on a snap and that´s it. And they catch fish. On the other side, there is us. Me and my friends, as well as some unknown fellows, kind of people that would tie the devil himself on a line if we only could. Just to see how he wiggles on retrieve and darts on a twitch.

Although I have more than enough lures of all kinds, I am allways in a search for a something new. And in those rare moments when I think I have it all, or at least enough, somehow it happens that something new finds me.

That special evening, I wasn´t looking for anything. Cross my heart and hope to die! I even have 2 witneses that I was sitting calm in a Cajti caffe, drinking Velebitsko beer and watching football on a TV. I wasn`t  thinking about fish, fishing, lures, rods, or anything similar. I just sat there and that was it.

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Then my good friend Krmpa came. Without rhyme or reason he pulled some 10 to 15 bags of soft plastic lures of various kinds. Bye-bye football, hello rubbers! As he was sipping his gorki pelinkovac (croatian liqueur made of aromatic herbs, goes nice with beer), I was digging into the bags.

From that pile of rubber I picked 3 pieces at the end. The one that Krmpa was claiming has the best action ever I didn´t take. I simply couldn´t because it smelled bad. Real bad. And it wasn´t beauty queen either. The three I took looked like a tuned Lunker City Shakers. They sat in my box, I ignored them for a month, or two and then they saved the day 2 times in 48 hours, when i couldn´t get a bite on anything else.

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Next telephone conversation went something like this:

´Hey, buddy, those rubbers i took from you, what´s that? Keitech Easy Shiner? OK, thanks..´Keitech was established in 1996. by Kei Hayashi. All I managed to find on web is that one of the mostsuccessful tournament fisherman in Japan.

Anyhow, Mr Hayashi´s Easy Shiner is another exciting swimbait with a great catch ratio. It comes in 3 sizes: 3, 4 and 5 inch and variety of colours. Sleek profile is created by a fusion of a Shad Impact´s body and a Swing Impact paddle tail.

Because of it´s tall and slender body, Easy Shiner has great body roll. Body roll which is not as aggressive as one would think by looking only. That´s why it can be rigged on hooks with heads weighting only 2-3 g (1/16-1/8 oz) and still have great, not too offensive action, which isn´t case with other swimbaits with similar shape of body. I found an information on the web that upper side of a body is made of one material, and lower of another, salt infused material. This could be a reason of it´s great, not too strong body roll considering that salted material is heavier than the one without salt. Material is pretty soft and that also contributes to Easy Shiner´s great action. It is scented with squid scent, but not as heavily as Swing Impact. According to our experiences, it works for pike and zander, and we have no doubt that trout and largemouth bass will find it attractive as well when season comes.

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Unlike some other swimbaits who have hollow belly, Easy Shiner has only a shallow slot on it´s belly. In that way, normal jig hook gives good support to the body, so it won´t slide off the hook during a cast or retrieve. On the other hand, worm hook sits nicely and hooks up fish well. He is more durable than hollow belly swimbaits as well.

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We achieved best results by rigging it on a jig hook, or a weighted offset worm hook and twitching it gently. Rigged like that it gives the most. Wide and tall body produces a lot of flash, but overall action isn` tacky at all. By our experiences, that works great for active and semi-active fish, especialy for zander, which often needs to be tampered, but not too much.

Baby face killers!

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We present you 2 spin rods:

Garbolino Ghetto rider ul and Garbolino Game hunter microlure.

Ghetto rider

Ghetto rider is a fancy spin rod which will hardly leave you indifferent. Hot red blank with Fuji K series guides, split handle made of red and black eva foam and Fuji skeleton split reel halter will leave you speechless even for a moment. To some, design like that will be avant-garde and progressive, to others it´ll be a total miss. If you prefer classic rods, I doubt it you´ll even take it in your hands and try what it feels like. Well, too bad for you.
First round guys from Top fishing store ordered sold out in a day or 2. I only managed to try one last left that was reserved for someone. I was stunned. I thought it over and ordered one eventually. I assigned it for trout fishing and couldn´t wait for the season to start. First half an hour I fished with it, I thought I couldn´t set a hook. Truth is I felt every stone my inline spinnerbait stratched. It felt like a bite because of a super sensitive rop tip. First fish i hooked was a small brown trout. Every one who caught one knows how nervous that fish is once when hooked. Over the rod tip I felt every single move, every twitch it made. That trout could jiggle for an hour and it wouldn´t fall off. I cuddle it for a while and then I realised it can wrestle with much bigger fish. So it did.

 

Game hunter

Game hunter, partly because of a camouflage pattern and thicker handle above reel holder (25 mm diameter), at first looks kinda beefy. For real, there are not too many differences compared to Ghetto rider. It is 30 g heavier than Ghett rider, but once you mount reel on, you can hardly feel the difference. Reel weighting around 250 g works well for both of them. Game hunter has normal guides, finish is nice, and it´s quite similar to Ghetto rider with it´s action. Same as with Ghetto rider, blank is super fast and sensitive, rod tip detects shy bites well, but it has strong backbone which can cope with bigger fish than you could imagine. Although print on a blank says microlure, this blank can cope with normal lures without any problem. That is work horse, for fishermen who catch fish and who don´t bother with high end components and make up on the rod. Considering we are dealing with 2 very similar blanks, general impression can be said in 3 words: baby face killers. In 4 words, wolf in sheep’s clothes. In 5 words.. No, I am just kidding. Both of these 2 are great for what they are made for. Thay cast and feel small, UL lures superb. On the other hand, you can cast a 20-25 grams of a weight with it. 10 cm slit shad with 15 g jig hook, for a n example. We did it, it is possible. How ever, they feel the best with softbaits up to 7 cm and 7-8 g, twitchbaits between 5-8 cm and metal jigs up to 10 g. We landed few bass around 1,5 kilo, barbel around 2, couple of asps over 60 cm, and so on. These boys can do it. Ghetto rider is more expensive because of Fuji k series guides (which trully are tangle free!), Fuji reel halter, it weights less and its design is great. If you ask me. On the other hand, if you like ´more common´ rods better, with Game hunter is a rod for you. Whichever you choose between these 2, you can´t go wrong.

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Game hunter je radni štap, za ribiče koji love ribu i ne zamaraju se opremom, šminkom i high end komponentama. Nadam se da mi nitko neće zamjeriti kada napišem da je game hunter ekonomična verzija ghetto ridera, i to jako, jako isplativa.

S obzirom da se radi o jako sličnim blankovima, opći dojam za oba se da izreči u 3 riječi: ubojice dječjeg lica. U malo više riječi, oba štapa odlično odrađuju ono za što su namjenjeni: bacaju i osjećaju male varalice, bilo da se radi o jig streameru vezanom na 2 g glavici, ili nekom tviču od 5 cm. I kad lupi manja riba, zabava je zagarantirana zahvaljujući punoj špici koja odradi i prenese i najmanje trzaje. Pri drilu veće ribe, ostatak štapa ulazi u fajt i sa ribama do 2-3 kg nema problema, pa makar se radilo o mreni oko dvice u jakom štromu. Klenovi, bassevi, ili pastrve oko 50, kao i boleni veći od toga nemaju šanse. Mada smo bacali i 15-20 g teške jig udice sa 10 cm dugim silikoncima, preko 10 g i 7 cm dugih silikonaca ne bih išao. Isto vrijedi za razne žlice i pilkere. 5-10 g je optimum. Što se voblera tiče, 5-7 dugi tvičevi bi bili optimalni, a do 10 cm nema nikakvih problema sa kontrolom i vođenjem. ´Meps´ dvojka je taman, a ni sa trojkama nema problema.

Svoju cijenu ghetto opravdava opremom (fuji k stvarno je tangle free!), malom težinom, jako dobrim općim dojmom pa i dizajnom koji je nesvakidašnji. Fujijev split halter, koliko god čudno izgledao na prvu odlično leži u ruci i poboljšava osjetljivost, jer su i dlan i kažiprst na blanku. S druge strane, ako vas ne smeta malo aljkavija završna obrada, ako trebate radni štap, za stvarno malo novaca (oko 400 kn) u game hunteru dobijete štap sličnih performansi. S obzirom da s oba štapa možete pokriti ultra light, light pa i medium light ribolov donekle, ozbiljno konkuriraju za best buy do 500 kn, odnosno 1000 kn.

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Specifications:

Game hunter

lenght: 2,22 m

tip diameter: 1,2 mm

butt diameter: 10,2 mm

handle lenght: 44 cm

lenght from reel till the end: 37 cm

weight: 144 g

casting weight: 1- 7 g

guides: 9

space between guides: 90-32-24-19-15-12-11-10-9 (cm)

diameter 24-15-10-8-6-6-5-5-5 (mm)

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Ghetto rider

lenght: 217

tip diameter: 1,1 mm

butt diameter: 9,6 mm

handle lenght: 38

lenght from reel till the end: 33

weight: 115 g

casting weight: 1- 7 g

guides: 9, fuji k series

space between guides: 92-30-21-18-15-12-11-9-8

diameter: 24-15-12-10-8-7-7-5-5

 

Sakura Slit Shad- you gotta try it!

I bought more than many lures in my life. Some of them looked good, with some of them my friends had nice results, some of them I saw on internet and had to try, and so on. You know how it goes. Some of them turned to be great, some of them turned out to be complete disasters. That´s why I am skeptical when someone, even though we know each other for a long time and he is a great guy and a great fisherman, comes to me and says,´ You gotta try this, this really works!´When you literally demolish perch on on a first try, when you catch few bass around 40 cm on aq fot summer day, when you trick 3 trouts in between 40-50 cm in a day, scepticism is gone and you say to yourself, hell, yeah, this really works. OK, it catches fish. Even cooler is it catches pretty much everything. In last year along with already mentioned species, we´ve been catching pike, zander, chub, asp, seabass, barbel, catfish and seabass!

Sakura Slit shad is available in 50, 75, 85, 100, 125, and from this year 150 nad 175 milimeters of lenght. It´s packed from 20 pieces a blister to 3 pieces for largest ones. They are scented with crawfish scent and salted. Mr Yamamoto long time ago tought us what that means. Fish that kind of a bait hold longer in it´s mouth so you can set a hook better. Material they are made of is neither too soft nor too firm. Crystals of salt crush when fish chews Slit shad, I am pretty much sure same happens when one chews a real thing.

Because of great mixture of a material and thin tail, Slit works on slowest retrieve, even rigged on a worm hook weightless. Rigged on a jig hook works great as well, with a nice body roll. It goes for all sizes. All of the sizes can be used like a topwater lure, kinda buzzbait, or torpedo. It burbles and leaves bubble trace behind. Bass and pike find it irresistable! With bullet weight in fornt of the lure, or rigged on a weighted worm hook it is weedless and can be fished from surface to bottom, even in a heavy cover. Once you set a hook, Slit Shad slides down the hook and miss hookings are minimum. It does happen, but usualy with smaller fish that can´t pack lure well. What to say in the end? Let´s say we found our new best friend in a Slit Shad. Try it, you might feel the same.

Tight lines!