A guide to fishing on the cheap.


Mar 25, 2013
What a brilliant and informative post !!!, on my way back to Ireland via wales and will stock up there, thanks again


Regular member
Mar 17, 2008
Just sitting here looking at the food cupboard and seeing what can be used in varying degrees...

Gravy granules
Sweet chilli sauce
Peanut butter
Stock cubes
Worcester sauce
Custard powder
Cheese sauce granules
Soy sauce
Tomato ketchup

and probably loads more could all be used in groundbait mixes


Oct 29, 2013
Believe it or not I have just posted trying to find out about Vitalin for Bream pre baiting! Thanks, question just answered! I've been looking for a cheap alternative for large scale bream pre baiting. Might look at the goat feed though - possibility there too!


Regular member
Site Supporter
May 31, 2008
goat feed is in my humble opinion superior to vitalin, especially when blitzed and used with an inline method or cage feeder. also try using sugar beet pellets, brilliant for pre baiting and half the price of vitalin so even cheaper than chips :)

Capt Birdseye

Regular member
Site Supporter
Jul 13, 2014
Originally posted by svenc

With current financial standings I thought I would write a thread on how I approach my fishing on a tight budget. I have been receiving a fair few PM's so thought id write a full Guide rather than repeating myself[;)][;)][;)]

My main ingredients as such are as follows:

- Vitalin, Around 10-13 for a 15kg bag.
- Hemp, I pay 18 for a 25kg bag from my local independant pet shop.
- Mixed corn, I pay 6.99 for a 20kg sack from my local farm feeds supplier, SCATS if your local to surrey.
- Layers Pellets, Again 6.99 for a 20kg sack from SCATS.
- Goat feed, Around 7 for a 20kg sack.
- Bread crusts, Free when you have finished the loaf. I cant stand the ends of a loaf. Just blitz down and add to resealable bags as you go. Then simply freeze it.
- Sweetcorn, I buy 1kg bags then put into smaller session size bags.

Right on to preperation:


Vitalin mixed with added extras makes a fantastic bait for baiting up large quantities. It is a great carrier of loose feed. Wether that be maggots pellet etc. Dont bother with too much corn though as it has a high content of flaked maize anyway.

There are a few ways to prepare this depending on methods or personal choice.

For commercials I blitz it down to reduce the larger lumps. Makes a great cloud in the water. Be carefull not to add to much water as it becomes very stodgy. This can either be balled in or my favourite choice is bagging waggler or method feeder. 2" hooklength with corn or maggot works treats.

For rivers I use it straight out of the bag, Its the first thing I do when I arrive, that way I can add more water if required as it can take a little time to soak in. I couldnt give you a definitive amount of water but just add enough to ensure the whole lot is dampened then add more as required. It will soften up over time, its not like groundbait as such in this form and it changes from bag to bag depending on how dry it is and weather conditions etc. You should be aiming for a mix which is fairly sticky but not too stodgy as it might not break down.

I wouldnt recomend coil feeders as you tend to bring the feed back when you re-cast or catch a fish. A little sharp tug with a Fox type or flatbed feeder will leave the rest of the feed in situe.

If you have a fair distance to bait up, I would suggest making up all your balls in one go and then leaving them in the sun to dry, or partner permitting stick them on a very low heat in the oven to make a hard skin. I can quite easily bait up on an island feature on the thames at 60-70 yards with ease using a Whopper Dropper.

I also Blitz Vitalin down and really soak it, adding blitzed down corn and cooked hemp. This makes a fantastic slop to be used with Nisa feeders such as this:


You needent worry about it coming out as it comes out on impact making a cracking cloud in the water.


The most understated feed going, either as loose feed or on the hook its cracking stuff. There are many ways to prepare it but im just going to tell you my way. A lot is down to personal preference so ill let others comment on that.

I half fill a very large pot, the type that have a handle that goes over the top. Very big. Dont put too much in as it either wont split, burn the base or boil over. I simmer for about 1 1/2 hours then leave on residual heat, topping up the water to ensure its fully emersed. Any floating hemp is removed. I add sugar salt and bicarb to mine. Never measured although I dont add too much salt. I find the salt stops it sicking to the pot.

You can add your flavourings half an hour before you finish such as chilli powder etc. Dont add it at the start as it will cook out before the majority of the seeds have split. Garlic salt available from any supermarket is good. I wouldnt add salt if using garlic salt, its not needed.


Available from any farm feeds stockist. Although advertised as mixed corn has plenty of other additions such as wheat etc. Perfect for prebaiting or spodding for a decent bed of bait and as cheap as chips.

BEWARE, when preparing this bait it expands massively and you may think theres not much in the pot until it expands. It takes on a hell of a lot of water and you need to make sure you havent overdone it. Freezes nicely so a little and often approach is advised. Previous experience tells me that its a bad idea to do too much. Gemma wasnt best pleased when it boiled over and I was in the garden.

The other way of preparing this, to the detriment of 4 food blenders in the last year would be to blitz it down then soak in a bucket for 48 hours adding boiling water to start. Ideal for slop feeders etc. Makes an ideal starting point to fishing vitalin too.

Its not very good at fishing at range without a feeder as it tends to be very gloopy when it starts to ferment.

I used a lot of it to prebait a likely looking margin swim with pellets too to catch this beast. The result is self explanatory:

20089512957_Big One.jpg

You can see the pot used in most of my bait prep. I used that pot on the BBQ to prepare more feed as required on the trip.


Really simple one really and I know Larry off this site uses it a lot. Again cheap as chips. You can add it to your vitalin or goat feed mixes or just catapult it straight out within range. Tubular pellets of around a cm at max. If its good enough for chickens its good enough for fish.

I only use them for feed as I tried to use them ground up and just kept falling apart. I add them to my Vitalin balls etc. Very nutritional too so any coarse fish will reep the rewards. We all know how well fish know whats good and what isnt.

Just make sure you wet them first as they can float. Not too much as they will start to break down.


My latest decent find. They have a very organic base so are ideal for grazing fish such as tench, carp and bream. Bream being the ones who love it the most. High grass content, loads of fibre and carbs as well as added extras such as mollases etc.

Preparation involves no more than sticking it through a blender. On its own its useless. Unbelievably its very sticky to the touch unprepared but once blitzed its very smooth. I wouldnt suggest using it on its own for long distances. It does tend to break down mid air. Use a 50/50 mix with vitalin. The blitzed down vitalin sticks it together. Ive never used a binding agent so cant comment on that.

I may add to this with the Moderators support with a few rigs but feel this may well cover most situations at present. I just hope this saves you a few pennies and for those in preparation for the new season may get you thinking.

I wouldnt regard myself as the worlds best river angler but I have fared pretty well the last 5 years, with 200-300lb night catches of bream, the cracking carp and plenty of nets of silvers.

If you could put it up as a sticky and allow me to edit as I add more that would be lovely.

As from today, Lidl are selling a decent sized blender for 19 .99 with, get this..3 years guarantee, so I reckon you will be able to do a couple of years before they ban you from the shop ! Great topic Svenc


Site Supporter
Aug 22, 2014
What A good read it makes the mind boggle as to how much you add or change the ingratiates to make up a ground bait of your own choice, and this goes fo match, course general as well as carp fishing.
Gives a lot of ideas to work on

Towpath Tyke

Regular member
May 17, 2006
Now that the sun is finally here I'm currently fishing for the canal Bream for the grand sum of 1.35 with great results...

Aldi tinned corn (hook bait) 35p
Aldi frozen corn (liquidised) 85p
Aldi rice pudding (liquidised) 15p


Site Supporter
Sep 28, 2012
Hi sven good topic I hope non of you mind but I have an interesting addition to the long list of brilliant information some three to four years ago I had to take over the cooking in my house so my missus decided that I would need some gaggets to help me out one of which was a Andrew James vacuum machine for storing food ect; but I found a bonus use for the said item I can now seal up bags of groundbait used or not and freeze them they will stay as they went in for up to a year even or even more I cook up kilos of hemp bag it up in measured amounts and never have any waste, left over things like sweetcorn, also it is good for dead reds vac and freeze, now here comes the bonus bit the version that she bought me came with some cannisters large medium and small these I use to pump my expanders with always do them the night before I,m going and they are perfect next day also can pump things like vitalin without it getting too wet ect; looked on the web you can now pick one of these machines up for around 50 the bag rolls last ages once you get used to how big you need to cut them and in the long run can save you loads of cash and agg as most of your prep can be done the day before you go hope this has been an interesting reply and that some of you find helpful Jon [:)]