Advice on Shotting a Waggler

gazvov

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Hi all.

Not sure if this is allowed here but I'm struggling to find help elsewhere so figure it's worth a shot. Apologies in advance if this is in the wrong place or this type of post isn't allowed.

I used to fish a lot back in my childhood and teenage years, around twenty years ago. I've recently been trying to get back into fishing and have had some small success. Had my first trip out since my childhood just yesterday and after a slow start and many mistakes and tangles, I managed to land 4 good carp with the largest about 12lb - Larger than anything I caught as a youth!

However, I don't have anyone to turn to for help and advice, and I'm struggling with properly understanding how to correctly set up shots on a waggler rod.

Let's say I'm fishing using a float marked 2BB. Does this mean the entire combined weight of all shots on the line should add to no more than the combined 0.8 grammes of those 2BB shots? Or does it mean that I should attach a single BB shot to either side of the float? If it's the latter, what do I do with the rest of the line down to the hook, because presumably I need some weight there, too.

If it's the former, what would be a sensible way to distribute that total weight? I've heard it said that 80% should be around the float. So should I attach, say, a size 4 shot either side of the float to make 0.6 grammes, and then attach a couple of size 6 shots near the hook to make up the other 0.2 grammes?

Furthermore, how do I allow for extra depth when shotting? Say I have 0.6 grammes allocated below the float, should I shot evenly across the line, regardless of depth?

Thanks in advance, and apologies for my ignorance and the stupid questions!
 

Neil ofthe nene

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No question is stupid, if you don't know - ask. It would be stupid not to.

Broadly you have the right idea, 80% of the load around the float then the rest down the line. Don't get hung up on absolutes though. The float may be marked 2bb but may take more or less. And if you have 85% or 75% then that's okay.

The shot below the float may be strung out from float to hooklength or as a bulk just above the hooklength. You decide how you want the rig to fish. On slow rivers I would have three no. 8s half inch apart dragging bottom then the rest of the shotting around the float. I would say that you want to decide on the shotting below the float first then add the rest either side of the float.

There are no hard and fast rules.
 

ukzero1

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Hi @gazvov and Welcome.

It depends on the depth really. The 2BB you refer to is the total weight of shotting required, but there are exceptions. Some that have a shotting of 2BB could take a little more, or a little less depending on what material was used to make the float. 'Natural' materials such as Peacock quill can be awkward to produce every float to 2BB because of density, thickness etc. They may look the same but there can be a difference in either making them NOT all the same weight when shotting.

I tend to use bulk shot at the float eye, then test, use dropper shot down the line to settle the float to how much tip you want showing. It could be something like a No6 and a No8. I place the No6 shot approx 2 thirds down below the float and the No8 8 inch from the hook depending of course on depth.

This might come in handy if you want to calculate the amount of shot in grammes...

 

bryan white

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The amount of weight for droppers is dependent on how fast you need to get the line down.
Fishing on the bottom in 10 ft of water, a few no.8’s would take just too long, especially if small fry are up in the water and hopefully larger fish on the deck.
Only one real point to avoid, do not put large shot around the float, say half of required loading and do another bulk a foot or more from the hook. That will create pivot points, a spread out bulk of no.8 shots will avoid that and you can control how fast the last part falls.
I would start any drop shot about a foot above the hook, it will allow you to deepen the rig if you need to lay a few inches over depth without moving shot about.
 

Silverfisher

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I usually only have between 1 and 4 8s or 9s as droppers (depending on depth and/or flow) fairly evenly spaced through that bottom half of the rig with the rest of the weight formed by a couple locking shot typically a couple 4s, couple 1s or one of each. Well that in addition to the loaded weight as I almost exclusively use loaded wagglers these days. Waggler fishing for me is about getting a slow natural fall so I don’t want many or big shot down the line plus the fewer the shot the fewer the tangles. If I need more dropper weight in the form of bigger or more shot due to flow and or depth then it’s a stick job for me.
 

gazvov

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Thanks Neil, Bryan and ukzero1. I appreciate your help. Some really helpful advice there.

I spent my trip yesterday with the bulk of my shot around the float and very little down the line, and was dealing all afternoon with small fish on the drop.

I also had a BB either side of my 2BB float so was very deep in the water. I left it that way and took the benefit of the sensitivity, but knew I'd been doing something wrong. Still, landed some good fish so it can't have been all bad!

If you don't mind a follow up question or two - presumably in flowing water or where there's more of a current, I'll want additional weight nearer the hook to keep the bait still? I should also be using a different waggler type in those situations, I imagine.

Also, is it worth using float stops to free up further weight down the line? As I understand it they'll be useful when fishing in deeper water too, so I've been considering making use of them anyway.

Thanks again for your help guys. Your time is appreciated!
 

BoldBear

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Here’s a diagram showing the standard basic shotting patterns that I use for fishing a waggler in shallowish (up to around 5ft) swims.

NB: these are basic shotting patterns which can be modified if you need to present your bait in a different way such as moving the telltale shot closer or further away from the hook, or adding shot if you are fishing deeper water and want to count your shot down so that you can register bites while your bait is sinking etc.

hotting-Patterns-For-Shallowish-Waters-zps1176410e.gif

One important piece of advice which Ivan Marks used to give was ‘If there isn’t a specific reason for placing a shot in a certain position then it shouldn’t be there in the first place’

Keith
 
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BoldBear

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Here’s three shotting patterns that I use when I’m trotting a river or stream using sticks/Avon’s or balsas depending on the way I want my baits presented and the speed of flow and any turbulence.

Shotting-Patterns-For-Flowing-Water-zpsc53eac99.gif

Keith
 
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Neil ofthe nene

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@MarkW has done a comprehensive video series on waggler fishing. Part one is on the link in this thread.


Mark may have a complete list of the varios parts and links. But if you search this site under his name and "waggler" in the title you should find all the parts.

To answer some of your follow up questions.

First I would say that with any float and most of the time you want as little float showing as you can get away with.

The pace of the current on any moving water will determine how much weight you need down the line. As I said earlier, I found that by dragging three No.8 on the deck I could slow the bait down. Whether you want it still or moving is something the fish will tell you on the day. But on some rivers and in some situations you will never stop the float and bait moving. As ever on a river remember that the lowest strat of water will be moving at a fraction of the speed of the surface.

Different situations demand different sizes of waggler so like any float you should carry a selection so you can match the float to the situation. With any waggler you need it heavy enough to be able to cast the required distance with little effort.

Using float stops and having all the shot down the line just seems wrong to me and makes the rig cast terribly. But I am no expert with the waggler and others may know of situations where this is done.
 

Northantslad

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All good advice there imo. It does help and as you have done to know the weight conversions. The two biggest mistakes made early on with a waggler is firstly thinking those exact shot are the ones you have to use (what is on the float) and the second is only giving consideration to the size of float needed based on how far you are looking to get it. Distance is a consideration, but equally is how you wish to present the bait, therefore your float choice will also be driven by what weight you need down the line also. For most floats and especially one such as a 2bb, i would use no'4 shot for the bulk and in 5ft of water, have two droppers equally spaced from the hooklength join, with the length of the hooklength being the gauge for the spacing of the droppers, any deeper then a 3rd dropper.

Should, during the session, there be a need for getting the bait down quicker (past smaller fish in the surface layers), then bringing one of those no'4s down to 3/4 depth, justifies their inclusion initially in the bulk.

There are times and in the warmer weather, where if you can find Rudd, then setting up for a slower fall will get them, but yes, as your report suggests, there are times to get the bait down quicker.

If it helps on set up and following plumbing up (with just two shot two lock the float), i get the droppers on next, then finally build the bulk around the float, otherwise you can be in a situation where your bulk is overshotted and you haven't left enough scope to get the desired droppers into the set up. At that point if you need some smaller weights in with the bulk to get the float just right, then that's fine.
 

mickthechippy

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Here’s a diagram showing the standard basic shotting patterns that I use for fishing a waggler in shallowish (up to around 5ft) swims.

NB: these are basic shotting patterns which can be modified if you need to present your bait in a different way such as moving the telltale shot closer or further away from the hook, or adding shot if you are fishing deeper water and want to count your shot down so that you can register bites while your bait is sinking etc.

hotting-Patterns-For-Shallowish-Waters-zps1176410e.gif

One important piece of advice which Ivan Marks used to give was ‘If there isn’t a specific reason for placing a shot in a certain position then it shouldn’t be there in the first place’

Keith
Those last two set ups look like a recipe for tangles to me ?
 

SpenBeck

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2BB is quite light for a waggler, unless you are fishing quite close in. Don't be afraid to go up to 4BB, 6BB or bigger. It will give you more flexibility and make it easier to cast further. The don't know its 6BB, they only have to pull the float tip under. Generally for waggler fishing I use no. 8s or no. 6 shots. Try and keep around 90% of the weight at the bottom of the float.
 

gazvov

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Thanks again everyone, there's some great advice to take away and think on, and a lot for me to use to improve my abilities. Those diagrams and the YouTube link are particularly great!

No doubt I'll be back with more beginner questions before long.

Cheers guys, appreciated.
 

Deejay8

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I find 3AAA to be the most versatile float size. On a float of that size, I begin by placing a AAA shot on either side of the float as bulk. Then I drop the float into the water and note how much is out of the water. Next I add my plummet and plumb up the depth. Once I have my depth, I hook up onto the keeper ring or leg of the bottom ring, and mark the depth. Then I add the small dropper shot, usually No8s and cast out to see how the float is sitting. Then I add another large shot, usually a BB to the bottom of the bulk shot, and test cast again. That usually leaves the float close to where I want it to sit, but in need of some fine trimming. So I would add a number 4 directly under the bulk shot. That usually gives me the amount of float tip showing that I want. If I want to dot it down further I can add another small shot. The small shot at the base of the bulk usually just sit there, but if I find I need to get the bait down to the bottom quicker, then I can pull the smaller shot under the bulk down to the dropper shot and create another small bulk there.The important thing is that the majority of the weight remains around the float. It will soon become second nature to you.
 
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