The Joy of Balanced Tackle - Des Taylor

Zerkalo

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We often hear about balanced tackle but here's a decent article I read in the Angling Times.

On the Severn I use a 1.75lb test curve, through-actioned rod and 10lb line and enjoy every barbel that I hook. Most of the fish are around 5lb, with a good one just reaching double figures. I’d be able to land them more quickly on stronger gear, but it wouldn’t be as much fun. And surely that’s what it’s all about. You can only catch what’s in your venue, so make sure you get the balance right between the size of fish being targeted and the tackle you are using. That way, you’ll get full enjoyment out of every fish that you hook!

I have certainly found with my Chub fishing using a light float rod allows me to get away with much lighter hooklengths than on a heavy 1.25lb feeder rod. Chub being a medium fighting strength fish, I'm sure they fight much harder when I hook them on a heavy feeder rig on the fast paced weir I fish than the ones I have on the float on the Severn. Certainly when I hook them on Barbel gear they don't put up much resistance.
 

Reuben

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How true, mate. I remember a series of matches on Drayton Res where the Method ruled. Big weights of carp to 10lbs started the 1st match using a 4oz quiver on a Pro Logic 1.5lb Twin Tip Barbel rod & came nowhere but enjoyed it - never fished the Method before - took too long to land the fish as it was a fair chuck. After that I used the 1.5lb Avon top section & framed in 3 of the last 5 matches. Can’t say I enjoyed the day but, financially, the heavy tackle did the job. Didn’t bother with the Method after that. Now I err on thE lighter side as there’s no money involved.
 

Northantslad

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Des' first paragraph spot on for me. Painting a real picture for the people a feature is aimed at doesn't happen enough, i don't of course do features but any opportunity i get to give the realities to people i will do.

My lad going through a phase of watching anything fishing at present, good lad i say for that but i am also educating him in the pinch of salt factors:

Were there brands slapped all over the feature? Where was the feature?.....

Other night.....
Lad: 'Watched Dean (first name terms eh, he can pack that up) Barbel fishing the other day and he caught loads'
Dad: 'Where was he fishing?' (he asked him knowingly)
Lad: 'Colllingham Weir Dad'
Dad: ' I see, let me explain something to you mate'....................

Humorous edge to that intended, serious side to it, i don't want the lad feeling low about his skills so far (lost one in two sessions so far but he is working hard at it and taking a Barbel book to bed every night*) and him measuring his progress against an un-realistic situation.

*The book isn't on his suggested school English class reading list, but hey...
 
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Silver fan 82

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Couldn't agree more with this. Where is the fun inwinching fish in on the end of a broomhandle? Using lighter, balanced gear but also being sensible about it is a much more pleasurable experience.
I would much rather play a carp, tench or bream on a feeder rod rather than a heavy tc specimen rod any day of the week.
 

Silverfisher

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Indeed definitely more fun to err on the light side than heavy. Meant to be sport and a challenge after all. I’ve said many a time that on the right gear almost any fish of any size (within reason) will give a bit of a scrap so that you can’t just wind them in. Much more fun playing fish on gear when you can feel everything and have to actually play them.
 

TrickyD

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Des Taylor comes out with some great info. I remember years ago, he gave a tip for people going out on boats who suffer from sea sickness. The trick is to eat a jar of strawberry jam before you set sail, he swears by it. It won't stop you throwing up, but it will taste better when you do.
 

davej1981

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Ive realosed this this year. Reading articles watching YouTube took me a few sessions to reallise that my setup was too overgunned for what i was doing. Re made rigs etc to something i felt was more suitable and had a better sesion than before even in unfavourable conditions. I enjoyed the fight more and did it take me any longer to land fish? Maybe a little but not enough to make a difference. All these articles and videos are great but methods techniques and setup all need to be tailored to you
 

Silver fan 82

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Ive realosed this this year. Reading articles watching YouTube took me a few sessions to reallise that my setup was too overgunned for what i was doing. Re made rigs etc to something i felt was more suitable and had a better sesion than before even in unfavourable conditions. I enjoyed the fight more and did it take me any longer to land fish? Maybe a little but not enough to make a difference. All these articles and videos are great but methods techniques and setup all need to be tailored to you
Using balanced tackle makes a huge difference Dave I agree. Like you, for ages I was fishing way over gunned. I would rather catch small ish carp consistently all day on light, balanced tackle then I would catch a bigger specimen on full on carp gear. The whole experience is much more enjoyable.
 

Zerkalo

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A big 'test' for me is going to be when I get my 17' Acolyte on Tuesday and if I'm going to be undergunned for Chub on the weir I fish with it.

When I feeder fish it I like being 'balanced' but fish quite heavy, settled on 4lb Maxima hooklengths, and 1.25lb feeder rod. I'm sure they fight harder on the feeder as when I've caught them on the float I've got them in on 0.10 Stroft hooklengths. I've found using a lighter float rod lets me get away with lighter terminal tackle so I'm hoping this proves true for the Acolyte. Good thing about having a long rod is also that you can steer them away from the snags on the inside bank easier, which is where they tend to head, but we'll see.
 

Silverfisher

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A big 'test' for me is going to be when I get my 17' Acolyte on Tuesday and if I'm going to be undergunned for Chub on the weir I fish with it.

When I feeder fish it I like being 'balanced' but fish quite heavy, settled on 4lb Maxima hooklengths, and 1.25lb feeder rod. I'm sure they fight harder on the feeder as when I've caught them on the float I've got them in on 0.10 Stroft hooklengths. I've found using a lighter float rod lets me get away with lighter terminal tackle so I'm hoping this proves true for the Acolyte. Good thing about having a long rod is also that you can steer them away from the snags on the inside bank easier, which is where they tend to head, but we'll see.
A 4-5lb chub doesn’t bother the acolyte ultra much (they’re nothing like as lively as a 4-5lb carp after all) so given the 17ft is somewhere between an ultra and a plus you shouldn’t have any issues.
 

Zerkalo

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Sure they fight harder in this weir than on the Severn for example though so we'll see. :)(y)
 
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