Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Making In-line Leads

I use a lot of 3 oz. in-line leads for carp fishing in many of the big rivers here in southern New England. I also lose a lot of them so it becomes an expensive proposition. So, I have been on a quest to make my own.
First problem....could not find a place in the US that sells the molds needed to do it. However, I found a great online store in the UK that sells these molds and ships to the US at a reasonable price. It is called The Tackle Box. The mold I bought was a CJT in-line flat pear bomb, code 10240, website, http://www.tacklebox.co.uk/catching-em/terminal-tackle/lead-making/ (see pic at right). It is a single, small mold that is held together by clamps or pliers. Before pouring, a rod is inserted into the mold which forms the inside hole that houses the insert. Once the lead is poured, the rod is pulled out. It's a very simple procedure.
Once my leads are all made, I paint them with a brown or green powder paint that produces a real durable finish.
The final step involves placing an insert into the lead that will hold your line and swivel. You may have to trim the elongated part of the insert for a good fit. Finally, I place a tail rubber on top of the insert section to complete my lead.
While molding leads are not for everyone, this can save you a bundle if you use and lose a lot of them. The Tackle Box also has many other types of lead molds that you can't find in the US. Check them out.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

On the DL

It's not pretty.
I've been dealing with a tennis elbow for over a year in my casting arm. Finally, I had an MRI two weeks ago that showed a tear in a ligament. It required surgery and elbow reconstruction. Yesterday I had the surgery.I am now wearing a cast that runs from shoulder to my hand.
I will be at least three months before all is healed. And, that will be after extensive therapy.
However, I will continue to post on this site. I plan to check out new venues and also write about tackle and technique.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A Crappy Month

In past years, July was a very good month of carp fishing here in RI. Last year when the weather was rainy and cool, I caught over 150 carp in just the month of July. Not so this year. I will be lucky to log in 35 fish this month and I am putting in the same amount of effort in the same spots as last year. So, what's the problem?
I believe the problem started in early spring when we had the severe flooding. That moved a lot of nutrients into the water and also displaced a lot of fish, especially in our rivers. The oppressively warm weather in July has boosted freshwater temperatures into the eighties in some spots, a major turn off to feeding. In addition, the water is very low, near drought conditions in the Blackstone River. Also, the water is very discolored in many spots due to algae growth ( caused by heat and nutrients from flooding). It all adds up to very poor carp fishing in the month of July.
My limited success has come from fishing in late evening, just before and after dark. That time seems to produce some fish if you can stand the big numbers of mosquitoes around. A hot night for me these days is two fish, extremely poor for this time of year.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Making your own Sinkers

I've had it with the high cost of sinkers these days so I am now making my own. One kind I am making is a no roll sinker. This has a flat pear shape and has a hole through the center just like an egg sinker. The mold is produced by the Do-It corporation (http://www.do-itmolds.com/prodmolds.aspx?c=72) and has 4 cavities for sinkers of 1, 1 1/2, 2, and 3 oz.

It is easy for me to do since I have all the supplies such as melters, ladles, molds and cutters needed to make sinkers and jigs. The mold is fairly easy to pour except for the 1 oz. cavity which must really be heated in order to work. A pin is inserted into each cavity before pouring and after pouring, the pin is pulled out with pliers. Later, I paint the sinkers using brown or green powder paint. The finish is beautiful. It is tricky doing this since the sinker must be mounted on a piece of wire first, heated for 4-5 seconds with a small torch and then sort of rolled on each side in a shallow dish of powder paint. I later cure them in the oven at 350 degrees. If you are into making sinkers and jigs this is all standard procedure.

I know this is not for everyone since lead is a toxic material and getting all these supplies is quite costly. But, if you do make your own sinkers and jigs, consider making your own carp sinkers. You will save a bundle.

Flavor of the Month....Carp Quila

While I am not catching loads of carp, I am getting some fish in this heat. And, I am getting them all on the same flavor.....CarpQuila. Carp Quila is sold by The Bait Stop. However, it only comes in sweet corn, impossible to keep on the hook in the summer due to turtles and sunfish. So, I bought the Carp Quila dip from The Bait Stop and added the dip to a jar of my own boiled field corn. It works terrific and has been my hottest flavor this summer. Just ask that mirror on the left that hit my Carp Quila maize!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Slow Going

It's been slow going in the last week for carp fishing here in RI. The water is warm and the ponds and lakes are exceptionally low for this time due to little rain in the last month. The fish seem to be in the shady spots and are not real active in the daytime. It seems to an early morning or evening before dark bite, typical of mid summer fishing.

I'm generally getting either one or two fish on every outing. I've tried a lot of different spots and all seem to be producing the same marginal results. My best outing was last Saturday at the Take a Kid Fishing event held on the Blackstone Canal. It was very disappointing that I was the only fishermen to show up to this event. So, what the heck, I figured I might as well fish. Well, I ended up with 5 mirrors (see pic at right) and lost a couple more in just two hours of fishing.