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dragon81

I usually fish from the river bank with my rod on a Y or rod holder of some type. I usually leave my line locked (bale) and the fish hit it and obviously bend the rod. Do you reccomend leaving the bale open or closed. Do the cats feel it and let go ??? Or should I leave it closed and just immediatly engage them when they are hitting the bait ???

Also I am having some buddies come up Sept 20th to catfish, they have never been before so would cut bait still be affective at that time of year. Just want to get them some action their first time. THANKS

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dan z

I asuume your fishing for channels cats thats what will get you numbers of runs usually channels sometimes other rough fish bite that stuff too If your using a baitcaster thats big it will have a clicker on it if not i would either thumb the line or set the drag loose so they can peel line off.

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Scoot

Hey dragon, I'm with Dan on his reply about baitcasters- the clicker option is the cat's meow for fishin' kitties. They can go on a run and get no resistance while the clicker is singin'.

As far as fishin' that late in Sep, the kitties will be big and likely will have the feed bags on. Cutbait will definitely still work then, but I'd start stockin' up on frogs...

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dragon81

Yeah I agree that we should be using the baitcast reels. However I am still using a heavier duty Spincast reels. I guess I was looking to see what you thought about having it open or closed when sitting on the rod holder. I have always had it closed, and when they hit the bells on my rod go off or I see it hittin, Wasnt sure if when doing that the Cats feel that tension and more fish are missed because of that. I have always caught my share of Cats but thought maybe I could do more to be more successful also. And this summer is the first summer in a while that I have got back into it. Thanks for all the help.

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dragon81

the more I read your replies after my second post I think you actually answered my questions pretty well. But still reply with any other info you thnk is important. Can you get decent baitcast rods for a decent price.

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dragon81

Baitcast reels that is ?

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CatManLee

The whole clicker thing for me depends on the bite that day. Usually I don't use my clicker fishing Channel Cats, simply because it's not needed. If they are really biting light or finicky for what ever reason I might use my clicker to see if it improves my hook up ratio by letting them chew on it a little longer.

For the most part if you see bites starting, pick up your rod and wait for steady pull, then when you feel a good steady pull or weight on the end of your line...slam it to 'em. That or you can try circle hooks, just sit back and watch the action unfold.

That's my 2-Cents.

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Ed Carlson

A great reel for low cost now, if you can find them, is the Gander Mountain GS66HS. It was made by Pflueger for Gander and is now on clearance. The GS 55 is another great reel by Gander and is a low speed version. They are both doubles for the Pflueger Trion reels, great cat reels.

I think they now go for 60 bucks, instead of 90 bucks. I have several, and love them.

Contact a Gander Store and ask them to locate a couple before they are all gone.

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hanson

dragon81-

One way to accomplish the "clicker" deal with your spinning reel is to keep the bail closed and then back way off on the drag. The fish will hit your bait, you'll get some rod tip movement, and then when he moves off, the loose drag will allow him to take line. The one trick here is you have to tighten your drag up quickly before setting the hook. I fish with a few guys down here on the Minnesota who do this and it does work.

Unless you have a good rod holder, Y-stick to hold your rod securely on shore, I'm afraid to leave my rod sitting around with the bail closed or spool engaged. When sumo comes along, its a good way to lose a rod quick. wink

Ideally, a baitcaster w/ clicker or a spinning reel w/ baitrunner/baitfeeder option is the way to go but sometimes you have to improvise if you don't have the equipment.

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Scoot

Usually I don't use my clicker fishing Channel Cats, simply because it's not needed.

That's interesting- maybe it's a fishing style thing, maybe something else, but I definitely haven't found that to be the case for me. I use clickers all the time and I find them to be invaluable. Catman, I'm definitely not argueing with you here, just saying my experience has been different. Must just be a fishing style/approach deal...

dragon, two other things- 1) Abu Garcia makse some good reels with clickers that'd be solid for you. You can find them on sale in the same price range Ed mentioned for the Gander reels. Get a C3 with the lower gear ratio and wait for one to go on sale. 2) Another idea for your spinning rig- keep your bail open, but place a stick over the line. That way, you won't constantly be loosing line out of your reel, but a cat can peel off line when it pulls and goes on a run. I know Doug Stange does this...

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dragon81

I have never used baitcasters before. Is the clicker just the noise the reel gives off when the line is being taken by the fish. Do all baitcasters have that option? Or are some silent when the line is running away on you. Hope that didnt sound too stupid.

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DTro

Clickers, Bait Runners or Bait Feeders all are designed to have an audible alarm that your line is being pulled out. Either by a fish, or in some cases your bait is swimming with it.

Anyways you will have to experiment what works best.

I’ve had pretty good luck using a tight line with circle hooks. But a lot of the time I will hold the rod or it is very secure in a rod holder (boat). I guess if it was me I wouldn’t trust my gear propped up against a Y-Stick without using some sort of clicker/baitfeeder.

A good economical option is the Salt Striker reel that Cabelas sells. It’s a spinning reel with a bait runner on it. The clicker is has an adjustable tension as well. It’s basically an Okuma Reel with Cabelas branding. I would recommend the 50 or 55 series.

Good Luck

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kfk

Do you guys have any problems deep hooking cats using clickers? What kind of deep hooking percentages are you seeing using clickers?

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citypaddler37

second on the cabela's reel. i haven't used them fishing cats, but got one when i was at my in-laws place in florida fishing in the surf with similar tactics to catfishing. since then i actually have used the baitfeeder for lindy rigging on mille lacs, and it works really nicely. they are solid reels, and not too expensive.

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CatManLee

No worries Scoot, to each his own. I have experienced a good hook up ratio using no clicker, so that's what I do. If a clicker works better for you, then obviously that's what you should do.

However, if you're eye's aren't glued to your rod, a clicker might be a smart choice as mentioned just so you don't lose a rod if anything.

As for baitcaster's, you should take a look at Shakespeare reels. They are dependable and priced right. I have used them for the past 7 years with no issues....If you're on a budget, check 'em out. The in-fisherman guys use them for a lot of different species, so they can't be too bad. I have moved up to a set of new "more expensive" stuff this year, but really the Shakespeare reels worked just fine too.

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Shack

I remember back in the mid nineties I bought my first high dollar set up. Been buying cheap wal-fart $15.00 combos and they would break or I would crunch them in the truck of my car grin. So, I went out and bought a true Shakespeare Ugly Stick (med/heavy), and a (I forget what kind) nice spinner reel. Spent about $80.00 when $80.00 was the world. Still have the mind image in my mind. I was down at the confluence of rice Creek and Miss., big chunks of cut sucker, Y-stick, big eagle claw hook, first cast, turning my back and watching the handle fly into the Miss. in the lantern light. At that time, it was right back to the $15.00 combo grin.

Since then I have never lost a rod and reel since wink.

When using a bait caster and bait caster rods for channels, using a circle hook, shore fishing, I always have some sort of alert going. If the clicker is too soft for circle hook, I disengage the free spool but leave clicker on and tighten drag. With circles, I try to just leave it solid or as close as possible. My findings are this works the best. When in the boat, rod in holder, the drag is tight and the free spool is disengaged. Shore fishing when pole is not in my hands, I might change this. But if I get a clicker run, I go over and hold pole in my had with everything tight for about 15-20 minutes or until fish is on. Spinner the same way. I am almost in the camp of the best channel set up is a spinner, mono line (20-30), circle hook, drag tight and in my hand.

I lost a very big channel last week, because I was using a bait caster, 80lb pp, circle hook, clicker and free spool on and I was not their to grab it right away. Do not ask grin

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