Rigging your livebaits on a kayak. Any preferred methods?

Discuss fishing tackle, methods, and kayak fishing accessories here.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

A couple more observations:

Pete's up through the roof of the mouth method resulted in two hook-ups yesterday. Used it on the small ones I didn't want to back hook because was towing them around rather than drifting and nose-hooking the small ones seldom seems to work out well.

I've now settled on Andrew's sorry, Casultyward's, demon circle hook suggestion (work well, cheap), 8/0. Model number is 39951. The beaks are small enough to thread better through the nostrils too, when nose hooking the livie. They seem slightly smaller than other 8/0 circles too, so fit in what seems like a sweet spot of about a 7.5/0 ;-)


So, small livies (and possibly very big ones with bigger hooks, but haven't trialled that much yet), it's up through the roof. For average sized livies it goes through the nose. Still deciding between roof or the nitta cable ties for the big livies.

But nice to be narrowing things down a bit.
Pic of yesterday's test results:
kingiFeb1.jpg
Last edited by kingiFiddler on Wed Feb 24, 2021 10:41 am, edited 4 times in total.
Casualtyward
Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2013 10:05 pm
Kayak Make: Ocean
Kayak Model: Prowler 4.3 Ultra
VHF Call Sign: ZMU7778
Location: Auckland

Thanks, KF.

I'm slightly jealous that you get so many takes you can afford to experiment. I'm lucky if I get one good shot (barring the time I had at least 6 takes and not a single hook-up).

I don't think the demon circles come any bigger than an 8/0 - I looked for them when I couldn't get consistent hook ups.
Kotare II
Ocean Prowler 4.3 Ultra

Callsign: ZMU7778
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Thanks Casualtyward. When this place was closing, many of us were lamenting the superb knowledge-base that was about to be lost.

Whilst I'm not exactly reinventing the wheel, I hope to do my part in collating and testing different ideas so someone, somewhere finds it of benefit. I figure in a year or two I might have the knowledge/experience to actually offer up some good info for others, but for now collating it is the best I can do.

Experimenting is part of the buzz I get from fishing. I can't stomach seafood and we don't eat much, so plenty get released and what I photograph are only the ones that made it to the ute. There's a list of people I give most of the keepers to. Please note however that experimenting also has, almost by design, its fair share of doughnut days. I recently did four sessions in a row with nothing worth keeping. But learnt plenty though, which is a buzz.

We have also been very lucky up here. That first week in January was the best I have ever seen it in the 15 or so years here. One for the record books for sure.

Thanks for that info on the demon hooks. I too couldn't find any bigger demon circle hooks and would welcome info on good but cheap bigger options. The only big ones I can find whilst good are absurdly expensive.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Small livie hooked with Pete's method up through roof of mouth and slow trolled under a sinker accounted for this yesterday:
snapperFeb1.jpg
peteatkina
Posts: 121
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2017 11:12 am
Kayak Make: viking
Kayak Model: pf400

:D gonad muncher!
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Ha. You underestimate the subduing power of the fumes from my sweaty crotch. Iirc that fish didn't wake up until it was slapped in the chops by water when torpedoed back into the sea.

I'm digging your hook placement suggestion and it accounted for this a few days ago
Image

I'm experimenting with how big a livie I can Pete-hook if I keep stepping up the hook sizes. The goal is to see if can do away with bridling the bigger baits.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Just wanted to update this with a few musings from the last two sessions (one kingi caught each session).
Have now settled on 12/0 circle hooks for anything from small to medium baits and Pete-hooking them up through the top jaw. They never rip the hook by themselves like they can when back or nostril hooked, and the hook can't turn and embed the beak into the bait's skin, so fewer missed hook-ups when a fish strikes.

Still have yet to see how well it works on large baits but am happy to be narrowing it down and simplifying. I could use smaller circles, like the 8/0's, on smaller baits but have been surprised how well they handle the bigger hooks. I wonder if hook size might be more crucial when the fish start getting really picky and don't like the look of a big hook sticking out of a small bait. But so far so good.

May have to go bigger than 12/0 (ha, I'd have laughed a few months ago if someone said that) on big baits if not bridling.

The main issue with 12/0's is the cost. Have yet to find a cheap source that comes anywhere close to the cost of the packs of demon 8/0's.

Not sure if any of these musings or posts are actually helping anyone else but at least it's all in one thread should I need to refer to it if I forget between Summers how to best set my livebaiting rigs up.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

A couple more musings, that seem to muddy the water, unfortunately, but I'll post them here because it's become a bit of a repository for my livebaiting experiences and good to refer to when I've forgotten where I was up to in the list of experiments.

Thinking I had it all dialled in and was just going to not bother with bridling, instead just Pete-hooking (up through nose) every livebait with a 12/0 hook, it hasn't worked out that well lately. Firstly, up until the last session the livies were quite small (perfect snapper baits) and a 12/0 up through the nose looks absurd and a bit too much for the wee things to handle for long. I did try but either the kings were not around or were spooked by the massive hook compared to the livie size. I did four sessions with no kingi strikes, and had gone back to a 8/0 demon hook and still no kingfish but quite a few snapper.

The latest session, I finally caught the perfect sized livie but still had the 8/0 on when I would usually be using a 12/0 up through the nose, so instead of changing hooks I bridled and stuck with that 8/0 hook. There wouldn't have been much hook sticking out if an 8/0 up through the nose.
kidstixKingBsmall.jpg
kidstixKingBsmall.jpg (44.01 KiB) Viewed 171 times
So, now I'm not sure which way to go when targeting kingfish. Also, I'm using barbless circles progressively more these days. If Pete-hooked, I have to add a bead to stop the bait shaking the hook. If bridling with the nitta bridles, they can be cinched up tight against the head and the livie can't shake it off.
Casualtyward
Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2013 10:05 pm
Kayak Make: Ocean
Kayak Model: Prowler 4.3 Ultra
VHF Call Sign: ZMU7778
Location: Auckland

Thanks, KF.

I always enjoy hearing the results of your experimentation. Hopefully I find time / space / freedom to give it a go myself this summer.
Kotare II
Ocean Prowler 4.3 Ultra

Callsign: ZMU7778
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Cheers Casualty.
Much of fishing seems to me to be a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma. Unpacking it could take a few lifetimes.

Hopefully you can get some normalcy back soon. I certainly took fishing for granted and getting back on the water has been very therapeutic.

We may very well be going back into level three here, with cases just around the corner popping up yesterday. :-(
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

More questions needing answering/experimentation. Rabbit recently advised he's using 7-10m leaders and 6/0 circles when targeting kingfish, which means I'm gonna test that :-)

Have done two trips with 10m fluoro and 6/0 circle and the first was a 4hr doughnut, while the second was a hook-up in the first 10 minutes and a bewildering 3hr fight with a shark.

I've now set up two livebaiting rods. Both with the same braid mainlines and topshot, 10m 50lb leaders, and 6/0 circle hooks. The difference is one uses a fluoro leader, the other mono. My trusty sidekick and I will cover the same water at the same times.

Once any determination is made on the relative effectiveness (Summer) of each leader material, the next step is cutting 3m off each and re-doing the testing. Rinse and repeat one more time after that so we are down to 4m leaders.

Given the significantly extra $ for fluoro, will it out-strike mono at any or all of the lengths?

Here's the line and hooks being used. The hooks are quite a thin gauge and tiny and won't handle serious abuse, me thinks, but only one way to find out. It does seem like Mustad's sizing is much smaller than other brands. Their 8/0 circles are closer to 7 in other brands. These 6's are more like 5/0 of other brands but it's worth testing 'em anyway.
leaderHookTesting.gif
leaderHookTesting.gif (113.31 KiB) Viewed 124 times
Predictions anyone? My gut says no difference until Winter but I'm wrong about 50% of the time.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Fluoro: 3 (2 sharks, 1 king) from 4 trips
Mono: 12 (8 sharks, 3 kings, 1 snap) from 6 trips


Will update as experiment unfolds.
Last edited by kingiFiddler on Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:03 pm, edited 4 times in total.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Is anyone using a line clip? I'm finding more often than not, the bigger kings aren't swallowing on strike and I'm looking for a good way to keep the drag super low but avoid the livie taking too much line out. I also wonder if there are any benefits to be had from the option to get the line down close to the water rather than off the rod tip.

Might try a rubber-jawed clothes peg, or a rubber band and a tag line. Am I nuts, worth a shot, both, neither?


*edit* Have two of these dinky little release clips coming. No idea if they'll work. only one way to find out.
dropo-backReleaseClip.jpg
dropo-backReleaseClip.jpg (39.3 KiB) Viewed 56 times
Had another king strike but drop the livie this morning. I don't know if they'll still feel enough drag from line in the water and still drop the bait even if the reel is in freespool / with bail arm open. I guess time will tell.
User avatar
kingiFiddler
Posts: 827
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:42 pm
Kayak Make: Stealth
Kayak Model: Fisha 460
Location: Mangawhai

Can't edit the running strike totals for the leader experiment anymore so:
Fluoro: 4 (3 sharks, 1 king) from 5 trips
Mono: 19 (13 sharks, 5 kings, 1 snap) from 10 trips

As awesome as the bronzies look, I'll be stoked if I never see another. They are a plague this Summer.

I've canned the Mustad 6/0 circles - they are just too small, and have gone back to the Mustad 8/0 circles.
Post Reply

Return to “Tackle and Accessories”