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Topic: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace  (Read 6726 times)

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Offline Bwana

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Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« on: October 16, 2012, 02:53:24 pm »
Bwana's Adjustable Live Bait Trace


For a while now I have been looking at making an adjustable livebait trace that can be used on any size livebait from mackerel through to jub-jub bonnies. Down here when the summer game fish arrive you can pin a live bonnie and get picked up by anything from a dorado, wahoo, tuna, sailie to a small black marlin. If you fish mono you get bitten of by wahoo, if you fish single strand wire you often break off (kink) when fighting a tuna / dorrie or billfish. I wanted a simple foolproof adjustable trace that could cover all these bases.


The trace below has worked well for me so far on tuna and small wahoo and I believe will handle sailies and even small marlin if hooked accidentally. The keys here are simplicity, flexibility and strength (note it is not a heavy tackle trace but best suited to tackle up to 40lb which covers most general gamefishing applications in KZN).


Take a look and maybe it will help you maximise your catch on summer "surprise hookups."


Materials:


The trace uses a single piece (50-60cm) of nylon coated 1x7 steel cable (I use Surflon because it is supple yet strong and has a low diameter) in this case I find the 45lb works best for the size of hooks and tube I use. The wire in this demo is the black coated but you can also get it in camo (bronze) which is the about equivalent to  #8 single strand.


I use 2 x 5/0 Daiichi hooks as their gauge of wire fits the tube and cable best, plus they are ultra sharp and very strong.


You will also need plastic tubing - in this demo I am using red with an inside diameter of around 2mm.



Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2012, 02:55:54 pm »
On the end of the piece of wire, attach your first 5/0 hook using a Riebeeck knot - it may have other names but it's basically a simple R&S knot used on nylon coated or carbon coated steel. It is low profile and very strong.




Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2012, 03:01:50 pm »
Next, cut a small (8mm) section of plastic tubing and slide it over the point of the front hook and push it all the way up the eye along the shank. Then thread the point of the wire trace in from the back of the hook and out through the tubing so it lies past the eye of the hook. Make sure that the rear hook stays aligned to the direction of the front hook (i.e. they are both point up and in line). This is the "stopper" that will allow you to slide the hook along the trace to set the distance for your different bait sizes. At this point you will have a 60cm long wire trace with a fixed rear hook and a sliding front hook. I keep them in my trace bag like this until I know the size of the baits I am going to use. The next 3 steps are really quick and can be completed when rigging up for your bait.









Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2012, 03:04:21 pm »
When getting ready to rig your bait simply slide the front hook forwards to the correct distance to allow it to position on the forehead of the bait. Pass the front end of the leader down through the eye of the hook and kink it upwards to lock the hook in position.




Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2012, 03:06:05 pm »
Now to rig the bait, pin the back hook into the livebait about 3/4 of the way back and then secure the front hook to the bait's forehead using a small cable tie.




Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2012, 03:08:04 pm »
Lastly, I use an Albright knot to secure the supple wire trace to my fluorocarbon leader, usually between 60-80lb. The Albright is slim and low-vis and very strong. This rig can take some pressure and also doesn't kink like single strand.




Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2012, 03:17:35 pm »
So there it is guys. Just an idea that has worked for me, hope it can give you guys some ideas and ways to build on this. I have worked on a variation that uses an IGFA clip for bigger baits but that needs to be tested this summer! Maybe this could work on Jaen's monster croc couta at Mtunzini?

Offline eric cotton

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2012, 03:17:55 pm »
Great post, have always liked an adjustable trace as it neat and well presented.... Going to give this a try this summer,
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Offline dugong

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2012, 03:20:48 pm »
Very neat Bwana!!
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Offline Capt. Hook

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2012, 03:29:42 pm »
Excellent post  :+ cred:
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Offline REEFMAN

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #10 on: October 16, 2012, 03:50:57 pm »
Nice!!  (clap) :+ cred:

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Offline isivuba

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #11 on: October 16, 2012, 03:52:23 pm »
excellent post going to try this one in December  :+ cred:

Offline shagnrelease

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #12 on: October 16, 2012, 08:31:32 pm »
Another pearler Mark Nice one!!
 

Offline John F

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2012, 09:35:07 pm »
Another great tut Mark!

Well done! +cred

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Offline super_daav

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #14 on: October 17, 2012, 09:06:28 am »
Good stuff Mark!
 
I was always concerned that Surflon was to visible for offshore fishing. Have you had any noticable decrease in bite ratio? Have you tried this for couta fishing or do you rather stick to single strand?
 
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Offline Kumz

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #15 on: October 17, 2012, 09:15:00 am »
 (clap) :win: :udman: :+ cred:

Offline deezynking

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #16 on: October 17, 2012, 10:22:50 am »
 :win: :corrct:

Offline Lichia amia

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2012, 12:13:06 pm »
Nice one , have some of the good stuff +1 for you

Offline Bwana

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2012, 08:59:56 am »
Thanks guys. I'd be interested to get some feedback if this setup works for you. It is important that the cable tie secures the front hook firmly in place without squashing the bait's head too tightly. You'll get the hang of it after a few attempts. Also the hooks used in this tut are perfectly matched for the size of tubing I use. If you can't find the same tubing you may need to change hook type or size to fit the tubing. The whole principle is that the tubing allows the trace to be adjusted by pulling firmly but doesn't slip when the bait is being towed.


@Super-daav - I haven't used this trace on couta yet but i am sure it will do the trick. If I was to use it for couta I would go to the Camo Colour (bronze) surflon. I believe that with bigger baits like Jub-Jub bonnies as long as the bait is frisky and creating a commotion the couta won't leave it alone! That being said I am sure the smaller couta may avoid this trace in clean water but I don't think a croc will mind. I have caught several nice tuna on this rig and they are known to be very leader shy so I don't think it's an issue.

Offline super_daav

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Re: Bwana's adjustable livebait trace
« Reply #19 on: October 18, 2012, 11:21:37 am »
Hi Mark,
 
Thanks for that info! Definitely going to try it out!!
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