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TMF89

Setting The Hook On Flatheads

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My one and only flat head this year so far

<-------------------Right here wink!!!

Was caught after letting it sit on the the line for 4-5 minutes because of a storm and it was still corner mouth hooked. I would not think you would have to wait this long.

I am now a huge fan of letting the fish do what it wants and take it's time. I have lost to many "nice" fish, because the clicker started to sing and I just had to pick the rod up right away and blow it. crazy

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Yah I agree with shack. I have tried all methods, and came to the conclusion that waiting works best. I will give it one full cancer stick before setting the hook now. To many fish have gottan off of my hook by me being set happy.

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I set the hook on them fish as quickly as I can get the rod out of the holder and turn the clicker off.

I would bet 90% of the time I have the hook set home within 10-15 seconds of the initial bite.

Let the fish "load" the rod up and give it the old heave ho.

I see more people miss fish when they just blindly set the hook on a run. If the fish is running, take your time, engage the spool, let the fish load the rod up and thump it a few times, then set.

You are going to have your share of misses, a 100% hook up ratio is not very likely. When you allow a flathead to run awhile with your bait, 9 times out of 10 he'll swim you right into a log jam. frown

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I guess I'm in the other boat.

When the fish hits, and I know that the bait is in their mouth. I reel up tight with the rod at about 1:00 position. Feel for the fish, let the rod drop with the fish till I'm at about the 2-3:00 position and then deliver the news.

I'm in the belief that if the fish is moving with the bait the hook is in it's mouth. There are several reasons to miss a fish, but the most common is either the hook sets back into the bait, or it just fails to grab anything on the way out.

These fish aren't getting any dumber and I really think that excessive pressure will cause them to open up immediately. As soon as the fish hits get the rod out of the holder and take any pressure off right away.

or there could just be a good chance I have no idea what I'm talking about. smile

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I'm with Hanson on this. We're talking about a fish with a mouth the size of an ice cream bucket. There's no nibbling involved. If the fish wants it, it'll be in it's mouth. With a cavern for a mouth, your hook's not always going to hit home.

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You guys bring up good points!

To be straight forward with you, I change my mind on just about everything to do with cat fishing at least once a year and then come back to the same thing I shrugged off. I also put a lot of credit in what you guys say also, even when you guys change your tunes.

I think time of year, life cycles, structure and which waters I am fishing on have a factor in what I do.Heck, just last week, I started out the end of the weekend on the MN, hit the Croix and finsished the week on Pool 2 and it seems things change with each trip. Also you throw in shore fishing and fishing from a boat (which I did both). I will say a shore hook set is most likely different from a boat hook set (IMO). You miss a couple, your mind tells you your are doing something wrong and there for you make changes. Now, should you change something is the question grin and should you revisit something again you shrugged off in the past.

Or, just figure one has no idea grin

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I am not doint to bad on the hook set, my problem lately are getting the runs! (now that can be taken the wrong way grin )

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On top of what was said... SET YOUR DRAG TIGHT TIGHT. It's amazing how tight you need it so it don't slip on the hookset. It's not even in the same ballpark as walleye/bass fishing. Cinch that mother.

Maybe there is such a thing as too tight, but I have not found it quite yet. Make sure you have your bearings about you thou when you do connect. You might be faced with a situation where you need to loosen the drag immediately so you don't get pulled overboard or snap the line.

What's your opinion on drag tension on the hookset?

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On top of what was said... SET YOUR DRAG TIGHT TIGHT. It's amazing how tight you need it so it don't slip on the hookset. It's not even in the same ballpark as walleye/bass fishing. Cinch that mother.

Maybe there is such a thing as too tight, but I have not found it quite yet. Make sure you have your bearings about you thou when you do connect. You might be faced with a situation where you need to loosen the drag immediately so you don't get pulled overboard or snap the line.

What's your opinion on drag tension on the hookset?

Tyler, I'm gonna have to disagree with you. there is some video coming out soon with a number of hook sets,

I say keep the drag tight, but not clamped all the way down.

I had a problem for a period of time where I was ripping the hooks out of the fish because I had the the drag really tight, I fish with stiff rods so my drag release which happens every time I set the hook, is the give in the equation.

The one factor to take into consideration with this is...Rod flexibility,IF you have a soft rod, you can torque your drag.

but with the use of super braids you need to have a little give somewhere... Mine is the shock leader and the drag setting.

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Well I'll be using two 7' MH Ugly Sticks, one Glow one White, if that matters. The reels are gonna both be Abu Garcias, one 6500 and one 7000. Line's 65lb PP, I'm just switching the reels over from two of my musky rigs. So set it tight, but just loose enough that I can pull line out if I try as hard as I can?

And set the hook relatively right away, just let the rod load up and lower it to around 3 oclock so I have plenty of room to set the hook?

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Sounds like a good gameplan.

Just make sure you "feel" the fish before you set the hook. When in doubt, just set it. You are only out a bullhead if not a fish.

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Yeah I have to agree with Larry. If you are using a super braid line every inch you move the rod tip the hook is moving that far as well. So if you lay into a fish and there is no give, you can potentially rip the hook right out of the fish or bury the hook much deeper than needed. A simple lifting of the rod tip is often all that is needed to get a good hook set.

As soon as you pick that rod up and feel a fish pulling...set the hook.

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Thanks guys, one last question. Where do I hook the bullie? And how much weight should I use? The rods are labeled 1-4, I was thinking of putting 2 2 1/4 weights on there, but that plus the bullheads gonna go waaaay over the limit. What would/do you guys do?

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Right now you will need at least 4oz of weight and possibly as much as 8oz.

5 should be plenty.

Don't worry about going over the weight the rod lists.

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The rods are labeled 1-4, I was thinking of putting 2 2 1/4 weights on there, but that plus the bullheads gonna go waaaay over the limit.

Dtro is right, you can get away with a lot more than what is labeled on your rod. The weight thats labeled on your rods are a casting "lure" weight recommendation. The more you go over that weight the harder it will be to cast but most of the time you don't need to cast very far.

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Well it will work in a pinch, but don't expect them to slide up and down the line as intended. They WILL get knotted up.

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Go to Moore's and get some bigger weights! laugh

I like to feel the fish pump the rod first before I give him what for. Definately dont let em run to long, especially when near any snags.

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so what your opinion on using 2 sinkers. Being all I have is 2oz no-rolls vs 1 4-5oz sinker

Go See Bob Moore he can remidy that not enough big sinker problem.

You are asking for it in high water, fast current for a tangled mess.....throw a fish in the equation..... of course it will be a MONSTER..........Well....

As all Flathead fisherman always say......FROM THE CHEAP SEATS........."GO FOR IT"

whistle

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I am going out tonight with EYEs and forgot to get some bigger ones. I'm sure he'll have a few xtra I can use. Yes I do have to make it to Moore's to pick some up. I really don't know what I was thinking when I ordered mine 25 2oz no-rolls (Brain Fart) Thanks

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