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JimBuck

Muskie/Catfish setup?

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So I've got 2 Canada fishing trips planned for the end of August into September. Both trips we will be targeting Muskie and large Pike. I'm not a muskie fisherman so I don't want to go out and blow all this money on a muskie setup I will rarely use. I do some catfishing and have been waiting to pull the trigger on a nice baitcast/clicker setup. I was wondering what people would recommend for a setup that I could use for both Muskie and Cats.

Cheers,

-Jimbuck

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For the reels you can cover both species with a C3 6500 Abu or a 7000, but the rods.....there's really not a rod that will work well for both for casting.

The cat rods are softer tipped and couldn't handle casting the lures, and conversely a high modulus graphite muskie rod is not meant to crow bar a flathead in. For trolling, I use a cat glass cat rod quite a bit, but that's about as far as a rod can cross over into muskies and still be an effective cat rod.

Gander Series muskie rods are a decent value, and for around $100 a Shimano Compre is a really nice stick for the value.

Long story short: reels are good for both, outside a glass rod used for cats and trolling, rods need to be different.

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I use a St. Croix Downsizer LT rod good for weights of 3/4 oz to 2.5 oz I think. I personally prefer graphite rods over that of the traditional glass rod for cats. Since I typically am holding the rod, rather than having it sit in a rod holder. As well as the occasional slight drift fishing, I prefer strike detection through hands rather than watching tip detection, especially when it's dark. Dumb luck drifting has picked up some fish that I never would've caught with jure just on bottom. That and sometimes I use a bobber.

For the most part I use spinning gear, though. It's a little more challenging that way.

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Cool. Thanks for the input cjac and slipperybob....As for reels, I have been looking into those Abu 6500's and it seems like it might be a good match. Going the graphite route seems like an interesting idea. I often keep my rod in hand and maybe graphite would be something I could manage, plus I like the feel of graphite in most situations. Thanks again for weighing in on the issue guys, have a good weekend.

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I do a lot of catfishng as well as musky fishing and use the same combo for both. What I use is a abu 6500 C3 on a 7'0" heavy action compre. It has the clicker for cats, casts like a dream, has an excellent drag for the runs that both cats and 'skis make, and you can cast pretty far with the set up. Plus, it's pretty versatile with the range of musky baits that are availible.

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The problem with a stiff musky rod for catfishing is that it is tough to softly lob a large bait without tearing out the hook. It can be done, but it's less than ideal.

A decent catfish rod will run you somewhere between $25-50, so picking up a dedicated cat rod isn't too expensive. Just buy two rods and swap reels. The Berkley Glow Stik is a nice cat rod, as is the Quantum Big Cat. Both are very affordable.

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I haven't had a need to lob my bait out far - fortunate for me. If it becomes a concern I would have to go back to an old Live Bait setup for Pike/Musky. You thread the bait with dental floss (and needle) and tie that floss to the shank of the hook.

There's another trick about using rubber bands, but that works best for bullheads. And I usually don't bring rubber bands.

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something that I do if I'm live baiting for pike/muskies or if I'm worried about it chasing cats, is I'll take some of the extra line I've got for my 6500C3 (65 pound dacron) and use that.

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