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augernaut

tipup tricks?

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Just curious to see whether or not anyone has any cool tricks/tips they use when tipup fishing? I'd really be interested in seeing if anyone has any tips for enhancing the sensitivity of polar type tipups, or the round frabills. I'll throw a few of mine out to start:

1.) I use slip bobber knots for linemarkers - they roll right up onto the spool, and offer zero resistance to light biting 'eyes.

2.) at the end of my dacron line, I attach a ball bearing coastlock snap swivel - then my leaders have a split ring on the end - I can easily switch leaders that way, and all my leaders get wrapped up onto one of those round snell holders. Don't have to deal with the whole mess of hooks in the dacron, etc. that way.

3.) My best tip: go to a auto parts store - get a pack of those dense foam garage floor mats - I think I got 4 for 10 bucks. Cut them in 11"x11" squares - put a hole in the middle, and a slit to the outside. Instant hole cover! They work great, and can double as a pad to kneel on and keep dry if you aren't wearing gore-tex.

anybody else???

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Great idea on the floor mats, I've been looking around for something to use as a hole cover.

Have you tried using circle hooks on your tip ups yet? I finally tried them last year and doubt I will ever go back to regular hooks. They really work great for releasing fish unharmed.

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Have not tried the circle hooks yet - what size do you usually use for a medium shiner/sucker minnow?

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Honestly I have no idea what size the hooks I use are. I just looked through a few different brands and picked the size that looked right or maybe a bit larger then I would usually use. I figured it would be easier to hook up with a hook a little bigger than normal than it would be with one too small. I'll wait until they are done with their 2nd run then pull the line tight and let the fish hook itself. So far the hook has been in the corner of the mouth every time.

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Highlife, Ive not tried circle hooks yet but was thinking about it this year, especially when Im on my own and still want to use tipups but not keep fish.

How do you set the hook? Say the flag is up do you just go over grab the line and let the fish tighten up? Do you have to give a little tug to set the hook? Also do you lose a lot while fighting the fish or is it about the same percentage landed as quick strike rigs?

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I'm still new to the circle hook thing myself but I'll fill you in on what has worked for me so far.

You'll still get your occasional drops before you even get to the tip up but every time I felt the fish last winter I landed the fish (again only 1 season and I didn't get out that many times). What I would do is just let him run with it a couple of times then pull the line until I could feel resistance. Once the fish felt me it would take off again and I would wait to feel a hard tug and then start pulling it in slowly. The idea is to get the fish to swallow the bait. Then when it runs while you are holding onto the line the hook pulls out of it's mouth and catches in the corner of the mouth.

I guess if you try to "set" the hook the standard way it can pull the hook right out of the fish's mouth without catching in the corner so it is important to not use a quick set method for circles.

If there are any catfish fishermen on this thread they could probably explain it much better than myself but from the success I had with them last year I was impressed.

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augernut, thanks for the tips on the ups! I've gotta try them. I'm fairly new to ice fishing so I'm not sure what will happen but I'm definitely going to get out there and give a couple of your tips a try.

Never used circle hooks for ice fishing. That's going to be one of my other tipup tries this year. I've already got a few hooks waiting.

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That's how I've always understood circle hooks to be used too - don't set the hook, you have to let the hook ease out of the fishes mouth until it sets in the corner - but I think the fish has to be running away from you for it to work properly. I might have to pick some up and try it this year.

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I like to clip the tails of any live minnows I use.Also cut small slit in cap of M+M Mini's container,mount to tipup.I use this to store any hooks I want to leave attached to line.

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No problem Lost - good luck out there :-)

I also like to clip the tail of a lively minnow - I think that struggling really gets the fish going - especially northern. Sometimes it helps to "beat up" the minnow, knock some scales off, etc. Just don't kill it!

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Another tip when using tip ups for walleyes is to use 2 fatheads on the same hook. What I'll do is hook them so they are facing the opposite direction so they are always struggling against each other.

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Hey Highlife I've tried the two minnow thing a couple of times when it was real slow but didn't have any luck. Might have been my location too. Have you had any luck doing this?

Thanks ~piker

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Please explain the use of a hole cover...

I've used circle hooks extensively. In the salt if you fish for stripers, you often encounter bluefish...bye-bye fly. If you fish with wire you land the blues but the stripers shy off. SOunds exactly like the walleye vs. northern problem. Trick is to avoid setting the hook, to react with a steady pull or just hold tight as the fish swims away. Only problem is the circle works best when a fish is facing away from the angler, so if your walleye takes and stays below you or doesn't move far, your angle isn't ideal. On the other hand you can wait a long time without fear of deep-hooking your fish. I've also been told that if a fish has the bait deep, they react to the feeling of tension from the line more violently, and are more likely to swim away which gives a better hookset.

ice

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A hole cover is simply a piece of material that covers up the hole to prevent freezup. Typically, they have a slit in the side and a hole in the middle, so you can slide it onto your tipup shaft. They work great on really cold days.

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I have had great luck with the 2 minnow trick but other times if they are not biting I won't get anything. The best luck I've had with it has always been early ice.

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I like to tape the lighted bobber battery ( the ones you have to push in to light up) So it extends past the flag. makes it easy to see. smile.gif

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Do you attach the bobber or just the battery? I never thought of attaching a lighted bobber to the flag, might have to try that one.

Do you have much luck at night with tip ups? They always seemed like to much of a hassle to deal with at night.

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just the battery, I try to keep it as light as possible. not that it matters the springs are pretty durable on most tip ups.

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I'm confused - you attach a 3volt lithium battery (those pin type ones) to the flag? What's the purpose of that? Maybe I'm just dense, but I didn't understand your post :-) I've had pretty bad luck with tipup lights in the past, this year I got some super relective tape and put strips of it on my flags. It will reflect light from a LOOONG ways away, so I should be able to shine them with my 2 million candlepower spotlight and see if I have a flag up or not.

tipups at night? Probably one of the best ways to fish for 'eyes! Here in Wisconsin, we can fish 3 lines, so it's common to set 2 tipups and jig your third line - hole hopping. Or, alot of guys set out 3 tipups and drink barleypop! Of course, I never do that, nope...

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I am sorry, I am talking about the batteries that have the built on light. I cannot remember who makes the bobber/battery. Do not use the bobber just the battery. I think the maker is Thill. do not quote me on that. you can put up to 4 or 6 of these batteries(if needed) I only have had to use one. The style of bobber that I am referring to can be bought at just about any retailer. I will check the tackle box tonight to find out for sure.

My fishing buddies and I have had some luck at night. mostly northern( few and far between, just enough to keep on trying), one crappie on a shiner(17 incher).


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Years ago I built 8"x12" wood boxes. Removalable lid and slotted for a tip up. Shelf inside lined with aluminum. Put the old ladies Christmas candle on the shelf and light it.Hole never freezes and tip up is elevated for a better visual. I have fished days at a time with this setup.

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