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New skip gap hooks


Jonn Graham
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I got a pack of Gamakatsu's new skip gap hooks given to me a month or so ago. The angler who gave them to me says they work great with flukes and other soft jerks. He said the hook design helps keep the fluke in place better and leads to less plastic tearing. They definitely look interesting. Any thoughts?????

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I use the skip-gap with the Ribbit plastic frog (great for topwater buzzing). The hook kept the bait properly aligned in the water, and held the bait in place nicely. I like 'em.

 

Check out this video on the Ribbit.....

 

 

 

 

-Chip

 

 

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I saw those earlier in the year but never tried them. Since Flukes are made of a firmer plastic, I never really had too much of an issue with tearing or slippage. Still, the hooks look interesting, though I like the weighted ones. The Falcon 4/0 work pretty well for me.

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Frog Baits

It's even more exciting when it's happening to you.

 

Fish can be caught on all frog baits, on todays market.

The action is better on some models.

 

In the early part of the season, the smaller sizes are better,

like the Brewer Slider Frog.

 

Frog baits are more productive, when fished slower.

When fished with a steady retrieve, they're like a quiet running buzzbait.

Models with legs that hang down in the water, are more natural looking when at rest in the water.

 

Yamamoto's twin tail grub is more universal---

they can be fished on top with a steady retrieve, subsurface and crawled along on the bottom.

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I am having a hard time visualizing how one would hook a Fluke using that hook. It's difficult enough to hook a fluke perfectly straight so it swims right and does not twist line.

I've experemented with the keeper hooks but I still think a regular 3/0 or 4/0 EWG works best.

 

I used the Horny Toad Hook, made by Zoom this summer. It worked great!

 

This summer I'm going to ditch the baitcaster and use my 8wt, and a Dave's swimming frog instead.

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On the subject of line twist:

 

My clients regularly throw flukes. Early one, line twist was a huge problem. Then I began to watch the clients fish the bait and tried to figure out where and how the line twist occurs. My opinion is what really twists your line when fluke fishing is the act of reeling in the fluke very quickly, thus casing the fluke to spin in the water. In other words, you cast the fluke out, work it back a little ways, and then you are ready for your next cast and instead of just reeling the bait in slowly, you crank the bait back at hyper speed so as to get your next cast out as soon as possible. If you slow down and reel the bait in slowly, or work it all the way back, the line twist is less.

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I got a pack of Gamakatsu's new skip gap hooks given to me a month or so ago. The angler who gave them to me says they work great with flukes and other soft jerks. He said the hook design helps keep the fluke in place better and leads to less plastic tearing. They definitely look interesting. Any thoughts?????

 

>>>>>>>>>>>>skipgap_grid.jpg<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

 

Thoughts:

 

+It definitely looks the the extra kink will hold the bait up on the eye of the hook.

-The extra kink looks like it fills up a lot of the gap clearance and would cause the hook to take a shallow bite.

 

 

+Gamakatsu always has made a good penetrating hook.

 

-That sharp right angle bend down from the point will slow penetration and provide a fighting fish a leverage point for "spitting the hook out."

 

Till I hear more from users, I will hold off buying any.

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Even though I love flukes, I avoid using them more due to line twist.

 

I know that I can use a swivel etc.

 

I just can't get that happening.

 

The twist drives me nuts.

 

Jim,

I use EWG and/or G-Lock style hooks on flukes, or equiv baits, and don't get line twist,

when the lure is not retrieved too fast.

 

The EWG and G-Lock (EWG) style hooks, act as a "keel",

which results in the bait running upright.

 

Some baits will rotate/revolve, when they're reeled in too fast.

When this occurs, slowing down the retrieve speed will solve the rotating problem.

 

Baits will rotate/spin if they are not rigged symetrical/evenly,

or when a worm, or the like, is not rigged straight.

A slight offset, not centered, too much weight to one side, not straight, or the like, can result in rotation,

when retrieved at a certain speed.

 

Spinnerbaits, buzzbait, crankbaits, and the like, will revolve/rotate when reeled in to fast.

This is due to increased pressures/forces on specific parts of a lure.

 

There is only one spinnerbait on todays market, that I'm aware of, that does not rotate, when speeds are increased---

it is the Yamamoto 1oz double bladed spinner bait.

The blade size and shapes along with the lead-head weight and design counters the rotation effects.

This spinnerbait can be retrieved as fast and you can turn the reel handle, and it does not rotate.

It's designed for "burning a bait" (cranking fast), and not rotate.

===============

ps---some spinning reels cause more line-twist over other models/brands.

 

Some line twist is caused by the operator (angler)---retrieve should be steady, with the line taught---

some anglers have a tendency to put excess slack in the line, as they're retrieving a lure---

like in the "jerk-N-pause" retrieve.

As the spool revolves, the line in twisted as its placed back onto the spool.

 

Some anglers experience line-twist with the "snap-jigging" presentation, like with many walleye anglers.

 

The NEW '08 Shimano series Stella, Sustain, Stradic and Seros spinning reels

innovative design reduces/eliminates line twist, as experienced with some brands/models.

Some brands/models are worse over others.

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Jerking and pausing are part of working a lure Ken. I don't think a constant retrieve is always effective

 

My solution to line twist woes is to use braid-always. It's far stronger, doesn't stretch (better hookups), no memory- twisting doesn't matter because it lays flat. Mono lines to me are so much maintenance. Once your braid begins to wear (and that's a long time) you can unspool it and throw it on in reverse for brand new line.

 

The only time I've ever had issues with braid is loose line on the spool followed by bomb casts. Just have watch your line for tightness on the spool when using slack lures like flukes and poppers then bomb casting big sammy's and such- if you keep this in mind your backlashes should be minimal. It's a win/win with braid.

 

As for flukes, if they made 6" Rhino hardnose brand in 5" I wouldn't fish with any other fluke. Zoom Superflukes tear far too easily IMHO. Neccesitating all these 'special' hooks. Harder plastic in the nose would solve this.

 

Does anyone like Yum's fluke? It looks like it has a harder nose, I haven't tried it yet.

 

Flukes are annoying for their constant riggyness, but do catch fish. Imagine a fluke that wouldn't tear and rigged proper everytime.

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A few points:

 

If you are getting line twist the bait is probably not rigged perfectly straight. If the bait bobs to the surface a lot, it's probably not rigged straight. The bait should do an erratic underwater walk the dog.

 

IMHO weighting the bait kills the action. You can get away with a very slight weight 1/32 or less. It should be somewhere in the center of the bait not in the nose. I have seen nothing commercial that works. They are all too heavy.

 

People use lots of weight with these and use them as a jig trailer, and catch fish. But to simulate the dying baitfish, the best action and most hits come with the slow fall and the erratic action. i think it's the most fun way to fish too.

 

Braided line floats and points the nose of the bait up. It will certainly catch fish. But you get less twist and better action with that thing staying under water.

Flukes work MUCH better with a 20lb flouro leader. Not to mention, the braided section sticks out like a sore thumb in clear water in comparison to the flouro.

 

Flukes are cheap. If it gets torn up put a new one on. You want it to slip out of the way, for a better hookset.

 

Flouro Leader, 3/0 EWG rigged perfectly straight on the seam. Strive for the underwater walk the dog. Superflukes are one of the best baits ever made. Damn near perfect.

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A few points:

 

If you are getting line twist the bait is probably not rigged perfectly straight. If the bait bobs to the surface a lot, it's probably not rigged straight. The bait should do an erratic underwater walk the dog.

 

IMHO weighting the bait kills the action. You can get away with a very slight weight 1/32 or less. It should be somewhere in the center of the bait not in the nose. I have seen nothing commercial that works. They are all too heavy.

 

People use lots of weight with these and use them as a jig trailer, and catch fish. But to simulate the dying baitfish, the best action and most hits come with the slow fall and the erratic action. i think it's the most fun way to fish too.

 

Braided line floats and points the nose of the bait up. It will certainly catch fish. But you get less twist and better action with that thing staying under water.

Flukes work MUCH better with a 20lb flouro leader. Not to mention, the braided section sticks out like a sore thumb in clear water in comparison to the flouro.

 

Flukes are cheap. If it gets torn up put a new one on. You want it to slip out of the way, for a better hookset.

 

Flouro Leader, 3/0 EWG rigged perfectly straight on the seam. Strive for the underwater walk the dog. Superflukes are one of the best baits ever made. Damn near perfect.

 

A weighted hook may affect the action somewhat, but you almost need it to put the lure in the strike zone, and keep it there, depending on the current speed. If the current is slow, an unweighted hook is more ideal and would give it better action. I really enjoy using the Fluke and I especially like the 4/0 EWG for solid hook-ups. Falcon offers a 1/32, 1/16 and 3/32 oz. center weighted hook. Not too much weight IMO.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
....................

 

Does anyone like Yum's fluke? .............

.......................

 

 

Yum's "fork-tail" plastic stick bait is a knock-off of the original Zoom's Fluke and Super-Fluke.

 

From my experiences, "Zoom's Super-Fluke" is a better producer---

REASON: a softer plastic resulting in a more life-like presentation and fluid swimming motion.

 

I've tried various brands of "fork-tail" plastics, but they are not have the fluid motion as Zooms Fluke.

 

Best rigged using an EWG or G-Lock hook.

 

Deadly presentation, fishing shallow water smallies.

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If you are having trouble with line twist using flukes give this a try. Get a pack of the "Hitchhiker" clips from Bass Pro ( they are like $4 for 25) they are a little screw lock clip that pops onto the bend of your hook. You screw the nose of the fluke onto the clip and then attach it to the back of the hook. No more rigging issues or line twist. The hook acts as a keel and the fluke wont spin regardless of retrieval speed. I use 1/0 Gammy octopus or 2/0 wip gap finess hooks with mine. Don't worry about reduced hook ups with the bait trailing behind your bare hook, every smallie i took last season attacked the bait head first. another plus was that 90 percent of the flukes had little to no damage from the bite. ;)

 

Ron G

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