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Float Tubes


Mark K
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What is the difference between the u shaped tubes and the closed front? The closed fronts must have some advantage considering they sell both.

 

I'm thinking about getting one for Mazonia. Curious too, how one gets in and out with the steep drop offs from the bank?

 

Looks like fun though and pretty good excercise. Probably a hell of a lot easier to portage than my yak.

 

Once saw a guy doing real well creeping along real stealthily, pitching a jig.

 

I was thinking it might be fun to play with in Sylvania too.

 

I know someone is going to suggest Pontoon. Not interested.

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Hi Mark,

 

Have a closed face one and have used it at a nearby pond. Great thing about it is, fish seem to react differently when you are in the water with them. Have had fish hit my presentation, when it was dangling off the side while I was closing up a container, etc. It can be a work out, watch the wind and don't get blown to far away. Did lose one kick fin in muck, never got it back. Look for a level as possible entry and exit. Probably cool in Sylvania Good luck!

 

Mark O'Donnell

 

 

 

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The "donut" boats are slower, harder to get in and out of. They are easier to spin. You can quickly adjust your position to cast or to fight a fish out of cover. The ones I like have a rubber truck tire inner-tube. ( These are more dependable IMO.)

 

The "U" boats are easier to get in and out of and they have less water resistance. They move faster, easier and the current (if there is any) will have less drag. They usually have heavy duty pvc bladders.

 

There are also the pontoon style. Never tried one.

 

There is also a "V" tube. The "V" Hull gets you through the water easiest of all. Especially in wind or light current. They are easy to get in and out of. They usually float higher than the others, keeping you more comfortable. This is the way to go IMO.

 

A float tube bladder should be inflated enough to remove most of the wrinkles in the nylon cover. Tight, but with a little give. They will expand in heat. Don't over inflate.

 

While your shopping, don't forget to check the load capacity including your gear.

 

Get the type of fins you can step into with your wading boot on and then lace over your boot. Should also have a strap and buckle that goes behind the heal.

 

I like wearing my waders unless it's really hot. They keep you warm and dry. You would be surprised how cold it can be on a breezy 75-80 degree day if the water temp is down.

 

Mark is right. The fish don't seem intimidated while your floating. You can get real close.

 

It's great exercise. You will have fun. It's a blast getting spun and fighting fish on their level. Whole new experience hooking a pig, trust me.

 

Have fun.

 

-jim

 

PS: Use the portability to your advantage. I have caught huge fish in untouched water because of my belly boat. Focus on places that can't be reached by boat and are hard/impossible to fish without one. ;)

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Jim is right in praising the virtues of a floatube for fishing strip pits, quarries,ponds and small lakes.Since you move about and hold position with your legs both hands are free to fish which is especially important in flyfishing. While it is more difficult in a stiff wind it's more difficult in any kind of watercraft on a windy day.Being lightweight they're easily backpacked fully inflated enabling you to walk back to your starting point after fishing with the wind.In places like Mazonia or Sylvania they're easily transportable from lake to lake.While Jim seems pretty neutral re closed front vs open front I much prefer the open front ones since they allow you to sit higher in the water and are as ez to enter or leave as an ez chair.The open fronts typically include a pair of backstraps.Pontoon boats are best suited for moving water where the oars are vital in the current.They're much heavier, take up much more space in your vehicle,are more difficult to set up and more expensive.Most importantly they're much less maneuverable using just your legs.I prefer the skin diver type swim fins that simply slide directly onto stockingfoot waders and wear a pair of cheap waterproof slip on shoes to and from the water.Cabelas carries many kinds of floatubes in their flyfishing catalog.

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thanks good feedback.

 

in the donut style, can one lean forward and propel oneself forward? Even slowly?

Or on both styles are you limited to going backwards?

 

On the round float tubes: You can do baby/ankle kicks with your legs/knees bent underneath you and creep forward. I will effortlessly spin 180 give a few hard kicks and spin back 180 and glide if I want to cover more water or get to the next cast further up the bank.

 

*They also make "duck fins" that work the opposite of regular fins. They propel/pull you forward on the down kick. (I don't like them)

 

-Also try this if you are throwing jigs or plastics at the bank or target fishing. Face your target and cast past it or onto the bank (whichever applies). As your lure sinks, keep your rod tip high. Don't reel, but concentrate on the lure. Give a tiny flip of your flippers which slides you backward and smooths all slack out of your line. It's silky and you feel even the slightest tap as your lure sinks.

 

-To launch, even on a deep water bank, I lay the tube down on dry ground, step into it. Lift it up and hold it up around your crotch and short step into the water until it's deep enough to sit down. not a vision of beauty, but it works.

 

-Also, if you will be fishing places with any motorized boat traffic, get a bright tube. Otherwise, I like natural colored ones to be more inconspicuous (from people, not fish).

 

jim

 

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thanks good feedback.

 

in the donut style, can one lean forward and propel oneself forward? Even slowly?

Or on both styles are you limited to going backwards?

Going forward in a floatube is difficult and awkward regardless of the style and unnecessary.When floatubes came out about 50 years ago folding metal paddles designed for forward movement were used instead of fins. I used them when I started floatubing the Cook County Forest Preserve sloughs in the 1960's(fantastic fishing in those days for big largemouths,bluegills,and until they started poisoning the weeds and cattails northern pike especially in Saganashkee Slough).Because going forward was difficult in littlle or no wind and impossible in a chop I got the idea to try swim fins.What a difference!So much easier to glide along from place to place going backwards in light winds and even able to make decent headway in a heavy chop.Casting was also easier since you never had to cast against the wind but either with it ,the situation most of the time, or across it depending on its direction in relation to your target. The few guys who floatubed(boats weren't allowed)all threw away their paddles for swim fins too.

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I have been fishing from tubes for a good 6years now. Sarted out with a round one and then a u shaped. I now have a bass cat/it is by far the best option. The main advantage in this one is you sit up higher. Only from your knee down are you in the water. I dont know about others but if I can keep my privates out of the water I'm happy. I think I payed $130 for mine. It has two seperate bladders and the front comes to a point making long runs easier. I have used it a Mazonia and other Quarries with great success. I have always used swim fins/what makes it nice is you can always position yourself for the best casting angle/and if there is wind you just point into it and kick lightly.It also comes with 2 storage areas/aremoveable lap table and a spot behind you were I lay 3 other poles/also the seat and back rest have two seperate bladders to fill depending on your comfort level/the seat can also have the angle adjusted. You can mail order theese/I also think bass pro and dicks carry some. I fish every possible way but I still think this is the easiest and most relaxing.

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