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Build my spread

Old 09-30-2019, 07:11 PM
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Default Build my spread

Been offshore a hand full of times over the years but finally doing it on my own. Went out twice in the last two weeks, bumming rods and lures from friends, and while we didn't set the world on fire, we came home with fish.

Looking to invest in my own gear and would like suggestions. Have done a ton of searching for people new to offshore but most seemed specific to Florida or other areas. Would like input from the people who fish the same areas I'm going to.

Almost all of my fishing will be done out of Ocean City in a 22' walk around. Currently no outriggers but plan on having them by next spring. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-01-2019, 03:27 AM
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so I fish a 25 foot boat and have 19 foot lees wish bone outriggers. My Tuna spread is as follows. Right Long black and purple islander tracker , Right short Red headed 5 oz joe shute, Right flat naked ballyhoo, right long flat black and purple wide tracker, Left long blue and white islander tracker , left short squid chain of any sort, left flat ceader plug or CD bomber , left long flat wide tracker in rainbow, Shotgun bird with green machine. This is my canyon yellow fin tuna set up. Inshore blue fin it changes and when mahi and marlin are around it changes again.
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Old 10-01-2019, 03:37 AM
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I would buy tld 50s & andy stand up rods I have some tld's that I bought over 20 years ago still good as new other than not looking new (Sun bleached) I would put braid backing & a mono topshots on them. this is the most economical setup that with good small boat handling skills will handle anything you'll ever encounter other than a grander blue marlin or giant bluefin
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Old 10-01-2019, 03:54 AM
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New to it also... and this is what put together for us, 23’ boat and no outriggers.

(5) Shimano TLD 50’s with inexpensive solid butt 5’6”-6’ Star, Billfisher Rods Looked at TLD 25 or 30 but bit bullet and figured 50’s might be overkill for dolphin,albies but will work fine on most tuna that hope to get into.

I spooled my reels 50# momoi mono (2) green, flat lines (2) orange, side lines (1) brite blue , way back rod is easier to see lines setting spread and also if tangle lines to untangle them in different colors

get some 150# momoi leader material crimps and some Kroc swivels, chafing gear ( I like rigging my own rigs)

get at least (2) chatter lures sidetrackers, pink is good all around color or pink and green and can get your lines out to sides like outriggers, and Chatter lures and reverse keels to switch right or left compared to the fixed keel “widetrackers”

learn how to rig ballyhoo, cheap is rigged ballyhoo with “skirts or seawitch in front or naked ballyhoo and they catch fish...

next would be Islanders or Joes Chutes type lures rigged with ballyhoo , always have a blue/white out , but also have purple/black , pink/white, green/yellow and other colors for a variety and normally pick them up in pairs of same colors

I make daisy chain flat lines out of cheap bulb squids or moldcraft squids I put 1/2oz egg sinkers in bodies when rig them normally 5-6 squids on flat chains, same thing various colors

(2) aftco flat line clips for rear corner stern cleats, or off to reel clamp safety hole...

any other chrome “jet head” type squid lures Cabelas / Bass Pro has some inexpensive ones that have produced for us. I like Zuchinni (green/orange) firetiger . Blue / white , purple / black , Pinks, . Any good looking resin head skirted lures without breaking the bank, Zuker , Green machine , Moldcraft Birds or cupped face chuggers, we have a couple “Wide range” moldcrafts that run. You just have to add lures as you can or able to...

We run bird daisy chain that run on way back center line, made some in different colors after bought a chatter lures chaos chain, then basically made our own and kinda copied it, was one of the first that bought assembled.

Made it offshore (3) times so far, first trip to Hotdog was (2) gaffer Mahi , weather and conditions were great and kicked myself for not going all way to Baltimore but was first trip and wasn’t 100% sure on fuel so played it safe....2nd went to Baltimore raised (3) white marlin and hooked one, jumped it off after 15 min , 50’ from boat got 3 Mahi and 7 albies for shark bait/chum, 3rd trip raised 2 white marlin and non hooked, 5 Mahi and 9 albies . For never fishing offshore from our own boat I am happy with our effort so far...

need be be able to change stuff up, set a mixed color spread, blue/white, zucchini , pink/white etc.... last trip had no hits on flat line chains at all, but blue/white islander single was getting hit, started switching out other lures to blue white singles and getting more hits, pulled the daisy chains and switched to blue/white singles off flat line corners and actually had 5 rods go down at once with 3 of us so have to be versatile and be able to adapt to what’s working and don’t be afraid to change things up
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Old 10-01-2019, 08:08 AM
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A couple Sea witch pin rigs, a few Islander type lures (Trackers and Islanders), and a couple of spreader bars or wide trackers should catch about anything out there.
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Old 10-01-2019, 11:36 AM
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At what point do 50W reels become necessary? I dont mind spending a little for quality rods and reels up front. It seems like pinnacle rods are a staple from members on this forum and have contacted John for his recommendations based on my location and type of fish. But what about reels? Really like the avet exw30s, but at what point does that 30 not cut it anymore? At that point I'd probably go with Timexs suggestion and get the 50 TLDs.

Thanks for all the info so far!
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Old 10-01-2019, 11:44 AM
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Get Avet 30ws and spool with 130 hc. This will stop 99% of the fish and are bulletproof.
Buy some spreader bars and lots of skirts, heavy and light. Run them anywhere they are all going to catch fish. There are no rules for offshore trolling when it comes to lures/rigs.
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Old 10-01-2019, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Boondock_RES View Post
At what point do 50W reels become necessary? I dont mind spending a little for quality rods and reels up front. It seems like pinnacle rods are a staple from members on this forum and have contacted John for his recommendations based on my location and type of fish. But what about reels? Really like the avet exw30s, but at what point does that 30 not cut it anymore? At that point I'd probably go with Timexs suggestion and get the 50 TLDs.

Thanks for all the info so far!
I have a total of 9 30s all have 600yds 80# power pro & an 100yrd mono topshot & I have cought a lot of fish & some big fish with them including an estimated 600+ blue marlin this weekend so yes with good boat handling skills a 30 will handle big fish. when I bought all my 30s I was doing a lot of chunking & the light weight setups are great for that (BUT) for trolling in the canyons where big fish live in thousands of feet of water there's no exception for big reels with big gears for big fish. after last weekend we pulled on 2 fish for a total of 7 hours on 30s. 3 times I had to chase the marlin & the bigeye was over 3\4 into the spool straight down at one point. I will keep them onboard for certain applications but I'm fazing 30s out of my canyon trolling gear
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Old 10-01-2019, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Boondock_RES View Post
At what point do 50W reels become necessary? I dont mind spending a little for quality rods and reels up front. It seems like pinnacle rods are a staple from members on this forum and have contacted John for his recommendations based on my location and type of fish. But what about reels? Really like the avet exw30s, but at what point does that 30 not cut it anymore? At that point I'd probably go with Timexs suggestion and get the 50 TLDs.

Thanks for all the info so far!
i ran the TLD 50’s to start to get outfitted for basically something to work for everything from tuna, wahoo, dolphin, white and blue marlin.....admit are overkill for slinger dolphin, albies, and white marlin but would rather go big enough to get on the water then when able to fill in with some lighter TLD 25’s or 30’s on lighter rods for trolling bluefish , albies or smaller dolphin if that was primarily gonna be targeted. I also Have a long time friend that owns a tackle shop and can get outfitted with those reels the cheapest and easiest for me, as well a getting set up with lures which is a big plus in getting started, just cost me a few Mahi fillets for the service......lol
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Old 10-01-2019, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Timex View Post
I would buy tld 50s & andy stand up rods I have some tld's that I bought over 20 years ago still good as new other than not looking new (Sun bleached) I would put braid backing & a mono topshots on them. this is the most economical setup that with good small boat handling skills will handle anything you'll ever encounter other than a grander blue marlin or giant bluefin
Agreed, the TLD 50 is one of the best choices for a do-all offshore reel, and an excellent value.
The Ande 50-80# stand-up rods sold at Tochterman's tackle in the Fells Point area of Baltimore for $55 are an incredible value, and an excellent match for those reels.
https://www.tochtermansfishingtackle.com/
I think when I bought 6 of those rods they may have given me a little better price.
I started fishing offshore years ago with the venerable Penn Senator star drag reels I had seen so many times, then went to Penn International lever drag 50s and 80s, then bought a full spread of Tiagra 50 wide lever drags, and now I have a full spread of the TLD 50 2 speeds on Ande 50-80# rods.
I have 330 yards of 80# braid backing tied to about 400 yards of 80# Suffix mono on the TLD 50s, and those reels should be able to do battle with most fish we will encounter in the Mid-Atlantic.

Without running out riggers I might suggest getting a set of out-rodders to run a couple lines out away from the boat a little, sort of like simulating short out riggers.
https://www.amazon.com/Amarine-made-Polished-Stainless-Outrigger-Stylish/dp/B017SG73Y4/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=outrodders&qid=1569971683&s=gateway&sr=8-1 https://www.amazon.com/Amarine-made-Polished-Stainless-Outrigger-Stylish/dp/B017SG73Y4/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=outrodders&qid=1569971683&s=gateway&sr=8-1
Eventually you may find outriggers are worth the investment, but the out-rodders are an inexpensive way to get 2 lines away from the boat a little.
In terms of baits to troll, you really can't go wrong with ballyhoo rigged to a sea-witch, and they can be found in just about any color you can think of.
Getting hooked on offshore fishing can be a little like sliding down a slippery slope.
Good luck!
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Old 10-01-2019, 05:03 PM
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I'm familiar with tochtermans and had a conversation with their offshore guy about those ande rods. He had me grab one, hold on, and then bent the rod tip to the floor! Definitely impressed! I also know to a degree you get what you pay for and those pinnacles seen to come very highly recommended without a crazy price tag, albeit not $55.

Any experience with the squall 2 speeds over the tld's? I've generally been a Penn guy and have two single speed 60s that have been very good over the years. They also have a bit more line capacity.

Again, appreciate the responses. All the possibilities and combos have had my head spinning trying to figure out what to invest in!
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Old 10-01-2019, 05:11 PM
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I would go with 30s and one 50 for the way back. I hate fishing with 50s in our area your rarly see over 200lb fish at the dock
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Old 10-01-2019, 05:51 PM
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as far as an actual spread goes I'm no expert just a weekend warrior that's been fishing offshore in small boat for a long time and what worked on my previous boat is completely different than my current boat also boat speed my previous boat got bit between 5 & 6 knots my current boat is 6.8 to7.2. as far as lures go there are a few I wouldn't be without blue-white islander trackers are absolutely my #1 producer year after year but my spread is constantly changing. for instance earlier this season the tuna had small squid in their stomach so we put out more small pink stuff. & the last few trips the tuna have had small blackfin in their belly so we switched to larger darker baits. if there's a lot of flying fish around blue-white blue- silver is good. a good swimming naked always produces. but to say this is my offshore spread & list a specific lure - color & position in my spread I can't because my spread is always changing based on the conditions & whatever the fish are feeding on at that time
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Old 10-01-2019, 06:37 PM
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I fish out of a 23' CC with outriggers.

I have 4, 50w's and use these for the spreader bars/bigger chains.
The rest are all 30w's (mix of TLDs and Avets) and I like these a lot better. Can run any chains, ballys, small spreaders on them and they are much easier to handle. Caught a 528# thresher shark on an Avet 30w this year. So they can handle big fish

For lures it depends what I am targeting. For tuna, more chains and bars with skirted ballys mixed in. For mahi/marlin more skirted bally with mixed in squid chains. Sometimes we mix in deep divers for wahoo. But no matter what we're fishing for we always have one or two cedar plug chains in the spread. They catch everything and almost always produce fish each trip.
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Old 10-01-2019, 06:49 PM
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I would go with the TLD over the squall. Just preference, you have a smaller boat you need to keep it universal, TLD 50 will cover you from the beach to the canyon, capacity is what your looking for expecially since your pretty green to the game. You get hooked up to 4-5-6 yellowfin at once spools are screaming you need the line capacity to let a couple fish run while you land the others. As far as rods the pinnacle rods I have seen are good bang for the buck for sure. But also the Ande rods are half that and save you coin to buy lures. I have a full setup of tld25 on Ande rods because I thought that was all I would need . Well the next year I bought all TLD50 LRSA and have them matched up on Shimano Blue Water trolling Rods. Wind-on leaders are kind on small boats can't be beat and we'll worth the time to set them all up. If money is no object get you a full set of Shimano talica 50 and a custom set of rods made thru Connelly or Joey's. Have the best you can have if you can afford it.
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Old 10-02-2019, 04:46 AM
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Originally Posted by mouse4x4 View Post
I would go with the TLD over the squall. Just preference, you have a smaller boat you need to keep it universal, TLD 50 will cover you from the beach to the canyon, capacity is what your looking for expecially since your pretty green to the game. You get hooked up to 4-5-6 yellowfin at once spools are screaming you need the line capacity to let a couple fish run while you land the others. As far as rods the pinnacle rods I have seen are good bang for the buck for sure. But also the Ande rods are half that and save you coin to buy lures. I have a full setup of tld25 on Ande rods because I thought that was all I would need . Well the next year I bought all TLD50 LRSA and have them matched up on Shimano Blue Water trolling Rods. Wind-on leaders are kind on small boats can't be beat and we'll worth the time to set them all up. If money is no object get you a full set of Shimano talica 50 and a custom set of rods made thru Connelly or Joey's. Have the best you can have if you can afford it.
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Was referring to the squall 2 speeds, which are comparable to the TLD 2 speeds, cheaper, and more line capacity.
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Old 10-02-2019, 04:49 AM
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Originally Posted by DTMASportsman View Post
I fish out of a 23' CC with outriggers.

I have 4, 50w's and use these for the spreader bars/bigger chains.
The rest are all 30w's (mix of TLDs and Avets) and I like these a lot better. Can run any chains, ballys, small spreaders on them and they are much easier to handle. Caught a 528# thresher shark on an Avet 30w this year. So they can handle big fish

For lures it depends what I am targeting. For tuna, more chains and bars with skirted ballys mixed in. For mahi/marlin more skirted bally with mixed in squid chains. Sometimes we mix in deep divers for wahoo. But no matter what we're fishing for we always have one or two cedar plug chains in the spread. They catch everything and almost always produce fish each trip.
This is where my conflict lies. I'm torn between spending a little less money and getting bigger graphite stuff, which seems like the most suggested approach, or going with a better quality reel and a tad smaller size where it would be most comfortable and maybe a little more sporting.
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Old 10-02-2019, 05:10 AM
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I was in a 30' Contender and bought a set of custom rods and 6 2 speed Avet 30s. I was told to buy TLDs and didn't listen because I thought metal had to be better and the Avets were better looking. The Avets worked fine but were heavy and I did have an issue with one of the reels. I caught whites, yellowfin, dolphin, wahoo etc on the avets. I switched to TLD 20s for white marlin / dolphin and TLD / tiagra 50s for yellowfin / big eyes / blue marlin. We have caught both yellowfin and blue marlin on the TLD 20s. I'd say don't hesitate to go with TLD 30s / 50s. Heck you can start with all 30s (back them with braid) and buy used TLD / Tiagra 50s on here when they come up for sale. That would be my suggestion based on experience with both reels and fishing out of a CC. I have tsunami tuff tip rods for my 20s and shimano tallus rods for my 50s.

In the end its personal preference, the 50s will catch anything you want but may not be as sporting or fun with dolphin, striper, blackfin, or white marlin. The 30s may have you undergunned but it will be rare and can be overcome with angling or boat driving and will be more fun with the majority of the fish you catch.
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Old 10-02-2019, 05:26 AM
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For spread I prefer to go brightest close to most natural. So teo weeks ago we started out with purple black sea star, pink crystal, red white, blue white sea witches. First three bites were on blue and white so we switched nearly everything to blue and white and we got covered up. Headed in early.

For meat I prefer seawitches size of ballyhoo depends on target, for mahi small / med, for tuna med.
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Old 10-02-2019, 08:11 AM
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lots of good advice here & not to twist on your arm but especially trolling in the canyons fish of a lifetime are few & far between & I know from experience that pulling on BIG fish with 30s is far more frustrating than wincheing in small fish on big reels
saying that a 30 is adequate in the canyons is like saying a 50w is all that's needed for giants. yes it can be done but less than ideal
after my experience last weekend I'm done with 30s in the canyons. pretty sure I'm gonna go with Penn vs70s plenty of capacity with braid backing 35# strike & 45# full drag & a few $$$ less than 80s
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Last edited by Timex; 10-02-2019 at 08:31 AM. Reason: add word
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