Gaff Recommendation?

Old 05-22-2020, 08:15 AM
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Default Gaff Recommendation?

So far, I have not gone out in my own boat to where "gaffable" fish are likely to be caught, but I expect to start doing so more and more - macs and dolphin, mostly.

I don't need (and don't want to afford) a top-of-the-line gaff, but would like a decent one to keep on board - thinking about 6' with 3" or 4" hook.

Should I be thinking in terms of fiberglass or aluminum? Carbon is likely out of my price range unless it's a lesser-known brand.

There are so many brands and variations out there - on the low end of cost I've seen Blacktips, and their filet knives are pretty good, and they're on sale at Worst Marine. Then there's Sea Striker, and of course, AFTCO makes a ton of them.

Any guidance?
Old 05-22-2020, 08:34 AM
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AFTCO's gaffs are excellent and should last you a very long time. The hook size is dependent on the size & shape of fish you plan on gaffing. Many of AFTCO's gaff models built in buoyancy. IMO some of the best products on the market and you can't go wrong.

Smaller gaff hooks for smaller fish and longer, more streamlined fish like wahoo and kingfish. Larger gaff hooks for beefier fish like tunas and cobias.
Old 05-22-2020, 08:46 AM
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Smaller is almost always better. I travel with four gaffs but my little 2-1/2” UC gaff does 95% of the work.

I’ve made this recommendation before on the forum and the members who bought them always sent me a pm later to thank me. They loved the gaff as much as I do.
Old 05-22-2020, 10:00 AM
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Aftco aluminum gaffs have served me well for decades. I agree with the smaller hook size for most fish.
Old 05-22-2020, 10:18 AM
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You left out the type of fish, but I will assume based on your question that you are not a pro out there hunting 500lb fish.

3" gaff is most popular, but I carry a 2" and 3" on my boat and use the 2" most of the time. Just about all fish to big to lift into boat will gaff fine on a 3" gaff.

Length of the gaff... well I will say longer the better, but....... the boat makes a big difference, where you going to store it and are you likely to have issues with T-top while gaffing. That said, I am going to guess you would be best off with a 6' gaff. (my 3" is 4' and that is why I normally use the 2" gaff as it is 6' and give me more reach.)

Material, IMHO least important thing to consider. My 3" is aftco aluminium and my 2" is fiberglass (brand unknown) The fiberglass is light and makes it easy to reach out with one hand on fish that just do not want to co-operate. but as with all gaffs you must remember to lift the gaff so that the fish is hanging straight down from the handle, (not bending or torquing the gaff like a fishing pole)



Old 05-22-2020, 10:27 AM
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I lost my nice 8' fiberglass one, so I picked up a cheapy 6' with the riveted hook, drilled out the rivet and replaced it w/ a stainless thru bolt, ground it down nice and smooth on both ends. Holding up well.
Old 05-22-2020, 11:04 AM
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For a 2-3/4 gaff. Perfect for smaller stuff. I’m told larger gaff harder to stick a smaller fish
Old 05-22-2020, 11:47 AM
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Hands down the favorite gaff on my boat is a 6' aftco fiberglass with a small hook probably 2 - 2 1/2" . I don't know the model # it's brown glass with black 1/4" rope wrapped around the handle. It's perfect for most fish. Kings , hoos, mahi, & tuna under 50#s
Old 05-22-2020, 04:39 PM
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My go to has always been a 6’ 4” aftco aluminum. Probably 20 years old and still looks new. For you I’d suggest the 3” model.
Old 05-22-2020, 05:22 PM
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I have had AFTCO glass and aluminum.

After I got the glass gaffs, I gave my aluminum ones away.

We have gaffed many thousands of tuna with the glass gaffs and besides the end caps falling off, they have been great.
Old 05-22-2020, 06:57 PM
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aftco is a value -they make both fiberglass and aluminum - I prefer aluminum because they float if one goes overboard
Old 05-22-2020, 07:44 PM
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Check out the Biscayne Rods 8’ with a 2” Winthrop. Very reasonable, and can be customized with boat name for not too much.
Old 05-23-2020, 01:08 AM
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The size of the hook depends on the size of the fish, but the length is more dependent on your particular boats relationship to the water.
Too short, and you’re bent over the gunnel, too long, and you’re tempted to gaff when the fish is too deep or too far away, either one can land you in the drink and/or loose the fish.
I carry six gaffs onboard my boat, a variety to hopefully suit any situation.
don’t fail to keep your gaff razor sharp!
Old 05-23-2020, 07:59 AM
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Thanks, all.
Old 05-24-2020, 06:40 AM
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I've become fond of my Morita gaff..... tuff as nails

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