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Tuna chunking set ups

Old 04-22-2021, 04:22 PM
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Default Tuna chunking set ups

Hey guys just wondering what others are using in the north east canyons. I been using my 30 wides and trolling rods after trolling all day and then using them to chunk. Any thoughts on alternative gear?
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Old 04-22-2021, 05:26 PM
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I always did the same but have since started using lighter set ups 20-50 medium action rods with ring guides and penn fathom 40s and tld 20a’s. The tlds have 50 lb solid braid with 50 lb mono top shots and the fathoms have 65lb braid and 50lb mono. I’m in the mid Atlantic and usually when the chunk bite is on the fish get leader shy fast and we never fish heavier than 40lb floro leaders and as light as 20. The lighter set ups have helped with pulling less hooks and landing more fish for me.
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Old 04-23-2021, 03:33 AM
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We moved to 16's for chunking with good results. Most of our fish are under 80 pounds and the smaller frame on the 16 makes it easy to handle. Drags on a 16 are pretty impressive as well if you hook into something bigger. However if you have 30's they will certainly work. Thats what we used for years.
Old 04-23-2021, 04:18 AM
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I have 1 dedicated rod for chinking mostly because it's set up with lighter line. International 30 2 speed - 80 lb braid - 80 lb mono - 50 lb leader. Looking for a better rod though.

I still make use of the trolling gear and just change leaders just to avoid carrying a bunch of extra gear.

Last edited by popeyeiii; 04-23-2021 at 06:11 AM.
Old 04-23-2021, 05:25 AM
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30Ws are perfect. Get a couple 5'6" rods and switch up when chunking?

Or get some 16's or 50's and put on chunk rods to mix it up.
Old 04-23-2021, 06:21 AM
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There is absolutely nothing wrong with the 30's. In fact, I think they're great. They are a nice manageable setup. Can be used for trolling just fine with the new advancements from Penn and Shimano in their 30 series. Yes, 16's are super ideal but not everyone has $3000-$4000 to put together 3-4 16 series combos with rods and line. Plus, at that point, that's all they're really good for: chunking and livelining. If you had the money, I would say go with 16's on shorter rods with 80 lb hollowcore to 80lb mono top shots.
Old 04-23-2021, 06:48 AM
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I have 5'6 rods with 30s on them for trolling and they would be fine for chunking- but after using a lighter setup (Centaur Combat Arm, 16 on an overnight chunking trip I had two rods built for chunking- Black Hole 350, spiral wrapped, with Accurate Valiant 600's on them that I bought off a THT Member. 80 lb braid with 80 mono.
Old 04-23-2021, 07:18 AM
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We use jigging/chunking outfits with 65# braid and light fluorocarbon leaders (25-50#) when chunking tuna’s mostly under 80#. The reels are tallica 16, Avet HX and even Saragosa spinners. The rods are Terez 6’9 H, Pinnacle 400g spriral jigging rods and i have a star paraflex that I like a lot as well. These outfits will allow you to finesse the fish better and have fewer pulled hooks or break offs IMO. I also use these same conventionals for deep dropping for tilefish so they serve multiple purposes. 30’s will work too as this is what I used to use before going lighter about 8 years ago.
Old 04-23-2021, 10:00 AM
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You can use the 30s with the trolling rods, but I prefer to use smaller set-ups for chunking. I have a set of LX Avet g2 single speed reels on some lighter ring guide rods that work well. These set-ups also work well for jigging (although we have grown to really prefer spinning rods for jigging). We've landed tuna up to probably 125lbs without any problems on these set-ups and they are much more comfortable/fun than trolling gear. Also, as others have pointed out, since the leaders are usually under 50# (sometimes down to 30#), having too big of a rod or reel becomes overkill.
Old 04-23-2021, 12:12 PM
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Always did the same as you, but more recently with the lighter leaders, love the Penn 16VSXs and 12 VSXs we picked up on GLoomis 40 - 60 and 30 - 50 rods.
Old 04-23-2021, 01:00 PM
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Old 04-28-2021, 08:09 AM
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We have dedicated chunking rods set up with Penn 16VSX's spooled with 80 lb braid to 30' long 50 lb mono topshots. The rods are typical 5'8" 80-200 lb jigging rods. Might be overkill in the reel department, but they have worked well on the 30-80 lb class Yellowfins.
Old 04-28-2021, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by LI32 View Post
We have dedicated chunking rods set up with Penn 16VSX's spooled with 80 lb braid to 30' long 50 lb mono topshots. The rods are typical 5'8" 80-200 lb jigging rods. Might be overkill in the reel department, but they have worked well on the 30-80 lb class Yellowfins.
Do you use a leader or crimp the hook directly to the mono?
Old 04-28-2021, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Lateagain08 View Post
Hey guys just wondering what others are using in the north east canyons. I been using my 30 wides and trolling rods after trolling all day and then using them to chunk. Any thoughts on alternative gear?
Dedicated modern chunk rods are all about utilizing modern braid technology so the line cuts through the water column and offers superior bait presentation. As a result, the modern low diameter braid doesn't require the use of larger capacity reels (can get a ton of line on a 16) Combine that with modern drag systems and this is why many crews (that can afford it) have dedicated rigs ready to go. With them being so light you can enjoy a chunk bite with just a Cush-it and not break your back like it was in the 90s.

I will tell you what we do. We actually double our white rigs and chunk rigs. WAIT!!! Before y'all freak out. John at Pinnacle (tht vendor) makes a beautiful 6'6" Spiral Wrapped 400g jig rod with a metal reel seat and metal gimbal. This is paired with Avet HX Raptor MCs with 65# J8 backing with extra topshot room.

Why do this?

We are never going to be white and tuna fishing at the same time so these rigs are dual purpose for us. When whitey fishing we can dial the strike drag way down so we can glide up to strike for the circle hook set, put a 50yd High Vis Mono Topshot on and like that we have pitch bait rods at the ready that will rival any setup out there. When tuna fishing those shots are stripped and flouro leader is FG'd to the Raptors, strike drags dialed up to 24# we can whip 70# yft all day with them.



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Old 04-28-2021, 10:52 AM
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How much fluoro top shot are you tieing to the braid? Have you noticed that the braid drifts differently than a traditional mono setup?

When you guys are fishing such light fluoro leaders, how much drag are you using at strike - the typical 1/3?
Old 04-28-2021, 11:18 AM
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Just be careful going too small with your rigs, I think the 30 Two speed or 30W 2 speed is a nice setup, it's a big ocean down there if you get a sword over 200 or even 3-400 or a nice Bigeye your going to be sorry. The canyon has a lot of tide I refuse to ever get off the ball when I'm on a hot bite hold on and suck it up is what we say to the angler.

If you get one fish and are marking them at a depth I have zero problem dropping a bait down with a smaller rod as the chances are the next fish is around the same size. It's just a been there done that deal with me on too light of tackle on a large fish, also it's night and sometimes they are there for a short window and I want an many fish in that window as possible so I don't mind going a touch heavy not an 80W heavy but a touch heavy to start. I'd rather get 4-5 fish in a short window with 30's and 50's than 2 on 16's, if I get a few for sure the next rod going down matches that class of fish for sure.
Old 04-28-2021, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by captpepin View Post
Just be careful going too small with your rigs, I think the 30 Two speed or 30W 2 speed is a nice setup, it's a big ocean down there if you get a sword over 200 or even 3-400 or a nice Bigeye your going to be sorry. The canyon has a lot of tide I refuse to ever get off the ball when I'm on a hot bite hold on and suck it up is what we say to the angler.

If you get one fish and are marking them at a depth I have zero problem dropping a bait down with a smaller rod as the chances are the next fish is around the same size. It's just a been there done that deal with me on too light of tackle on a large fish, also it's night and sometimes they are there for a short window and I want an many fish in that window as possible so I don't mind going a touch heavy not an 80W heavy but a touch heavy to start. I'd rather get 4-5 fish in a short window with 30's and 50's than 2 on 16's, if I get a few for sure the next rod going down matches that class of fish for sure.
for canyon fishing I believe you got it right. I do the same. I went to light tackle inshore and seem to do much better. When you can only run 12 lbs of drag because of light leaders all the big reel does is fatigue the angler and the heavy rod pulls hooks. Just what I’ve picked up on over the years.
Old 04-28-2021, 04:28 PM
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Lots of different answers above and not saying their wrong but I'll still disagree. A 16 vsx and a 7ft rod is the perfectly balanced dead boat no harness (cush) set up for chunking. Most times you're fishing 40 - 60lb floro so how much drag do you need? The sword baits are always 50 lrs's with heavy floro. But chunk baits and handling are light leader.
Old 04-29-2021, 04:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Re-Bait View Post
What knot is that on the pink line?
Old 04-29-2021, 05:21 AM
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That's the Springer knot.

It's unbelievable. Comes to THT via San Diego Polaris fleet courtesy of Basil. It's one of the easiest knots to tie. You can tie it quickly. Easy to remember (twice around twice thru). Very compact. Stands up with the best of them! Tied on Yozuri pink floro!


And here was the discussion of tuna knots from last year.

Best Knot for mono to tuna circle hooks



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