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Gaffs

Old 04-25-2006, 12:36 PM
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Default Gaffs

After losing my 2nd 100+ YF to a bent Aftco gaff in as little as a year, I have determined that I am in the market for a new brand of gaff.

I am looking for any recommendations from you guys for a gaff for Tuna to 200lbs. Nothing over 8' as I fish from a 25' boat. Also don't want to spend $500.00 on a top shot or the like.

Anyone have any experiences with the fishing barefoot gaffs?
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Old 04-26-2006, 03:15 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

Let me get this straight. You would rather use a "flexible" fiberglass gaff on 100lb+ YFT than a metal one? My suggestion is to buy the flying gaff head and make your own pole for it. That's what I have and it works great. On the other hand, BUY A BIGGER GAFF!
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Old 04-26-2006, 07:07 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

Just out of curiosity, you're not trying to use that gaff handle like a shovel handle, to LEVER the fish into the boat, are you? Seems like the best way to use them is strictly as a PULLING tool, almost as if the gaff handle was made of rope...then it seems like they would be much harder to bend...

Anyway, that's my 2¢
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Old 04-26-2006, 07:24 AM
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Default RE: Gaffs

I have yet to lose fish to an inadequate gaff, but if you are, at least you are catching fish that are testing the strength!!!! My .02 is this. I bought a Barefoot 8' 2 piece this spring at a show. I have a 23' boat and storability is tanatmount. IMO you give up a little strenght because of the connection but those things are stong as hell. I (250#) practically pole vaulted with the thing at the show. Put a lot of pressure on both the shaft and the hook/thoat. I opted for the 4" because the steel in the thought was beefier than the 3.
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:37 AM
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Default RE: Gaffs

I'm just looking for some opinions on different brands.

I believe all the leverage you can gain with the gaff comes from the placement of the hook in the fish. On this last fish, I got a good shot right behind the head and as the head of the tuna was about to reach the point of no return(over the gunnel) I could feel it slipping and in a split second it went back in the water and parted the line.

I'm willing to spend some money just not $500.00 on a freaking gaff.
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Old 04-26-2006, 10:31 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs


As mentioned above, Barefoot Gaffs are tough, and cost around $175 for 8'. Black fiberglass, 2-piece and real works of art.
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Old 04-26-2006, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

neal check this out

http://www.thehulltruth.com/forums/t...ighlightmode=1
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Old 04-26-2006, 10:44 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

If you're going to spend $175 for the Barefoot why not spend the extra $100 for the Topshot and have the piece of mind that your gaff isn't going to break. Melton charges $250 +/- depending on which one you buy and I'm sure they aren't the cheapest price in town. Alternatively you could just buy two Aftcos and use them both in a big fish. For really big fish, I think using two would be better than any single gaff.
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Old 04-26-2006, 10:48 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

I've used all three brands mentioned as well as Sea Striker and other cheaper brands. The tops shots are the best, but like you mentioned, extremely pricey. I personally have not had any problems with the Aftcos that I would say were due to poor or cheap manufacture. I have had large makos tie them up in pretzel shaped pieces of art work, but never had one fail on a tuna. Well I did have one, but the guy totally misused the gaff trying to get the fish in the boat, and bent the shaft handle. Normally on a big fish, anything over 100 lbs, gets a tail rope just in case the gaff pulls out for some unforseen reason. I'd pick the Aftco every day of the week over the Barefoot.
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Old 04-26-2006, 02:09 PM
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Default Re: Gaffs

This is the kind of banter I was looking for.

Thanks for the link Chris, I sent a PM.

To be honest, I have never seen the Top Shots for under $450.00. I am going to give them a closer look if Melton has them that reasonable.

I was thinking a 4" hook would be plenty, anyone think I should look into a 6"?
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:06 PM
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Default Re: Gaffs

on a head boat we used 4" gaff hooks wrapped to a piece of bamboo with epoxy over the wraps I pulled a 180# blue shark up to the rail with this It was a free gaff and gave us something to do. If your breaking atfco's you should have someone show you how to use it the right way
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:51 PM
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Default Re: Gaffs

I kind of agree. Part of using a gaff is to use it the right way. Gaff big tunas in the head whenever possible, they have a big head and it's a good target. Make the gaff very sharp so you can sink it deep into the head and follow it up with a second gaff in the head if it's big enough, say 100 or bigger. When lifting, try and lift straight up.
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Old 04-26-2006, 05:47 PM
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Default Re: Gaffs

i use a 5" hook on a 6' handle, aftco gaff. i'd rather have too much gaff than too little, within reason.

i also have a smaller, wood-handled gaff that i made out of a piece of SS wire and an old laminated cane and some epoxy.
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Old 04-26-2006, 05:56 PM
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Default Re: Gaffs

buy a flying gaff you wont regret it
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Old 04-27-2006, 02:59 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

I have four gaffs on my boat. A 6ft Aftco for most uses, an 8ft for monsters, a flying gaff and a lip gaff. If I'm gaffing a very large fish, I definitely put more than one gaff in it and frankly so should you.
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Old 04-27-2006, 06:57 AM
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Default RE: Gaffs

We have always used our "normal" 6' - gaff with 4" hook for tuna, even blue fins. With big fish, you better have them "ready" before you stick them. Don't just stick them in the head, hold his head up with the leader, stick them in the head and pull up. If you have his head up, he's yours. Then we stick another one in him and, always keeping his head up, slide him around to the tuna door and slide him in. 200+ pound tuna are nothing to screw around with. Make sure you get his head out of the water.
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Old 04-27-2006, 08:46 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

Check out Solo gaffs, I beilive fishermans outfitters sells them. I have had very good luck with mine.
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Old 04-27-2006, 08:59 AM
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Default Re: Gaffs

Last summer, pulling a small 20-25 lb tuna up the side, and the handle pulled right off... bye bye tuna... bye bye aftco gaff
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Old 04-27-2006, 11:31 AM
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Default RE: Gaffs

Dang Todd, what were you doing gaffing tunas that small? Practicing? That is the one thing about the Aftcos, you need to pull the handles off and stick them on right. I like using 2 part epoxy.
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Old 04-27-2006, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: Gaffs

twotems - 4/27/2006 3:59 AM

If I'm gaffing a very large fish, I definitely put more than one gaff in it and frankly so should you.




, on large shark's and tuna's we use 2 gaffs 1 flying and 1 regular works perfect everytime
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