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Old 08-22-2009, 11:25 PM   #1
Ruby Red Lip
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 95
Default Ilanders

I've been trolling for three years and have had good success with a lot of different artifical baits. Othere than tuna I've never really used a lot of ballyhoo. Over the last month I've started to use ballyhoo in the spread. They seem to get a lot more hits but I'm getting a ton of short strikes and a bunch of half eaten ballyhoo. I'm sure it's because the hook is only half way back on the bait, am I messing up the rigging or doing something wrong? Is there a way to rig a stinger hook? I'm not a tournament guy so anyway to get the meat in the boat is great with me!

Thanks for the help, Ben
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Old 08-23-2009, 09:27 AM   #2
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Location: Jackson, MS & Orange Beach, AL
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Default RE: Ilanders

You can add a stinger hook via a small cable or heavy leader, but most don't due to the effect if has on the motion of the ballyhoo. We troll ballyhoo a lot once we are in over 600' of water and and I never get short strikes. If I use them in shallower water, bonita, kings, barracuda etc... will play havoc with them.

I started using imitation hoos this summer, Williamson's, Berkley Gulps and squid skirts and it would appear to me that they work just as well with a lot less hassle.

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Old 08-23-2009, 10:26 AM   #3
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Location: Destin
Posts: 197
Default RE: Ilanders


Mytournament circle-hook rigworks great for everyday trolling. To be legal for tournaments, it is necessary that a circle hook be used AND that the hook is embedded in the ballyhoo. We take a piece of flexible 60 - 130# 7 strand wire and crimp it to a circle hook on one end and a very small swivel on the other end about 10". I then run the swivel through the body of the ballyhoo starting at an incision at the the tail (some guys just take it in via the anal vent) using a rigging needle. If you sized it correctly, the shank of the hook is inside the tail and and the swivel is at the mouth. Then, I just tie off the swivel with copper rigging wire so that one end is exposed and the other end is secured to the ballyhoo. Re: securing to ballyhoo - run it through the eye socket and the head and wire the mouth shut and break off the unused beak (making sure the rig pulls on the ballyhoo NOT the hook or otherwise it will spin). Then, I just crimp my leader to exposed swivel. Note; the purpose of the swivel is not to swivel but just give you some connecting points and a good place to secure the wire to the bait.

This rig not only puts the hook where you want it but it also eliminates bite offs from toothy critters such as wahoo. And, since all the ugly metal is inside the ballyhoo it is great for trolling naked of using as a pitch bait for white marlin.

The 7 strand is flexible enough to allow the ballyhoo to swim and give you a good presentation.

Another suggestion would be do a bunch of them at the same time. I have the guys over and we have some beers andrig about 40 of them. Then I vacuum pack them in bags of 3 and 5 and put them in the freezer. Works great when you go as the ones that don't get used, go right back in the freezer. I'll Sprinkle a little baking soda on them and salt and they look great for a long time.

Matt Condon
Broker / Captain / Appraiser
United Yacht Sales of the Emerald Coast / Destin
[email protected]
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