king setup - Pensacola Fishing Forum

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Old 04-22-2014, 08:38 AM   #1
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Default king setup

I'm coming back home to visit in July and I want to do some king fishing out of my kayak. What would be a good king mack red/reel setup? I have several 7500ss and an 8500 ss as well as some smaller penn reels. My concern is that most of my rods that I normally use for kings are more of surf/pier rods. I was looking at trolling a cig with a skirt and maybe a stretch 15-25.(seems like the 25 is a lot aof drag for a yak) Should I get smaller rods for my 7500's or do I need a big baitcaster with braid?
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Old 04-22-2014, 09:54 AM   #2
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i bought a 7500 from a guy who used it on his yak, he had it on a catfish ugly stick. he said he caught many kings on it. lite and cheap.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:08 AM   #3
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Actually not a bad plan. Ugly sticks are not the most sensitive, but while trolling that's not really a concern.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:24 AM   #4
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This is probably more than you asked for but...

I am by no means an expert at this and only fish down there 2-3weeks a year when we visit- still pretty new to ocean side of it but from speaking to guys, trolling the forum and personal trial and error i troll the following set up for everything in the ocean. I have a okuma star drag conventional reel loaded with 25lb mono on an okuma conventional rod rated 20-50lbs, I attach that to a pink skirted (pirate plug or king rig with a chin weight) with a frozen cig. I believe max drag is 22lbs on this reel. My other 2 rods are a medium action 7ft ugly stick big water 10-25lb line rating. Currently have it paired with a sh***y daiwa 4500( waiting for it to die to I can get the penn 4500ssv). This reel i have loaded with 30 lb braid and a 20lb mono topshot of about 25 yards. One this rod i troll a yozuri crystal minnow or a bomber crystal minnow 5 3/4 inch lure- i use 40 lb steel wire leader tied directly to the line. The other rod i have a gotcha or some other lure tied to it in case i come across something interesting.

On the above i have caught- kings, spanish, sharks, bluefish, f**** ladyfish and bonito in Perdido key area. Seen tarpon and cobia.

I have found that I never have any of my reels set on full drag. In fact when i am trolling my drag is set to a little tighter than a free spool, basically i like the drag to keep my cigar minnow or yozuri from taking out line, while a paddle but soft enough that when a king takes it, he can run with it. Once the run has ended or slowed i tighten my drag up some. Usually to the point where i can get some traction on the fish, but not too much that he will pull the hook should he try run again- this is where my trial and error came in.

I do not think the reels you have are an issue, maybe a little big but for a week or so, not worth getting anything new. On the rods, 7-8ft is about all you need. Anything over that is probably a little too much. You need more of a boat rod than a surf or pier rod.


Tight lines.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:44 AM   #5
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Sounds like you have the reels for it- you can catch a decent king mackerel on a good 5000 series and up. Your 7500 will have more than enough power for those nearshore kings. We use a good 7' med rod, penn slammer or Carnage are what we frequently use on the boat. Can't go wrong with an ugly stick, not for $50. Heck, Shakespeare should sponsor us for as many of their Ugly Stick rods as we have used.
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Old 04-22-2014, 03:01 PM   #6
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I have a 550 as well, I guess filled with braid it would have enough line for a good size king.
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Old 04-22-2014, 07:11 PM   #7
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When I first started trolling kings, I bought a $20 Berkely Big Game 8" rod and a Shakespear Tidewater 40 reel. I originally planned to use it "till next year" and get something better. Worked great.

The next year I did buy a Big Penn Trolling reel (GTO I think) and another Berkely Rod. First troll on first trip, the Penn handgrenaded, not even on a fish. I ran to walmart and bought anotherTidewater 40.

Now I have been using them for 7 and 8 years... Not a lick of problems out of either one and many dozens of kings brought to the grill... Kinda hard to beat a $60 complete setup with no problems. I have several dozen other rod/reel setups, some costing $300+. I know that is not alot of money for a setup, but it's a respectable amount. Point is, I know the difference between cheap crap and good stuff. That Tidewater combo is some cheap crap that has worked out for me for a long time...
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Old 04-22-2014, 07:56 PM   #8
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I had a tidewater that took a dump, I may use that rod and get a better reel for it.
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Old 04-25-2014, 10:07 PM   #9
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Wirelessly posted

Are y'all picking up decent kings kayak trolling stretch 15-25? I've never been Yaking for kings, would rather paddle a live hardtail around but I don't think I would find any.
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