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Tuckahoe Joe

Backlashing With Lighter Weight Lures

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Well I'm getting better with my baitcaster.  I can throw heavier lures like my 1/2 oz. Red Eye Shad or my 7/16 oz. Skitterwalk pretty much without issue but I'm still having a little trouble backlashing with lighter lures like 1/4 oz. spinnerbaits and lighter weight cranks.  I've watched glenn's video on setting up a baitcaster and I always re-set it when I tie on a new lure.  I'm using the Abu Garcia Black Max Combo and its rated for 1/4 oz. up to I think 5/8 oz. lures.  And before you suggest a different rod or reel, I can't afford one right now.  Is there something I can adjust here?  Spool tension?  Magnetic brake?  What to do, what to do...?

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The combo ratings apply to the rod. Not really anything you can do to the reel to make it throw lighter baits any better. Reels with lighter spools that are more finesse oriented are going to run quite a bit more than a black max. You could try to flush the spool bearings and spool up some thin braid, 8-10 lb. test. This may help a bit

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Are you using the heaviest line the rod can manage without undue stress?

 

Have you checked all line guides with a Q-Tip to make sure there are no knicks or cuts?

 

Have you sprayed the line guides with Reel Magic?

 

May I suggest rigging the heaviest lure the combo and handle and cast it. No backlash?

 

Go to the next lower weight, reset the combo and cast. No backlash?

 

Go to the next lower weight, reset the combo and cast. No backlash?

 

Sooner or later you will note when the reel starts to backlash and you can then take remedial steps to correct the problem.

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The combo ratings apply to the rod. Not really anything you can do to the reel to make it throw lighter baits any better. Reels with lighter spools that are more finesse oriented are going to run quite a bit more than a black max. You could try to flush the spool bearings and spool up some thin braid, 8-10 lb. test. This may help a bit

It's rated for 1/4 oz to 5/8 oz lures but I seem like I'm backlashing a lot with the 1/4 oz ones.  I don't see why they would sell a combo with a reel that couldn't be compatible with the rod.  Maybe I'll try some lighter line.

 

 

Are you using the heaviest line the rod can manage without undue stress?

 

Have you checked all line guides with a Q-Tip to make sure there are no knicks or cuts?

 

Have you sprayed the line guides with Reel Magic?

 

May I suggest rigging the heaviest lure the combo and handle and cast it. No backlash?

 

Go to the next lower weight, reset the combo and cast. No backlash?

 

Go to the next lower weight, reset the combo and cast. No backlash?

 

Sooner or later you will note when the reel starts to backlash and you can then take remedial steps to correct the problem.

 

The combo is rated for 8-15 pound line and I'm using 12lb mono.  Like I said, the heavier lures I'm fine with.  It's the lower end of the rating spectrum I'm having trouble with.  I fish from the bank and I'd like to limit what I have to carry as much as possible and thus have to try and make this rod work for as many techniques as I can.  I'd hate for the step to correct the problem be to just not fish 1/4 oz lures. I may try some lighter line but I was hoping that maybe someone could give me some insight as to what they might do in this situation for on-the-water adjustments like less spool tension/more brake or vice versa or something along those lines.

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Also to add, remember 1/4 oz is a light spinner bait. That couple with spinnerbaits act like a sail when being casted can produce some backlashes. I use 1/2 only that reason.

One more thing. If you watched Glenn's video on fluke casting with a BC, he gives the bait more line before the cast. Drop the bait 20" or so below the rod tip on a lighter bait and it will help generate more power when you cast.

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Joe, If you feel the settings are as good as they can be, try this. Leave the lure a little farther from the tip of your rod than you usually do, this will help "load" the rod better. Then smooth is your name, don't try to over-power the cast.

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Lower trajectory casts will help. Try not to cast directly over your head, especially with spinnerbaits.

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Baits as light as 1/4oz are best thrown with a spinning reel. Like golf you can not make one club to do all things , it is hard to get one rod to do all spectrums of fishing. It is hard for one rod to do heavy duty and extreme light duty. The manufactuors now even make rods technique specific, jerkbait, crankbait, spinnerbait, worm, dropshot and so forth. When you can, try to get a full set of clubs, until then concentrate on what you can do with what you got and perfect what you can do.

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If you want to throw 1/4 oz, either use a spinning rod or save the cash and get a used 50 series shimano or daiwa sol/alphas....

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At the lower weights, line makes a big difference in your ability to cast without problems. A soft mono like Trilene XL will work better in my experience. Braid is an alternative if you like it. I do not.

 

I used to have trouble throwing 1/4 oz cranks with a baitcast combo until I started using a glass rod with a soft tip that loads well. Now I can throw 100 series Bandits all day with little problem. I am not telling you that a new rod is required, just that having the right gear makes a huge difference. That is the rationale I use to justify all of my fishing related purchases. :wink2:  It is a slippery slope...good luck.

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i can throw light baits on my revo stx just fine.. how long have you had your black max? i noticed that my stx casted better/farther after i oiled the bearings ... if you were closer to me id say id take a look at it for you, not quite sure how far rigdley is from me

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I just started using my first baitcaster (Curado) and while throwing my 1/4 weights i was having tiny backlashes.  I was making sure my lure was falling slowly but still was having the same problem.  I noticed if i kept the tension knob a tad tighter than where I felt it needed to be, it wouldnt backlash at all.  I am not sure if its because my reel is new, but im sticking to it for now.

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All good responses, but it's worth considering that some reels just don't cast lighter lures well. I can't throw light stuff on my Pro Qualifier, but I can with my Citica. I can almost fish weightless worms with it (weightless flukes are no problem). My PQ casts a mile with some weight, but I backlash like crazy with lighter stuff.

 

Maybe some upgraded bearings or a good oiling?

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I didn't read all the posts, but is the rod capable of handling lighter baits? Meaning, does it load up well?

When I'm fishing <3/8 oz baits on an MH casting rod (not often), I keep the spool tension the same (usually set pretty loose), and increase the number of brakes from 1 or 2 to 3, or even 4 (Shimano VBS).

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Me to wondering if with 1/4oz weigth is the rod tip not loading up. ... :Victory:

What is the rods power (mh, med. etc), and the tip action (moderate, fast, extrafast, etc.)

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The thing I have noticed is the harder I cast the more backlashes I get which will mean that your smaller finesse lures will backlash quite a bit more backlashes. I feel like the larger lures I dont feel I am throwing as hard which results in a smoother feel of the cast and fewer backlashes. That may just be me though.  When I throw something finesse, like 1/4 and under, I will typically use a spinning rod/reel.

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1/4 oz. is getting light for most baitcast reels....and even more baitcast users.  3/8 oz and up lures are a breeze on a b/c reel.  Casting a 1/4 oz. or less requires 1) a reel capable of throwing those weights, 2) a rod that loads with those weights, and 3) an operator with more than a little skill.  At least that is my opinion.

 

What action is the rod?  A Moderate action will load better than an Extra Fast action (for most of us).  Light lures require light spools.  I picked up a Black Max combo at Dick's and was impressed with free spool time.  My Trion also has impressive free spool so I thought it would work well on a Medium Fast Compre for unweighted 10" worms.  WRONG.  The spool is too heavy for light weight lures.  It is a casting machine with heavier weights.

 

Casting a 1/4 oz weight is going to require less spool tension and less brakes to get any kind of distance.  Unfortunately with the wrong reel(s) this is going to lead to lots of backlashing unless you are extremely good with your thumb.  One place you will run into trouble real quick...especially with light lures since you will probably be throwing hard to get some distance...is on the rod's reversal.  Smoooooooth is critical.

 

If the rod loads well with 1/4 oz lures, and the reel is capable of casting well with 1/4 oz lures, then you have to experiment with the reel's settings...both spool tension and brakes.  I have recently been informed that drag can also play a small part in casting light lures.  (In my case the responder was referring to 1/8 oz. or less.)  Then all that is left is lots and lots of practice.  :teeth3:

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Like others have said....there are many variables here.  A nice medium action  or medium/light rod will go a long way with lighter baits....it simply loads better.

 

Smaller diameter line often helps a bit.

 

Reels with shallow light spools that are designed for lighter baits invariably do better:  that's why people always mention the Curados, the Sols, the Steez, Pixy.  These all cast baits well below 1/4 oz. 

 

And others have mentioned the condition of the reel:  too much oil can limit the cast....a simple cleaning will improve it.

 

Also, the way a person casts:  the harder you sling it, the more likely it is to backlash, without the "educated" thumb.

 

And one person said there are light baits.....say a "scum frog" that catch the wind and the spool will over run.

 

Sort of like playing golf:   many variables.  But when you finally get them in sync, it can be wonderful.

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The thing I have noticed is the harder I cast the more backlashes I get which will mean that your smaller finesse lures will backlash quite a bit more backlashes. I feel like the larger lures I dont feel I am throwing as hard which results in a smoother feel of the cast and fewer backlashes. That may just be me though.  When I throw something finesse, like 1/4 and under, I will typically use a spinning rod/reel.

 

x2. I have been experimenting with different casting techniques (new reels and all that) and have found that the only thing that throwing harder gets me is a bigger backlash. I can cast just as far tossing easy and get less hassle. Set up your reel right and you don't need to throw with all your might.

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The problem here is the rod and bait being thrown, not so much the reel. Even though a rod may be rated for 1/4oz ratings are subjective. The sweet spot usually lies near the mid-range of the rating as you approach the limits on either end you can expect some problems and needed adjustments.

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The problem here is the rod and bait being thrown, not so much the reel. Even though a rod may be rated for 1/4oz ratings are subjective. The sweet spot usually lies near the mid-range of the rating as you approach the limits on either end you can expect some problems and needed adjustments.

I agree. Rod is the main issue.

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Hey joe. Lots of good advice in this thread. Like rockchalk said a 1/4 spinner is going to act like a sail. Heck I can't even cast them very far with a spinning reel without a grub or fluke on the hook. Maybe you should try something like a fluke like glenn did in his video. By casting a more aerodynamic bait you might get the technique down better that will allow you to cast other lite baits. I mentioned in a post awhile ago I spent alot of time and money on casting setups capable of throwing light baits specifically flukes but now prefer to throw them on spinning tackle anyways. If you have a spinning rod honestly that's what I'd use.

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Thanks for all the replies everyone.  I've only had the combo a couple months so its fairly new but I suppose it could use a cleaning and a little oil and I know I still need a good deal of practice.  The rod is medium power but I'm not sure of the action.  It's not listed on the rod.  It's just the generic BlackMax rod that comes with the reel.  I do have a spinning rod as well though so if I keep having issues I'll just use that to throw the lighter stuff.

 

 

i can throw light baits on my revo stx just fine.. how long have you had your black max? i noticed that my stx casted better/farther after i oiled the bearings ... if you were closer to me id say id take a look at it for you, not quite sure how far rigdley is from me

Appreciate the offer man but were on opposite ends of the state.  I'm in Caroline County...practically in Delaware.

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