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jlew

Problem With Punching

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I seem to be having a problem with hookset while punching mats. Please help.

Set up: heavy rod, 65lb braid, 1 oz. tungsten pegged, punch skirt, 5/0 flipping hook sharpened, sweet beaver.

I think I'm loosing way too many bites. I'd say my boating ratio is at 40% versus the number of bites I know I'm getting. I feel I'm either pulling the bait out of their mouths if i go too hard or I'm not getting a good hookset and I loose the fish on the fight.

Anyone have tips?

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I use a mh rod but other than that my setup is the same.  A firm hookset and steady pressure until you get them back through the slop is all you can do.  You will still lose a lot of fish in the heavy crap no matter how good you are.

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you snelling that hook? a semi pegged tung along with the snelled flippin hook is also a key deal so that weight slips just a tad and bangs the top of the hook on the hookset and assists in kicking it up...

 

punchin your going to lose fish, i kind of compare it to froggin...when your dealing with thick mats/heavy veg etc...it can be par for the course...sometimes those missed fish are just dinks whacking it...

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A punching hookset should be more of a tighten the line first, then a sweeping motion straight up.  This hookset is not a jig hookset, where some slack is good.  As mentioned above, choose your knot wisely, this wouldn't be a time for a Palomar or Trilene.  Similar to frogging, you should be hooking up with 90% plus.  Your setup sounds ok if your heavy rod has a touch of tip to it.

 

Show us some pics some punchin pigs soon :punch-2:  :respect-059:

 

FL 

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Your setup sounds fine to me.

 

On balance, a lure in a freefall will generate an impulse strike, so you really can't strike too soon.

One thing you might try is omitting the punch skirt.

For one reason or another I seem to get a better hookup ratio on a standalone craw or beavertail.

 

Roger

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proper snell knot

 

use a smaller weight if possible (i've read where a larger weight can knock a bass's mouth open.

 

and watch videos of pro's hooksets while punching.  They just apply pressure.

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I think your set up sounds ok. With out being there to actually see what Is going on I would guess its your hook set that is the problem. If you set the hook with a snap set and a heavy weight it will pop the fishes mouth open. Use a sweep set. If your not snelling the hook that will help as mentioned. If you put to much pressure on them you can also tear their mouths.

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If you put to much pressure on them you can also tear their mouths.

 

Good point and something I should've mentioned.

 

When mat-punching, a hooked bass quickly collects weeds that in many cases will weigh more than the fish itself.

All the same, we still have to apply firm & steady pressure. Unfortunately, a lure lodged in vegetation is like being held in a vise,

a time when head-thrashing makes it very easy for a big fish to tear free. Bar none, I've lost more big bass in this situation

than all other situations combined. For run-of-the-mill bass, I'll use the lazy-man approach and pump the boat over to the bass

(easily done with heavy braid and a light boat), but if it's an old sow, I always move the boat quickly to the bass  :smiley:

 

Roger

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well go to a 4 and try ewg vmc hook I rarely miss one and yes snell knot is a must and someone already said the deal is a quarter inch between bobber stop and hook , I just hook set  strait  up high and hard lol

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4/0 straight shank round bend, never snell, heavy rod.

Ya gotta turn their head quickly & getting coming up on the hook set.

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Hey guys, thanks for all the recommendations. I'm going to go give it another shot this Wednesday utilizing all the tips. I'll let you know how it goes.

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Actually, I've got one more question on this subject... When using the wide gap straight shank flipping hook do you guys run the point of the hook all the way through the bait and then skin hook it, do you stop the point just a hair short of penetrating the opposite side of the bait, or do you leave it buried say one millimeter in the bait?

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it depends on how well I'm hooking them.  I usually texpose, but if the cover is making it pop out I'll push it "just a hair short"

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Hi jlew,

 

Here in Florida we have lakes filled with heavy weeds especially hydrilla.  When you hook a fish deep in the weeds you can accumulate a huge stack of weeds and you can't even see your fish or be sure it is still hooked.  The problem is not hooking them but keeping them on coming through the weeds.  I have tried several different things and it all comes down to a reduced landing rate in this type of fishing.  Once hooked you have to keep pressure on the fish and pull it through as quickly as you can.  I have thought about this and I think one of the main problems is this.  As you get the fish close to the surface you have accumulated a big gob of weeds.  When a fish swims to the side or shakes its head the weeds hold the line and gives the fish some leverage to get off.  Somewhat like with a big top water bait and the fish jumps shaking its head.  I have pulled up fish with a weed gob bigger than a five gallon bucket.  I haven't found that a snelled knot makes any difference in my fishing.  Looks good on TV though. 

 

Frank 

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Here in Florida we have lakes filled with heavy weeds especially hydrilla.  When you hook a fish deep in the weeds you can accumulate a huge stack of weeds and you can't even see your fish or be sure it is still hooked.  The problem is not hooking them but keeping them on coming through the weeds.  I have tried several different things and it all comes down to a reduced landing rate in this type of fishing.  Once hooked you have to keep pressure on the fish and pull it through as quickly as you can.  I have thought about this and I think one of the main problems is this.  As you get the fish close to the surface you have accumulated a big gob of weeds.  When a fish swims to the side or shakes its head the weeds hold the line and gives the fish some leverage to get off.  Somewhat like with a big top water bait and the fish jumps shaking its head.  I have pulled up fish with a weed gob bigger than a five gallon bucket.  I haven't found that a snelled knot makes any difference in my fishing.  Looks good on TV though. 

 

Frank

 

Only your 9th post, and a barnburner at that  :thumbsup3:

 

Roger

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When I'm punching or pitching, I let it fall and slack the line twice. I twitch it twice and let it fall again til I get a strike. Once I get a strike and fish is on the lure. You can see your line go left or right swimming with it. Set the hook upward so the hook can puncture the lip and start reeling.

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