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Looking to put together a setup only for frogs. Would I be better suited with a North Fork Composites blank turned into a custom rod ($200 blank on sale for $100, plus other components). Or, should I just buy a rod. I can build it myself so don't have to pay for labor. The blank is 7'3" 14-30 lb 3/8-2 oz fast. Or should I go up to maybe 7'4", 5", 6", or even higher? More powerful or less? Looking to get the "perfect" frog-only rod for the perfect price.

 

Then where should I go for the reel? Maybe a nicer Lew's or something. Magnesium speed spools on eBay for a little under $200, maybe I could scrounge together a bit more money and go with one of those? 

 

Then what braid? 30, 40, 50, 65?

 

Let me know what you think. Tight lines

Drew

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Any time you can go custom, I think it's a better choice. You get the rod the way you want it, instead of trying to find something on a shelf that might fit your needs. As far as reel, I will forever recommend the 8.1 Tatula SV for frogging. I don't know if there's a better reel for that purpose, at any price. 

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It sounds like you already have the rod figured out. I picked up a Daiwa Fuego CT 8.1 yesterday. It's a d**n good reel for the price. It actually casts further than my SV TW with the same baits, line and rod. It's going on a Fury 735 for my frog rod. 

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Alright, sounds like a custom 7'3" HF rod is the way to go. No votes for 7'4", 7'5", 7'6", or higher? I am a bit on the "vertically challenged" side of things, so I don't think going much longer gives me too much of an advantage over the negatives that will come with it. 

 

Love the looks of the Tatula SV, might just have to scrounge together a bit more money for one of them. Or shop around, if I could get one for $150 I'd be solid. That would be a $300-$350 setup, but still it'd be great. And since I'm selling off tons of old tackle, these are paying for themselves essentially. The money is just going from stuff that's sitting around to stuff that'll actually be used, so it's no biggie. 

 

Drew

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3 minutes ago, biggiesmalls said:

Alright, sounds like a custom 7'3" HF rod is the way to go. No votes for 7'4", 7'5", 7'6", or higher? I am a bit on the "vertically challenged" side of things, so I don't think going much longer gives me too much of an advantage over the negatives that will come with it. 

 

Love the looks of the Tatula SV, might just have to scrounge together a bit more money for one of them. Or shop around, if I could get one for $150 I'd be solid. That would be a $300-$350 setup, but still it'd be great. And since I'm selling off tons of old tackle, these are paying for themselves essentially. The money is just going from stuff that's sitting around to stuff that'll actually be used, so it's no biggie. 

 

Drew

If you look around on the auction site, you can get the Tatula SV for $130ish most of the time. 

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32 minutes ago, Tywithay said:

If you look around on the auction site, you can get the Tatula SV for $130ish most of the time. 

Thanks man. Is the 8.1:1 purple? If so, might have to go with some purple wraps on the rod :)

Ordering the blank as I type this - also a 7'6" 8-15 lb XF for the salt too :)

 

Drew

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1 hour ago, optimator said:

It sounds like you already have the rod figured out. I picked up a Daiwa Fuego CT 8.1 yesterday. It's a d**n good reel for the price. It actually casts further than my SV TW with the same baits, line and rod. It's going on a Fury 735 for my frog rod. 

Not a surprise.  The SV spools are hard to backlash for a reason.  The Fuego CT got a "Best Value" rating from TT.

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25 minutes ago, biggiesmalls said:

Thanks man. Is the 8.1:1 purple? If so, might have to go with some purple wraps on the rod :)

Ordering the blank as I type this - also a 7'6" 8-15 lb XF for the salt too :)

 

Drew

The 8.1:1 does indeed have the purple. 

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Seven ratio Curado with an Abu Veritas 7'H. Fifty to sixty five pound braid.

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I went the opposite route for a frog reel in terms of gear ratio - I got a revo x winch at 5.4:1 for muscling fish out of heavy vegetation and slop.  Some or most are actually likely to be snakehead where I'm mainly kayak fishing, so the 5.4 made sense to me as I've heard horror stories of people burning gears on high ratio reels while try to rip fish out of heavy cover.  Seeing as some of the snakehead I'm catching are not unlikely to go over 10 pounds, the low gear ratio was a no brainer.  Hope the rod you're making turns out nicely.  With the price of blanks you mentioned and your 250 budget, you might be able to find a revo winch (higher end version) on sale and possibly go a little over your budget.  The revo x version will surely keep you within your budget - just got mine for 70 on eBay with a coupon (paired with Okuma TCS frog rod).  I might have gone higher end if I was thinking I'd be catching more bass on the rod, but with more snakehead on the line this is more of a beat up setup that I'll likely upgrade if it doesn't hold up to the task.  Mind you, I'm also a fan of the tatula sv, and recently purchased that for another setup, but I think the revo and revo x winch (along with some other Abu reels) are some of the only freshwater low profile baitcasters with that low of a gear ratio - Saltwater baitcasters tend to offer low ratios. 

 

I went with 50 lb braid as I've heard it's better for cutting through pads and such than 65.  I wouldn't go under 50 for frogging.  H/F (or mag heavy /extra fast)  is the way to go for frogging.  

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I plan on picking up the following, which should run $220 on Amazon on the right day.

 

Tatula CT, 8:1 ratio

Tatula 7'4" Frogging Rod

 

Given you are looking at making your own rod, that gives you some freedom in the reel.

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Okay, the rod is set - ordered the blank last night. Going to wait until I've got a bit more spare spending money available to get the reel, but looks like I just might get the Tatula SV 8.1:1. 

Is the casting distance going to be an issue with this reel? And, will it hold enough 50-65 lb braid to work well? Not using this setup for anything other than throwing hollow-body frogs. 

@Tywithay

 

Thanks,

Drew

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8 minutes ago, biggiesmalls said:

Okay, the rod is set - ordered the blank last night. Going to wait until I've got a bit more spare spending money available to get the reel, but looks like I just might get the Tatula SV 8.1:1. 

Is the casting distance going to be an issue with this reel? And, will it hold enough 50-65 lb braid to work well? Not using this setup for anything other than throwing hollow-body frogs. 

@Tywithay

 

Thanks,

Drew

I've had no issues with distance with either of mine, especially with frogs. I have a couple reels that cast further and several that don't cast as far, but the SV spool makes the Tatula one of the most consistent and easy to cast, regardless of conditions. I use 50lb braid on my frogging setup. I think the slightly thinner diameter (compared to 65lb) helps it cut through vegetation more easily. The Tatula SV will hold roughly 115 yards of 50lb sufix 832, based on my spooling station counter thing. Comparing diameters, I'd say it'd be around 90 yards of 65lb. Either should be plenty. I know I can't throw a frog that far, nor do I want to, as I'm usually aiming at a spot, not a distance. 

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Alright, so the Tatula SV wins. Now just to decide 50 or 65 braid, sounds like 50 is a little better in terms of lb test and such. 

Drew

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13 hours ago, biggiesmalls said:

Alright, so the Tatula SV wins. Now just to decide 50 or 65 braid, sounds like 50 is a little better in terms of lb test and such. 

Drew

Check out my recent thread asking about this. Lots of great info in there. 

Disregard the top one... That went to a single comment on the 2nd page and won't delete. You can see I ended up going with 50. 

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6 hours ago, Riazuli said:

Check out my recent thread asking about this. Lots of great info in there. 

Disregard the top one... That went to a single comment on the 2nd page and won't delete. You can see I ended up going with 50. 

After reading through the thread, I'm going with 50 lb as well. I don't see any added benefits to 65 lb. 

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By the way, thought I would post this thread that was part of what led me to go with a low gear ratio vs high for froggin:

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Riazuli said:

By the way, thought I would post this thread that was part of what led me to go with a low gear ratio vs high for froggin:

 

 

I understand the logic of a lower gear ratio for more torque, but we're talking about bass here. Not a world-class fighting fish, we're talking about a fish that averages well under 5 pounds. And IMO, the fish should be fought with the rod and the drag - you shouldn't be reeling so hard that you can strip the gears of a baitcaster on a bass, even if it's 5 or 6 pounds. Use the rod to your advantage, that's what it's there for. Again, just my opinion on that matter. One of many, take it with a grain of salt :)

 

Drew

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10 hours ago, biggiesmalls said:

I understand the logic of a lower gear ratio for more torque, but we're talking about bass here. Not a world-class fighting fish, we're talking about a fish that averages well under 5 pounds. And IMO, the fish should be fought with the rod and the drag - you shouldn't be reeling so hard that you can strip the gears of a baitcaster on a bass, even if it's 5 or 6 pounds. Use the rod to your advantage, that's what it's there for. Again, just my opinion on that matter. One of many, take it with a grain of salt :)

 

Drew

I agree with fighting the fish with the rod and not just cranking away without doing that, but I guess my concern is more around what I mentioned before - It's not uncommon that I come across 10+ pound snakehead while frogging where I'm at.  The guy in the thread did say he did this catching a bass while using his rod (but also under tourney pressure), but again it's just a perspective to consider.  If If I didn't think I'd likely have better chance of catching a snakehead than a bass while frogging where I'm at, I likely would have gone with a higher ratio. 

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1 hour ago, Riazuli said:

I agree with fighting the fish with the rod and not just cranking away without doing that, but I guess my concern is more around what I mentioned before - It's not uncommon that I come across 10+ pound snakehead while frogging where I'm at.  The guy in the thread did say he did this catching a bass, but again it's just a perspective to consider.  If If I didn't think I'd likely have better chance of catching a snakehead than a bass while frogging where I'm at, I likely would have gone with a higher ratio. 

I use an 8.1:1 for wiper fishing and have caught numerous fish over 10lbs. They fight atleast twice as hard as a bass and I haven't noticed any additional wear. As long as you're using a reel made with quality components, the ratio isn't going to make a huge difference on longevity.

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9 hours ago, Tywithay said:

I use an 8.1:1 for wiper fishing and have caught numerous fish over 10lbs. They fight atleast twice as hard as a bass and I haven't noticed any additional wear. As long as you're using a reel made with quality components, the ratio isn't going to make a huge difference on longevity.

To each his own.  There are mixed opinions in the thread I posted, the guy said he was using his rod but also under pressure for a tourney so who knows.  He was using a Daiwa Tatula, so the components were "quality". 

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Im a fan of lower gear ratio reels as well. I haven't noticed any benefits with reels faster than 7.1:1. But reel ratio is very preference based.

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Walked into our BPS three years ago and they had a KVD 7' MH, 1/4-1/14. 10-20lb rating on sale for $80.  On a long shot I put 50lb 832 braid on a Curado E 7:1 and started throwing a frog and it turned out to be a perfect set up for the Potomac grass beds.   I already had the reel.

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I seriously doubt that any quality fast reel is going to be more fragile than the same reel in a slower gear ratio. If people were blowing up 8.1 Tatulas frogging but the 6.3's weren't having issues people would know about it. 

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3 hours ago, optimator said:

I seriously doubt that any quality fast reel is going to be more fragile than the same reel in a slower gear ratio. If people were blowing up 8.1 Tatulas frogging but the 6.3's weren't having issues people would know about it. 

That statement is somewhat flawed, given the physics of gear ratios...lower gear ratio means bigger teeth and more torque vs smaller/thinner teeth (fragile might be a strong word here, but they simply aren't as strong as the gears in a lower ratio gear) and lower torque/more speed with a higher gear - sure, a quality reel with the right approach shouldn't be burning gears easily, but it happens.  

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