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I've been bass and panfishing lakes and ponds for years. I have a number of BPS and Shimano baitcasters.  I recently moved and now have a 5 minute drive to an extremely productive river in my state with multiple dams where fish stack up. My question is in regards to using your nice bass gear on the river. I've been using my Carbonlite 2.0 and PRO Qualifiers as they are the cheapest baitcasters I have. I've already hooked into a number of Buffalo, Catfish, and Wipers larger than any bass I can catch in the area.

 

Do you guys that fish for other species use your nice bass gear on the river also? I'm afraid of my gear taking a complete beating. Would you guys go buy some cheaper stuff to use that wont be that big of a deal if its trashed? I have a couple spinning outfits also that I could use but the line capacity is only 8lbs compared to my baitcasters with 12lb test. 

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  I  apologize, but I don't understand. How does gear "take a beating"? I fish the Mississippi, and catch wipers and pike in addition to bass, and my gear doesn't "take a beating". It does what it's made to do: catch fish. You have a line of limited capability and a drag of limited capability. Use them within that capability and you'll be fine .... and so will the equipment.   jj

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I catch Sunfish to Bass to big Channel Cats on my bass gear with no worries. No gear will take a “beating” if you know how to play a fish.

 

 

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Just now, jimmyjoe said:

  I  apologize, but I don't understand. How does gear "take a beating"? I fish the Mississippi, and catch wipers and pike in addition to bass, and my gear doesn't "take a beating". It does what it's made to do: catch fish. You have a line of limited capability and a drag of limited capability. Use them within that capability and you'll be fine .... and so will the equipment.   jj

 

Well, I assumed my Carbonlite wasnt designed to withstand 30lb Buffalos making multiple runs day after day after day. The biggest bass Ive ever caught is 6lbs and Im hooking into fish 4 and 5 times that size. I live within a 5 minute walk so its probably a spot Ill be fishing often. 

4 minutes ago, NYWayfarer said:

I catch Sunfish to Bass to big Channel Cats on my bass gear with no worries. No gear will take a “beating” if you know how to play a fish.

 

 

Im very well versed and have years of experience with baitcasters and their drag systems. I guess my question is do you guys use your expensive bass gear on a spot thats going to be chock full of catfish and rough fish, or save it for my bass trips?

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8 minutes ago, Squarebill79 said:

Well, I assumed my Carbonlite wasnt designed to withstand 30lb Buffalos making multiple runs day after day after day.

   What are you targeting, the buffalo or largemouth bass? If you're targeting bass and hook into 30 lb. buffalo day after day, then I'd say you're fishing for bass in the wrong spot. On the other hand, if you're actually targeting the buffalo and wipers (which can be tremendous fun!) you should be using gear for buffalo and carp, not bass. The chief differences are in the heavier drag and greater line capacity in the reel, and a heavier power in the rod. If you want to stay with the gear you already have, I'd make sure you lube the drag or change to Carbontex drag material from Smoothdrag. You might want to change whichever lures you're using, too. Most (not all) lures for bass don't really attract buffalo. Wipers are another matter entirely. Whichever you decide to do ..... good luck!    jj

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I use bass rods for multi species. They don't know the difference :). But seriously its about playing the fish and setting your drag appropriately to what your fighting. I have caught numerous carp, catfish, trout, and panfish on my bass gear with no issues. I would never try to horse a 30lb fish in, rather play them until they tire out.

 

I also have carbonlite 2.0 rods with no issues so far. 

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18 minutes ago, jimmyjoe said:

  

   What are you targeting, the buffalo or largemouth bass? If you're targeting bass and hook into 30 lb. buffalo day after day, then I'd say you're fishing for bass in the wrong spot. On the other hand, if you're actually targeting the buffalo and wipers (which can be tremendous fun!) you should be using gear for buffalo and carp, not bass. The chief differences are in the heavier drag and greater line capacity in the reel, and a heavier power in the rod. If you want to stay with the gear you already have, I'd make sure you lube the drag or change to Carbontex drag material from Smoothdrag. You might want to change whichever lures you're using, too. Most (not all) lures for bass don't really attract buffalo. Wipers are another matter entirely. Whichever you decide to do ..... good luck!    jj

Thank you, this was the advice I was hoping to hear. No, Im definitely not targeting Largemouth Bass at this spot. Im not really targeting any specific species, I just rig up some gulp minnows on 1/8 or 1/4oz jigheads and see what I can catch. 

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3 minutes ago, Squarebill79 said:

 No, Im definitely not targeting Largemouth Bass at this spot. Im not really targeting any specific species, I just rig up some gulp minnows on 1/8 or 1/4oz jigheads and see what I can catch. 

    OK. Now I understand better. Are you fishing Polk or Marion county? If you fish below the Red Rock dam, you also have niiiiiice walleye. Talk to your local fishermen. They'll steer you right. You have a lot of choices regarding which way you want to go, but they're all good. And yes, you have bass. You just have to learn to be selective in your choice of lures. If all you want to do is catch fish without being selective, you're probably in fish heaven right where you are.  😀    jj

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1 hour ago, Squarebill79 said:

 

Im very well versed and have years of experience with baitcasters and their drag systems. I guess my question is do you guys use your expensive bass gear on a spot thats going to be chock full of catfish and rough fish, or save it for my bass trips?

Forgive me, I meant no offense to you and your experience level.

 

As to your question, “Expensive” is relative. My best gear is “cheap” to some. I have no problems using my $200 Bass setup anywhere for anything. I target Bass but if I see a Carp or Catfish and the Bass Bite is off I will target the other species. I have caught double digit channels on a Medium Light spinning rod by accident as well. 

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If a buffalo damages your bass gear it wasn’t good bass gear to begin with. BPS and Shimano have quality gear so you are good.

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I don’t use my good bass gear on the river simply because it’s a harsher environment than the lakes i fish. I like using round abus for river fishing. It can withstand the sand and the fish better than my more refined baitcasters. 

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If you are going to target and I mean no disrespect rough fish I would opt for better gear. I've had channel cats bite trick worms, and a carp took one of my goldfish swimbaits once lot of fun. I would go with a round reel of your choosing, Abu Ambassador, Shimano Cardiff, or Daiwa Millonare. They are all basically the same with centrifugal brakes and are a winch for big fish, pair it with a heavy rod and you should clean up. I still have a back up Cardiff for when the bass bite slows down.

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I use my gear for whatever is biting.  I am always aiming for bass. But if catfish start biting, I'll change my lures over to some catfish bait.  I did this last week with a big batch of crappie I ran into.  I took the t-rigged worm I had set up on a Daiwa Steez off and put on a light jig with a grub.  I had a blast for about 30min and caught over a dozen. 

 

As far as being on a river, White River here in Indiana with all of the rain we have is swollen, making boating in certain areas not only tuff but dangerous.  I would say my gear gets the same "beating/use" on a river as it does on a lake.  

 

If I were to pick gear that would cross over better between big species and bass, I have a Shimano Calcutta and a Fenwick Elite Tech Bass Rod that I use for bigger catfish and as well as for small to medium size swimbaits for bass.  I don't think the catfish care.  

 

If you are going to target bigger fish as well as bass.....  Round reels or bigger bait casters would be my choice (Shimano Calcutta, Daiwa Lexa, Abu Garcia Revo Toro Beast, Shimano TranX, Abu Garcia C3 or C4... just to name a few).  

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My gear on the tidal Potomac is regular bass gear.  My go to rods are Carbonlite 2.0 7' medium and MH and I had a ProQualifier on one of the older Carbonlites for three years for frog fishing with braid.  Snakeheads are like freight trains and I have never had a problem with my Shimano reels and a 15lb cat or two. My daughter fishes with me with a Carbonlite 2.0 7' medium spinning rod and a Sahara 3000 spinning reel with 8lb mono and her best was a 5lb largemouth last year... no problem.

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I usually use gear I like the least on the river, not necessarily cheaper. That has nothing to do with the fish, but the environment. Lots of snags you've got to break off, trees, sand, rocks, other debris. It's always worse on the river. Once in awhile I break my rule and take gear I like better, and it bit me in the rear end yesterday. I have a post on the General forum here about my Elite Tech and Tatula taking a tumble down the dam wall and into the water. I was able to get it back with another rod and quick thinking. I won't be making that mistake again. This year's river gear will be the Fury rods because I hate them, they catch fish all the same but I don't like them and if they break or whatever I don't care.

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3 hours ago, Glaucus said:

I usually use gear I like the least on the river, not necessarily cheaper. That has nothing to do with the fish, but the environment. Lots of snags you've got to break off, trees, sand, rocks, other debris. It's always worse on the river. Once in awhile I break my rule and take gear I like better, and it bit me in the rear end yesterday. I have a post on the General forum here about my Elite Tech and Tatula taking a tumble down the dam wall and into the water. I was able to get it back with another rod and quick thinking. I won't be making that mistake again. This year's river gear will be the Fury rods because I hate them, they catch fish all the same but I don't like them and if they break or whatever I don't care.

I bought leashes for my unused rods on the yak but I also think about leashing the one I use to my wrist...

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The PQ is a well built reel. I don’t think you’re doing it any harm. Tackle are tools to me: meant to be used, deserve to be cared for. 

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depending on how big of river you are fishing say, smaller to medium sized rivers that can be wadded or canoed.  I generally don't use my bass gear for the river unless were talking the Saginaw, titt, Maple ,western parts of the grand river.  Two exception are a MH spinning rod that acts smaller than the rating says and my new 7 ft Dobyns colt M/L.  I don't use braid on the rivers here( the exception will be that Dobyns. I'm not re spooling for the river) .  It is almost always 8 lbs mono with possibly a FC leader if it is super clear water. I bought a Pflueger president 5'5ft light action combo ( 80 bucks) for river fishing ( get what ever length rod you need).  I went 5'5 just because I do a lot wading and use the canoe to go from place to place and a longer rod is a pain to maneuver.  basically, its an all around rod that I can use for size 5-8 rapala's, inline spinners, ned rig, and 4 inch zoom tubes.  river fishing is hard on the equipment.  the rod and reel is going to go for multiple swims, hitting brush, breaking line snagged in trees and in the river. that way if It breaks I just buy another.

 

No if were talking carp, suckers, and channel cat fish ( not flat heads).  I bank fish for these species and I might go up to MH heavy spinning gear and 10 lbs berkly xt mono 

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My two main river sticks 

7’M Abu Super Seven 

Diawa SS1300 for catfish

7’MF St Croix SCII Mojo 

Diawa BG2000 for Smallies 

 

 

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