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BassKing813

One More Shiner Fishing Question: Float

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Sorry if I'm asking too many questions about shiner fishing, but I still haven't found anything about what size float to use when fishing live wild shiners. The ones I used last time were those big saltwater popping corks about 4 to 5 in long. From what a guy at the lake told me, a float that big wears the shiner out.

How small a float can I get by with for fishing shiners? Would a little 3in float get the job done?

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You should really consider "party balloons", because they have four advantages over traditional floats.

1. The displacement (diameter of the balloon) is adjustable, hinging on how much you blow it up.

2. Cork and plastic floats can get hung-up in vegetation, but a hung balloon can be pulled until it bursts free.

3. Unlike snap-on floats, a balloon float cannot damage the line.

4. Balloon floats are obscenely cheaper than commercial floats.

The best balloon diameter to use depends on the size of the baitfish, and shiners can range from 4 to 12 inches long.

On average, a good all-around balloon diameter is 1½", about the size of a "golf ball".

If you'd rather use solid floats instead of balloons, understand that the float length alone is useless information.

For instance, a 6" Slim Jim that's 3/8" in diameter displaces less water than a 3" ball float. Below is a good all-around float:

Betts Billy Boy Cigar Bobber - 1 D x 3 L (Red & White Balsi-Foam)

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Most anglers set the float about 30 inches above the hook, but you really need to set it according to the depth of the weed bed.

Adjust the float so the minnow cannot swim into the weeds, which is typically about half the water depth.

Roger

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I don't mean to steal the thread. What knot do you use to attach the baloon to the line? I have always used a styrofoam float about the size of an egg. I always wanted to try baloons but was unsure how to attach the baloon. When you are fishing for what could be the fish of a lifetime no time to experiment..................Al

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I don't mean to steal the thread. What knot do you use to attach the baloon to the line? I have always used a styrofoam float about the size of an egg. I always wanted to try baloons but was unsure how to attach the baloon. When you are fishing for what could be the fish of a lifetime no time to experiment..................Al

Blow-up the balloon to the desired size, grab the balloon-neck right against the bubble and stretch the stem long.

Tie a simple overhand knot around your fishing line, then slide the balloon to the desired position (just shy of weed depth).

Lastly, stretch the remainder of the balloon-neck and tie a second overhand knot around the fishing line.

Under a lot of pressure the balloon will definitely slip, and may require an occasional readjustment (only takes a second).

As you know, bass usually wind up in the salad, but the balloon will bust away and not hang you up.

Roger

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