Fishing Gear

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Smallboat Offshore Fishing Rigs (Pub. No. 5351)

Offshore fishing for sailfish, marlin, tuna and amberjack once limited to larger sortfishing boats are fair game for small boats specially rigged for fishing.

If you own a sixteen- to twenty-six-foot outboard skiff or cabin cruiser, she can easily be rigged as a fishing boat. Basically, your choice of gear depends on the type angling you’ll be doing--chumming; offshore or inshore trolling; bottom dunking; skirting a rock headland or mangrove shoreline and casting plugs for any game species from striped bass off Massachusetts to snook on the Gulf Coast of Florida.

12 pages

$7.95
Build Your Own Bass Boat (Pub. No. 5458)

by Hal Kelly

Half the cost. Twice the fun!

Bass fishing is here to stay. But let's face it. With the high cost of buying a ready-built boat coupled to the rigors of a questionable stock-market, the only way a lot of us can afford a really top-flight bass boat these days is to build it ourself. Which is just what we did. She's a super bass boat that is not only fast, stable, uncluttered and unsinkable, but is loaded with all the bass boat worth wantiner . . . loads of storage space, bait boxes, fish wells, rod-holders, positioning motor, fighting chairs, side-console steering, depthfinder/fishfinder, etc. You name it, this boat has it!

10 pages, 2 plate(s)

$7.95
Make your own Electronic Fish Sensor & catch more (Pub. No. 5478)

by James G. Busse

Trout by Telemetry

You can go from a frustrated bobber-watcher to a space-age fisherman in only a few evenings. That’s all the time it takes to build this project. By next weekend you’ll be able to lure the fish to your line and detect even the feeblest nibble from trout, pike, pickerel, bass or other fish you’re after. Here’s how it works: Floating on the surface of the water is the main electronic unit called a “sonobuoy.” It contains a fish lure that generates a steady high-frequency electronic signal for about 10 seconds each time the sonobuoy is rocked by wind or a wave. This signal is then piped down to a saucer-shaped underwater hydrophone, suspended directly below the sonobuoy at the end of a length of speaker wire. The hydrophone’s speaker converts the signal into high-frequency sound waves, which travel through the water for a considerable distance in all directions to attract fish. At the same time, the line from your rod and reel runs through a swivel attached to the bottom of the hydrophone by means of a small magnet. When a fish strikes, a tiny mercury switch mounted inside the hydrophone is triggered by the movement, sending a signal up to the sonobuoy on the surface. It, in turn, relays the alarm in the form of “clicks” to the fisherman located in a boat or on shore by way of a transistorized radio transmitter inside the sonobuoy. By listening to a radio receiver near you, you know exactly when a fish is taking the bait. You also hear the random 10-second signals sent out by the sonobuoy’s electronic fish lure.

8 pages, 1 plate(s)

$7.95
Building Trolling Centers (Pub. No. 5633)

(Permanent and removeable gunwale and railing mounted and deck mounted)

Here's how to build and install several different types of trolling centers, both permanent and removeable.

22 pages

$8.95
Building Rod-Holders (Pub. No. 5634)

(Deck mount and side mount)

For those whose boats are not so equipped, here are some designs for both deck and side mount rod holders.

16 pages

$7.95
Build a Permanent Gunwale-Mount Trolling Ctr. (Pub. No. 7773)

For Captains whose boats serve no other purpose than sport fishing, and whose craft have no railings along with gunwales near the stern, the permanently mounted trolling center—a 2 x 8 inch plank across the beam of the boat equipped with downriggers, or sideriggers and rod holders—may be desirable. To construct and install the permanent trolling center, follow these steps.

4 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Removeable Gunwale-Mount Trolling Ctr. (Pub. No. 7774)

If a boat has no railings over the gunwales near the stern and a permanent trolling center—-a plank on which downriggers and rod holders are mounted—-is not desired, one that is easily removed from the gunwales can be installed. To construct and install a removable gunwale-mount trolling center, follow these steps.

3 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Removeable Railing-Mount Trolling Ctr. (Pub. No. 7775)

For boats equipped with tubular metal railings at the stern that would prevent installation of a gunwale-mount trolling center—-a plank on which downriggers and rod holders are secured-—boat owners can elect to mount a removable trolling center that is clamped to the metal railings. Before proceeding with this project, however, make certain that the fastenings for the boat railings are firmly bolted with backing blocks, especially if they are attached to fiberglass surfaces. The strain placed on a trolling center by a downrigger weight that is snagged on a rock ledge or a sunken wreck could pull the trolling center and railings from the mountings unless they are properly secured. To construct and install a removable metal railing-mount trolling center, follow these steps

2 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Removeable Wooden Trolling Ctr. (Pub. No. 7776)

On a boat with expensive teak railings, one would naturally be reluctant to drill holes to temporarily install a trolling center—-a plank across the stern on which downriggers and rod holders are mounted. And, boat owners may hesitate to use metal brackets to secure the trolling center because of possible damage to the wooden railing. Here is a method that employs wood clamping blocks that is much better for this type of situation. To construct and install a removable wooden railing-mount trolling center, follow these steps.

2 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Fishing Speed Guage (Pub. No. 7777)

Correct trolling speed can often be a critical factor in fishing success. The speed at which a lure travels through the water has much to do with the action of the particular lure and the response from a fish. Gamefish are usually predators that capture their food by pursuing it. There are times when a fast-moving lure will trigger a strike and times when it is difficult to throttle a fishing craft down slow enough for the presentation of lure preferred by the fish under prevailing conditions. By experimenting with lures known to be productive and trolling them at different speeds, the captain can determine the boat speed that works best for his craft. Maintaining this speed can present some problems, however, especially if you must cope with strong wind and currents. While the revolutions per minute (rpm) of the engine may remain constant, the boat—and lure being trolled—will travel faster heading downwind than when moving upwind. The same applies when the boat is going with a current rather than against it. A boat may have a speedometer or rpm gauge but the accuracy of these instruments at slow, trolling speeds is not very reliable. So, there is a need for a fishing speed gauge to guide the skipper in maintaining the proper trolling speed once it has been determined under all conditions. To construct a fishing speed gauge, follow these steps.

4 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Fish-Cleaning Table (Pub. No. 7778)

One of the least enjoyable parts of a fishing day is cleaning the catch afterward, especially an all-day outing with everyone tired. A shower, refreshing drink, and a good dinner are much preferred to fish-cleaning chores. In addition, too much of a delay in cleaning fish can detract from their palatability as table fare. Unlike game such as venison and grouse, fish does not improve with aging. So, there is a double advantage in cleaning the catch soon after the fish are caught. A fish-cleaning table that can be set up quickly, takes little room in the boat, and is easy to maintain is a desirable item on the well-equipped fishing machine. Such a table is not provided even as an option by most boat manufacturers but this should not deter the boat owner because the construction of such a table is not a difficult project.

3 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Fishing-Rod Stowage Rack (Pub. No. 7779)

When the call, “fish on!” sounds out, there is a scramble to retrieve lines and clear the decks of fishing rods that might hamper the landing of a hooked fish, especially during those critical moments when the angler and net man are attempting to coordinate their actions in bringing the fish to net. Usually, there is not enough time to stow the fishing rods that have been removed from rod holders into rod storage boxes. Instead, they are propped against the center console or some other place—even placed on the cockpit floor where they are liable to be damaged. The same problem exists when the skipper decides that fishing action is better a few miles away and issues the order to “haul lines!” for the run to the new fishing grounds. Again, there is need for some kind of quick rod stowage to avoid clutter. One solution to the storage problem is a vertical rod rack with quick-release clips. Such a rack can be tailored to available cockpit space. And, it is not difficult to construct.

3 page(s)

$3.50
Installing a Surface Thermometer (Pub. No. 7780)

The relation of water temperature to successful fishing is one of the newer developments in the sport of angling. Traditionally, good fishing conditions have been linked with local seasonal phenomena, such as dogwood in bloom (when the bass fishing gets good in the South); or, lilac leaves the size of a squirrel’s ear (the time to go fishing for white bass in Wisconsin). Recognizing the limitations of such adages as fishing forecasts, anglers have been turning to a more scientific approach, relating water temperatures with favorable fishing conditions, and seeking out the temperatures that prove to be most productive. This project shows you how to install a remote-reading surface thermometer to take advantage of this knowledge.

4 page(s)

$3.50
Build a Real Salt-Water Tackle Box (Pub. No. 7816)

The shiny metal tackle boxes sold in stores are fine for the fresh—water fisherman—but for the salt—water fan, nix! They’d rust out in no time at all, and even then a chap wouldn’t want one, for the plug compartments are made to hold small fresh-water plugs, not the big ones used to tempt stripers. Since nothing else is available, most salties just dump their gear into whatever they can find in the way of a canvas bag at an Army-Navy store. We did it that way too—until we got sick and tired of spending half our time selecting what we wanted from a tangled mess of triple gang-hooks, leaders, spinners, and what-not. Desperation drove us to making a real salt-water tackle box. This box has more uses than a ten-dollar bill. It has a drawer for small items, a compartmented plug drawer, and a large storage drawer for such items as reels, hand lines, and similar bulky equipment. The handle doubles in brass as a gaff—so after years of fumbling for that pesky item, you’ll now know where to grab for it in an instant. The top of the box makes a handy bench for working on tackle, baiting up, or serving coffee. The box is so sturdily made that it can serve as a swell seat during those long hours of waiting for a bite on beach or dock. Being made of wood, it won’t rust; and if it should fall overboard it’ll float, saving you from having to buy a new outfit. If well-painted, the wood won’t be affected by water.

4 page(s)

$3.50
How to Get Close to the Dam Fish (Pub. No. 7892)

by Warren Transue

If you're not allowed near the turbines or if the fish lie beyond your normal casting range, try this technique for 'motor casting' to the big ones.

Right next to you on shore is a husband-and-wife team, with the belled poles wedged in the rocks, their lines way out. They much sandwiches and sip beer while waiting for the jangle of that bell. And near them on the rocks is a queer-looking contraption they call their “boat.” There are quite few of these “sturgeon boats” in use on this stretch of the Columbia River about a thousand feet down from the Bonneville Dam, and it is these homemade affairs that get the hooks to where the big 6-to-13-foot sturgeon, weighing hundreds of pounds, lie far below the tumultuous surface created by the gates of the dam.

2 page(s)

$3.50
How to Fish with a Sky Hook (Pub. No. 7909)

by Kenneth A. Anderson

Illustraton by Dana Rasmussen

Kite fishing is an ancient Asian art that's catching on here. With kits you can 'cast' as far as you want--if the wind's right.

Have you ever stood helplessley at the edge of a lake watching bass pop the surface about 100 feet beyond your casting range? Or maybe you know where big catfish lie beneath naccessible rocks offshore. Then kiting may solve your problem. Tie a leader to your kite string and fly the lure to the fish. You'll need a bait-casting outfit, some rather stout line, a few weights, live bait or artificial lures and a kite. Almost any kite will do. But since it may get wet it's better to choos a kite with plastic or cloth covering, rather than paper. A paper kite usually has had it if it goes in the water.

2 page(s)

$3.50
Make Your Own Fishing "Spoons" (Pub. No. 7911)

by C.L. Howard

An expert fisherman tells how to make these sure-fire bass and steelhead lures. All you need is a kitchen spoon, tin snips, a file, a drill and some paint.

Most fishermen have a sizable investment in fishing lures. Many of these lures are of the spoon variety costing a dollar or more apiece. When a lure is lost--especially if it's a favorite--a rather pained expression crosses the angler's face. But now you can have all the 'spoons' you want for less than 10 cents each. No need to fret if some are lost in the wees or high branches of trees. Fishing spoons are easy to make and exceptionally cheap.

3 page(s)

$3.50
Make your own Take-Along Custom Rod (Pub. No. 7929)

by Bob Stearns

You'll have one that exactly fits your suitcase, and it'll be styled to suit your taste.

If you’re like most fishermen and must travel to get to the water, you’ll find this compact, customized suitcase rod particularly handy. You needn’t bother with the usual long fishing-rod storage and shipping tube or case—just pick a length that will be most suitable for stowing in your bag or backpack. Almost any rod, even your present ones, can be converted into a compact model by means of fiberglass ferrules, but the best rod of all is the one that is designed from scratch for this purpose. The technique is quite simple and can be used for spinning, baitcasting and fly rods. Don’t try it, though, with graphite rods or rod blanks. The ferrule systems that fit together sections of graphite rods are complicated.

4 page(s)

$3.50
World's Deadliest Lures, The (Pub. No. 7935)

Years of fishing all kinds of lures have convinced me there is one that outfishes them all—the spinner. It comes in various shapes and sizes and many look like nothing fish feed on. Yet it’s deadly. It took me a long time to discover why the spinner is so effective. It came to me one morning trolling for rainbow trout in Lake Placid, N.Y. I was using one of those 2-ft.-long chains of spinner blades anglers call Christmas trees. I had tied on a foot-long leader and a No. 6 long-shank trout hook baited with a mghtcrawler. The water was clear and the rainbows were feeding on Mayfly nymphs. I was trying a short line behind the prop. I could see the big spinner 2-ft. under the surface and was studying its action. Suddenly, a sizable rainbow dashed out of nowhere. It ignored the spinner and went straight for the nightcrawler. Then the truth hit me. That trout had been attracted by the sounds the spinner blades made and not by their flashing or by the worm. It’s a fact that a thrashing-about by a swimmer or hooked fish attracts sharks from long distances. Why wouldn’t the sound of spinner blades attract game fish from afar?

2 page(s)

$3.50
How to Build a Fishing Machine (Pub. No. 7938)

by Bob Stearns

Any dedicated angler would like to own a custom-built craft designed specifically for his favorite type of fishing. The problem with that concept—especially at today’s high prices and interest rates—is primarily a matter of money. Custom fishing rigs are expensive—fishing machines are luxuries. Not necessarily. Anyone with the skill to use very basic woodworking tools can, in a matter of a few weekends, convert a basic utility craft into a first-class fishing boats at a cost that is surprisingly low. Not long ago, a friend and I did just that. In four weekends, and at a cost that (if adjusted for expected inflation by the time you read this) was less than $225. Obviously, I’m not including the initial purchase price of the basic boat, engine or trailer. I’m just talking about the wood and hardware needed to make it work.

4 page(s)

$3.50
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