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John E Powell

Professional
  • Content count

    656
  • Joined

  • Last visited

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24 Excellent

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Niagara Falls, NY
  • Interests
    I started fishing for trout and salmon with my dad in the late 70s. When I hooked my first three year old salmon it broke my brand new Berkley downrigger rod like a twig. I was hooked for life. That very day, I decided I could build a better rod than what you could buy, so I became a student of rodbuilding. In 1980 I opened my rodbuilding business, Custom Rod Designs by John, and have been crafting task-specific Great Lakes trolling rods ever since.
  • Home Port
    Wilson, NY
  • Boat Name
    Coho Queen

Recent Profile Visitors

7,068 profile views
  1. John E Powell

    best knot for wire

    You didn’t specify 7 or 19 strand wire. If you’re using 7-strand wire, I think most people use crimp. Make a loop through snap swivel eye and then fit swivel through loop and pull tight working the wire loop back so you end up with double wire from crimp to snap. Crimp after wire loop is pulled tight. If you’re using 19 strand double the line making a loop. Fold the doubles line onto itself and feed the end loop through the double loop (you’re doing an overhand knot). Slide to adjust the size and pull the overhand knot tight. Add the snapswivel as described above. ________________________ Owner John's Custom Rods Specializing in building Great Lakes trolling rods since 1979 First place winner of the 2016 World Rod Building Challenge
  2. John E Powell

    Auroralite Boards

    If you’re wondering if Amish composite boards will pull long coppers well, we run two long coppers on them and the tow line barely bends where the release sits. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  3. John E Powell

    Wilson 7-8-18

    Weighted steel lines off boards usually only light fleas. Wire divers hold more fleas, but the wire easily cuts them when you rub a bunch up and down the wire. For rigger lines I switch over to Flea Reels. Each has about 150’ of 40lb big game on and then a lighter fluorocarbon leader. The big game is between the release and rod tip, the fluoro trails behind the release to the bait. 40lb big game is big enough diameter that most fleas can’t get hooked on it. Splices to the backing and big game and the big game to leader are both Albright knots, the big game is the loop line and the smaller backing or leader is the end you wrap around the loop. I use a flea file to get stubborn fleas off. A flea file is a plastic ruler or similar size water resistant stiff material with the male side of adhesive backed Velcro applied to it. To use, pull the line tight from both ends and rub the Velcro across the line like a musician would use their bow to play a string instrument. A moderate pressure sends the fleas flying as the Velcro rips them from the line. They do fly everywhere, but you just wash them down after with your deck hose. ________________________ Owner John's Custom Rods Specializing in building Great Lakes trolling rods since 1979 First place winner of the 2016 World Rod Building Challenge
  4. John E Powell

    Wilson 7-8-18

    We had a 15ish fix box from 180-280 ft of water straight out of the harbor, including 3 in the low 20s. Mix of spoons and flies, meat went untouched all day. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  5. John E Powell

    Dipsy Diver Set-Ups

    In my opinion I’d rig one for wire and dipsy and a second as a wire/mono Slide diver. The slide diver will allow you to lengthen the distance behind the diver for variety when the bite is tough and the fish are finicky. Braid divers are fine up until the fleas show up, then they’re a nightmare. Mono divers won’t reach the deeper depths you’ll want to fish at certain times of the season. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  6. John E Powell

    Shimano Talora Dipsey rods

    They’ll reduce by not eliminate them. ________________________ Owner John's Custom Rods Specializing in building Great Lakes trolling rods since 1979 First place winner of the 2016 World Rod Building Challenge
  7. John E Powell

    Shimano Talora Dipsey rods

    Under the right circumstances yes. However, roller rods need to be oriented in the rod holders to oppose the pull of the divers. If they’re oriented more than about 15-20 degrees either way the wire will walk up the rollers and rub the inside of the frames. They’re also a notably heavier rod with all the added guide weight. The guy I fish with regularly runs mag divers on short 7’ roller Talora in the inside and reg divers on longer 10’ ring guide Talora on the outside. He’s happy with both. I’ve noticed that the 3 or so rollers near his rod tips have a lot of frame wear so there’s a good amount of torsional loading on these rods when pulling back and really loading the tip when fighting fish. This is not something that would cause wear on a ceramic ring guide. There is a recommended freshwater maintenance interval for the AFTCO roller guides. Most people are unaware of that point. ________________________ Owner John's Custom Rods Specializing in building Great Lakes trolling rods since 1979 First place winner of the 2016 World Rod Building Challenge
  8. John E Powell

    Shimano Talora Dipsey rods

    Talora rods with ceramic guides are fine, especially when using 19-strand wire. Use a Twili tip, there’s no need for roller guides. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  9. John E Powell

    Ethenol Free octane question

    87 should be fine. If you experience pre ignition (pinging or knocking) under load, you can retard the timing a couple degrees. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  10. John E Powell

    Led core fishing

    I run core off planer boards. This may sound really complex but it’s straightforward if you take it step by step. To get the proper amount of backing to fill a reel precisely to the full point, you fill the reel backwards so the backing tops off the reel. Then you transfer it to a second same size reel. If you don’t have the same dive reels, then you transfer it off the reel you filled, and work between a couple of others reels or spools, or go to a park where you can stretch it out and then switch ends and reinstall it. 1) Assuming you want a spoon or plug rod, not a rotating flasher, start by taping 20-30’ fluorocarbon leader of your choice to the spool. 2) Use a Willis knot to splice the core and leader and wind on the core. You may need to pass the spool or reel through the main loop of the Willis knot so don’t mount the reel on a rod. 3) Use a willis knot to splice together 20-30’ of 40lb Trilene Big Game and wind this on the reel. This section of heavy mono is where you’ll attach either your inline planer board or to the release of a tow line pulled big set of boards. 4) Use an Albright knot to splice 50lb Power Pro to the mono. Mono should be the large standing loop and power pro is the smaller wrapped line. Fill the reel almost full. Leave just enough room for 2 full levelwind passes, left to right and back to left, of some lighter mono around 20lb or so. 5) Use an Albright knot to splice together the 20ish pound mono mentioned above. Mono should be the standing loop and the power pro should be the wrapped line. Add enough mono to top off the reel, at least 2 complete levelwind passes. 6) Now that the reel is perfectly filled to the proper full mark, empty the reel, mount it to the rod, and reverse install it as described in the intro paragraph. 7). The light mono gets started with an Arbor knot, then wind on your backing, heavy duty planer release mono, core, and fluorocarbon leader. Note: If you think you might want to use a rotating flasher on a longer length core, say 10 colors, add a couple 50lb Spro swivels in the mono and leader on each end of the core. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  11. John E Powell

    What's working these days

    Spoons have been hot all year Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  12. John E Powell

    Thermocline

    Years ago the thinking was fish the majority of lures around 54-56 degrees, but active Chinook can be found as cold as 42-43 degrees so set one line down there and fish the rest spread from there up to the mid 50s. If you’re marking bait or fish high, try a line high out of ideal temp. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  13. John E Powell

    Gas mileage

    Rig both, but run one port side in calm seas or up/down wind, in a beam sea run it to the windward side. ________________________ Owner John's Custom Rods Specializing in building Great Lakes trolling rods since 1979 First place winner of the 2016 World Rod Building Challenge
  14. John E Powell

    Gas mileage

    If you want to lower your fuel consumption, you need to run it near its most economical cruise which will be lower speed. Look online for a review and performance report for your year and model. Look for a review that has a fuel consumption chart. Run the engine at that speed and then adjust your trim and tabs for max speed at that most economical rpm. Trolling fuel consumption is a much smaller part of the picture and not a lot can be done to improve it, other than maybe 1 bag instead of 2 and adjust rpm accordingly. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
  15. John E Powell

    Large Board pull gauge

    If they have backing plates you’re probably fine. Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United
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