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Sk8man

Meat rigs/cutbait:What's your take? (Discussion)

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What type of whole fish are legal to use with meat rigs, I've been using type X but would like to know what is legal. Just don't want to put any more invasive species into our waters. I looked up what's legal and it seems to be a grey area, but it says any store bought fish that is commercially packaged may be used, did I interpret that correctly?

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There are various forms of "teasers" They originated  with salt water trolling mainly for tuna and billfish and they vary in size and shape depending on the species of fish you are after. In fresh water teasers are basically tinsel flies used as "attractors" rigged ahead of meat rigs of various types (cut plugs, bait heads etc.). They are designed to get the attention of the fish before he sees the "wounded" bait itself trailing behind. The unrigged = no hook) flies can be used singly or in multiples (e.g. spaced 12 inches apart on a  36 inch 50 lb leader and then you attach a 12 inch leader containing the "meat rig" to follow. Here is an example of a teaser fly (unrigged)

 

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There are various forms of "teasers" They originated  with salt water trolling mainly for tuna and billfish and they vary in size and shape depending on the species of fish you are after. In fresh water teasers are basically tinsel flies used as "attractors" rigged ahead of meat rigs of various types (cut plugs, bait heads etc.). They are designed to get the attention of the fish before he sees the "wounded" bait itself trailing behind. The unrigged = no hook) flies can be used singly or in multiples (e.g. spaced 12 inches apart on a  36 inch 50 lb leader and then you attach a 12 inch leader containing the "meat rig" to follow. Here is an example of a teaser fly (unrigged)

ok, that's what I thought,  I have a couple I'll take pics of and post this evening.

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Pap - The recent bait regulations were imposed for good reason (prevention of invasive species and virus) but it also created a "mess" regarding the use of "fresh bait". We used to catch our own sawbellies or golden shiners  and package them in zip locks  and freeze them for later use. Now you have to have a "bait sale" receipt that is within 10 days for your bait in order to use it and you can only use bait from a given body of water....reading between the lines here you can see some potential problems as well as areas of exploitation ("honest officer I caught these baitfish right here  in this lake myself yesterday that's why there is no receipt").  The commercially prepared Herring bodies  such as those by Erie Deerie and Fresh Bite can be used (but don't last a long time ...usually a fish or two) and technically you have to keep the packaging in case you ned to prove the source. Tim's use of the immitation herring bodies appears a very good solution to messing with the other stuff as well as not having to keep changing baits often (e.g.sometimes after each fish)

Edited by Sk8man

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tt

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Sweet...thx Tim

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i did some searching on google and it seems like the strips are hard to come by and a bit pricey are there sellers that i'm missing or local retails.  I definatly have an interest and will have to experiment on seneca this summer.  the rockets look like there right up my ally but the thought of soaking the stips in my own brine sounds fun to get to play with a recepie.  I saw on another thread about using belly meat from a kept fish.  I like that option as well.  when running on a spin doctor do you have to have the bait rotaing in the same direction as the blade or the oppiset or doesnt matter same for bigger paddles?  i have a protroll that i think might work well

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I had not had much luck on cutbait till this August when I tried Brads cutbait plugs. I would get rid of the sponge and place either Erie Derie or Familiar bait in and run it behind an 11" hotspot of similar colors. During late August we were boating more fish on these than on fflys and/or Spindoctors. The plastic plug would kind of protect the bait so we could sometimes get 2 fish off a bait before replacing. I know next year I will have one rigged all the time.

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This is the ilandhood meat rig I use when trolling for walleyes.

I use it[ when they're on the smelt feed.  PAP

 

 

attachment=6672:MIRROLURE_WEB_BROC_Image_567.jpg]

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I've run meat for a few years, except this year. Didn't really have time. Kinda the downside to meat is the time/prep involved. Many brine it, some color it, if it's whole some fillet it into 2 strips, trimming, tuning,freezing, thawing, keeping cooler space for it.....and of course the dreaded mess. A lot of work to do it right.

Next year I'm doing some side by side with with some alternatives:

MC rockets

Baitrix

landbiggish.com slimers

Warrior lures has a tunable strip

I wish I could get any of these locally because they're expensive once you figure in shipping. I live in Michigan.

Some other alternatives

Gulp makes a sheet for cutting out strips

The salmon belly strips looks promising

Shushi flies

Sham Wow strips soaked in herring oil

The Brads cut bait plugs I've got and like and are available locally. I need to run them more and try some different scents.

There's another plug made up in Manistee called Scarpace plugs that you put herring strips in I've been looking for id like to try.

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IRon - Great input ...thx.

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I also use a meat rig made by savage, they are a company out of Europe but some of their stuff is sold in the states. The best place and who carries the most is FishUSA they carry the bait heads, which are nice some of the heads have a red spike that holds the fish in the holder, and what's nice with these heads is they have a divers lip on them so they have their own action. I make up a blade with a series of beads for more attraction which I put in front of the bait head and they also carry a brine that is colored, you can change the color of your bait, it has scent and like food coloring in it, colors are chartreuse, blue, red, yellow, just put fish in a zip-lock bag and refrigerate for 24hrs. Easy and productive. Oh and with these bait heads you can use a stinger hook for those tail biters! 

 

 

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My all time favorite is live sawbelly with a small hook in the mouth into the upper jaw and a second hook(treble) not in the body but just behind the tail with a small rubber band just in front of the tail to keep the line in place. I troll it like a lure usually about 15 to 20 foot behind the ball and use the same setup for leadcore and troll/jigging (moving at troll speed and jigging at the same time using copper or malin stainless).

Live bait can be trolled at almost any speed and it sends out wounded fish smell which a regular lure does not. With this  setup I do the most succesful fishing. So how to get sawbellies in Lake Ontario? It is what most bait schools are made of just lower a line with a bunch of small hooks  and drag it through a bait school. You'll end up with more sawbellies than you know what to do with. Besides, fresh ones do not fall apart.

I find trolling/ jigging the most effective way to fish and also the most tiresome. It must be done with copper or stainless because you need weight and no stretch. I learned this way of fishing in Cape Cod Bay going after stripers. Next year I will try to do it with 5 ounce bucktails at 2/3 mph . 300 feet of stainless/malin will get you 40 foot down. This is supposed to mimick squid movement in a current. I tried it while going after lakers in Keuka and it is deadly

Edited by rolmops

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I ran meat for the first time this year and have only run MC Rockets. I caught fish on them every trip, especially early in the day.  If you are someone that doesn't get to fish Ontario very often they are definitley the way to go because they don't spoil and they hold up to many strikes.  Mike is also VERY VERY helpful. I couldn't tell you how many emails we shared back and forth.  He even took the time to individually copy and send the precision trolling dipsy charts.  AND repeatedly resend them when they came out too fuzzy to print.  He is a top notch guy all the way!

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Tackle idea - If you're bored during the winter months and want to dress up some plain heads here is what I did: I bought some plastic 3 D eyes of different sizes in the craft section (Dollar Store, Walmart, Joanne's Fabrics etc..) I used super glue to put them on the heads. The pupils actually move and make a small clicking sound as well. I then bought some things to make skirts from at Walmart. They are actually for use as party favors to put in girls hair I think. I just cut them to size to fit the way I wanted them and glued them in place with super glue.  Some of the commercial meat heads look pretty similar (e.g. have eyes, and the tinsel skirt) so I thought 'd give them a shot....maybe I have too much time on my hands... :lol:

 

 

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Peg-it's work fantastic (vs toothpicks) for holding your bait head in place.  They won't crack the holes in the heads or fall out.  They also work better than crimps for holding your teasers in place (and won't damage the line).  Just peg a bead where you want your teaser to lie.

 

http://www.topbrasstackle.com/products/peg-its/

Edited by BAZOOKAJOE

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Tackle idea - If you're bored during the winter months and want to dress up some plain heads here is what I did: I bought some plastic 3 D eyes of different sizes in the craft section (Dollar Store, Walmart, Joanne's Fabrics etc..) I used super glue to put them on the heads. The pupils actually move and make a small clicking sound as well. I then bought some things to make skirts from at Walmart. They are actually for use as party favors to put in girls hair I think. I just cut them to size to fit the way I wanted them and glued them in place with super glue.  Some of the commercial meat heads look pretty similar (e.g. have eyes, and the tinsel skirt) so I thought 'd give them a shot....maybe I have too much time on my hands... :lol:

 

If you run a single treble you might want to add a piece of rubber tubing between the hook and the bait head to keep it straight.  You'll miss less strikes from the hook swinging around. 

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BazookaJoe - Great tip on the Peg it Thanks....have to try some. The heads that are on the styrofoam aren't actually rigged by me yet. The rigged plain heads were bought rigged that way at a yard sale this summer. I have a different way of doing them but thanks for the info.  Les

Edited by Sk8man

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As far as paddles and color. What are the handful of best combos you guys would suggest. I am going to purchase a bunch.

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Well I was at it again....messing with stuff. I made some home made immitation bait rigs after Tim's post. I know they won't fool you folks but I hope they fool the fish. They have a stiff copper wire inside so I can bend them anyway I wish to tune them and the hook is totally adjustable. The bodies started out as rubbery/plastic 9 inch shad jig baits with curly tails (for salt water) that I modified and cut the existing rubber like heads off. The tails wiggle and move back and forth and the eye pupils move as well. They are a little heavier than traditional meat rigs but I'm hopeful they will work when tuned and scented :)  Unfortunately my boat is plastic wrapped now so I can't test them out :( Hoping this will give some of you ideas for the winter doldrums :)

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Edited by Sk8man

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Hey Les they look great, did you epoxy the body's to the head? They should turn some fish, let's us know how they work come spring.

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Thanks Pap. I used super glue and it seems to hold thus far......but haven't had a king take a bite either :lol:

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