Tuna bombs

Discussion in 'Tuna Talk' started by Cdux, Oct 13, 2016.

  1. Cdux

    Cdux Senior Member

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    Dont hear much about them anymore. Do you still use them? Did you used to, & why did you stop?
    Chaffed 2 off early this week on 130 leader and bearly landed a 3rd, all gut hooked. Stepped up to 150 but haven't had a knock down since. Obviously could be for a number of reasons, but really want to go back to shyer leader. Was thinking of making some bombs up and looking for input.
    Do have some 10/0 owner circle hooks but have zero experience (or faith) with them. Any thoughts are appreciated. Thx
     
    Cdux,
  2. Larry Bird

    Larry Bird Member

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    Fishing giants with 130 is insane. Sure you'll hook more fish, but whats the point. 180 works pretty good and holds up most of the time. Just my opinion, do what you like.
     
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  3. Old Mud

    Old Mud Captain

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    Bombs, YES, always for me. Havn't needed them very much since owner Super Mu Tu's. I can only remember a couple of gut hook in 10 or so years. Most are right in the latch. Fish Giants with 200# Floro and Mono. Works for me. :D
     
  4. leaky

    leaky Captain

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    I'm no pro, get about 5 a season, but all we typically run is 130 or something like 130 (seaguar premier 150, blue label 130, yo zuri 130)... Got them to 950 lbs on that leader and many > 500. The size of the fish kinda doesn't matter. If you have a good rig 130 lb flouro will support all the drag anyone ever runs, what you lose is just chafe protection.

    Since the leader is light, no sense with heavy mainline, so we run 150. It's got it's advantages, less drag in the water, same LI crimp works across the board, more line on the reels.

    If I'm ever in a situation when the bite is that good where the hardest part is getting them in and not getting a bite, absolutely I'm going up to 180+. Only seen that sorta fishing once (Halloween actually and it's coming!), I never manage to quite hit it right (leaving for another spot then the crazy bite happens, show up after, no luck)... so usually I'm hoping one of those few fish that comes by isn't going to pass it up.

    Occasionally we might bump up to 150 blue label. We also run 30 ft leaders - necessary? No. Obviously not, some of the best giant fisherman do it with 10 ft or less, but it certainly does not hurt and is a small expense compared to fuel.

    The key thing when you fish that light is circles. Even then you will gut hook and there are plenty of ways to get chewed off without totally gutting, but sometimes you gut hook and get them in anyway. With circles it's not just about jaw hooking but also it's real hard for them to fall out, which is good for staying set on a long fight.

    We boat about 50/50 to what we hook lately and one cause has been chew offs. This year is just bad on gut hooks, don't know why but the same gear gut hooks way more. I've been playing around with inline circles (versus the standard circles that are offset) for that reason, trying to find something a little better.

    Here's a little something to understand though. It's harder for them to chew you off if you keep the drag light, like 30 lbs - and sooner or later 30 lbs will about do it as far as wearing them out. Flouro is actually really tough stuff but if you go jacking up the drag you are actually helping a fish create the pressure to wear it out.

    Some say to prevent the chew offs you gotta hammer them in before they chew through, that may work too but even a 300 lb fish can chew through 180 in 30 minutes (actually kinda easier for them to do it because younger fish have sharper teeth). I think both strategies kinda work. 10 years ago Cal that owned Saco Bay taught me "just stay attached" and it definitely works. Don't believe the hype about burning fish out, I've had them on the line for up to 7 hours and got good $$, others have told me they had a burnt fish they took in 30 minutes, seems to be more about the particular fish you hooked than the length of the fight..

    OK that's it for trade secrets, but like I said I'm not that good so use at your own risk.. Maybe someone else will come through and give me a couple pointers too. Oh as far as tuna bombs - my problem is they are goofy in the water - you either use them like a weight and you have this massive tangly contraption down there, or you need to have your whole rig setup such that you can keep it on the rod tip and it will be able to make it down to the hook (and then you gotta work around it all day), while they also can pop hooks upon deployment, seem like more harm than good to me.

    Jon
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2016
  5. leaky

    leaky Captain

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    Oh ya as far as hooks, we run VMC Nemesis 10/0 (which is closer to a super mutu 8/0 size, touch wider gap maybe) - which are a nice light offset circle you can buy by the 50 pack and get down to < $1.00 a hook (replace if there is any question every time you crimp which is nice, always a new hook).. Or the super mutu's if we want a larger hook, 9/0 and up, and we gut hook about the same with them all.

    What I don't like about the mutu's is they are just too heavy for small baits, if you run lighter drag it's overkill. The VMC's can take up to 50 lbs anyway and we rarely end up that high.

    Jon
     
  6. leaky

    leaky Captain

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    A little food for thought on hooks.

    From left super mutu 9/0 and 8/0, VMC nemesis 10/0, VMC tournament 14/0 and 16/0 (which are inline circles, not offset like the others)..

    That leader on the 10/0 took a giant as you can see the offshore loop all cinched down. It was in the jaw when it came up but had some chaff on the 150 premier, not nearly enough to part it but was rubbing something sharp at one point, maybe was gutted and ripped out during the fight and set in the jaw.

    Jon
     

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  7. Cdux

    Cdux Senior Member

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    Thanks for the replies. Think I will give those circles a try today. Past seasons the owner offshores were hitting the latch like 90% of the time this year seems to be the opposite.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016
    Cdux,
  8. CEShawn

    CEShawn Captain

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    Man, I might have to pick up a box of those VMC hooks just to have onboard incase I get sharked up like crazy...

    Leader/line/hooks, its all what your comfortable with.

    I will say, sure I am not an all star angler, but mother of god, I hate those Super Mutu's... Mind you not sure if they have changed since 2002...

    2002 is my first year for bluefin, everything before that was canyons for me... So as fall came I was using my Gamugatsu's 10/o live bait hook which I LOVED in the canyons, grew up with that hook from bass to tuna. Then Super Mutu was pushed back then too. So my first bluefin was on a Super Mutu so I said screw it and switches... So that fall I went on to lose another 6 fish... Finally before the mid October closing back then, I switched to my Gam Live bait hook again and nailed every fish after... have had very very very little hook pulls, chafing issues yes, but I went back for what works with me. I know this, using the life bait hooks, I stayed in par last year with people when I fished, seemed to lose the same amount, so I was happy... I think when i use larger baits, I had to switch to the GROUPER hook, I think that is what I need because live bait maybe doesnt break 12/o...
     
  9. leaky

    leaky Captain

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    VMC is a much friendlier company as far as offering cost effective options - and they are very nice hooks, just as good as gama & owner as far as I can tell.

    What VMC does is many of their hooks come in 1000 packs, so savvy tackle shops buy in bulk and then can re-distribute for very reasonable $$.

    Anyway - so with VMC Nemesis if you go on Ebay you got 2 options, buy the bulk packs of 50 for about $30 shipped to your door or you can spend a little under $25 for a 25 pack that comes in the nice VMC box. I've found they are always the same hooks, just you pay less from a tackle shop that is bagging up their own off a 1000 pack.

    FYI those Nemesis hooks go 10/0 then 8/0 and generally the 8/0 size is really kinda small, I've got some but basically the giant bluefin sized one is the 10/0 - great for herring because they are lighter.

    Those other hooks I've been playing with, the 14/0 & 16/0, not so cheap, but more like < $2.00 for a 10 pack, still less than half of what you pay with the other brands. I think the 16/0 is going to be the ticket for when I liveline groundfish and if the 14/0 ends up working well it may replace the Nemesis 10/0 in my arsenal some day.

    Jon
     
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  10. El Mar

    El Mar Captain

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    Nice info on the hooks Leaky.


    FYI, a little reading on Tuna bombs.




    Quiz





    .
     
  11. Old Mud

    Old Mud Captain

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    LOL still going strong. :D
     
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  12. Ms.Aimee

    Ms.Aimee Senior Member

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    IMO i dont think leader weight is the secret to catching giants. I personally use anywhere between #150 to #200 depending on conditions. Best advice i ever got about tuna fishing is.. "fish where the fish are"
     
  13. leaky

    leaky Captain

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    I 100% agree about that - those that catch the most do not seem to fish that light and it's infinitely better to be fishing around a pile of fish on heavy gear versus fishing around a few with lighter gear.

    However if the things weren't leader shy we'd still be fishing with wire, I think everybody agrees on that.. and if it was just the wire that makes the difference we'd all be running 300# flouro. So there is something to it. I've even seen stripers shy away from the rod with 40 lb leader while we bailed them on the rods running 20, and they are dumb compared to tuna.

    As far as what you pick, depends on how you feel about the compromise between the best odds of getting a bite and the best odds of boating the fish if you get a bite. I've got 100# up to 300# flouro, played around with the 100# a little on days when we marked but just couldn't get hit, and have hooked 3 times loosing them all (once though was just rigging learning curve with the stuff, crotch break). The 300# I put on the kite with a big bait on top where the lines out of the water anyway, potentially could use wire for that I guess even... A rough short day may go up to the 180# because we can't be fighting a fish for 3 hours.

    What situations do you pick a heavier or lighter leader?

    Jon
     
  14. Ms.Aimee

    Ms.Aimee Senior Member

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    If its a day with high sun and the water is nice and clear i like shy gear. A good overcast NE day when theres not as much light in the water column i feel like i can get away with heavier gear. Also depends what size fish are around. If im fishing in the crowd.. (unavoidable sometimes) and theres 30 boats thats atleast 90 leaders, i feel the fish are pretty educated at that point and ill switch to 130#. Also its not always in the budget for a new leader every time i hook a shark, ive hooked tuna on 4-5 foot leaders before. They're eye sight in incredible, they have something like 3 times the rods and cones in theyre eyes than humans do. Its not easy! Thats what makes those beers so good when your waiting for truck to back down!
     
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  15. Old Mud

    Old Mud Captain

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    One thing that most people forget is the rod. I use the old unlimited Fenwick sticks, (telephone poles) = less give and total attentiveness to that rod tip. :eek: The soft tip rods like those Chatham specials and the like are a lot more forgiving. The condition and setting of your drag is also important. The size of your boat also makes a big difference. (Small boat more forgiving). Fighting when it's FAC or in 5 to 7 footers.

    Sorry, that's more than one. :D
     

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    Last edited: Oct 15, 2016
  16. leaky

    leaky Captain

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    Yes that's all important stuff.. I was about to build a set of chatham specials on the long 80 calstars w/ aftco's but after fishing the hyrbrid Reel Easy rods w/ Winthrops I can't justify spending a dime on anything else (so I keep fishing my old 130 class junk on my boat because I don't want to spend the $$ yet :) )..

    Those rods are so damn forgiving, you really gotta be daydreaming to have the line go slack, they provide a nice cushion when the boat is doing something erratic, and they still lift fish and take drags nicely. Then the winthrops - you have so much clearance that winding crimps & swivels in and having them ripped back out again, is of very little concern at all.

    Obviously the old school stuff works fine too, and the aftco guides will pass the same gear, just it's no where near as forgiving.

    Jon
     
  17. Ms.Aimee

    Ms.Aimee Senior Member

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    +1 on the winthrop guides. If i can i fish long leaders, it sucks trying to take a 20 foot dart shot not being able to reel the crimps up
     
  18. Old Mud

    Old Mud Captain

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    I never reel the crimps or swivels in. The first thing i put on my line is a bead then Balloon slider so i can't go past the bead. 1 1/2 fathom leaders and i use a 13' poon. No problemo. :D
     
  19. Tuna Pursuit

    Tuna Pursuit Captain

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    Wow balloon slider, Old School Old Mud
     
  20. VCF

    VCF Senior Member

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    What is a ballon slider?? And what kind of bead and what is it for??
     
    VCF,

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