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Thread: Musky and gear questions

  1. #1
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    Musky and gear questions

    I'm looking for some gear advice. As a kid I did a lot of Bass/Pike casting using mostly under 1oz crank baits and spinners. I've been out of fishing for way too many years due to lack of time. Now my free time is coming back to me a little and I am gonna get back into it. My focus will be Musky and of course I want a setup that will do everything....hehe. I also know that setup doesn't exists.

    I've decided on a Abu Toro NACL50 for a reel. Rod selection is confusing me greatly the more and more I research it though. I am looking at a med/heavy rods and was planning on 80-100lb braid with 100 or 135lb flouro leader. My thought process on the line is rather it be overkill and get the musky to the boat asap so I can release him quicker rather a snapped line or a longer drawn out fight weakening the fish.

    I found a 8ft rod that has a lure rating of .5 -3 oz. I as hoping to stay between 7-7.5 feet for storage/travel reasons, but then all the lure ranges are under an ounce. I don't expect to throw anything much larger than a bucktail or 7-9 inch suick. Will 100lb braid throw that lure range ok? Or do I need to go with lighter braid for lures that weight?

    Sorry for the long winded questions. Thanks in advance for any input!

  2. #2
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    A few things. 100-pound braid is fine, but it might be a little overkill. I know many guys who use 80-pound braid if they use really heavy lures, but 65-pound should be more than enough for what it sounds like you'll be doing. Plus, not matter what pound test you use, getting a pissed-off muskie in the boat asap can be a lesson in futility lol

    The one thing you may want to consider is the length and capacity of the rod. If you can find a 7 1/2-8 foot rod, get it. You won't regret it. Also, you'll be hard-pressed to find any musky lures that only weight 1/2 oz or even 1 oz anymore. If you can find one that throws 1-4 or 2-6 you'll be far better off for an all-around rod.

    I have an older rod slated for 2-6 that I bought when I first started musky fishing. It's still one of my favorite rods. I've thrown 3/4-oz rattle baits on it and Magnum Bulldawgs, which covers most of the weight ranges without getting into pounders. It wasn't always the best rod for those light and heavy lures, but it got the job done.

  3. #3
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    Thanks Sean0!

    I appreciate your input. I think I am going to order a 7'9" MH F 1-4oz rod based on your advise. As far as line goes, maybe I don't fully understand. Is there much of a difference in diameter from 65 to 100lb braid? Will there be a huge casting performance difference with 1-2oz lures? If it only boils down to a few dollars for the cost of the braid, I'd rather be safe as I know one of the rivers and the flowages I plan to target has a lot of structure to get tied up in.

    Thanks again...

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by kmeyer View Post
    My focus will be Musky and of course I want a setup that will do everything....hehe. I also know that setup doesn't exists.
    that set-up does exist ...

  5. #5
    Administrator
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    KMeyer, it never hurts to get beefed-up line, especially if you're going to be fishing around cover in rivers. Cost was the biggest factor, and if you don't mind springing a little extra, then go for it. There is a little difference in diameter and with casting performance, but you will adjust I'm sure.

    The thing with line is that at some point it just becomes overkill. Most braid is so strong even at 20-pound test that you can land a musky on it will little trouble. It just won't handle the wear-and-tear of tossing musky lures as well. Guys really like to beef up their line not so much for the abrasion resistance but to stop losing lures when they get backlashes midair. Nothing worse than seeing a Bulldawg fly away after a nasty midair backlashes breaks a knot.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Steve Heiting's Avatar
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    Here's the guide to follow for musky fishing with braided line:

    Less than 65-pound test -- Don't use. It won't hold up to backlashes, nor hook, leader and rock abrasion. It will be much more prone to bury in the spool.

    65-pound test (equivalent diameter of 16-pound test mono) -- Okay for most applications. A little light if fishing around anything that will abrade line, like rock or wood. You can still break it with a backlashed bucktail if you cast hard enough, and definitely can break it with heavier lures.

    80-pound test (equivalent diameter of 18-pound test mono) -- By far the most popular with musky anglers, and almost impossible to break.

    100-pound test (equivalent diameter of 20-pound test mono) -- If you're fishing for big fish around abrasive cover or structure (think Canada), use this.
    Steve Heiting

    www.steveheiting.com

  7. #7
    Junior Member
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    Thanks guys! This is all great info. I am sure this is just the start of buying all kinds of stuff, but I do want to get off to good start.

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