Caring for your tackle will help make it last longer
WITH the break in the season upon us, I thought I would write a segment on maintenance of fishing tackle.
Statistically, more than 80 per cent of the fishing population in WA goes fishing three times or less a year.
Of those three-times-a-year fishers, 95 per cent occurs between the October school holidays and Anzac Day.
With the winter season upon us and with the inclement weather the old “she’ll be right mate” kicks in, fishing gear is thrown into the shed to be forgotten about until the spring when we are ready to go again.
The three biggest killers of fishing tackle are sunlight, salt and moisture.
The fourth is lending your fishing tackle to someone else.
After every fishing trip, you should wash all of your tackle down with fresh water.
Take your spools off your reels, wash your spools out with fresh water and then wrap then in a towel to dry.
Spray your reel body with INOX, which is available at all hardware stores and is that good a product you can even spray it on the electrics on your outboard motor.
The other thing you should do is also wash your rods down with fresh water, especially the reel seats and around the mount guides where they are bound onto the rod blank.
Always let your tackle dry out before putting it away.
When winter sets in, you need to do a little bit more maintenance to make sure your trusty tackle is raring to go when it sees the light of day again in the spring.
Sunlight causes the colour to fade on your tackle and also breaks down your fishing line.
There is not any fishing line that has inhibitors in it so the more sunlight your line sees, the shorter life span it has and tackle companies love that as they make a lot of money from line.
The easiest way to avoid your line breaking down is to put your reels and spare spools on line either in a dark box or bag.
Make sure they are dried out before doing so as moisture can also eat away at your line, especially if it is salty. Your fishing rods need maintenance too.
A good rod has guides that are under bound and over bound and sealed with rod varnish so there are no exposed sections of guide.
If the foot of your guide is exposed and not sealed properly, as a lot of cheaper rods are, it leaves an avenue for salt and moisture to get in at the binding on your guides.
Coupled with sunlight, it makes a potent mix to chew away at your guides.
The easiest way to check the varnish is in a good condition is to run your thumb nail over them.
If it crumbles or peels off, take your rod down to your local tackle store and have it rebound.
You will thank me when you take it out fishing and the guide does not pop off the rod when you lean into a huge fish and set your hook.
Please do not think fishing in fresh water makes you safe from needing to maintain your fishing tackle.
All fresh water has some amount of salt in it so you have to care for your fishing tackle, your line still breaks down the same way and your guides can still perish.
There is one thing that I need to say to finish this segment:
Vaseline should never be used on your fishing tackle in any way.
All it does is end up melting away in the heat and making a mess and it has no heat shielding properties at all.
Until next week, this is the time of year that gummy sharks come in close to shore to spawn.
Do not get excited and catch as many as you can, please observe fisheries limits and leave some for others to catch.
This week’s winner of the $25 tackle prize is Tayne Prosser, 10, with his 5kg salmon.
Tayne Prosser, 10, with his 5kg salmon he caught recently.