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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Many guys are gearing up for cod, and once the weather breaks hopefully we will hear some good reports. In the meantime, what is a good rod and reel combo?
For rods I generally build 'medium taper' glass. They have proven over the past 45 years that I've been involved in the fishery to out perform graphite due to the 'softness' on the action. One never knows how well a fish is hooked, and while retrieving the fish from depths of 150-300' the glass rods offer a cushioning or 'shock' absorbing quality that helps to prevent a lip hooked fish from being dislodged, or line breakage when a fish surges away from the angler. This medium action allows for a comfortable rhythm' while jigging and gives a greater range of both jig and sinker weight values.
The length can be argued. The traditional lengths have been mostly 7 1/2'-8', though 7' is far from short. The longer rods allow one to raise and drop the tip of the rods while the boat is rocking, so that constant tension can be kept on the rod to feel bites. Upon feeling the bite you can lift, set the hook, and keep the tip up/crank against the tip and slowly drop to level while retrieving, keeping the fish away from the wreck or any sticky bottom. Rear grips are generally 14" so as to allow one to get the rod under their arm with rain gear and heavy clothing. The fore grip should measure between 12-14". The long grip allows the angler to shift his hands under stress and if you need to retrieve from great depths to check bait you can just lay it on the rail to conserve energy. Six brace guides are the best choice for durability, Beware! three brace guides just dont cut it. On their best day they are a headache waiting to happen. Most rods should carry a line rating between 30-60lb test. One advantage of the longer lengths is that they adapt to other fisheries. Most party boat captains and mates agree that the best Tuna jig sticks are at least 7' because they deliver more 'motion' to the jig. The long lengths prove to be excellent for Tile fishing as well.
Reels: There are obviously a lot of choices and budget may play a roll. A Penn 330, or Shimano TLD 15 both at about $100 are a good start, but if you want something beefier that can be adapted to Tuna and Tiles Penn 113H 4/0, and TLD 20,25's will come in at about $150. There are a lot of aluminum 'torque' style reels starting at about $200 on up. Keep one thing in mind about gear ratio. It is commonly believed that high speed 6/1 ratios are best. That is incorrect. The high speed reels can easily 'bump' fish if retrieved too fast. The best gear ratios are generally from, 2-4/1. This applies to almost all bottom species.
Presently I'm looking over the 'Squan river at snowfall, and like most of us cant wait for a break in the weather so that we can hear more "Cod stories".:thumbsup:
 

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Hey Kevin, Nick here. You made me a blackfish rod and two trolling rods a few months back.. Well just wanna let you know that i used the blackfish rod on a charter out of montauk on 2/20/10. I mattched it up with an Avet jx in 4-1 ratio. It was killer. The rod was awesome. A little on the lite side but it is my blackfish rod anyway. I may be in soon for a cod rod. Thanks alot. By the way there were 4 of us and we limited out on cod, nothing big but all keepers.
 

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Kevin,

You have built nice hefty 8 footers for me and my friend Dan,

I know that you u are not going to like this. Far and away the nicest Cod rod that I have seen was one that you recently built for Mike Johnson (Mjbites)

When he told you thats what he wanted you said its not what you would get but you were not gonna talk him out of what he wanted.

It is a little longer than 8 feet long
It is acid wrapped and the thin cork handle.

Is there any way that you can replace my 8 foot cod rod handle with a cork handle (like the one in the below picture)?










BTW, here is a nice 15 pounder that MJ caught while jigging with the rod



Peter


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A non-sponsor builder built me a 8' acid-wrapped stick with a split hypalon butt (some at the butt and then a few inches behind the reel). It's perfect for fishing 16-20 oz lead for Montauk cod and for jigging Norwegians 14 ounces or less.
 
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I've found the straight corktape grip to be a little too thin and cause hand cramps. Also, it doesn't hold up against the railing of a headboat, but it's easy enough to replace. I built a cod rod with a corktape foregrip and soon realized I had to add a second layer, then put shrink wrap over it. Now it has more diameter and can take a beating as well.
 

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I know everyone has there own opinion and that is fine, however the acid wrap on a rod is pointless, and i don't want to here that it helps the rod from turning, if a rob builder who knows what they are actually doing splines the rod correctly they will never have a rod turn, i have caught almost every species of fish with conv rods and have never had a issue with a rod turning, all of my rods are custom wrapped by a guy who is just flat out amazing. So the acid wrap might look good but is not needed.


Bye the way this is not a dig at bogans rod just saying in general.
 

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As far as rods there's a few that im in love with i liek the 8foot rod as the longer rod helps when jiggin like bogan explained, i fell in love with jaws blanks they have a 15-40 which i love, calstar rods are also nice but have more of a fast action then the glass rods. My buddy just purchased a glass blank that im not a huge fan off they are softer which might have its pros but im not a huge fan off them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Here's a few comments;
Steigerguy yes we have a bunch of them.
Nick, great report, I'm sure if you catch a few your happy, especially now when getting out is half the problem. As far as your blackfish rod being light, I have several models, if you want bring it back, We can go to a heavier model, I can use your's as a loaner. I wouldnt charge you for the replacement.
PEB, Mike asked for the spiral wrap, I'm not sold on that. I think if you put the guides on the rod in a zig zag fashion it would still work fine. I agree with Extract Them, the cork tape is a little thin. I just gave Mike what he wanted, after the trip he said he was very happy, [shows what I know:eek:]people like certain features, no sense talking them out of it. As for replacing the handle, the drawback is that when you apply cork tape you need a 'smooth' surface. After removing an existing grip,cork,foam, the surface is generally rough and doesnt allow for good adhearance.
Dante, I was at a tackle show, saw a charter boat video that had about 4-6 Calstars, 8' Graphiters. They were kickin *** on fish, so who could argue. I agree they are a bit fast, and pricy. I use an awful lot of Calstar on Tuna rods, jig, standup and trolling. I do think for most bottom species they are too fast.
Every picture tells a story; The shot of Mike's rod shows the six brace guides. They are as close to bullet proof as you can get. Good shot of the spiral wrap. Looks like that cooler lid is getting a workout from a sharp baitknife.:thumbsup:
Great comments!:thumbsup:
 

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Kevin that was a great read thanks.

Thats why I opt for a custom rod.Ya get what ya want.

I like the thin diameter of the corktape(so far)and the acid wrap is somethin I wanted to try because none of my other rods have it.I agree I dont think its needed but fishing with it only 4-5 times id say theyre are small advantages to it and not many disadvantages.

Thats why that rod says MJ(and Kevin Bogan):D

After this storm I hope to get it bent:cool:
 

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I have an eight foot cod rod you built about ten years (or more?) ago. You called it a Helen H special which was the hot cod boat at the time. The first time I used it I caught the pool cod on the boat. 34 anglers times $20....sweet! Rod is still beautiful, but now that I live in Fla. and it goes mutton snapper fishing in the Dry Tortugas. The cod decal is always a conversation starter...some Floridians don't even recognize the species. Also have several others from you. Thanks for good advice and great rods.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have an eight foot cod rod you built about ten years (or more?) ago. You called it a Helen H special which was the hot cod boat at the time. The first time I used it I caught the pool cod on the boat. 34 anglers times $20....sweet! Rod is still beautiful, but now that I live in Fla. and it goes mutton snapper fishing in the Dry Tortugas. The cod decal is always a conversation starter...some Floridians don't even recognize the species. Also have several others from you. Thanks for good advice and great rods.
I never fished much down there, but what was surprising is how many different species you can catch in one spot. That rod must be good for grouper as well?
 

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kevin that was a great read thanks.

thats why i opt for a custom rod.ya get what ya want.

I like the thin diameter of the corktape(so far)and the acid wrap is somethin i wanted to try because none of my other rods have it.i agree i dont think its needed but fishing with it only 4-5 times id say theyre are small advantages to it and not many disadvantages.

Thats why that rod says mj(and kevin bogan):d

after this storm i hope to get it bent:cool:
+1

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You're right, the Tortugas is an amazing fishery for both variety and quality. I've caught scamp and red grouper on the rod but haven't had the opportunity to fight a black or worse, a big goliath with it yet. When it happens, I'm confident the weak point will be the angler, not the rod!
 
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