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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Gents,

I have never had interest in marlin fishing, I only looked forward to a catch now and then when dragging for Tunas.
However this year I am looking to step up the bill fish game. I have never researched Marlin fishing and admittedly know little about it. But this year I will learn and I seek a Blue.

What's the difference in tactic?

Troll Speed?
Do you serious folks troll live or fresh bait? Dolpin, Tuna, kings?
Whats your favorite spread for trolling Blues and Whites? If the spreads are different why?

What times seem better for Marlin? Morning, Mid day or other?
 

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There are only few on here that are really good at that game. I've done it on the OG but the mate Sean was the guy who rigged and set it all up. He learned while working on a private boat the Insure. Put on on the hook and I'll get the boat where it needs to be. :D;)

A few of my most fun days chasing a fish were a blue on light tackle at 20 knots back and forth and we had 3 whites that went in three directions. I ran that 54'er like a 20ft CC. There was nothing like doing things with a big boat that people thought couldn't be done.

We used all fresh an had trolling valves plus 30lb line
 

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We trolled in the 4 knot range with perfectly clear water out the transom sometimes slower sometimes a tad more with 2 dredges and or daisy chains. dink or small bally swimmers and sometimes 1 large bait. TLD 25's and a 50wide.

Never targeted just blue I have seen the out there with all big baits and double my spead.

Nothing like going over a pod of bills in the deep end.
 

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troll speed depends on sea conditions, wave direction, and particular boat preference. circle hooks has really changed the game for billfishing in terms of offerings, and a big learning curve in rigging bigger circles for bm etc. I have been billfishing for 20 yrs, though i fish all major tourney, the pesky wm is why I continue to fish. they are so hard to consistently catch, but love it.

my wm spread is a five rod spread of all dink ballyhoos, maybe a big bm offering off right short rigger but a plethora of pitchbaits in the cockpit. the difference in marlin fishing is the boat, u need to hum, you need the spread, you need to pull the dredges and teasers. you need them to get interested to raise to boat, then you have to have eyes constantly on spread, each man guarding a rod and spot fish. Marlin fishing is all about paying attention, as the hook up ratio greatly improves with seeing him vs him hanging himself.

I denied it for the first eight years of marlin fishing that the size of the boat is important. mostly bc i only fished boats in the 28 to 35 ft range. but as i was able to purchase larger boat the numbers of whites caught and released grew expontentially. The imprint of the boat in the water is very key to white marlin fishing. I hate the thought of money=success in wm fishing but the sad truth after many many years, many of those frustrating in not having alot of success. but you need the mullet dredge on one side, the ballyhoo dredge on the other side, two sets of large squid teaser chains dropped back a good distance and a man in the tower who eats, sleeps, shits, pees, and whatever else he needs is all done up there, bc if eyes arent watching so minds as well just go to the beach for the day.

if you plan on wm fishing from a center console with no tower it will be very tough and frustrating. you will ask yourself alot of questions of why am I not seeing fish when other boats are seeing five per day or more. from a center console i may mix the spread alittle more, keep it diverse, pull two bm baits, to troll alittle faster, create more vibration and commotion and let the bm come in hot and hook himself. then use the mauneverability of center console as advantage. a more diverse spread will equal more chances of actions rather then counting on only wm because two things are probablly occurring: one, he is back there, u just dont see him and he swam away or stripped your bait. two, your not raising fish to your spread on account of boat traffic in the area and the fish are going to bigger footprints in the water, ie. bigge boats. best bet is fish away from crowd and cross fingers


good luck
 

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There are only few on here that are really good at that game. I've done it on the OG but the mate Sean was the guy who rigged and set it all up. He learned while working on a private boat the Insure. Put on on the hook and I'll get the boat where it needs to be. :D;)

A few of my most fun days chasing a fish were a blue on light tackle at 20 knots back and forth and we had 3 whites that went in three directions. I ran that 54'er like a 20ft CC. There was nothing like doing things with a big boat that people thought couldn't be done.

We used all fresh an had trolling valves plus 30lb line
Man can Chumstain chasem down!:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
greatful thanks gents. keep um comming.

I may out a small perch on the reg...
 

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There are only few on here that are really good at that game. I've done it on the OG but the mate Sean was the guy who rigged and set it all up. He learned while working on a private boat the Insure.
Im still waiting on Sean to give me a marling rigging lesson :rolleyes:
he'll be home soon.
 

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The differences between billfishing and tuna fishing are huge. First off you usually use a lot lighter tackle for the most part. When we are billfishing we troll 6 tld 25s or equivalent with naked swimming ballyhoo at the most they might have a seawitch skirt on them or just a strip bait. Then one fifty down the center short with and ilander and then an 80 way back with a mackeral or bonito. These rods are for the man in the blue suit only if a white comes up on one these we have a pitch rod set up to switch him off to or you can use a flat line if you don't have extra rods on board. For the speed yes you are trolling around 4 knots somwhere all depends on sea conditions. This fishing takes a crew that work really good together because these fish show up as quick as they are gone. You really need to see them before they get to the bait so you can feed them if they fell any tension what so ever they are gone. The 25s are pretty much set in free spool with the clicker on to just keep the line from paying out while trolling. The drags are set at around 4lbs at strike and this is where we fight the fish at until you touch the leader then we will crank them up. To set the hook we just reel till line is tight then lift lightly the drag on the line in water will set the hook for you mainly. The other thing is that diesel boats will raise a lot more billfish than an outboard boat. The other attractors are the dredges whoch are a whole different story some guys use plastic ones we use plastic squids on one side and a dredge with real mullet on the other. Hope this helps a little but it takes a long time to learn the best bet would be get on board a boat that does it all the time and sit back and watch. I have been fortunate to fish with some of the best billfisherman there are in Cape May on a regular basis during the season.

Here is a pic of my fiancee with her first white marlin.



In this pic you will notice how the line has a massive bow in it when the fish jumps all that drag of the water on the line keeps enough pressure on the hook most of the time.
 

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Last season we got two white marlin (50-80 lbs each) and two blue (150 and 500?lbs) in the same day. And on another day one large blue 109 inches, est 450 pounds. I was targeting them on both days. However the entire spread was not set for marlin. The whites on day one both hit the same rod which was rigged with a medium bally sea witch pink and white trolled at 5 knots on the STB side long rigger set about 50 yards behind the transom. I fish from a 31 foot CC and we saw both fish come into the spread, take a few swipes at the bait then ultimatley hooked up. The first BM on day one took the long center rigger that had a MONSTER naked balyhoo i bought from Baitmasters, the second BM hit a green machine, go figure. Day two when we boated the 109 inBM, that fish agian hit the MONSTER naked bally on the center rod, WWWB, The marlin hit as a pod of bottlenose dolphin flew thru the spread, we were traveling west right on the edge and the dolphin were moving fast north to south. I actually thought we foul hooked one of the dolphin. Do they travel with dolphin? Maybe. I plan on targeting WM and BM next season with a mix of JUMBO ballyhoo large trolling lures and small skirted ballyhoo trolled at 4-6 knots. Bear, i actually think you were out there that day, I was fishing with Rich (hookdup) on the Run Off in the Wilmington in mid Sept.

Good luck next season.
 

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troll speed depends on sea conditions, wave direction, and particular boat preference. circle hooks has really changed the game for billfishing in terms of offerings, and a big learning curve in rigging bigger circles for bm etc. I have been billfishing for 20 yrs, though i fish all major tourney, the pesky wm is why I continue to fish. they are so hard to consistently catch, but love it.

my wm spread is a five rod spread of all dink ballyhoos, maybe a big bm offering off right short rigger but a plethora of pitchbaits in the cockpit. the difference in marlin fishing is the boat, u need to hum, you need the spread, you need to pull the dredges and teasers. you need them to get interested to raise to boat, then you have to have eyes constantly on spread, each man guarding a rod and spot fish. Marlin fishing is all about paying attention, as the hook up ratio greatly improves with seeing him vs him hanging himself.

I denied it for the first eight years of marlin fishing that the size of the boat is important. mostly bc i only fished boats in the 28 to 35 ft range. but as i was able to purchase larger boat the numbers of whites caught and released grew expontentially. The imprint of the boat in the water is very key to white marlin fishing. I hate the thought of money=success in wm fishing but the sad truth after many many years, many of those frustrating in not having alot of success. but you need the mullet dredge on one side, the ballyhoo dredge on the other side, two sets of large squid teaser chains dropped back a good distance and a man in the tower who eats, sleeps, shits, pees, and whatever else he needs is all done up there, bc if eyes arent watching so minds as well just go to the beach for the day.

if you plan on wm fishing from a center console with no tower it will be very tough and frustrating. you will ask yourself alot of questions of why am I not seeing fish when other boats are seeing five per day or more. from a center console i may mix the spread alittle more, keep it diverse, pull two bm baits, to troll alittle faster, create more vibration and commotion and let the bm come in hot and hook himself. then use the mauneverability of center console as advantage. a more diverse spread will equal more chances of actions rather then counting on only wm because two things are probablly occurring: one, he is back there, u just dont see him and he swam away or stripped your bait. two, your not raising fish to your spread on account of boat traffic in the area and the fish are going to bigger footprints in the water, ie. bigge boats. best bet is fish away from crowd and cross fingers


good luck
AMEN Brother! :thumbsup: I'm gonna print that out for future reference!

Bear, you can catch without a tower, but not the numbers that some do. WM are not suicidal like BM or most tuna. That makes them a bigger challenge than BM and yet are manageable on lighter tackle. Serious BM fishing without a chair (especially with a charter crew) could be risky business. Even good, fairly strong anglers will find it difficult:eek: to hold 20 pounds of drag long-term with even a moderate size BM on standup gear - especially with you gunning the throttles to 20+ knots just to head off the rush.
 

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My heart rate just increased
I hear ya! But here's another reason why you need to move up to a diesel boat - those yammies just won't send up the proper smoke signals to let everyone know when the fight is on ;).
 

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we have done rather well with a center console, its all about watching the baits IMO and the teasers, no doubt you can see alot more and further back from a tower, maybe one day i will be able to afford a boat with a tower,,maybe not:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I hear ya! But here's another reason why you need to move up to a diesel boat - those yammies just won't send up the proper smoke signals to let everyone know when the fight is on ;).

Smoke signals??? Hell I haved been ousted from the elitest club cause I will broadcast when I find a hot bite. Once I get mines... :D:D

I am more looking toward a big blue, my reading it seems they are much easier to connect then the whites.

Been wanting a perch on the Reg anyways, this just adds to the reasons.
 

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We've also done well in a 31 pursuit, no tower. I think its all about location and presentation if you want to get bit.

Here's what works for us:

For whites
2 dredges off the corners with skipping dink bally trailing.
2 pitch baits ready in each corner. (dink)
2 iland luhr/bally on outriggers.
1 naked select bally WWB
Trolled at 4-5 knts.

For Blues
5 hawaiian lures trolled at 8-10 kts to include joe yee appollo evil, mold craft, marlin magic etc. All have flat face to pop and create a smoke trail. We'll troll the pots as the blues shadow the mahi. Also picked up quite a few wahoo with this spread. These lures will raise a white so have a pitch bait ready TLD/Dink. The blues just pile on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
As for the gents talking about getting frustrated. I can't understand that, Ack and I had somewhere in the neighborhodd of 10 whites up this year and only got one to take a bite and we didn't even see that one. One thing, that drives me nutts is seeig fish I can not get to take a hook. I know they eat and i have to be able to catch them....

I always wondered what to do when one comes up but now it seems clear. Have a naked dink waitin for a drink.

Let me ask. if I am trollin tuna and have a white come up should I cut the throttles back alittle. I know this taboo when trolling but wanted to ask.

Seems like Blues can be caught with a large tuna spread quite nicely. I tend to pull bigger stuff unless I know the bait is small.

When we fish, Ack tends to the spread as I am glued to the FF, temp machine, and chart. I get to the fish and consisently note their position in the water column. It has payed off quite nicely.

Anyone have tips for rgging a whole Boston Mack for draggin?
 

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got a fow tips on a good day marlin fishing in usvi. we landed 6 of 10 with one tripple hookup. they are bubble hunters most fish came out of the wash. we ran doubble hooks in large black barts and mold craft lurs. one hook up other must face the wash!! they were fished from short rigger. long rigger islanders with hoos. fish didnt favor one or the other that day. we also had only lost the fish that ate hook with slightly closed gap. open throught was 100%. good luck wish i had the tome to do it up here think they are some to be had.:)
 

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Blue marlin fishing and White marlin fishing are 2 differnt worlds. We always have a blue marlin rig out when white marlin fishing except---- when the white bite turns on in Sept. Then your just wasting a rod holder. better off pulling 6 white marlin baits and getting the score up!. reduce confusion for fish and anglers trying to pull mackeral away from white and pitching back a dink. easier just to have all baits ready for ****** in Sept!

Normaly before the white bite turns on we fish 5 white marlin baits with a Islander down the middle for tuna or blue and a large swiming mackeral on short rigger.
 
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