What all in one seafood fishing knife is perfect for the toolbox

Question: What all in one seafood fishing knife is perfect for the toolbox

“I often wonder what type of tool set I should have to prepare seafood in general. Is there any all in one knife set to prepare the vast array of seafood you can find up and down the the country. Personally I am finding it really perplexing that I need such a huge toolkit for the kitchen and I am looking for perhaps the standout knife that will give me more than one function in the kitchen such as a fillet knife that doubles up as a knife for cutting Sashimi for example, can you help me with the all in one kitchen knife that’s the perfect accompaniment to any toolbox for the kitchen, professional or hobbyist alike.”

Answer: the best fishing knife for your toolbox at home or in a professional kitchen

This is a tricky question. The perfect fishing knife should be able to fillet, cut sashimi, go through bone when it’s a must, makes for a really difficult equation but we are going to take a look at a couple of cracking all round fishing knives and perhaps a small fish knife set that will get the job done. It’s quite interesting how many disciplines you need to master in order that the whole spectrum of seafood can be handled with skills and professionalism.

Fish Fillet Knives in the toolbox

Personally as a go to knife for seafood and fish in general is the fish filleting knife is the go to piece of kit for any budding seafood hobbyist or chef. It’s the professionals choice for a vast array of important cutting processes in the kitchen. If I had to pick any one of the knives to place in my toolbox then it would be this knife. It’s absolutely vital to have a sharp filleting knife when handling both seafood and shellfish. You can’t deal with a scallop for example without one of these beautiful knives and at the same time fish cutting just won’t work without a fish filleting knife.

Sushi Knife is an amazing piece of kit

If there’s another tool that I’d love to recommend it would be the Sashimi/ Sushi knife. This beautiful knife will turn you into a complete professional when it comes to preparing your seafood raw. One tool that you really need with this is the tweezers to remove any bones. You really do not want to dull this fish knife with a bone as some Japanese chefs will literally spend hours sharpening their knife kit which would be heartbreaking to then go and cut through bone which will undo hours of quality work.

Conclusion – fillet knife is the ultimate fish knife

You really can’t go wrong with the boning and cutting fish fillet knife. It’s generally the right piece of kit for so many applications in a kitchen preparing fish that you would do much better to spend a good chunk of money on this knife and then use it for a multiple purposes than buying a cheaper all round set. I hope that you’ve enjoyed this write up on fish knives and if you have any suggestions that might help us improve this write up then please do feel free to leave your fishy comments below

Circle Hooks, Barbless, would that not be the Answer to the Parrot Mouth Carp problem


Circle Hooks are self hooking no need to strike and a very high % rate of lipped hooked fish as apposed to J hooks which cause a lot more damage to fish lips and internally more gut hooked fish than Circle hooks. Primarily used for commercial long liners at sea, one big advantage was that they did not catch as many % of unwanted quarry like sea turtles and sharks only the fish they were after and the major thing was they were lipped hooked as apposed to gut hooked J hooks and unwanted quarry kills. Circle hooks are mainly barbed with the point turned in, some advantage the point don’t get blunted, they do come barbless now and in smaller sizes. Just wonder if you would use these for Carp Fishing or have used them.


I can’t really comment on the hooks as such because i would never use anything over a size 14 and barbless in my fishing, i pole fish so i need to keep things in the right size, as for the so called ”parrot mouth” and what causes it, well many say it is Barbless hooks, some say it is more like Barbed, then you get some saying it is Braided lines but others say it is low diameter lines, do we really know what causes these problems?…for a long time now i have thought it more to be the way some play the fish, cranking like mad instead of playing the Carp does it untold damage, remember one force pulling one way the other pulling the other way, what is going to go?…the line, no because we are told we need to use line that can hold up so it has to be the lips, this is the weaker point, just imagine having a hook in you’re mouth then running away only to have it stopped dead, what would happen, one thing is for sure you’re lip would be a mess and this is what happens to the fish, chunks are taken out of the mouths simply because they are not played in the right way, so the hook pulled, did it?..or did it rip through the lip because you played it all wrong, we have to look at this from all angles and this is my take on this matter.

“Parrot Mouth” What evidence?


Just done a quick internet search on any scientific evidence to this problem and found none. Some excellent debates on various websites on this subject. From what I can gather from other anglers there are a combination of factors for this, barbed/barbless hooks, to powerful test curve rods not suitable for the venue, excessive heavy line when not needed, Braid line, birth defects! (Not sure on that one) Bullying tactics from the angler who does not know how to play the fish. While this is not so much as a question as to an observation, the reason I have written this short piece is that I came across an article in “Goat World” I kid you not (pun intended) that Goats develop and horses too, a thing called “Carp Mouth” which is the same as “Parrot Mouth” How peculiar? Thought I would share this bit of useless information with you, and sorry you will never get that five minutes of your life back in reading this! Ha Ha


I have already given what i think causes this problem in another post, it is a age old problem and one that is getting worse, i believe it is through the increase in carp Anglers and there lack of knowlegde on how to play the fish right, you can not just pick a rod up and fish without learning a few things first and i don’t think some of these new to carp fishing have learnt anything because they see these videos and think that is easy i will do that, what they see is a seasoned pro doing it the right way, they will have no idea how to play a carp, once they get a take it will be…oh i have one look….and start to crank like mad, tighten the clutch right up, you name it and i bet they do it because they have learnt nothing…..the old saying”all the gear, no idea” comes to mind and i feel using line that can tow a car round will only lead to more damage.

I use 6lb BS,as you know i pole fish but i have caught carp over 20lb on my pole with such line, ok so not a 30lb plus but the waters i fish don’t house such carp so a 6lb main is all you need but some use 15lb plus for carp of this size,is that right?…i don’t think so, no need for such big lines to be used but i would if the carp went to 25lb plus use a stronger line and not a pole either, i am not that silly,,well….but the point i am making, i believe it is more to do with the way some play the fish or don’t for that matter, that causes these problems.

Why do Pike follow Carp on capture at this time of the year?


On a few occasions I have noticed that pike will follow the carp when you are playing the fish. Last year I had a pike mirroring the movements of the Carp that was on my hook. Right close to the carp, I had problems netting the carp trying to avoid the pike in the net. I managed to do so only for the pike to jump into the net with the draw cord above the water line by around 6 inches. Has anybody else noticed this with the pike at this time of the year? I know the pike are early spawning and wondered if this had any bearing as to why they do so.


With its rows of razor-sharp teeth and predatory instinct, the pike rarely meets its match in the water world.

They are adept at pouncing on fellow fish and have been known to eat voles and even ducklings.

But whether it was over-confidence, desperation or just sheer greed, this 12lb pike decided to gulp down a huge carp – and died trying.

I’m stuffed: Hermitage Fisheries owner David Walker with the pike which choked to death after trying to swallow a 3lb carp

More than it could chew: The 3lb carp got wedged in the pike’s throat as it tried to swallow the fish whole, choking it to death

The 3ft fish was found floating on the surface of a Suffolk fishery with the 3lb carp stuffed down its throat after choking to death trying to swallow its prey.

It is believed to have prowled the murky depths of a pond there for the last 10 years.
Dr Bruno Broughton, a scientific adviser to the Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain, said the pike would have ‘choked’ to death because the carp had prevented oxygen flowing through its gills.

He said: ‘This fish wouldn’t have been able to breathe. It took a meal it just couldn’t swallow.

‘In most cases, a pike would just drop a fish if it was too big, but there must have been something in the interaction between these two that caused it to become lodged like that. It’s very rare.’

Agonising end: Pike normally eat fish, but rarely anything the size of this carp, which weighed around three times it’s usual prey


The northern pike, more commonly known as pike, is a carnivorous, freshwater fish found across the northern hemisphere.

They are often found in murky areas in lakes and streams, which are advantageous environments for them to hunt.

They like to ambush their prey, lying in wait for lengthy periods before striking with lightning acceleration.

Pike usually feed on fish, although they do branch out to water voles, ducklings, frogs, insects and leeches.

The heaviest known pike caught is said to have weighed 68lbs and measured 58ins in length, while the longest ever recorded was 60ins.

David Walker, who owns Hermitage Fisheries in Clare, near Sudbury, was alerted after the fearsome fish was spotted on the water by one of his regular anglers.

Mr Walker, a farmer who has spent 15 years building the fisheries, said he was stunned by what he saw.

‘I went down and I had to get the boat out to row out and see what it was and, to my amazement, it was this 12-and-a-half-pound pike with this 3lb carp stuck down its throat,’ he said.

David Plampin, secretary of Bury St Edmunds Angling Association, said such an incident was almost unheard of.

He said: ‘Pike have been known to eat ducklings and perhaps fish of up to 1lbs, but not anything of that size.

‘Carp do get slow this time of year and it could have been unwell.
‘Pike will usually lay there, wait for their prey to come past and then snap it, but that’s a huge fish for a pike to tackle.’

Mr Walker said the pike could be ‘a bit of a menace’, but was was upset to see this one go.

He said: ‘I think it is very sad because I spoke to two fishermen today who had caught the pike and taken a picture of it because it was so big.

‘It has obviously been content to eat smaller fish, but as it has become braver it also appears to have got greedier.

‘I am really sorry that such a beautiful fish has now been lost.’

The powerful pike, which survived being hooked by at least two fishermen this summer, was close to be immortalised at the fisheries.

Mr Walker asked a taxidermist to stuff the fish so they could be put on display, but, at a £25 an inch, he decided against it.

‘So after a couple of days I had to bury it,’ said Mr Walker. Colin.

Do you think there should be a minimum BS line rule if your venue holds big fish? 20LB+ Carp.


Lots of venues are imposing a minimum 12/15LB breaking strain line because they have big fish in them. As a carp dragging light line is dangerous to their stock. Do you think this is right or do you think the managers/owners are playing too safe to protect their stock.

Also do you think the smallest increase of diameter changes to your main line are a huge hindrance?


I can see problems with this move, we have already spoken about the inexperience or organised Anglers already but what is stopping these unorganised Anglers from using ”cloths line” well over that BS just to feel safe, nothing in my opinion, how often do we see the ones”all the gear, no idea” trying to look as though they know what they are doing, we all see them on every water, unless the venue is run by hardcore Carp anglers who care for the stock this rule will not so much protect the stock but could damage it more.

i can see the point in what is being done but i do wonder if this rule will not be enforced as it should be, i lost count at how many carp anglers use barbed hooks on barbless waters, pile in loads of ground bait yet it states ”no groundbait” so what is stopping them from just saying who cares i use what i want, now don’t get me wrong the seasoned pros of our game know better but here i am making the point of the not so seasoned and there are many of them now and i know they will not be bothered and just use line that can tow a truck, there is no need for such big BS lines if you play the fish right, i see some cranking like mad when they get a take, no playing the fish at all and people wonder about Carp with no mouths, it’s a wonder they have a head, it makes me so mad when i see that and i just feel this will allow the lunatics to take over the banks.

Seasoned Anglers know how to go about catching fish in the correct manner, using the right gear, line, hooks and so on, it is what is learned over the years but allowing unseasoned to use strong line will lead to more problems than ever, will it safe guard the stock, it will to a point but more notice should be taken of the Anglers rather than the line i would say.

Is this a bad habit, fishing the same swim time after time?


Finding a very good swim, where you catch plenty of fish and then finding yourself heading to it time after time.regardless. Do you get into a rut with your fishing or do you carry on trying new swims and venues.


For me, it pays to know your venue, if it is a canal then there are certain areas that will fish better than others, it could be for any number of facts but if the fish seem to like it there then you will not be going any where else so you stick to that spot.

Rivers are a different thing, fish will hold up in areas at different times of year so if you just fish one spot all the time you will find it hard going, you have to be mobile and search other areas.

Still waters, with the fish not having the freedom of the Rivers or even canals, you are most likely to find they will be in the ”hot spot” at some point during the session so it is wise to keep to that one area.

Although i have not answered the question in the way it is asked i feel it is the way many go about there fishing today and as a result choose to fish the same venues or swims all the time, is it a good thing?…i don’t think so but with so many factors to take into account these days it is the way it is done by many now.

For me, i will fish the venues i know well and seldom go to new ones these days, knowing a venue well is the main thing in catching fish however i would always take up a challenge of a new venue if that option was there to take, so it is how you feel about your fishing that counts most, some will travel many miles to take on a new venue wile others will stick to the tried and tested venues.

Where could i go sea fishing?


You can go sea fishing anywhere really, you don’t need a rod licence and it is nearly all free fishing if done off the shore line, some clubs run contests for beach fishing so you might need to find out if there is one on but very few of the coastlines are private so you can fish almost anywhere you like but always check the local bylaws, these do differ from one area to another but over all you can sea fish without licence anywhere but if it is your first time get some help because there are many dangers involved and never go alone, take care with tides because these turn quickly and can catch you out…in a nut shell just find a beach or cove and ask the locals about the fishing, they should know but of course you can go out to sea on a charted boat if you can afford it, the options are there…good luck.


You can go Sea Fishing any where along the coast line, from sandy beaches, shingle beaches, harbours, pier, breakwaters, marinas, cliffs, rocks. Some places are private or you might have to pay to fish from them, pier, harbours, breakwaters, marinas, bridges etc, some are out of bounds MOD land, some cliff or rocks are just too dangerous to fish from, even some beaches, mud flaps, sand banks and coves you can get caught out with the incoming tides, even shingle beaches at high water, the sea will wash the shingle from under your feet. Always set up your base, above the high water line, this is where the weed and rubbish lies on the beaches from previous high water, just think safe in your safety and others, tell people where you are fishing from and how long, if change the place then tell people. You can always walk to the water edge to cast, just be careful of the waves. Even from the safe rock or cliff face a rising rouge wave can knock you off your feet and into the sea or you can easy slip on wet sea weed on rocks, just be aware of the dangers and keep safe.

What fishing equipment do I need for fishing along the shore?


Depends what you want to catch, where and what grounds you are going to fish and your budget. If you have some course fishing gear, then you could use a lot of the gear for sea fishing float fishing, lure/ spinning, light ledgering and even fly fishing. If you are just starting sea fishing there are some great combo package deals with basic gear to get you up and running from the shore, again depends on your budget, have you used a multiplier reel, if not then a fixed spool reel will be more user friendly to start with from the shore, a 12-14 foot beach caster ringed for fixed spool rod which you would/ should get in a combo. Spool of 15 lb BS line and a shock leader of at least 60lb BS, to take the shock out of casting a 5-6 oz lead weight with grips. You need to hold your bait on the bottom of the sea bed in tides. Some swivels and lead clips and a quick release clip system to re bait quickly. Some made up rigs, with hooks or you can make them yourself. You are going to need a rod rest, an adjustable tripod are the best, you don’t want your new rod lying down on ground while you bait up and do not want to holding your rod all day. Last but not least some fresh bait.

Very new at Fly Fishing for trout. Anyone know what is the best Fly to use at the early season?


It all depends on what type of fly fishing you are doing, river or lake? And also how large the venue is, how many people fishing it frequently and if there are any sizeable fish in it. As you can see, there are a lot of factors to take into account.


River fishing – Nymphs
Pheasant Tail Nymph (PTN) – with a gold bead for faster waters and mainly to get it down to the fish, start with a size 14 and go up to a 10 if required.
Hare’s Ear Nymph – again gold bead if required and start on a size 14.
Diawl Bach – size 12-14 red bodied, always worth a chuck out with a PTN on the point.

Yellow Owl CDC – small yellow body with grey CDC “breathers”, size 14-16
Sedge – Brown fly very buoyant and good for browns, size 12-16
Shipman’s Buzzer – I’d personally go either black or orange on this one but it depends what’s catching, sort of a fuzzy dry with white “breathers” front and back

Lakes – Nymphs and wets
Again with the PTN, Hare’s Ear and Diawl Bach but throw in some colourful flies too, Cat’s Whisker, White Bunny Leech, Green and Black Fritz (Green fritz body, Black marabou tail)
Also worth trying out some blobs and boobies and stripping them back as fast as possible, if lots of competitions are held there, sometimes they switch onto the big bright blobs and it’s hard to get them off them again (Not what I’d deem fishing but if needs must)

Sedge’s, CDC’s, Emerger’s, Parachute dries if just lipping below the surface, or try a size 16 buzzer and put some Gink on the line about an inch above it, it’ll suspend the buzzer just through the surface film and entice the fish to take it.

Going away for a week, Any tips?


I’m going away fishing for 7 nights first time alone and for more than 2 days, apart from tackle what should I take with me?


Fist time I did a longer session I tried to multiply up the kinda things I took on an overnight trip – but found I ran out of food – basically because I was eating out of boredom (I hadn’t taken anything with me to fill the time between runs). So as well as bait the food and ingredients to make hot drinks – very important if you’re not taking hot food – I now take bits pieces to make up new rigs, loads of chewing gum, a good book and make sure I can keep in touch with the outside world.


You will need to take a lot of stuff to cater for a week, cloths are just as important than food and you will need that and water, if your into cup-a-soups then they might be good, they don’t take up much room and weigh light.


A week on your own needs careful planning, I will assume there are some toilet facilities on the site. A means of cooking is a must, you will need to eat hot food at least once a day. Also you will need several litres of water a day so if there is no water on site you will need to take it. Spare clothes are a must too as wet clothing will demoralise you in no time at all. Books are good as is a radio, a phone and a means of charging it. I am sitting on the bank right now typing this on my iPad, a toy that has transformed those long backside hours. I am assuming that you have a bivvy and a good bed, if not then they are another must.


All the others suggestions are spot on.

  • I take plenty of pot noodles – loads of flavours, light, easy to make and most importantly Hot. Hot food can really make a difference if the weather turns.
  • I also take ready made sachets of coffee that have milk and sugar already in them as milk only keeps a few days and sugar gets damp and messy outside and attracts ants. They are really easy and convenient and once again light weight.
  • There are plenty of light weight stoves on the market and which ever one you take make sure you have enough gas canisters as they don’t last long.
  • If you have a smart phone you can get plug ins that recharge the batteries several times and get some apps to keep you amused when the going is slow.
  • Good luck and stay safe and don’t forget to post the catch photos.

What’s the best way to kill maggots?


Admittedly more of a winter bait (maybe) but I’ve seen a fair bit in the press about using dead maggots, but never seen an explanation of how to do it!


The best way to kill maggots by boiling water is this…riddle your maggots off, they should be clean first, you then put them into a bait tub and add cold water, enough to cover them all, you them boil a kettle and add the water a little at a time, do not just pour the water on to them but spread it out making sure you cover all the maggots, stir them around a little to help this, you will find the maggots will move quick then start to die off, once they have stopped moving you then remove them from the water, use your maggot riddle to strain them off, thats the best way of killing maggots by boiling water…this will stop them stretching and loosing colour.

Freezing them is another good way and one used by many but again you have to make sure they are clean, this method is best used if you have a few pints or bulk that need killing, if you only want a hand full or a tub full then boiling is the best option in my opinion, remember once frozen i would not refreeze again because dead maggots goes off very quickly and start to smell and go black in colour.

Some even roll the maggot in the palms of there hands to kill them, obviously only a few at a time can be killed this way and you need to be careful or you just squash them but again it does work and this way is best used if you just want to try them out as a alternative way of presentation.

How do we encourage young people into angling?


Following on from the fishing in the good old days post, I hear a lot of people asking how can we encourage young people into angling ? In fairness, unless they are encouraged by a family member, and allowed to use the family members gear, it is going to be very hard. Take the average non fishing parent, who brings their off spring to a commie to “try out” fishing. What do they see ? Blokes sitting on top of the range boxes, using top of the range poles, rods etc. So they stop for a chat. Parent :”How much does your gear cost ? Angler : “Well this pole cost me £1200 and the box was £600, The box attachments work out about another £300 or £400. The two piece suit was £200 and the boots were £60.” Parent : ” Thanks for your help, I think I will get him flying lessons, it will be cheaper.” Angler : ” He does not need to buy all expensive gear, some of the cheaper stuff is every bit as good !” Parent : ” If that’s true, why aren’t you using it ? I don’t want my Johnnie to look out of place !”


Jeez – that paints a bleak picture Kevin. You are right of course it does look a bit grim when you look at it that way. I think there are quite few things to pick up on in that question mate.

The first and key one for me is the family member. I know society has moved on and we here a lot about errant fathers but you know I just don’t see anything like enough dads uncles etc. taking their kids (or someone else’s) fishing. Why is that? I also came across a venue quite recently that didn’t allow anyone under the age of 18 onto the venue whether accompanied or otherwise – well I wish them well with that blinkered attitude – I will never go there and I even tell others to avoid it.

But there are also quite a lot of venues that won’t allow under 18’s to be on the venue after dark, because of H&S rules or insurance!!! Really – What madness is this?? (Don’t get me started on H&S).

All that said I’ve taken and taught my own 3 kids and quite a number of their mates fishing (too many to remember), and not just to teach them fishing but to get them to understand the wildlife, the countryside, nature, and how to look after it by treating it with respect, not littering etc.

The next thing is tackle – yep starting out has got very expensive but as you’ve no doubt guessed – I’ve acquired quite a bit of my own tackle over time (and most of it was not expensive).

Every time I take a youngster fishing with me for the first time they get to use an 8ft old converted tank aerial (that might jog a few memories) that my father made in 1948, I keep it because its virtually indestructible and an old Shakespeare Sigma reel (because its small enough for any youngster to handle). Either that or its an old whip that my eldest son first used.

Before we go they get the Allen lecture of – If I’m going to take you, you need to understand that you can catch big fish with a tree branch, some line and a hook if you learn to do it right. Learn your water craft practice what you’re doing with the cheap stuff (it doesn’t them matter if you make mistakes) and when you get better you can use some of my better gear or I’ll help you to save up and get your own. After all you don’t start playing football by going out on the pitch at Old Trafford with the most expensive football boots do you?

I then take them to a venue where I know they will catch (and usually because I’m teaching them they catch more than I do which I then use to reinforce the point about tackle).

By doing this I’m working on the principle that once they have caught a few fish it kinda won’t matter about tackle because by then they are hooked on the fishing.

Pole floats, dotted down or some showing


I was wondering if some of the more experienced pole fishers could help me out here.
I read that some people talk about using their floats dotted right down, but others talk of leaving a bit showing.I have 4 questions.
1) does it depend on type of tip i.e. solid or hollow?
2) does it depend on time of year, summer or winter?
3) is it purely personal choice?
4) or does target species decide?
Hope this makes sense


The idea behind dotted down is so you can detect bites more quickly, the weather plays a big part in choosing what you do with your pole float, if it is a nice calm day then dot it down so only the tip is showing on the surface but this is of no use if it is choppy waters, you need to see the float tip.
Tips solid or hollow, a solid tip being heavier will show up bites more easy, a hollow tip being lighter and with air in the tip will fight to come back to the surface so the takes are not so positive, one reason you will see hollow tip floats bobbing around much more than solid ones.

Time of year, yes this is a factor,Summer fishing is very different to Winter so you need to choose your pole floats better,Summer time fishing, i would use a hollow tip float because the fish are up in the water more and these tips will be best suited to that,Solid tips would sit lower or take less weight over all, you would have to choose a bigger body float to compensate that problem and that is not such a good idea if fishing up in the water.

Personal choice, yes very much so, many will have a totally different way of looking at this and bring in all kinds of scientific reasons and yes they would be right but most of that is so trivial it is not worth mentioning in my books, so what ever answers you get it is all based on personal preferences but the over all facts are the same, it is just the shotting patterns and so on that differ, the float tips remain the same.

Target Species, yes, some as you know are very shy biters others will just grab and run, knowing what species do this is important in using the right float tip, shy biters need a very sensitive set up, others need not so much of one.

All i have said is only my way of looking at this problem and in no way am i saying i know best (if only) but many think in the same way on this subject although many go into this in more detail.

I’m looking to buy a new float rod and reel – any recommendations?


I’ve been using a Drennen tench float rod and a Shimano fight & drag reel as my go to float fishing set up for many years. I’ve used this highly flexible set up with a great deal of success over the years and its landed many of my pb’s including a 26lb Common and a 12lb 8oz tench.

But like all things I’m thinking it’s maybe time to stop being so sentimental and upgrade – and maybe I could do better 20 years on from when I bought this kit.


I guess it very much depends on the style of fishing you go for (OK, and budget too).

I suspect you tend to go for a more general approach rather than a “specimen hunter” but you do hit lumps every now and again? If this is so you are much like me, and I was in a similar position a couple of years back. I had a hand made carp rod from back when I was a kid (one of the first carbon rods owned by somebody in my local club) – over 30 years of fishing with it I have caught all sorts. Then couple of winters back it finally developed a permanent curve in the blank thanks to a 20lb pike!

I was gutted but decided to shop around for a replacement. One day I randomly saw an advert for a John Wilson Avon Quiver at the local Go Outdoors – £40.00 and looked/felt like something way more expensive so thought I’ll buy it for Tench/Barbel fishing in the summer whilst I find “the perfect big fish rod”.

It is now my primary stick – it’s taken carp to 24lb and handled them as well as (if not better) my brothers Sonix SK4’s, yet it is light enough for canal roach of a couple of ounces!!

What’s a good starter pole that’s nice and light without breaking the bank?


I am new to pole fishing and have bought an 11m Avanti pole but when it’s at 11m it’s got a very large bend in the pole and weighs a ton, what’s a good starter pole that’s nice and light without breaking the bank? I don’t want to spend over £200 but want something that I don’t need arms like Arnie to hold.


Always a problem when starting out in pole fishing, with a budget of £200 you should get a nice pole to start off with only down side it will be a margin pole so will weigh heavy,Match poles are lighter but more expensive, you local tackle shop might help you out so worth a visit but i would look on E-bay, some very good bargains on there now but the length of pole will be around 11 meters at this end of the money scale and many will not be much lighter than 1,000 grammes and could go to 1300 or so, the one i like is the Maver Blue Vega, it is 11 meters and is rated to a number 20+ with the elastic, weighs in at 976g so thats about as light as you will get and at under £100 on E-bay…i would take a look and see what you think.


Try this link to a pole compare site, should give you a few ideas but remember they are E-bay based.

A few rigs for Pole fishing, easy to make and understand.


I have changed from rod to pole fishing many years ago now, although I do still use a rod it is mainly all pole these days I use and like everything else in fishing you need the right rigs to be at it’s best, although many are based on personal preferences it is not that hard to understand the basic pole rig set up, a lot depends on the weight you use, many will use standard shot, some stots but what is best used for what.

Like everything it is personal preference here really but shots do have a tendency to ping off the line, this can happen on the cast (if rod fishing) or on the take, it can happen when landing the fish even, in other words it can happen at any time because you do not put the shot on tight it leaves it vulnerable to this happening but stots do not ping off the line, they stay in place and are more easy to put on the line, shots are more at home on moving water I think but not so much on static, this is were stots come in to play, they offer you better registration of bites in many cases and of course those lost shots don’t come in to play.

Floats come in all shapes and sizes and all take a certain weight to cock, this is normally on the float body but in pole fishing the weight can be strange because many are used to the weight in grams and shots used but in pole fishing it is normal to see floats with the markings like this 3×7, now this might sound like three number 7 shots but in fact it is markings for styls, so it is not 3×7 shots but 3×7 styls and that works out at lets say 6×13 shots or 0.03 grams, hard to follow maybe but the main thing is to remember it is mainly styls that is being referred to on pole floats not shots.

There are many different rigs around these days but here are a few that always get results and are easy to make and understand, on the drop rig is a simple as it gets, all you need is a light but sensitive float, a boded down type is preferred, the shots/ styls are set out even down the line, this can be done by plumbing up to find dead depth then lets say you have 4 feet of depth, you could put your shot on every foot of line space that means three in total, remembering you have to have a foot from hook and float so only three would be even spaced out, the idea is to allow the bait a normal fall through the water and also it has to be the right weight for the float, that is very important.

Margin carp rig, this is another rig that is easy to make, you need a long bristle to show up line bites better but it is not a must use, because it is margin work you need a short float like a dibber float but again make sure you have it weighted right, the bulk of the weight is put on the last third of line above hook with one dropper shot holding bottom, I like to class these as anchor shots and three inches over depth is about right for the hook bait.

Another simple but very effective rig is the surface rig, it don’t come any easier than this one, all you need is a light hook, line and some poly float and shot, you can use anything that floats as a bite indicator, I say poly float but it don’t have to be, if so you need something for it to be wrapped round so a light shot does the job, the poly float will keep everything on surface, bait should be a floating bait like bread or pellet wrapped around the hook, leave around 3 feet of line between the indicator and bait and around 2 feet from pole tip making it 5 feet line length, it is up to you on this part but the longer the line the harder it will be to land the fish.

These are just three very easy rigs to make and use and it pays to keep things simple, if you know of any good simple rigs for pole use just add them to this if you like but I will try and add some more plus a few little basic tips for those who might not be so up on pole fishing.


As a pole float assembler, I say that because I don’t turn my own bodies.
I spent most of last season fishing mainly match carp venues.
I can strongly recommend the high density foam diamond body design for its versatility and strength.

As a rough rule of thumb, 0.1g per foot of depth. e.g., 0.4g in 4 ft of water.

My favourite rig for carp being a 0.4g foam diamond, 25mm long 1.5mm hollow orange tip for dark water which can be blacked out in bright conditions with a sharpie permanent marker pen, new style spring eye and 0.8mm clear glass stem. Attach float to 016mm SHIMANO silk shock main line for accurate diameter and b/s strength and 3 pieces of silicon on the stem, using no.10 Stots about 2/3rds down the rig can be bulked together to get the bait down quick or strung out for a slower natural fall and finally a no.11 Stots dropper/tell tale shot just above the hook length. A 6″ or 15cm hook length of SHIMANO silk shock 010mm to 014mm depending on fish size and conditions. My preference of hook is a strong gauge Tubertini series 175 for large fish or finer series 808 for smaller fish. Great for pellet, meat and corn.
This float design in other sizes has also worked well for me in the margins and far shelf work.

Are you stuck for the right shot to use for setting up a pole rig?

Do you know the difference between pole float sizes?

Well here’s a guide to the most popular pole float sizes in styl weight and their matching weight in grammes, plus a guide to which split shot/Stots to use to cock them correctly…

float size Weight Shot equivalent

3 x 10 — 0.10g — 2 x No10 shot
4 x 10 — 0.15g — 3 x No9 shot
4 x 10 — 0.2g —- 5 x No10 shot
4 x 14 — 0.4g —- 6 x No8 shot
4 x 16 — 0.5g —- 8 x No8 shot
4 x 18 — 0.75g — 3 x No3 shot
4 x 20 — 1g —— 4 x No3 shot
5 x 20 — 1.25g — 5 x No3 shot
6 x 20 — 1.5g —- 6 x No3 shot