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Volitan last won the day on July 15 2018

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About Volitan

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    Central Coast, NSW

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  1. Just a simple thing but so convenient. Carries up to 4 rods and 2 beach spikes, then folds out to keep them handy and out of the sand. cheers v
  2. Volitan

    The DIY SP jighead experiment

    I’m sure they will catch you fish. However I can tell you what has worked for me with tying my own saltwater flies, and fly/jig and fly/popper combos. Firstly, a great big outsize eye on the jig head. Predatory fish zoom in on the eye. Flouro colours. Flies with a lot of flouro work very well because flies are easily overlooked by fish. Fish eyesight is tuned to work in low light, so they are particularly responsive to flouro (giving out more visible light then is taken in). Fluorescent chartreuse and flouro pink seem to be what works for me. Lots of movement. You need feathers etc that flex and pulse in a lifelike way. Ditch the foam on the side, replace it with twitchy soft feathers backed up with some stiffer flouro flash. I reckon that as soon as fish see feathers pulse, it confirms to them that the fly/jig is alive because everything living in the water needs to pulse somehow to get along. When you think about a clouser, it’s just a fly/jig with the weight coming from lead wire wrapped along the body. cheers V.
  3. Volitan

    Jervis bay fish ID (Sand Whiting)

    Looking at the book Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. The main diagnostic is the rear margin of the first dorsal fin. Concave in sand whiting, convex in trumpeter and eastern school whiting. Also mentioned is the ‘dusky blotch at the base of the pectoral fin’. Present in sand and trumpeter whiting, absent in school whiting. Also mentioned are the diagonal bars along the back of the school whiting - which darken after death. So its diagnostics are in line with a sand whiting.
  4. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    So I made my testing device today, and I’m pretty happy with it. At least I made a prototype - I usually make a prototype of things before making the real thing just to get the bugs ironed out. This morning I bought a large, long-travel tension spring, which I reasoned would have more reliable performance then a small spring. then welded up a few levers and brackets. Done. Simple and ugly but robust. then took my old diving weights down to the friendly local postmaster to get them weighed to use for static testing. then tested the device with the weights in static mode. Results were actually pretty awful between 0 and 2 kilos, then ok, then a strange blip of inaccuracy around 10-11 kilo. Then ok up to 15kg which is where I stopped. So I figured the inaccuracy below 2kg was inherent and redesigned the device so that it actually kicked in at 2kg and marked that as 0kg on the scale. Then spent the rest of the afternoon refining it to remove any variation or play. Springs are strange, finicky little things to work with. The result is pretty good - I don’t know how to express the accuracy mathematically, but 30mm on my scale represents one kilo, and the accuracy is within 0.5mm everywhere except around the 11 kg mark where it jumps up to 2mm, then down to 1 mm but in the other direction, then back to about 0.5 mm at the 13kg mark. I think that’s just a characteristic of the spring. These measures don’t change no matter how many times I retest it so I suppose that’s conditional success. i could be using the wrong term here, really it’s repeatability or reliability that I’m looking for not accuracy. when I get access to a better workshop later in the week I’ll refine it a bit, replace the metal to metal joints with bearings, build the bollards (for wrapping line around) and put a slider on the scale so it preserves the maximum value after a test. Cheers
  5. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    Hi Derek. Your suggestion is a good one, and I was going to do something similar but using sand not water. In the end I figured building a spring focused device would offer shorter intervals between tests. Probably your method would be a little more accurate because it eliminates the vagaries of the spring which really come to the fore when you start working with them. Besides, I just like making things. i also note your suggestion of using large dowels for securing the ends without knots. That’s a good suggestion and I understand they are called ‘bollards’ in the testing industry. Like giant stainless steel cotton reels, apparently. cheers
  6. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    See my comments below about the finnickyness of springs, but multiply it by several times because you’re dealing with a small, very high tensile spring of short travel.
  7. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    Actually, pretesting counts for very little. the pretest is for a smooth pull on unknotted line. The question is how are lines degraded by being knotted, by being repetitively flexed, by being subjected to shock loads rather then smooth loads etc etc. Another issue I have is how do you buy ‘quality line’. What constitutes an assurance of quality - is it the price, the hyperactivity of the marketing efforts, the fact that people who are prominent in the sport swear by it? If you can’t measure it how do you know it has the features of a ‘quality line’. And what constitutes quality anyway when standards tests are so divorced from real world experience. On use of scales. Researching this a bit, I think the ‘scale pull test’ was long ago invalidated as a way of reliably measuring either knot strength or line test. It serves now only as an annoyance to people in the industry doing it properly. Nothing wrong with using the scales as a source of a reliable spring, but a little bit of extra work and money should allow me to build something that eliminates the major issues. I’m not after scientific accuracy. cheers v.
  8. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    With respect Kingie Chaser, that’s missing the point of the exercise. The point of this post is not about the here and now. It’s not about the line that I’m currently using, or the knots I’m currently tieing. The point is to raise the whole scenario of line selection and usage above the typical approach of intuition and anecdote and put it on a measured and objective basis. i realise this approach isn’t the way most people like to approach fishing, but too me it’s obvious if you buy some line and tie some knots in it then how can you be certain you are getting the best out of it unless you have an accurate and repeatable way of measuring it. ‘I reckon’ just doesn’t fly with me.
  9. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    Yep, I’m not after a laboratory standard of accuracy. The link works for me on Safari on IPad. cheers
  10. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    Glad someone agrees. engineering 101 : ‘you can’t improve a process till you learn to measure it’. leader selection and knot tying are a process. The Shimano balance is interesting. Im now thinking I may use that as the core of the system, the rest just being just several levers to make things more ergonomic and allow finer measurements. I notice the blue Shimano spring scale is sold in science supply places for use in high school science, so it must have reasonable accuracy.
  11. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    I think I’ve already done that. but knots still break. I’m sure you have both had knots break or leaders fail at least a few times in your fishing careers. And when it happens you’re left wondering did I tie a bad knot, was the leader faulty, or was it simply beyond it’s design strength and something had to give? look, I know not everyone appreciates my meticulous approach, but with lighter lines required as fishing pressure increases there will always be a boundary where leader strength is at the minimum. This is especially true for us who rarely have the opportunity to get away to less fished places. im sure I’m not the only person who prefers not to proceed by seat of the pants approach, so I’m interested to hear from others who have gone down this route.
  12. Volitan

    DIY breaking strain tester

    Yet again I return from a fishing trip with the knowledge that the best fish (good kingfish, I saw it take the bait) was lost due to a failed knot. this makes me think that even after 50 years of tying the same small group of knots there’s a lot about them I don’t know. I think where the critical knowledge is missing is the relationship between knot structure and line characteristics. So I want to make a device for measuring breaking strain. i used to do this just using a spring balance, but I know now and I knew then that that method isn’t going to deliver the accuracy required. My question is has anyone made such a device. I have designed one, but it seems overly complicated and will take a long time to build. Maybe if I could see what others have made and what they’ve learnt in the process there might be a simpler way. Anyone done this ? cheers
  13. Who uses snapper flashes (flashers) and what is your experience with them? also, how do you use them - with bait on the hook, or just near a baited hook? i did a search and didn’t find much authoritative comment from the last few years. Does that mean they were a passing fad? also, is a snapper flash, snapper flasher and snapper snatcher all the same thing ? cheers Arron
  14. Volitan

    What are these squid lure things?

    Yes, exactly. That’s why I was thinking maybe Asian pro fishing equipment.
  15. Volitan

    KIwi Kingies

    Couple of questions where abouts in NZ were these caught and when you say fly fishing, is that trailing a fly down a burley trail, or some other technique ? cheers