Rods / Reels

Here's a basic lineup of our various rods and such...

- Debbie loves to pole fish with her 10' B&M Carbon Fiber poles, and she's good at it. These are called "Crappie Poles" by the manufacturer... super strong, almost like a fly rod with the tail mounted reel. Debbie's has a 3.7:1 ratio reel attached for faster retrieval speed, and 30lb braid.  These are TOUGH! I've seen Debbie fight 4lb catfish on this, pull the tip way down below the handle, and never break.

Despite baitcast reels seemingly being the mainstream reel choice today, we cast with spincast reels (closed face)... I've tried a baitcast reel in previous years and again more recently, and while I didn't give it an honest try, I just didn't like it. Each to their own, I guess :-) With the cost of the basic Zebco 33 or the 33 Micro being $20 or less, and the fact that we can beat them up a year or more with nearly daily use before they're shot, you can't beat the bang for the buck!

- Our best distance rigs use the new Zebco Bullets (love those reels!). Here's the Zebco Bullet on a Zebco 33 Authentic Medium action 5'6" Rod. Great combo, and handles like a dream! We use 12lb mono on all but one Bullet reel, and I have one set up with 30lb Proline braid.

One of our bullets would occasionally hang up immediately on cast, and slam the lure in the water right in front of us. After a bit of inspection, I found a small problem with one of the line pickup bearing retainers. More on the fix is located HERE.

- Our daily weapons are Zebco 33 Classic with 12 lb mono for some of our lighter baits, on a 5'6" Zebco SlingShot Medium action rod. As I've said before, you can beat these things up with daily use, and if you have to replace it every year or two, it's under $20.

- We also use the Zebco 33 Classic with 30 lb braid for instant response to frogs, jerk baits, and for stuff we're likely to get hung on snags with. We use these on 5'6"
Shakespheare Durango rods. Great combination and inexpensive!

- Our freshwater fishing gear for smaller breeds is on micro rigs with 4 lb mono and Shakespeare micro spincast. These things make catching Crappie, Bluegill, Small Bass, Chain Pickerel, and others so much fun...everything feels BIG!

- Another of our rigs for smaller breeds is on Zebco 4'6" light/medium action micro rod with 4 lb mono and Zebco Micro 33 spincast. I don't care so much for the one with the forward facing trigger, but I love these little reels with the conventional thumb button. This setup has caught literally hundreds of Crappie, Bluegill, Small Bass, Chain Pickerel check us out on FishBrain as dhockaday to see the stuff we've caught on these.

- I fly fish with an Eagle Claw 8'6" medium action Graphite rod and a Martin 63SS manual reel. This is a setup my Dad gave me at least 25 years ago, and I love it. I use 7F floater and a 6' 3.5lb leader.  Debbie has a new (to her) fly rod setup and will begin to learn that, this year.  

Nothing crazy, but we catch a lot of fish with this gear. Here's a shot of our typical bank fishing gear that we use several days/week. Simple, inexpensive, and loads of fun!