October 17, 2014 Last Updated 8:51 pm

*Tried & Tested #6

This update has a distinctly lure flavor to it -from braid to lures its fairly and objectively covered....



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This update we have lots of gear for you to check out – some is tested some not… if it  is not tested now it will be certainly done later!


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Penn Squall  20LW

Penn is a name synonymous with the best of boat angling tackle. When starting out in fishing if you didn’t have a 3/0 Senator hi-speed you were at nothing!

The GTI range was one of Penn’s most popular. The 310 and 320 GTI were to hard wearing but very usable reels. They remained unchanged for many years and provided anglers with a reliable winch with which to tackle a huge range of species.

Change is inevitable and the GTI range has been replaced with the SQUALL range of reels. The Squall 20LW is the mid ranged reels that would be about the same size as the original 310GTI.  The finish is what you would expect from Penn and with a host of features that are designed to make this reel better than its predecessor.

The Squall is not your fast retrieve multiplier. No, it is more the solid performer that will grind out big congers and even sharks but the 20 will equally be happy scratching around on the drift.

I see prices around the €120.00 online.


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Biwaa Lures

French Lure manufacturer Biawaa have not had a huge presence in this country until recently. When you see that they have more than 24K followers on their facebook page you know they mean business. While they would be more known for their freshwater range they have plenty lures that will float the boat of the salt water angler.

The 5” Scorpitail is one of these lures. It is an unusual shape in terms of tail while the body is the typical weedless shape to hide hooks well.

I haven’t had a chance to get these wet but I must say there is a certain excitement in trying a lure that I have never tried before.

The Hypnotik Swimmer is a simple yet beautifully soft lure that will surely catch bass. It is a light lure that will be suited to the ultra finesse aficionados or the Jig Head set. I can see them doing just fine on some Bricoleurre heads.

Biwaa lures are mainly mid-to high end in terms of price. They hit the mark as being non-toxic, a trait that is becoming ever more important on the freshwater scene.


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Shinobi Braid

I have been very much the traditionalist in terms of my boat multiplier braid for boat fishing. I really was happy enough to use the “older” braids rather than upping to some of the modern super braids.

I have used Daiwa’s Shinobi braid on my fixed spools and had no problem with it. I have never seen it in the higher braking strains until the arrival of 24.5kg. It comes in a decent 270m spool which will still need backing on the average multiplier.

Expect to pay around €30.00


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Tournament 8 Braid

Initially I avoided this braid after hearing some less than complimentary remarks. I was surprised considering that Daiwa have a great name for quality control.  Reading between th e lines I realised that the guy saying he had a problem was more likely to have a rod problem more than a braid problem. Let’s just say that anglers I know have been using this braid for a long time now and to a man the verdict is – “Awesome”

Awesome comes at a price: Expect to pay €25+

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Berkley Power Bait Prerigged

There seems to be more of a fad in the last couple of years to pre mount shads and package them with a spare body. Berkely have a great range of soft lure kits and it was with some interest that I saw  these Prerigged  Shads and Sandeel.

I have used the prerigged lures and also have used the spare bodies attached to my own heads and have to say that I had plenty of codling on both. No trouble. The action from the shad is typical and the sandeel is as good an imitation as any out there on the market. I have not got details of pricing as yet but knowing Berkley they will be very competitive.

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Daiwa D’Swim Shad

When I saw these a few years ago I thought we were on to something great. It was not until they appeared to be identical offerings from a host of different companies that I realised that these are more of a “stock” lure than an original design. All that said I have used them more as cod & ollack catchers rather than bass lures. They will catch fish, including bass. They weigh in at 18gr so they are good possibility as a weightless lure.

Not much change from €14.00 a pack sees them in a competitive marketplace.

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Sakura L16 Shad

Sakura is often forgotten about in the ranks of French Lure fishing companies. Yet Sakura were one of the first companies to make their product available in Ireland. The Sakura Shingin made an impressive debut as a decent action lure rod when there were few to choose from on the shelf. Those initial offerings have all been updated over recent years.

The L16 system is an interesting one.  Most of us fine ourselves chopping the heads of shads and slugs in order to get the best mounting on jig heads. The L16 Shad has a profiled head with eyes. It is recessed around the head so you can literally pull off the head in order to mount on the Sakura L16 Jig head.

These are chunky shads with a big tail. They have a splendid action and I have hammered bass all this year on them. I would say though that the removable head is a bit of a gimmick unless you are using the Sakura Jighead. I still have to take the scissors to them!

Partner of the L16 Shad is the L16 Koneel.  I won’t go into the Koneel at this stge as that lure deserves a section of its own.

The Shads come at an attractive price for the superior finish – expect to pay €7+ The Jig heads are pricey but very well finished at around €7.

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