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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Went out last Friday off Hengisbury and caught plenty of mackeral and a couple of small bream. As a newbie Iv'e now learnt what a bream bite feels like, the tap tap on the rod, but I missed lods of bites. I was using small strips of mackeral and "striking" when the tapping started but not hooking the blighters.
Any advise please?

Also I dont understand the use of a 'shockleader' Is this the line that ties onto the main line which in turn has the rig tied onto it?
At the moment I am using a 20lb mono filiment from my multiplyer reel and tying my rig onto that, do I need a shockleader?
 

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i would suggest your missed bites were very small bream which strip the bait very quickly and are a pain, what size hooks were you using? match the hook size to the bait and don't mask the point, for the better bream try a size 2 circle hook and DO NOT strike, the fish will hook itself and just pull the rod tip right over

you will not need a shockleader, these are used with braid when downtiding, it gives a little stretch and stops you losing the braid which is expensive when snagged, also can be replaced easily when it has abrasion damage

hth
 

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Bream are experts at stealing the bait. Definately switch to braid. When you feel the rattle just lift slowly into the fish - if you feel it hooked wind it but do not pump the fish. If the fish starts pulling back just ease of off a little then when it calms down you can continue to wind in.

You will of course still miss a lot of fish - as has already been mentioned there will be lots of smaller bream hitting the baits aswell - generally when theres a good shoal in the area if the rattling bites stopped the baits will have been stripped already!! It can get quite frustrating!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for your advice, I am using size 2 hooks, I will look out for 'circle' hooks next time I am in the tackle shop.

I am thinking of treating myself to a new reel, the one I have is a few years old now, so I will definately put braid on it, I have a budget of about £70, any recommendations?
 

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Personally I would say the answer lays in your hook size, switch to a size 4 Aberdeen, Bream only have a small mouth and a size 2 may be just too big for everything but the desperate. Always found squid a better bait for Bream as well, maybe cos it does not mask the hook ?? Macky can.
As to reel, if it's for Bream, I prefer fixed spool, on a spinning rod, loads more fun, but every one has a differrant opinion on fixed spool, I like lever drag, and at around £50 the Abu 7000 takes some beating. some will say there rubbish, but I have a couple and love them.
 

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Thanks for your advice, I am using size 2 hooks, I will look out for 'circle' hooks next time I am in the tackle shop.

I am thinking of treating myself to a new reel, the one I have is a few years old now, so I will definately put braid on it, I have a budget of about £70, any recommendations?
Some would say a size 2 is a bit too big - to be honest in Jersey this would be the smallest they use!!! And believe me having seen bream the size of your hand taking unbaited 3/0 hokkais I dont believe the hook size is the problem!
The reason they 'get away with bigger hooks' in the channel islands is because i think there are so many bream literally fighting over your bait that they become voracious to the extreme.
Circle hooks can aid hook ups - i swear by them for fishing live eel for the bass aswell.
To be honest a size 4 mutu light circle (veals sell these) would be ideal. Totally agree with the previous comment about squid - its tough and the bream love it!! Try a small squid head for a better specimen.
Remember to 'pinch' the bait over the eye of the hook so that the bream cant just drag it off and scarper!

Reel-wise I prefer lever drag and would suggest a shimano charter special 1000ld. Think you can get these for a tiny bit over your £70 budget. Only by a tenner or so. Very hardy reels - simply wash with freshwater and stow away after use!
Type of braid is personal choice - have used soft braids and hard to the same effect. Breaking strain depends on the ground but remember the diameter is so low that you can get away with a higher breaking strain without losing the tide-cutting capabilities!
 

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On the other hand-
I've always used 15/20lb mono for Breaming (Kingmeres/College Rocks) with a finer hook length as it helps you trot back in the relatively shallow water and essentially keep the bait moving which the Bream seem to like .
I tend to drop the rod tip back on getting the first few rattles then just lift in rather than striking wildly when you feel a more positive bite.
 
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