The well-crafted shoulder on this alloy stemmed stick float allows for perfect bait presentation while the magnesium alloy stem helps the angler achieve perfect balance. The heavier sizes are well suited to faster rivers such as the Avon or Severn with the smaller to mid-sized models being the top choice for slower moving, shallower waters.
What better way to catch Barbel, Chub, Roach and Dace than to trot the swim, whether it be a slow meandering river or the fast and deep Trent, Severn or Wye. All can be fished using the present day alloy stemmed floats. The upper body is made from high density balsa wood and the stem is a mixture of aluminium and magnesium, with the end product being a float with ultimate balance which the present day anglers prefer.
Rods can vary in length from 11ft. up to a long 17 footer, depending on the depth of the swim. The top needs to be on the soft side as this will pick up line quickly and aid casting. Main lines, depending on target species, would normally be from 3-6lb and all floats should be fitted with three rubbers on the stem and one on the tip.
ALLOY STEMMED SHOULDERED STICKS
The well crafted shoulder allows for perfect bait presentation without riding up when holding back. The slim smaller patterns are ideal for slow to medium paced waters at depths of three to eight feet, it can with practice be gently held back to let the bait stop or rise enticingly. They are best fished with the bait very close to the bottom using No.8 shot in shirt button style of shotting, loose feeding when the pace is not too fast. The larger, shouldered sticks are best suited to depths of seven to fourteen feet in faster paced waters, the bigger area of shoulder gives good 'holding back' properties for slowing the bait down against a faster top current. For the bigger sticks the best shotting pattern is groups of 2xNo.8 shot, spread equally throughout the bottom half of the rig with no shot in the last nine inches, being soft lead the No.8 are easier to fix and kinder to the line. This style of shotting is excellent in fast water as for this style of fishing you would be using balls of ground bait laced with samples of hook bait, or even a bait dropper. With all the shot concentrated in the lower half of your rig, you can stop the bait or inch it through the feed area. All this will give better bait presentation and positive bite indication.
FISHING THE STICK FLOAT
The key to stick float fishing is to keep in touch with the float at all times. Let the float move downstream in a controlled manner ensuring that the line is never allowed to overtake the float. This is easy when the wind is blowing directly upstream but unfortunately perfect conditions are not always present. In these situations you may well need to go to a larger float. The extra weight will keep you on line and give you better control. Back shotting the float with two or three No8s helps to avoid an adverse wind from pulling the float off line. Most anglers when using trotting control the float by allowing line to pull off the spool, slowing or stopping the float with their finger tip. Whilst this works it tends to give an erratic movement to the bait. A far better method is to move your rod upstream, trap the line against the spool and follow the float down at the speed that produces most bites. If you need to travel further down simply repeat the process. In this way you are in control allowing you to slow the float down, speed it up or even stop it. You can now see that inching a bait through your feeding area is highly achievable.
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