Ever wanted to create your own fishing reel? Well here’s your chance with the DCR from Daiwa!
Daiwa have taken the plunge and offered it’s customers the opportunity to take control and create their own, personalised fishing reel!
The concept is simple. Take the body of the classic Daiwa Basia reel (RRP £599) and choose your preferred components, colour or style along the way. Daiwa have set up a user friendly 12 step configuration process, allowing you to choose from a selection of genuine, Japanese made parts to customise your version of this classic carp fishing reel.
How do I get one?
Simply head over to the Daiwa Website, and select whether you want to build your own fishing reel, or carp rod! Once you’ve completed the 12 steps, you can choose your favourite Daiwa Stockist who are appointed DCR dealers, and place your order through them. No fuss, no hassle.
Here’s one we’ve quickly put together…
You’re in the perfect fishing spot, in pursuit of your dream fish. Conditions are ideal. You sense today might be the day you bag your ultimate prize.
Then your rod tip quivers, your pulse quickens and you strike. The fight of your life begins…and then you wake up!
We all have a fish we dream of catching. Some of us have several dream fish we’d love to land. What gets your heart pounding and your fishing reel in a tangle? Here are our top five…
It’s not the biggest or the fastest fish you can catch, but the unique combination of technical skill and watermanship, as well as cunning and guile required to bring to bank a specimen salmon makes this our favourite game fish, and definitely one for any angling must catch list.
And fly fishing for Atlantic salmon is about a lot more than just catching a fish – superb though that may be. Fishing the waters of one of the great salmon fishing estates of Scotland or Ireland is a true adventure of the old school. The majestic highland scenery is the backdrop for the practice of an art steeped in tradition. To take part is a joy and a privilege – and afterwards, it’s back to the bothie for a wee dram!
2. Bone fish
For fly fishermen, or anyone who loves the thrill of a hard fighting fish on light tackle, few pleasures surpass the experience of fishing for bonefish in the shallow coastal flats of the Caribbean. Think stunning blue waters, tropical sunshine and one of the best sport fish on the planet. Florida, Cuba, the Bahamas – all are top holiday destinations with bonefishing to die for. But why all the fuss about a little silver fish?
Bonefishing is all about the hunt – finesse, stealth and a good guide are the prerequisites. Bonefish are tricksters – hunted by barracuda, they’re adapted to be super fast and easily spooked. Unlike big game fishing, there’s no gin palace under you, no thick spool of line, no cooler full of tinnies by your feet. It’s just you, your fly, or lure and the great outdoors. Bonefishing is wild game angling at its very best.
3. Giant trevally
If you like them big, they don’t come much bigger than this! Giant Trevally can grow up to 80 kg and 170 cm in length – but though it’s pretty rare to catch a specimen in this size range, any fish over 15 kgs will give you a fight to remember. Trevally occupy a range of habitats, from tropical flats to coral reefs throughout the Pacific. An apex predator, they’re very fast, extremely strong and super aggressive.
The most fun you can have fishing for giant trevally is probably with a topwater lure. Make sure all your gear is in perfect nick though, because any weakness and you might as well not bother trying. Trevally will bend a hook, snap a line and if the fish gets into the reef, you’re done.
4. Nile Perch
The tranquil waters of Egypt’s Aswan dam offer treasures for the bucket list angler – tiger fish, Vundu and Bagras catfish to name but three of its inhabitants. But the Nile Perch is the real prize and what could be the biggest freshwater catch you’ll ever make.
Nile Perch can weigh in at over 400 lbs and grow to be a whopping 6ft in length. Silver flanked and with a bluish tinge, the fish is a beauty that’s renowned for hard fighting. To catch one, you’ll need a rod of at least a 4.5lb test curve and a reel capable of holding 250 metres of braid. You can hook a Nile Perch on live bait, but lures are favorite – try a depth raider or shad. Oh how nice it is to dream!
Think of the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico, or in the Pacific – Tahiti maybe? The shining shimmer of silver scales and a battle you’ll never forget. We’re talking tarpon, that prized saltwater game fish. A big one could come in at over 200 lbs – it’s not a catch you’re likely to forget in a hurry.
In July last year, dreams did come true for one lucky group of anglers. At the end of a successful day’s Fishing off the Florida coast, the captain gave the order to reel in. But one of the party didn’t hear and a few minutes later, when he finally began to wind in, he got the surprise of his life – he’d hooked a monster. An hour and a half later, fisherman, Jan Toubl brought his quarry alongside to be unhooked and released. The gargantuan tarpon measured in excess of 3m in length – which would put its weight easily in the 300 lb plus league!
My season started off on the Tywi in April and I have been a regular rod at Golden Grove up until now. The first week or so of April started off with fairly low water. There were a few kelts caught and the odd few small sewin. There was a good rise in water in the second week and things started to look up with some awesome sewin up to 15lb being landed with the odd salmon falling to spinners in the high water. Shortly after this the water dropped and cleared just enough to start fishing at night and by the third week of April I was well into them.
I have been fishing at night with a two rod setup, a 10ft 7/8 Airlite fly rod and a 9ft 6 7/8 Airlite. A couple of Airflo V-lite 7/9 fishing reels both loaded with forty plus fly lines – with my favourite two being the fast intermediate and di 3. It’s not often that I use a floater for any of my sewin fishing, but when I do, I use a set of Airflo polyleaders to help turn over.
During the first couple of months there has been some surprisingly big sewin around and my first fish at night of the season was a 12lb bar of silver, followed by another double figure fish of 10.5lb. During the last two week’s of April, there were some fantastic sewin caught by some of the rods fishing there at night, up to 14.5lb, caught by Berwyn Morris. Also a few nice salmon being caught during the day.
May was great. It started off very well just as April – I was out one night with a couple of other rods and it was a very quiet night. Conditions weren’t great with heavy mist on the water and not much in the way of action. It had just gone 1:30am and I was around halfway through the pool when I had an arm wrenching take – but no hook up – It really woke me up from staring into the darkness. Next run through, another ferocious take but this time the fish stuck.
This fish was very strong, and was giving massive head shakes as it tore around the pool, but my Airflo rod and reel combo held up well and I managed to safely land the fish. A belter at 16lb. It had snapped the tube in half where it had been giving massive head shakes. A few photos which didn’t come out great because of the mist and the fish was returned. The other guys fishing all had a couple of hits with no lock ups, but as I just step back into the water I hooked into another good fish which was on briefly, but managed to throw the hook. After that it all went quiet again.
At times throughout May the fishing has been difficult as the water conditions were bad. There has been a lot of small rises in water levels so it has sort of been between day and night fishing a lot of the time, with a murky colour in the deeper areas. There was a week where the day fishing could have been really good, but the sun, which was very high in the sky, killed it and fishing was tough. Night fishing wasn’t too bad and some nice fish were being caught. With there being some colour in the water I have been using mostly tubes around the 2″/2.5″ with the Fast Intermediate fly line. The weight of the tube and density of the fly line lets me fish the tube very slow through the pools which has brought the most success for me, with some beauty’s between 3.5lb and 12lb up to the end of May.
Now into June I managed to grab a few days fishing with a friend – Again the conditions haven’t been great with really thick mist on the water for the majority of the night. It got to 1:00am and I was making my way through the pool when my friend had just walked back and was saying to me how quiet it was, when bang, a good solid take. This fish did not show at all during the time between hooking and landing. It just buckled the fly rod and was determined to stay on the other side of the pool. I wasn’t quite sure how big this fish was but we did know it was a good strong fish. Eventually I managed to bring it to the shallow water in font of us and then it turned on it’s side and we got the first good look at it. A belter of a fish weighing in at 16.5lb. It was a cracking fish, in excellent condition.
We took a few misty photos and the fish was released, which went back very strong. That was the only take of the night but was well worth sticking it out.
We are well in to June now, and hopefully thing’s will settle down a bit with the weather. The river’s coming good for night fishing now, and the fish should start to build up in the pool’s now.
Are you a newbie or a seasoned old hand with years of angling know-how? Either way, you won’t want to miss out on these nuggets of fishing wisdom.
Get the most from your fly rod, fishing reel and line with our reader round-up of top tips for anglers.
From technique tidbits to essential equipment suggestions, there are some excellent tips on offer…
“Keep low when bank fishing, your shadow and silhouette will easily spook fish!”
“Sometimes the fish are right under your feet. So fish close in first, then try further out.”
“Chuck it and chance it!”
“Bait your swim first and leave for a while so fish can feed in confidence hoovering up the freebies, bait some more then cast.”
“When reeling in, and to stop the fly line wrapping around the tip of the rod, keep the tip under water.”
“You’re not going to catch anything if your rods are out of the water!”
“Think like a fish.”
“Fish to your own limits and do what you feel confident with.”
“It’s tadpole season so fish zigs just under the surface with a piece of black foam!”
“Find whatever tactic, rig and bait works for you and stick with it.”
Robin Bodney Humphris
“You don’t need to cast 100 yards to catch fish when they can be right at your feet.”
“A tip I picked up off Dean Kibble this year was to fish my top dropper not too far away from the braided loop on a sinking line, as the line fishes the fly for you. It has certainly worked for me so far.”
“Keep it simple.”
Terry “Tough Mudder” Pancake
“Wear protective glasses at all times when fly fishing a fly. Travelling eighty miles an hour can do a lot of damage so please take care of your eyes folks.”
“Add hang markers to your fly lines if you haven’t already.”
“Or buy the airflo lines with them on – a brilliant idea.”
“Barbless hooks. Easy to pull our of a both fish and people!”
“Wear your hat and glasses!”
“Best tip is rapala knot your boobies – they won’t twist as much, and the movement it gives them is much better.”
“If a fly takes more than 5 minutes to tie, it isn’t worth tying.”
Gareth ‘Forgie’ Evans
“Applying sun screen is probably, one of the best actions you’ll carry out in a fishing day. Skin cancer, the silent killer!”
“Get a rod licence.”
“Tie your own fly patterns.”
“If you hook yourself don’t try to pull the hook out. Push it through so the barb comes out of the skin, cut below the barb and release the hook.”
“Go to where the fish are, it is much easier to catch if the fish are there.”
“Location Location Location!”
“Don’t fish there, lad they took all the fish out last week!”
“Always watch the water.”
“Don’t take the misses!”
“I was always told to not fish near the car parks, but to wander along the bank to the empty stretches, that is where you will find the fish. Thanks to Richard Walker and Fred Taylor for the advice, it still works.”
Have you got an awesome tip? Share it in the comments below!
After a few dismal competition performances I decided to really get bet to basics in my fishing, I was totally over complicating things chopping and changing every five minutes and I was spending more time faffing out of the water than I was actually fishing.
With this in my mind I decided to venture out to a few small Stillwater fisheries situated around the North West. One of the venues I visited was a stunning fishery called Chirk Trout Fishery nestled in the heart of the north wales valleys close to Llangollen and the Welsh Dee. The fishery itself consists of two fly fishing lakes, a bait pool and also fishing rights on the river Ceiriog that runs through the fishery. One of the reasons I chose this venue was the vast variety of trout the fishery stocked. In both lakes there are Rainbow, Brown, Golden, Blue, Tiger and American brook trout all reared on site. Not a bad variety hey? The lakes are around an acre and a half in size, gin clear, with a maximum depth of 12ft. The fishery is renowned for its prolific dry fly sport, and on my arrival it didn’t fail to disappoint with fish rising everywhere. The weather was perfect with a light breeze and clear skies, so back to basics I went and dry fly fishing was the tactic for the day.
I was adamant to not over complicate things so I went for a one rod set up. I chose the 10’ Sage XP 7# a fantastic rod and great for dry fly fishing. I was also trying out the new Airflo Switch Black Cassette Reel, this reel is fantastic and truly stunning to look at. It accommodates all my lines perfectly and is very light when casting, it’s a fantastic addition to any competition angler, as the unique cassette spool is extremely easy to change lines, and save a lot of time in doing so. Now it was time for my line choice. One thing I was noticing was that a lot of the fish were rising right in the centre of the lake, and for a lot of people they would be out of casting range I had a secret weapon, the new 40+ Expert floating line now with super dri technology. This would be the difference of me catching or blanking. Not only does this line fly out but the presentation and ability to hook up at long range would inevitably help me have a fantastic days sport.
After tackling up and a short walk I started fishing on the left hand side of the main fly lake, casting straight into the wind. I had the beautiful river Ceiriog running behind me and plenty of fish rising in front of me. After just watching the water I was able to pick out a few fish that were rising confidently.
I was fishing 9ft of 6lb Airflo Sightfree G3 to my first dropper then 6ft to the point fly, on my dropper I had a big rubber legged Daddy long legs and on the point I was using a JC Diawl Bach. I would be using the daddy as a sight indicator throughout the day, but was confident that it would take fish too and I wasn’t disappointed. I cast out straight into the wind which was effortless with the 40+ line and let everything settle. After ten seconds I began to slow figure of eight, barely moving the line just staying in touch letting the wind push the line and flies towards me. There was a swirl at the daddy but no take, then the daddy shot under the water and I struck. Fish on!! The first fish of the day was a stunning 1lb rainbow trout and after an acrobatic fight the fish slid over the net with the JC Diawl Back firmly set in its top lip. I carried on fishing this method and took 6 fish within 20 minutes.
It then went quiet so I decided to change the point fly to a small immature damsel. The daddy was still acting as a sight indicator and was still attracting a lot of fish. If the fish didn’t take the daddy or got spooked it wasn’t long before the daddy shot under, as the trout had homed in on the point fly. After an hour of fishing I was on 15 stunning fully finned rainbow trout. The fishing was on fire, with trout hammering the daddy and the damsel. After 3 hours of unbelievable fishing I called it a day. The light was beginning to fade and I was overwhelmed with what can only be described as a red letter day. A short late afternoon dry fly session was exactly what I needed to restore my confidence and understand that complicating things is not necessary. I kept the same tactic throughout the day only changing the point fly when it went quiet and it worked unbelievably well, with me finishing on 28 trout returned. The fish weren’t massive but they were fantastic fighters and stunning to look at. A huge advantage was without doubt the 40+ line as a couple of anglers blanked as the fish were out of casting distance but for me casting this line was effortless and the presentation was perfect.
It was an incredible short fishing session at a truly picturesque fishery. Keeping my fishing tackle to a minimum paid off, and persistence and patience helped land a lot of fish. The main reason I was catching was that I was constantly fishing. It sounds so silly but not spending time on the bank out of the water chopping and changing helped me land a hell of a lot of fish. Something so simple but extremely effective helped contribute to a real red letter days fishing the dries and nymphs.
Trout and Salmon magazine have reviewed the Airflo Xceed fly reel, voting it as one of their recommended reels for 2014!
Most fishing reels that cost less than £100 are die-cast (weaker) and then machines for a better finish. The Xceed is fully machined (stronger) from bar-stock aluminium and has a price tag of only £59.99-£79.99 – Including a range of sizes from 4/5, 5/6, 7/9, 9/11, 11/12 – So you’re sure to find a fly reel to suite your needs. It certainly looks and feels like a reel worth twice the price.
The build quality of this fly reel is hard to fault. It has a rigid and very strong full-cage design. The large and wide arbor provides ample capacity. It’s sealed disc-drag ranges from stream-light to a lorry-stopping break.
It has a no-nonsense looks with plenty of porting (holes) and an attractive gloss-black and silver finish.
Not only is the Airflo Xceed Fly Reel light, it features a satin black and silver anodised coating that provides a finish that is not only aesthetically pleasing but protects the reel from corrosion to provide you with many years of smooth performance.
We’re proud to announce that the Airflo Switch Pro fly reel has gained ‘Tackle Testers Choice’ by Trout Fisherman magazine! This is where the latest fishing gear is put through it’s paces by T&S’s independent tester Robbie Winram who has been fortunate enough to have tested 1000′s of items of tackle over his 30 year fly-fishing career.
This amazing new fishing reel from Airflo is the complete redesign of the ever popular Airflo Switch Superlite reel. Launched as the Switch Pro, it’s machined from barstock allow and comes in two different sizes. A 7/9 version will easily take 7wt or 8wt fly lines with over 120 yards of 20lb backing, and the 4/6 that will take a 5wt or 6 wt line with the same amount of backing.
Style and Substance
The Switch Pro fly reel is an incredibly stylish reel. It has a ‘spoked wheel’ design reel cage featuring a black anodised finish with anodised silver alloy highlights that sets the reel off really well. The face plate has been given the same finish and has been heavily ventilated with a series of drilled holes.
There’s a good sized handle with a matching counterbalance weight on the opposite side for a lovely smooth wind. On the rear of the reel is a large scalloped drag knob that is very easy to turn in precise increments and this brings into play a very smooth disc drag.
Each reel comes with four extra spools plus one on the reel and these are made from clear impact-plastic and are a simple push-fit onto the face plate over the rubber 0-ring. There’s only one way to push them on, matching two raised lugs on the spool with the holes on the face plate. When the spool is removed the sealed drag unit is revealed.
Airflo Switch Pro 7/9
Prices £129.99 | Weight 7.2oz | Spare Spool £7.99 | Width 31mm | Dia 96mm
Airflo Switch Pro 4/6
Prices £119.99 | Weight 6.6oz | Spare Spool £7.99 | Width 27mm | Dia 84mm
We’ve been trawling the web looking for some exciting fishing footage for your viewing pleasure and have put together a selection of our three favourite pike attack clips!
Lure fishing can be very exciting at the best of times, but using a braided mainline whilst fishing lures can be absolutely phenomenal, but have you ever thought about what’s happening beneath the water? Make sure you have your drag knobs tightened hard on your fishing reels when one of these fearsome looking fish hits your lure!
The Airflo Sniper Fly Reel is an incredible reel at a budget price point.
If you’re putting a fly fishing outfit together with a limited budget, you need not look further than the Airflo Sniper fly reel. At just £29.99 with a FREE Velocity fly line.
The Sniper reel has been designed by top anglers here at Fishtec, to offer fishermen on a tight budget a quality, lightweight fly reel. Boasting great looks and a superb build quality featuring a lightweight frame, the Sniper fly reel can hold up to 100 meters of 20lb backing along with a full 30 yard fly line due to a generous large arbor.
Perfecting the art of fly fishing takes years of practice, patience and determination. For those of us with years of experience, it’s easy to forget that we were beginners ourselves many moons ago.
Fly fishing skills were once passed down from one generation to the next. Now, this knowledge is freely available online.
Totalling 27 minutes and 8 seconds, the six videos below make a great introduction to fly fishing. From setting up fly reels to tying a simple fly, here is our crash course in fly fishing.
Choosing the right equipment
Start your foray into fly fishing by kitting yourself out with the right tackle.
How to set up a fly reel
This might be a long video, but it is very thorough. You can’t catch any fish without first setting up your reel.
How to cast a fly rod
The next step is learning how to cast your fly rod.
How to tie a simple ‘Bloodworm’ fly
Fly tying is a craft that many fly fishermen enjoy. The joy of landing a fish is even greater when you’ve made the fly yourself.
How to improve your casting distance
After learning how to cast, you’ll be keen to practice and improve your technique.
How to target big fish
Now you’re ready to go after the biggest fish in the lake. Impress your friends and beat your own records by targeting a whopper!
Once you’ve mastered the basics, these fly fishing tutorials will help you to improve and perfect your fly fishing techniques.