The Sinker Chronicles: Vol 2
Perfect day to sling some lead
I was behind a couple of weeks ago and re-shared a post from the past on Sinkers and how each one produced a different range of distances and their uses. It made me realize that I never completed the next iteration on this topic, and that was testing other sinkers and what they can do. So I apologize for that and have seen the err of my ways. This week, I bring you a new batch of sinkers and distances that came along with them while testing.
One of the most surprising things during this test was seeing how much my casting has changed. After that sinker article, I wrote another casting piece and took what I told you all to heart. I cast my way after a lot of tweaks, bit of coaching from Chip “The Sinker Guy" Brundage, and a class with Noel Kuhn of The Surf Angler (pro-tip, check out the video if you've got an hour to spare as it is undoubtedly worth your time to learn some new techniques). When I wrote this, the best distance I achieved (with a minor tailwind, too) was 140 yards with a 4 oz Sputnik. Today, my best cast was 168 yards with a sputnik! Nearly 30 yards improved from those adjustments made. Ok, I've got my "look at me" moment out of the way. Let's get back to science!
The break down of the test. One rod, different weights
You see from the chart that I used only one rod this time and pulled the test from there. Last time, other rods just meant more error factors and numbers that didn't make a difference, so I simplified it this time. I only used 4 and 5 oz weights, and my Okuma Longitude preloads very nicely at that range. The beach was slightly overcast, and the wind was 5 MPH out of the North heading South (so it was a tailwind). Perfect factors, in my opinion, to perform this test. After writing down my last notation from the test, I was extremely surprised by the findings.
I purchased the Broadhead (I call them Arrow) and Bank sinkers from Walls Tackle Supply via Etsy after getting a recommendation from Joao Marcal of Surf Fishing Florida Facebook Group. My Sputniks came from The Sinker Guy and are always on my cart to fish with (they are my primary sinker, as you have read numerous times before). This isn't a company vs. company test, so don't read into it as such. Sorry, I felt that needed to be said for some reason.
Broadhead Sinker 5 oz
The broadheads were a new sinker for me completely. I had seen my buddy Tom use them (he gave me one to try, too), and he had said he enjoys how they fly and the action associated with them. Between the 4 & 5 oz being 16 yards. Not bad at all, but that could also be the difference between being on the bar or over the bar by a pretty wide margin. They flew a tight spiral (from when I could see it) and sat well. It is quite a personal challenge to get used to how something holds vs. a sputnik. With the drag lighter, I was able to get a nice bend in my rod, and they kept in position. I can see using these on a no/light current day or as part of a fish finder rig. They would also be a solid choice for fishing off the pier when you want the weight at the bottom without extra hold.
I also utilized Walls Tackle Supply for these. According to Take Me Fishing, a bank sinker is: "Bank sinkers are usually used to put a bait close to the bottom. Most are either round or bell-shaped to avoid getting snagged in the structure. Some of these saltwater fishing sinkers connect to the line with a swivel to reduce line twist. Others feature sharp edges and points to stick in soft sand or have wires that stick out and hold like an anchor. Bank sinkers can either be tied to the end of the rig or attached to a fishfinder slide above the hook." –Take Me Fishing Article
Bank Sinker 5 oz
I have seen bank sinkers and used them when fishing from the pier but never to cast bait out. The only thing I don't love about a bank sinker is the connecting end is a bit wide for almost all snap swivel type locks that are on the bottom of my rigs, but with a bit of "motivation" (aka bend dammit!), it fit and held on just fine. These sinkers flew exceptionally well during my test. I was surprised to see how the 4 and 5 oz were so close in location as well. I did the test with these a few extra times to see if I was inconsistent with my throws, but they came up with the same numbers.
One particular shout-out goes to Blake Hunter of Reel30A that he was right when he told me a bank sinker would fly nearly as far as a sputnik. I doubted him before, and I am here to put in writing: BLAKE, I WAS WRONG, AND YOU WERE RIGHT (in truth, the man is typically when it comes to fishing, and I love getting schooled by him). He also explained to me how using a bank sinker sets up a good position for a fish finder rig as it will roll around and move so you can cover more ground. I will likely have to try this with a rig sooner rather than later.
I absolutely could talk to you about this, but I wrote pretty extensively here about them. They are my primary sinker for distance and hold. I've been told different things about sinkers several times, and what I should/shouldn't use. My answer each time is: Thank you!
Sputnik Sinker 5 oz
I hope this test was as educational for you as it was for me. It is beneficial to see these different sinkers in action and also seeing how they fly. There will be another volume coming soon with some other sinkers that we might utilize while surf fishing, and I will get them out there for you to read about with total test distance and holding. I am also picking up a push/pull gauge soon to do a test about break-away strength while showing you some more footage about sinkers.
Have you used these sinkers before? Let us know in the comments where you saw this post or in the comments section on here. Thanks for coming by and reading today! If you'd like to request something to be investigated or written about, please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will get on it. Thanks again, now go forth and do good things!