The LRS reels had beefed up drags applied that could now generate 30lb of drag and still maintain free spool, which allowed the anglers to cast anchovies and mackerel. That's also what Cal Sheets does to Penn Internationals -- he completely re-engineers the lighter 16/20/30 series Internationals so that you can fish 30, 50, and even 80 lb line (usually spectra with a mono top shot).
Just so you know, Track Fishing may earn an affiliate commission from the links on this page, at no extra cost to you. Often considered a classic bottom fish, grouper is one of the most popular species to go after for beginners and experienced anglers alike.
Although heavy reels are not required for inshore fishing with live bait rigs, they don’t hurt. This will allow you to exert more strength and precision when it comes to extracting the grouper from its hiding places.
Shaman TLD 2-Speed Conventional Reel is durable, sturdy, and remarkably powerful. It offers exceptional lever drag, a unique feature that should be praised for numerous reasons.
The Shaman TLD has a unique design that includes a solid graphite frame as well as a side plate with an aluminum spool. Shift gears easily with the two-speed effect of this reel and know that it has a maximum drag of 42 lbs.
A slight upgrade to the Penn Squall series, this reel is not only robust but it’s also durable. The Penn Squall Level Wind is corrosion resistant as it is designed for saltwater.
Corrosion-resistant and perfect for saltwater use Has a large spool capacity A versatile and strong reel You aren’t limited just to grouper when you use this reel, however, as it can also be used for other bottom fish or large species, too.
Built with a solid aluminum frame, this reel is strong, and resists rust and corrosion. The Penn US Senator also has the HT 100 drag system, providing you with all the fishing power you might need.
It can easily land fish past 50 lbs, offering power and user-friendly design. It has a power handle that is comfortable to use and easy to hold along with reversible harness lugs.
It has a durable gear train and is machine framed, making it more resilient and perfectly aligned. You can add a backlight side plate, for instance, to make it perfect for commercial use.
Great for hobby or commercial use Excellent for saltwater use Has six stainless steel bearings Known as the Saliva Lever Saltwater Reel, this product has six separate corrosion-resistant ball bearings.
It performs well on fresh and saltwater, offering greater versatility and strength than some smaller models. A highly capable reel, it can hold a ton of monofilament or braided line.
Before you make your choice, you have to consider different kinds of reels and rods on the market. Several factors combine to determine the best reels for different fishing waters.
The choice you make would depend on the size of grouper you want to tackle. If you are targeting a bigger grouper, then you would require the equivalent tackles for the fish.
If you want to fish in a rocky area and you are targeting grouper of about 50lbs, you have to consider the braided line as it can offer some benefits. Furthermore, you have to consider a reel with a good drag, it is going to be more powerful, and that means that you can catch bigger fish.
If you want fast and heavy fishing action, then you require about six to seven foot spinning rod. If you want to catch the biggest grouper you require a heavy rod and this must have a strong backbone.
This type of rod is unique because you are not going to find it hard to lift your grouper fish as soon as you catch them. In deciding the type to buy, then you have to consider the fish strength and size.
Another important factor to consider when you want to catch grouper is the gear ratio. You are not going to find it difficult to catch the grouper because it would make it easy for you to pull away the fish from the rock where it could hide itself whenever it is hooked.
It appears that many people are more conversant with conventional reels, and the reason for that is the benefit it offers, as well as the better fishing leverage it provides for its users. When you use them, it is going to force even the heaviest and the strongest grouper from its holes and hiding places.
This is one of the best casting reels and it is perfect for different kinds of fish, especially grouper. The brand is popular because of the solid construction of a single aluminum frame which makes it very strong.
It is equally composed of heat pickled pinion gear. The gear train is unique and it was designed in such a way that it can serve you for a very long time.
This product is a redesign of the previous brand, and it is done to satisfy the needs of users. It is powerful enough that it can catch any kind of grouper you want, but it is most suited for saltwater.
This is good because the ball bearings would neither rust nor corrode, which makes the product is responsive anytime you use it. Infinite anti reverse Machined aluminum spool Machined aluminum rod with a clamp Lever drag two speed reel Precision ratchet anti-reverse feature It is medium light and compact design Furthermore, it features 6.3:1 high gear ratio as well as 3.1:1 low gear ratio The line capacity of the product is 20/300 and several other ranges.
Obama Lamar has produced many kinds of spinning reels. If you want to fish in trout, bluegill, crappie, as well as small perch, then you can use the smallest size of that family, which is the C10 brand.
This smallest size is meant for two to six pounds fishing line. These are intermediate size reels, and they are good for many anglers, especially those that fish on steel head, walleye, bass, as well as catfish and several others.
This is a capable reel, and because of the efficiency, it can hold as much as two hundred and forty of fifteen pounds monofilament line. This brand possesses an extraordinary cranking power and it can hull any grouper of any size because of the capacity.
If you are looking for a product that would deliver maximum performance in saltwater fishing, then you have to choose the brand. It is the best for catfish, groupers and other types of fish in lakes and big waters.
For an effective reel control, the product features forged aluminum handle. One of the best reel products of the company includes the Penn Squall Level Wind reel.
This replaces the famous brand from the company that is the GT series reels. This latest product has the good qualities of the GT series and this is in addition to the improved features.
An added feature of the product is the instant anti-reverse bearing and it is now packaged in a more compact form. Furthermore, the brand features a lightweight graphite frame, as well as a side plate.
Forged aluminum handle Machined aluminum spool Stainless steel pinion gear HT 100 drag system Stainless steel bearing Instant reverse system The product is durable as the body is designed with the finest quality stainless steel materials.
This means that irrespective of the number of hours that you use the product that it would not creep. If you want a powerful fishing reel, this brand offers you a good option.
I try to up my odds of landing grouper by building leaders that can withstand the line-gnawing reefs. My grouper rig is simple; it consists of a 6 to an 8-foot-long leader of 300-pound-test monofilament with a 9/0 to 11/0 circle hook.
All swivels and the hooks are attached to the line using 1.9 mm crimp sleeves. Slide your weight onto the line, and then attach the opposite end to the swivel on the long leader.
A fighting rod of 5’8” or longer, rated for line up to 200-pound test will do in most cases. My reel of choice is the Shaman Thorium 30HG spooled with 65-pound-test braided line.
The 6.2:1 gear ratio makes it fast and powerful enough to move big grouper in a hurry. The goal is to keep them out of the reef, but if they do get back to their hole, you’re prepared with a leader that can survive the fight.
When I hooked the gag grouper in this picture, he immediately ran back into his hole in the reef. Randy Not is the co-publisher of Coastal Angler/The Angler Magazine’s Panama City/Forgotten Coast edition.
BTW, it didn't bother my wrist a bit which was my whole goal. You may want to educate yourself on 2 speeds more, because you don't start off on high and shift it into low for grouper.
Then you go on to claim, that its very rare to catch a 20 pound plus grouper. If you can't handle a 20 pound grouper then you may need to hit the gym.
Oops, Don't forget to tighten your star drag my friend. “You state you fish offshore Maya, so I pay a little more for my hooks too and my leader too.
I use 50lb Vanish flour main line, Yamagata circle hooks, and Seagate Four for leader inside 90 feet of water. That's a lot of up and down, missed fish, shorts, grunts, stolen bait.
That is a lot of wear on the system of the lever drag. My remarks were made in general as for others to see that you don't need to spend 500 plus dollars on a reel to catch grouper and you want to get all smart ass on me.
I have caught grouper on my Trinidad, Internationals, Accurate and my Penn's so what ever you want to think. The accurate 665 Boss series of which I have 10 have had the handles snap off on several occasions.
If you wrench on that handle like some people like to do it will break at the shaft entering the side plate. Here is some advice below from a guy who services lots of forum members reels.
Quote in this thread from Triumph Rick of Ricks Reel Service “I don't like seeing a lever drag reel used for locked down drag bottom fishing...they aren't made for that. And for anyone who’s hard to take a 10-minute break after bringing in a 5-pound red snapper from 230 feet down, the prospect of reeling in a fish from five times that depth is absurd.
Deep-drop fishing takes this idea to the extreme, plying depths of 300-1,000 feet or more for grouper and other species unidentifiable to most, but gobbled nonetheless by even the most discriminating palates. One of my first blue water trips, an overnight er to the Mars platform many years ago, was a bountiful one with plenty of school-sized yellow fin.
I was ready to take a shot at a fish larger than the 100-pound yellow fin cooling in the ice chest. Well before the advancements in live bait, we were trolling at the standard six knots with a wide spread when a large fish put a hole in the water the size of one of those new hybrid cars.
I was chock-full of “young and dumb” in those days, and didn’t even know the meaning of “living at the moment” and enjoying the sweet song of the drag. No doubt with the look of Mike Singleton as the fish slowed its sizzling initial run, I mentally prepared for the fight ahead.
There was a lot more gold showing on the inside of the reel than before, probably a little more line than what is a drop at the Lena or Cognac platforms off the mouth of the Mississippi River. Sometime shortly after I began cranking on the heavy fish, it made a run to port, and the line went slack.
Apprehension turned to rage that I’d lost the fish, which would have certainly been the largest skin on the proverbial wall by a large measure. Plenty of anger poured into those first hundred cranks or so, and as the adrenaline began to wear off, the sweat started to streak in earnest, and I felt the first of several slight twinges in my forearms as the midsummer sun depleted the water in my system.
“Shoot, most people would fall out just bringing it up to check the bait,” said Scott Steiner, local distributor of Deep Drop Fishing, an East Coast electric reel outfit specializing in the heavy-duty stuff. Almost as difficult as hoisting a big grouper from 1,000 feet was organizing a trip with Steiner and Bill Delaware, an offshore captain in Venice.
Hurricanes, business conflicts and about a hundred other things did their darnedest to scuttle the trip, but finally, we shoved off from Venice Marina at around noon and sped down Grand Pass in Delaware’s 32-foot Twin-V catamaran, taking the shortcut through the first spillway and into Joseph’s Bayou and East Bay. A flat-calm Gulf awaited and showcased dozens of balls of thread fin herring en route to South Pass 75, where we deployed the two deep-drop rigs.
Before diving into the boat dealership, Hunter was known as one of the best charter captains at plucking grouper from the rigs surrounding the bird foot delta. “They’ve got big Warsaw, gags, yellow edge, snowy and other fish that you literally couldn’t handle without one of these rigs,” said Steiner.
Shane Decay, a deep-drop enthusiast, was along for the ride, and manned his Deep Drop Pro, which looked more like a small crane than a fishing outfit. On the other side of the boat, Hunter manned the more conventional looking Super Stick system, the reel being a Krystal 651 filled with 200-pound dark gray Spectra.
All of this might as well have been Chinese to me, but the inference was unmistakable: There were no shortcuts, from the motor on the reel to the components on the rod, brackets and base in this type of fishing. You never know if it’s going to be a barely legal snowy grouper or a 100-pound Warsaw, so you’ve got to get the first 50 feet up as quickly as possible,” said Steiner.
The lights glow in the dark constantly, and the pulse attracts the fish, where he gets a whiff of the bait. Decay filled them this time with a smorgasbord of squid, butterflied hard tail and a 14-inch white trout carcass I had snared back at the dock.
The thick boom pulsed like a spastic recurve bow as the unseen fish struggled a thousand feet down, and the line was steadily fed back onto the reel. “It took three and a half minutes to get it down there, and it should be around four or five to get it back up,” said Decay, who joined most of us in excitedly peering into the blue water far before the fish was anywhere close to being within sight.
The next drop produced a barrel fish, which looked like a cross between a Bermuda chub and a pompano, and whose internal make-up allowed it to fight pretty much all the way to the surface. Most of the crew had never caught, much less eaten, one, but Hunter, who had landed several on a recent trip, reported the flesh as being every bit as good as grouper.
Steiner expertly stuck the exhausted fish, and hoisted the 60-pounder over the side as Delaware summoned the strength to clamber aboard. It was loaded up, though, with the thick fiberglass rod straining as much as it possibly could, but line was slowly filling the reel.
“That’s some cranking power, there,” said Steiner, shaking his head as a 30-foot section of heavy, rusted cable came into view, trailed, amazingly, by Decay’s leader with a small snowy still attached, and Hunter’s rig, which had a barrel fish and another grouper as well. No, it’s not for everybody, but if you like the adventure of fishing where few hooks have been seen for species most could not identify, or if you just like to eat grouper without risking a hernia and knowing the location of every wreck in the Gulf, deep-dropping could be the way to go.
May 1 marked the official opening of recreational grouper season along the Atlantic coast, which means hard-core bottom fishermen from North Carolina to Key West, Florida, will be gearing up and heading offshore to chase these tasty critters. When scared, a grouper will often swim into a hole, cave or any structure where they can wedge themselves into a crevice and flare their gills, so they can’t be removed.
Other good baits include sardines, scads, cigar minnows, spots, craters, grunts, thread fins and ponies or menhaden. Either way, bring plenty of frisky live bait and make sure they are on the large side.
The biggest reason is the over-abundance of the “overfished” (per fishery managers) American red snapper. These snapper are big (many between 12 and 25 pounds), extremely aggressive and will eat you out of bait and boat.
The second reason I recommend using larger baits is that grouper are inherently lazy and like to eat the biggest, easiest meal they can find. A gag grouper will routinely eat a bait that is roughly 10 percent of its body weight.
Sometimes grouper will fall victim to whole, dead fish such as Spanish sardines or cigar minnows. The problem with these are the red snapper and the thousands of sea bass, grunts and trigger fish that will peck the dead stuff off the hook.
Ideally, you can entice the grouper to feed away from the structure, so you can stop the fish from going back in the hole after he’s hooked. Let that fish get back into its home, and be prepared for your buddies to start yelling “gone!” or “fail!” as you tie on a new rig.
I purchased this reel to replace a Diana saltiest that I use for live bait trolling for kings. The Diana keep breaking springs for the clicker, so I wanted something a little more robust.
Conrad to send the first one I purchased back to get an updated clicker. The clicker is nice and loud when a fish hits the live bait.
Although I used the 1 speed 4:1 gear ratio because of the slow pitch jigs used aka butterfly etc. It didn't require a high speed Yoko reel so it worked just fine.
Accurate reels For the size awesome power & very smooth cast effortlessly! Outstanding reel Smooth, lightweight and aesthetically pleasing.
Light, easy to cast and capable of handling heavy volumes of braided line. Prosper lightweight, compatible with ALPS, American Tackle, and Pacific Bay 24 mm reel seats.
High quality single speed I bought this for my brother he took it out for snapper fishing and to troll for king fish really handled everything we were targeting. If you're wondering which is the better leader material, fluorocarbon vs mono, this article will go over benefits and drawbacks of each line type to see if there is a clear winner.
Strike up a conversation about leader material and you'll quickly learn that anglers are prone to strong opinions, especially related to tackle. Guesses and pondering aside, it's time to get to the bottom of the great debate: fluorocarbon vs mono and which is the best leader material.
The discovery was made in the late 1960s by a chemical engineer named Mr. Ishim of the Korea company in Japan. Talking about what makes fluorocarbon unique and different is difficult without comparing it to nylon-based monofilament, so let's get into the comparisons.
Fluorocarbon's lack of elasticity is seen as a positive trait among anglers as it provides a more sensitive “feel” of the lure and the fish. Mono filament, being less dense, actually absorbs water and is more prone to surface damage that can weaken the line.
Being less dense, monofilament is typically preferred for top water fishing applications as the line has near-neutral buoyancy and floats. Being denser, fluorocarbon can withstand more scratches, nicks, and dings while fishing than monofilament and still maintain its strength.
In smaller line sizes, you won't notice much difference in knot tying ability between monofilament or fluorocarbon. Mono filament is reliable, relatively cheap, and when used as a leader, gives you a nice shock absorber at the end of your line.
Fluorocarbon, being much denser than mono, sinks faster, gives you a better feel of your lure and has a higher level of abrasion resistance. But fluorocarbon is much more difficult to tie reliable knots in, especially in larger sizes, and it's quite a bit more expensive than mono.
So, for the average weekend warrior, the overall usefulness, thriftiness, and reliability of mono makes it our winner. Red Snapper are one of the most sought after, and definitely one of the top targets of all anglers along the Florida Panhandle.
Recent years have seen a huge increase in size and numbers. Minimum size limit is 16 inches in total length, two per harvester per day.
You can buy charts from Half Hitch, or you can look online at www.myfwc.com/conservation/saltwater/artificial-reefs, or on a county site like www.co.okaloosa.fl.us/dept_pw_resources_reefs.html. Optionally, you can have a reef company build your own private spots.
The next string of four, I like 20 or so miles down the beach just inshore of the state water line. The last three of my order I like 20 or so miles from home in water 150 ft to 200 ft deep south of my two inshore strings, these will produce snapper, grouper and amber jacks.
Many times they put a large reef like a tug boat down first and then make an X pattern around the tug boat using Florida Special reefs. Most people want to go and fish the tug boat in the middle of the cluster but I often find the best fishing on the far ends is the X pattern of reef modules up to a 1/2 mile from the larger anchor wreck.
The reason for this is it is easier for people to find the larger center reef and it just gets fished more. Google Earth has a neat feature now; there was a study done of the Florida Bank or Destiny Dome.
If you look at Google Earth and really start to zoom in on our area you will see two lines start to appear along the coast from 180 ft to 300 ft. All the area inside these lines is hi-definition bottom. When you first open Google Earth you need to make a couple changes to the settings.
I have checked known numbers for rocks, and they are within 20 ft. You can even use Google Earth to organize all your places. To really catch red snapper you will need a good bottom machine and GPS unit.
If you like spinning rods and reels an 8000 size reel on a 6 1/2 ft to 7ft medium heavy rod with 65 lb braid works good and is also great for when you want to butterfly jig for snappers or fly line for kings. The leader should be 60 lb test 6ft long with a 7/0 Owner Mute Light hook or similar.
As for the size of lead I like the lightest possible to be able to fish straight up and down in the current. With this rig you use a much lighter lead no matter the depth of the water, only about 2 oz.
When you arrive at the spot toss as far up current as you can and let it slowly drift back to you. By the time the rig is under the boat you will often have a snapper bite already, and many times one of the larger ones you will catch all day, as the bigger snapper will often be very close to the surface, closer than you may think.
Regular mono works good for leader material, but when fishing gets tough, or you just want an extra edge, make your rigs out of Jaguar Fluorocarbon. Fluorocarbon is the same density as saltwater and does not refract light making it nearly invisible to the fish.
Most of the time a regular Hayabusa bait rig works great. Sometimes during a full moon the bait fish can be very finicky and difficult to catch.
One of the things most people hate about catching bait is how to store the Sabik rigs at the end of the day. I cut 4 or 5 pieces of PVC pipe 5’ long and zip tie to attach them to a leg of the T-top, I slide the bait rig lead first into the PVC pipe and hook the last hook on the edge.
This way the rigs does not just stay tangled on the rod at the end of the day. For those of you who are like me and sometimes get bored fishing with bait waiting for a bite there is always butterfly jigging.
For me tossing over a Sure mark buoy when we get to the spot makes it so much easier. The nice thing about the Sure mark Buoy over other models is once you throw it over it feeds out just enough line to stay right on top of the wreck and not drift out of place.