Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Anthracite Outfitters, Product Review: Tactical Anglers Fishing Clips for Sweet Water Application

Confidence (from "New Oxford American Dictionary" on my computer): the feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something; firm trust.

Recently I have started using the Tactical Anglers "Tactical Fishing Clips". {as seen attached to the lure in the above image} My findings based on the performance of the clips and moreover, the performance of my lures attached to the clips, bring one word to mind... Confidence.

Before I ever fish a new lure or piece of terminal tackle I always watch its behavior in close. When I first received the Tactical Angler Fishing Clips I took them and my go to lures and for about 3 hours scrutinized the plug and clip combination's behavior in the water. The clip I focused on was the 50lbs. clip. This is the most practical size for my walleye and smallmouth lures. The first lure I attached to the clip was a 3/4oz bucktail jig. I was shocked to see that there was no restriction of the jigs movement akin to using a non-slip loop knot. The jig bounced through the column as if there was no clip there. The walleye also don't appear to notice the clip either fishing the jig as usual...

After I gained full confidence in the behavior of the jig attached to the clip, I switched to my swimming plugs. Those plugs being the standard balsa 4-3/8" rapala, a Shallow Shad X-rap XRSH-08, and a Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnow in the 5 1/4" floating. I spent a good amount of time with short casts and varied retrieves so I could watch the plugs behavior. Again I was thrilled with what I saw. The XRSH-08 and the Crystal Minnow behaved as if I tied direct via a non-slip loop knot. The light balsa rapala was actually enhanced by the slight bit of weight the clip added to the lure. One of my favorite and often surprisingly effective techniques is to cast the rapala short, in the dark, no more than 20' off the river bank. Then as the mellow current grabs the lure, I just subtly twitch the rod tip so the rapala displaces as much surface water as possible in order to create rings in the surface. Walleye pound the snot out of it in inches of water. Well when I employed this technique with the TA 50lbs. clip attached I found the lure's behavior in this technique to be enhanced as well a slight audible click created between the clip and the lure eye. The head of the lure rides a bit lower in the surface so the same rod tip motion causes more water to be displaced. All of my standard techniques and lures produced as well as they have before I started using the TA 50lbs. clip...

One of the many functional aspects of the TA 50lbs. clip is the efficiency of changing lures. It took me 3 minutes with my eyes closed to get the feel for changing lures. In situations where the walleye are at your feet at night, the use of any light is ill advised. I would never in a million years trust that a duo-lock snap was fully closed unless turning my back to the water and using my red light on my head lamp to verify the plugs security. Anytime a lure isn't in the water it can't catch fish. Yeah, I know that's like saying the team that scores the most wins, but if you took and added up the seconds one looses changing plugs it would add up to hours a year. Once the TA clip is attached to the plug with an audible metal on metal "click" it's attached securely. Trust me, the lure aint going anywhere unless you break it off!!!

This leads me to the strength of the clip. Many a time smallmouth and larger walleye have mutilated duo-lock snaps on me. Many a time when locked up on sticky bottom I stretched out duo-lock snaps. Well that's the least of my concerns with the TA 50lbs. clip. Since using the TA clips I have brought back snagged jigs with the hook broken or straightened and the TA clip unscathed.

I began this piece with a definition of the word "confidence". When it comes to the security, and functionality of the Tactical Anglers Fishing Clips the definition I started with is what comes to mind for me. In my angling world every cast could produce a trophy. In my angling world trophies are just a cast away. In my angling world confidence is a must. The last thing that concerns me in my sweet water angling world is where my lure attaches to the Tactical Anglers Tactical Fishing Clip.

Speaking of fishing...I'm going fishing...

Hope this helps.


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