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I just recieved my Shimano Calyx that I bought off of ebay today. I took it out tonight. Nothing but birdnests, I finally just put it back in the trunk and used my ultra light spinning outfit.

Anybody have any tips on setting up a baitcast reel?
 

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You should have mentioned it when I saw you at Axehead. I had my bait caster in the car.

I'm on my 2nd season with a baitcaster. If you look throughout these forums you'll see some of my thoughts/results with it. Augy has the same one as I do and he's "hooked" on it. I'm less impressed as I finesse fish most of the time.

But for throwing larger baits I enjoy it. And the hookset and fight from the fish is different from using spincasting gear.

Lesson number 1... you didn't have a bird's nest, you had a backlash. :lol:

I've actually gotten pretty good with mine, but again, with larger baits. And I actually prefer it in those situations. Next time I see ya I'll help out - as a newbie myself too.
 

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Check this out. http://www.anglersnet.co.uk/authors/elton66.htm

Just practice practice practice and thoroughly learn how all the controls on it work. One of the biggest mistakes I made when I first got into baitcasting was not re-adjusting the settings everytime I would switch lures.
What pound test do you have on it? I've found 10lb test works best for me, and how about your rod? I've found that I can cast easier and further with a 6'6" MH rod but that is often times too much rod for the little bass around here. I still have trouble sometimes with really light lures on a 6'0 M action rod. Just get your thumb on that spool quick enough to before any of those day ending birdsnests happen :).

Also practice where there is no wind, or even better, where the wind is at your back. Sometimes the slightest breeze can make a big difference.
 

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horn, there are 2 "dials" for setting up your baitcaster. the one that's on your handle side is usually the tension knob that controls how loose or tight your spool is. the other one on the other side is your brake setting.

try this. set your brake at the middle setting. a good all around brake setting. mine is set on "5" and i almost never touch the brake dial. all my adjustments are done on the spool tension knob.

next, hold your rod tip at 45* angle. press spool release but keep your thumb on the actual spool so that it doesn't release any line.

while holding your rod at 45, release the spool. the optimum setting of the tension is so that your lure falls with some resistence. if it free falls, the tension knob is too loose. if the lure doesn't fall at all, loosen up the tension knob until the lure starts to slowly descend. these are sensitive gears and the smallest of adjustments are required.

again, the trick is to get the lure to fall with a little bit of resistance from the spool. this is the optimum setting for the best cast.

using quality reels helps significantly. just remember this, the speed of the lure and the speed of the spool much match perfectly for a good cast. the only time you get backlashes is when your spool speed is faster compared to your lure speed. match this and your set.

with some practice, you can make adjustments in seconds. keep at it! like jason said, i'll never go back to spinning unless i'm skippin under docks. that's the absolute only time I will use spinning gear.
 

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i forgot to mention that the actual "casting" motion is quite different. this WILL take some getting use to. you really have to "whip" the rod when first starting out. after awhile, you can cast short and middle distances with different casting techniques.

think "one" and not "two". meaning, the cast has to be a one step process. with baitcasting, your backswing and forward swing are "one". you can never do it with a 2 step cast.

imagine tiger woods golf swing. the backswing and the transition to forward swing is a single fluid motion. "one" step. if tiger try's this with a 2 step swing, he'll lose soooo much power he might as well be playing miniature golf.

::: once again, this dang subject intriques me. i don't know why. :eek:
 

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I think you need to spend more time using your baitcaster and less time readin bout how to use it Augy :D ... you sound like you could write ur own book on the subject... not that its a bad thing

Horn13 just do what Augy said... he put it perfectly... just match the speed of the lure to the speed of the spool
 

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I think Augy and Jason are right on with their posts. Based on my experience, it is also important to wind back your line in a neat and tightly fashion. Any loose line or loop in the spool will cause a backlash. I use braided line on my baitcaster right now, and any sort of kink in the spool screws me up every time I cast.

Growing up, I used to practice casting baitcasters in the park using a light weight. Obviously, you want to be careful you don't hit anyone, but it was a good alternative to having to go to a nearby lake. Plus, when you're at the lake, you tend to want to fish and not screw around with the backlashes. This might be a more disciplined approach to learn.

Good luck and don't give up. It's a blast fishing with a baitcaster.
 

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One little tip from yer ol' Uncle Al. When casting, turn your wrist so your reel crank faces the sky. Also keep your elbow tight to your body, try putting a magazine or newspaper between your ribs and your arm. If the paper stays put, good. If it falls out, bad. Good luck :!:
 

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Also VERY IMPORTANT you HAVE TO stop the spool with your thumb AS SOON AS your lure hits the water!!!

I'm just speaking from experience.... it took me a full two summers to figure out how to use a baitcaster correctly and it's been three more since and i'm just starting to learn the finer points and tricks such as flipping
 

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Fishthoughts mentions an important point about line. I was taught a long time ago to "re-pack" the spool on a regular basis. Especially after successive backlashes or a particularly nasty one. Secure the end of the line to something or have someone hold it and walk out, releasing most of the line on the spool under a bit of tension (using the cast control knob or your thumb), then reel it back in under a bit of tension. Re-adjust reel settings as needed.
 

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mike163 said:
Fishthoughts mentions an important point about line. I was taught a long time ago to "re-pack" the spool on a regular basis. Especially after successive backlashes or a particularly nasty one. Secure the end of the line to something or have someone hold it and walk out, releasing most of the line on the spool under a bit of tension (using the cast control knob or your thumb), then reel it back in under a bit of tension. Re-adjust reel settings as needed.
I have found that to be the secret to keeping a baitcaster trouble free. Yeah, it kinda sucks to have to do it, but sure beats fixing backlash after backlash.
 
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