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Paul's Fishing Kites Copyright © 2002-09 

 

Paul Barnes

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Bottom Longline Instructions

The Bottom Longline is considered to be the easiest of all kite fishing systems to operate.

It is ideally suited to east coast fishing or anywhere there is clear sandy snag free areas. The Bottom Longline is not suitable for fishing on or near reef, foul, rocks or in harbour mouths.

There are two number 6 coastlock clips at the end of the 65kg kiteline on the large kite reel.

Attach the first clip to either wing spar of the kite above the plastic cross spar locator (or through the braided cord loop supplied only with the Delta Force Kite).

The second clip is attached to the appropriate eyelet on the keel of the kite. There are 3 eyelets on the keel, the first (on the corner of the keel) is for light wind, the middle eyelet is for moderate winds and the third, (closest to the centre of the kite) is for strong to gusty conditions.

 

Safety Features

The clip attached to the wing spar is a safety feature and ensures that the kite is not lost if a clip or eyelet fail. Be sure to check that both clips are securely fastened.

The kite safety floats are a safety feature and should always be used with the Large Delta Kites. If the kite enters the water the safety float helps to keep the kite afloat.

The safety floats can be clipped directly to the light wind eyelet of the keel or, if you are using a safety trace (a short 10 to 15 kg trace) between the keel and the keel clip,the floats can be attached to the kiteline clip. Should your safety trace break the floats will come away with the kiteline and assist in keeping the kite afloat as it is recovered by the wing.

Be sure, if clipping the safety float to the light wind eyelet on the keel and also flying your kite from this eyelet, that the safety floats are connected BEHIND the kiteline.

If the kite does enter the water slacken off the mainline. If the kite has dived to the bottom the slack in the line will allow the kite to resurface with the assistance of the floats. Having the kite on the surface makes it easier when retrieving and also keeps the kite safe from scuffing on the bottom as the kite is hauled in.

Tacking

Launch your kite and ascertain if it requires tacking to provide optimum fishing angle from shore. If so, attach the tacking rope (supplied with your rig) to the bottom end of the wing spar on the side you wish the kite to go to. Attach the clip of the tacking rope to the cord on the kite, above the plastic end cap on the wing.

Tie a screwed up plastic shopping bag to the lower end of the tacking rope. This creates the drag required for tacking.

The more drag you have, the more your kite will tack. The stronger the wind is, the easier it is to obtain a good steady tack.

Relaunch your kite and study it for several minutes prior to setting your gear.

Taking this time to ensure you have correctly set for the conditions could mean less time wasted once the gear is out.

Deployment

At the lower end of the kiteline, between the kiteline and the mainline, is a heavy duty braided nylon cord with a red and green attached. (Flags are not supplied with dropper rigs) This flag alerts boats to the fact there is a longline present and indicates which side of the gear it is safe to pass on.

The large spare loop pre-tied in the braided cord below the flag is where you attach your bottle float. A two litre bottle is generally sufficient however a four litre container may be required in strong wind conditions.

Thread the braided cord loop through the handle of the bottle and up over the bottom of the bottle to secure it to the kiteline. Fill the bottle with enough sand or water until the kite cannot quite lift it off the beach.

The first section of mainline (between the flag and the hook section) is the leader section which extends for approximately 130 metres. The longer the leader section is the less weight that is required in order to hold the hook section firmly on the bottom.

The most important weights on the longline are the ones just prior to the hook section. In order to avoid any wear and tear on the mainline Paul's Fishing Kites supplies a heavy duty cord crimped into the mainline to attach the weights onto the line.

A good rule of thumb is for every quarter of a two litre bottle of sand attach one 8oz weight at the front end of the hook section.

Weights are not generally required at the back of the hook section. If the front is hard on the bottom, the back should be too. The gear should be set at a slow walking speed.

Underweighting the mainline will result in the gear lifting off the bottom once it is fully deployed and fish are caught only on the shore end of the line.

Too much weight results in the gear taking an extraordinarily long time to set, possibly getting bogged, and allows paddle crabs to strip your baits. Hooks return clean, no fish and no baits.

Optimum weighting should return a line with fish spread evenly throughout the hook section.

The baited hooks are clipped onto the 115kg pre-stoppered hook section. After each trace is clipped on let two stops pass before attaching another trace. This allows for an empty space between traces and prevents the traces from touching each other and becoming tangled.

Note: Pre-stoppered hook sections are not supplied with the budget longline and budget kontiki rigs. These systems use surfmaster clips which require the traces to be tied to the clips and fixed in place on your mainline.

Fishing Time

East Coast: Once the gear is set it can be allowed to fish for up to 30 - 45 minutes before retrieval.

West Coast: Due to the abundance of large sharks and stingrays on this coast limit your first set to 15 to 20 minutes maximum. If the gear returns with few fish and no sign of shark problems it is safe to leave the gear out for 30 to 40 minutes on your next set. NEVER leave the gear set on the West Coast for longer than 45 minutes.

Retrieving

Pull the line up the beach by hand and wind the SLACK line onto the reel, removing excess sand from the mainline in the process.

DO NOT USE THE REEL AS A WINCH

If you plan to do another set and there is plenty of room available on the beach, retrieve the line to the hook section only. Lay the hook section along the beach well clear of the surf. Get one of your helpers to hold the mainline to stop it running back out to sea while you walk through the beached hook section removing fish and re-baiting as you go. Once this is done simply release the line and allow it to set again.

Maintenance

Rain or saltwater immersion does not affect the performance of these kites. Rinse your gear with fresh water after use and keep a check on your line for any scuffing or abrasion. Replace damaged line with a crimped join or blood knots and check regularly.

DO NOT USE SWIVELS TO JOIN LINES

Check your kite for possible damage, particularly after flying in adverse conditions. Repair holes by searing them with heat or cover them with sail repair tape.

The large delta kite is supplied with a 8 mm and 10 mm tawa dowel. Use the 8 mm in light winds or whittle down the ends of the 10 mm for use in moderate to strong winds. The dowel should fit easily into the cross spar locators with about half an inch of movement back and forth once fitted to the kite.

Strong, knot free tawa dowel is very important. Pine or beech dowel is too weak and tends to bow out the back of the kite causing instability in flight.

The 8 mm tawa dowel is another safety feature of our kites.

Should the kite enter the water the dowel will break, fall away from the kite, and the kite will be safely retrieved on the surface by the wing.

If using the 10mm tawa dowel it is necessary to fit a safety trace between the kiteline clip and the eyelet of the keel. If the kite enters the water the safety trace will break allowing easy retrieval by the wing.

Caution

  1. Always fly your kite well clear of swimmers, areas where the rescue helicopter operates, or where boats may be prevalent.
  2. The bottom longline is designed to be fished over clear sandy snag-free areas only.
  3. Aviation regulations prohibit the flying of kites above 400 feet or within five miles of any airport or aerodrome.
  4. Some areas of our seaways are used by amphibious aircraft or for Air Force exercises. If in any doubt phone your local Civil Aviation Department.
  5. Current New Zealand fishing regulations allow 9 snapper per person per day plus 20 other fish on the east coast. West coast fishers are permitted 15 snapper per person per day plus 20 other fish.
  6. Longline regulations allow a maximum of 25 hooks per line. (Not per person) e.g. To set 50 hooks legally for two or more fishers would require two longlines with a maximum of 25 hooks per line.

Bait

The most commonly used baits for kitefishing are fresh or salted trevally or scaled mullet cut into strip baits 20 to 25 mm wide and 50 to 75 mm long.

Fishing with these baits will result in catches of snapper, gurnard and kahawai that reflect the abundance of each species in the area.

Pilchards are a very effective bait for those targeting kahawai or trevally and, if the hooks are set mid-water, john dory and kingfish are can also be targeted with these baits. Care needs to be taken when using these soft baits to ensure they don't fall off.

Strips of high quality squid are a top bait particularly when large to very large squid are used. Fresh or frozen octopus is a very good bait for targeting snapper on the east coast but should not be used on the west coast as it catches far too many sharks.

Gurnard do not like squid or octopus so don't use these baits in areas where gurnard are the main catch.

Because of the distances involved with kitefishing it is important to use a firm fresh bait. Pre-frozen baits, unless heavily salted, often do not last the distance and serve only to feed the paddle crabs within the initial 300 metres of the shore.

Salted fish fillets can also be used successfully in areas where it is difficult to obtain fresh bait but catch rates will be affected. The best bait of all is trevally, kahawai or yellowtail mackerel taken on a previous set on the same day. The fresher the bait the better the catch.

Target Snapper Hooks

All of Paul's Fishing Kites rigs are supplied with Target Snapper Hooks.

These hooks are designed to reduce gut hooking to less than 1%, increase your catch of large snapper while reducing the number of undersized snapper you will catch.

Target Snapper Hooks are a recurve hook and for optimum fishing results should be baited as follows:

  • Scale and fillet your bait.
  • Cut bait into strips.
  • Put the hook through the bait at one end of the strip, penetrating the flesh first then through the skin.

NOTE : Do not choke the bight of the hook and don't hook your baits through the centre of the strips as this can cause the bait to spin and may twist and tangle the traces.

 

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