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  1. #11

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    Quote Originally Posted by mikench View Post
    I blame tiddlers for that or blanking.
    Too modest, Mike - you catch a few good ones. I think the drag/backwind issue might have changed a bit in recent times. Not necessarily because reels are different. More that fishing has changed. I'm guessing that a general angler, fishing here and there with a few commercials or similar amongst their venues, might be spooling their reel up with 4-6lb lines (I even hear 8lb mentioned) and using proportionate hooklengths. The bigger fish merit heavier line, and the smaller species, perhaps refelecting the very different environment of heavy stocking, seem more tolerant of heavier gear.

    When I started fishing, for many years my reels were spooled with lines between 1.5lb and 2.6lb. Hooklengths were frequently 1lb or 1.5lb. Even for trips to Ireland, where you planned to bag up with big catches of roach and bream, with some tench, I'd have 3lb or 4lb Maxima on the reels. I think that made you approach your fishing with a lot of care to avoid breakages, striking, playing or landing fish, and people developed - just like Markg posted - a very sensitive touch/feel for using the reel, and the backwinding was the most responsive way to go.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    Hertfordshire
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    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    I haven’t used the backwind for playing fish since the 1970s and 1980s when clutches were a little suspect to say the least; although I did suffer from a few sore knuckles whenever a larger fish decided to go for a run.

    Nowerdays I rarely (if ever) use my backwind as clutches have got a hell of a lot more reliable these days.

    For small fish and finer lines I prefer to use a front drag; as I find front drags allow finer adjustments due to their larger drag washers, however for larger fish and lines of around 5lb-ish and upwards I usually use rear drag reels as to me they seem a bit easier to adjust during the fight, as I can often find myself changing my drag setting several times during a long fight with a heavy fish.

    Keith
    Last edited by Keith M; 06-04-2020 at 10:46.
    Happiness is fish shaped (It used to be woman shaped but the wife is getting on a bit now)

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    North Yorkshire.
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    11,091

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    Horses for courses. I use centrepins a lot and, with only one notable exception, they don't have any kind of fish playing drag system. I have closed face reels with drag systems that are no use whatsoever and one with no drag system at all. I also have a reel with no option to backwind. I have front drag reels, rear drag reels, rear drag with Fightin' Drag and even Tri-Drag reels (front, rear and Fightin' Drag in one reel).

    I may occasionally disengage an anti-reverse when necessary, but I tend to avoid buying reels with drags so poor that I'm forced into backwinding. I've not used, or bought, a reel with such a bad drag in over twenty years. However, I can well understand the need to backwind for those that the method became ingrained due to using such reels and those that insist on still using such reels.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    The Nene Valley
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    12,534

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    I'm with Keith. The clutch on a decent f/s reel is so good that there is no need to back wind (in virtually all conditions) unless you're still using a 301...............
    That's about as big as a fish that big gets
    If you understand what you’re doing, you’re not learning anything................

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    South Yorkshire.
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    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    When I fished the Trent back winding was the norm. Roach was my main target, the main reason was that the clutch on reels back then was total garbage. It was nigh on impossible to set the clutch for the lines I used, mostly 1lb reel lines were normally 3lb. By far the easiest way to play a fish was to back wind.
    These days fishing far heavier than back then the clutch is the easy way. hook lengths now are .12 with reel line 4lb for float fishing. fishing now for me is easy to manage with the heavier lines and bigger hooks to balance the clutch, clutches are a big stride better than they were back in my river days. Commercials don't need the fineness that river roach did.

  6. #16

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    I don't remember the drags on reels being as bad as some say, but even now, when I've got plenty of reels with good drags, I like to use backwinding as part of the mix. I don't know what others find, but the drag setting that's right for the moments after hooking a decent fish on a long line is not ideal when the fish is on a short line and you're trying to get it to the net. Of course, you can adjust your drag, and I do - as I said I really like the Shimano system for that -, and you can pull line off it yourself if you've wound in more than you should have etc, but I still find that backwinding suits me better than the drag. Maybe I'm kidding myself that brain and hands work better than a machine for some things, but it feels like that to me.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
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    South Yorkshire.
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    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    I do remember how bad they were, or perhaps I'm just heavy handed.
    I wouldn't I don't think to be able to back wind now with confidence. I'm quite used to fishing off the clutch now, I do set it quite soft to prevent hook pulls near the net.
    Had it not been forced on me to stay away from the river I'm sure I would still be back winding even with the superior clutch that reels have now. If I was fit I would still back wind on a commercial. If I fished one.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Dorset
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    1,301

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    Spent my first fifteen years of angling fishing the centre pin, then made the permanent switch to Fixed Spool/Close Faced reels. All my reels have the clutch tightened up solid and I backwind. Seems the most natural way of playing a fish when you are in control Pete.
    Casternets

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    North West
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    3,196

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    Quote Originally Posted by bracket View Post
    Spent my first fifteen years of angling fishing the centre pin, then made the permanent switch to Fixed Spool/Close Faced reels. All my reels have the clutch tightened up solid and I backwind. Seems the most natural way of playing a fish when you are in control Pete.
    My dad bought me my first fishing outfit from the Grattan catalogue for one and six a week on the drip. It had a 9ft rod with bottom 2 sections bamboo cane and a lancewood tip. The reel was a centrepin - The Bijou and you couldn’t trot with it as it rotated like a bag of nails and you could hear the ratchet half a mile away. I just cast by pulling the biggest loop I could get below the butt ring and launching the tackle as far as I could (a rod’s length probably)

    I fished like that from the age of 10 to around 16 when I bought my first fixed spool reel a Pinto and what a bag of c**p it was. Bent wire bail arm appalling drag and the line spent more time around the back of the spool than it did in the water.

    At 17 my best mate and I built our own 12ft fibreglass rods on mustard coloured blanks with moulded-in ferrules and I got an Ambidex Delmatic reel and all was right with the world.

  10. #20

    Default Re: Clutch or backwind

    Backwind.
    I don’t fish for Marlin or Tarpon (or even carp). I have never felt that a clutch would give Me any advantage over backwinding ... even if the reels that I use were to have a decent clutch (which they mostly don’t).

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