Fishing Gear and Tackle


Hand angling consists of a fishing rod, line, and hook. The fishing rod must have a light weight, great strength, and elasticity at a length of 3-6 meters. Its center of gravity must lie near the end of the handle, and it must bend in full extension when loaded at the tip. Materials used include various types of wood and bamboo, with American rods carved from the hard bark of bamboo being particularly renowned. Better fishing rods consist of three or more sections, each about 1 meter long, firmly connected with metallic ferrules.

Small metal rings are attached to the tip and on the individual sections of the rod through which the fishing line is drawn. The line is wound on a wooden or metal reel attached near the handle using a crank, and it must rotate very easily to allow the line to run quickly and smoothly without resistance, equipped with a slightly adjustable spring brake. The fishing line consists of a 30-120 meter long mainline and the leader, which carries floats, sinkers, and hooks. The mainline is braided from horsehair or, better yet, from 6-8 strands of strong silk and usually varnished; for special purposes, unvarnished silk lines are used, which slide more easily through the rings and float on the water. The leader, typically 1-3 meters long, must be thinner than the mainline to attract less attention from fish. It is made from gimp, horsehair, or gut (silkworm intestine). Gimp, i.e., silk spun with the finest wire, is used for pikes and other large predatory fish that often cut through other leaders with their teeth. Leaders made from horsehair consist of several strands in the upper part and a single strand at the end. Gut is a thread made from the spinning glands of the silkworm. Typically, the leader consists of two sections, the casting line, which is firmly attached to the mainline with a knot, and the casting line, which is connected to the latter with a loop and to which the fishing hook is attached. Fishing hooks are made of steel wire and should not bend or break. In general, the English forms are the most commonly used. Additionally, double or triple hooks are also used. Hooks with smooth, long shanks are attached to the casting line with fine waxed silk. Those with a long shank ending in a plate are attached as shown in Fig. 7.

Apart from one or more hooks, floats or sinkers are often attached to the leader. The float (bobber), attached adjustably movable with wire or rubber rings on the leader, should keep the baited hook at an appropriate depth and simultaneously indicate when a fish has bitten by its movement. It is made of cork, feather quills, or bristle from wild boar in various shapes and attached in such a way that about one third of its length protrudes from the water in a vertical position. Sinkers consist of split cork grains or small pieces of lead foil clamped above the hook on the leader to promote the sinking of the baited hook and to make it sink to the required depth. The paternoster or ground tackle is mainly used for carp, bream, barbel, tench, and roach, which usually stay close to the bottom. The float is usually set so that the bait almost touches the bottom and drifts over it in flowing water.

In Nottingham fishing, the light, unvarnished silk line and the very large and easily movable wooden reel allow for a very wide casting of the bait. In paternoster fishing, the leader carries a lead weight at the end, while above it, at intervals of 25-30 cm, several fishing lines are attached to small lead beads that can be slid on the thread. The paternoster, which is used with or without a rod, is particularly suitable for catching perch. Fishing up and down in deeper water with or without a rod is done with a weighted line, usually without a float; the hook is baited with worms, maggots, small fish, or artificial lures. Alternatingly sinking and rising to the bottom, especially trout, chub, and dace, are caught. The spinning, trolling consists of having the natural or artificial bait fish pulled through the water rotating around its longitudinal axis or “spinning.” Dead but fresh baits such as bleak, roach, or minnow are attached in a curved position to a system of double or triple hooks, so that the hooks are partially exposed. Several swivels are inserted along the fishing line to allow for easy rotation of the bait without twisting the line. The bait fish is cast upstream as far as possible and, when drifting downstream, is reeled in slowly and spun with the rod; as soon as the predatory fish takes the bait, it is hooked.

The trolling is similar to spinning, but the bait fish is given time to swallow the bait; this method is used almost exclusively for pike in heavily weeded waters. Similarly, the trolling or trolling, which is mainly used from boats rowed or sailed forward with or without a rod, is employed in various depths for catching pike or lake trout. The line is 100-300 meters long and equipped with several swivels and a fish or spoon bait. The latter is made of brass or silver-plated lead and spins excellently due to its curved shape. Predatory fish snap at the shiny object and are immediately hooked