Recommendation for a new Tog Jig Rod combo

SPTOGFLUKEJIGR

New Angler
Jan 3, 2020
6
1
3
Hi Pete,
It's been a long time, I followed you over from the other forum! Hope all is well.
Looking to pick your brain as I start shopping this winter for a new Tog Jigging Outfit or two.
My current collection is primarily you past suggestions- I have the Shimano Trevela S Green Spinning rods in ML and MH, both paired with Stradic FL's 3000 & 4000. I also have the Tsunami Slow Pitch 701H with a BG3000.

I was fortunate to fish multiple tog trips this year from Rhode Island to Fishers Island to NY Bight to NJ, I fished on multiple charters with many sharp anglers and had the ability to see what other guys are using and had the opportunity to use a few rods. More often than not I was struggling to feel the jig on most of the rods I used. Dont know if it was me or simply the rods were very fast action and very stiff.

One of the most popular rods I seen used was the Tsunami Slimwave 6'4 MH. I didn't have the chance to use one but seen it in action and many anglers who own the rod that I spoke to on the boats love it.

I also came across a few Slow Pitch Rods that caught my attention:
1) Centaur Constellation Slow Jigging 6'3 L
2) Ocean Tackle International Pitch Black Slow Pitch OTI-PB66S
3) GooFish Solid Nano Slow Pitch Green Rod PE2-4
4) Daiwa Proteus SS Spin Medium (rod is no longer in production and havent been able to find one left in stock)

I also seen the Daiwa Harrier Jigging HRJ70MS rod that caught my attention.

I have a few of the Jigging World Nexus conventional rods for fluke bucktailing which I love but havent picked up the Spinning rod models. Based on the rods I have I think they might be a little too stiff.

Curious of your opinion. I definitely want to stick with a factory built rod, not interested in custom sticks. Unless there is a specific blank you suggest that is not available as a complete rod.

As for reels- I kind of have it narrowed down to the Daiwa Saltist MQ 3000 or Daiwa Ballistic 4000. Open to your suggestions.

As for jig sizes I fished mainly 3/4 - 2 oz jigs. 75% of the time I use 1oz jigs.

I have been using Berkley X9 braid and Sufix 832. Mainly in 10, 15 and 20 lb. And also Berkley Nanofil in 17 lb. Any suggestions on the braid of your choice? I know I'm likely playing with fire using 10 and 15 lb braid for tog jigging but when I use the 20 and 30 lb braid I start to loose contact with the jig. Again maybe I'm doing something wrong? The NJ Tog fisherman that I have fished along side the last month are all using 30-40lb braid on their spinning reels and doing very well, meanwhile I cannot feel the bite. I pick up my 10 and 15 lb braid combos and feel the bites immediately.

Thank you for your recommendations.
Scott
 

Leprechaun

Kind of a Big Deal - In My Mind Anyway
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Yep, been here since the "walking death" of the other board and Day-1 of this board's inception. So thanks for tracking me down.

Anyway, I like one of the outfits that you already own. The Trevala S in MH with a 3000-sized Stradic is a solid choice. Load that reel with either of your line choices (X9 or 832 - or J-Braid8) in no more than 20lb test. Use a 4-6' 30lb shocker leader made of Berkely Big Game and you're good to go.

If the Tackle Monkey is really being a PITA, telling you that you "need" another outfit - well then, I'm a BIG fan of Shimano's Grappler Type J in the ML and M powers. I have both - in the 6' length. Awesome tog jiggers - as I've repeatedly written on various threads. The ML is more than strong enough for tog jigging if you want to stay with a lighter-action stick - and KILLS IT on the offshore fluke grounds. Also, if you fish on boats that have some height to them, then perhaps look at the 6.5' versions of those sticks. Reading thru this thread might prove helpful:


Another newer option - I have friends that fish to the West that love their Ecooda Black Expert spinning rods. Very limited availability here in the US. The Korean-owned tackle shop up in College Point (maybe the name is "Tackle Depot?") is a big proponent of these rods. Around the same cost as the Grapplers - and I have to say that they are very nice rods indeed.

I agree that the Daiwa Proteus SS sticks are (or were) super-nice, especially for the money asked. The spinner in M and MH are “go-to’s” for deep fluke and inshore togging. I own the baitcaster in H-power, and its a definite tog-killer. Not crazy about the 13 easy-to-bend teeny micro-guides though. But the rod is a perfect match to my Daiwa Pluton 2020 reel, so I take extra care of it, during transport and actual fishing.

As far as reels go, I'm a little leery of any of those Daiwa MQ reels, for a couple of reasons. First - its my understanding that the Saltist MQ shares the same Zinc gears as the BG MQ reel series. No Zinc gears for me, please. Especially not for the asking price of that Saltist MQ.

Second - you will need a special side plate tool to open any of the MQ reel's gear boxes, in order to access the gears or inner bearings for lubing or service. Guess what? Daiwa will not sell those tools to us mere civilians. Nor will they sell the Magnetic sealing fluid that they use to protect the pinion/rotor bearing. So, unless you hunt down the tool and the mag fluid on your own, you must send those reels to Daiwa, or one of their authorized dealers for service.

You can sometimes find various non-Daiwa sourced versions of the tool on Ebay and also on the Hedgehog Studeos/Japan website, but be prepared to pay though the nose for one - and better be sure you get the right one, as there are at least 3 sizes of it, that I am aware of.

Yeah, um, this not my idea of a friendly manufacturer-client situation. I can live with the mag fluid issue, as its used in my favorite fluke jigging spinner - my Ballistic LT3000, and only because there are sources that will sell you a substitute for that fluid. Though in truth I don't know if its an exact match. I've not yet had to refresh my reel's mag fluid, so I cannot speak to the efficacy of the available replacement fluid. The factory side plate tool's unavailabilty? Yeah, that's just not right. Not to my mind, anyway.

In the interest of my "Sharing is Caring" fishing gear philosophy, here is the webpage that carries that fluid:

Home

To be totally transparent, I learned of that source from Mr. Tackle Advisor himself, over on another local fishing board. Have you ever watched any of his Youtube videos? VERY highly recommended - he is as good as it gets in breaking down reels and giving his honest opinions. Especially recommended are his reel-to-reel comparison videos. There, now you have an entire Winter's worth of viewing to look forward to. A very addictive YT channel, for sure.

There is also a Korean source for what they are calling an exact match for the Daiwa mag fluid. They sell it on Ebay - but wait til you see the price! Holy moly, I think I'll try the other vendor first.

Or you could avoid all this Daiwa-inspired chaos, by not buying one of their reels. As an alternative, I do love both my little Tsunami Evict 2000 (Stainless Steel gears!) and my new Penn Clash II 3000. The Tsunami can crank 'em in a bit easier with its 5.3:1 gearing, but a higher-end Penn is a higher-end Penn, so you know parts will not be a problem - which I'm not so sure will always be the case with the Evict. Though again, I really love that little Tsunami for heavier cranking - and once those steel gears bed together, its oh so smooth.

Other choices for togging might include the new Penn Battle III DX with the brass gears and the newest Spinfisher with the stainless gears - though I don't know if that one is available just yet. I do really love my Clash II - so that's a solid recommendation from me. Lep
 

Leprechaun

Kind of a Big Deal - In My Mind Anyway
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You know, I just realized that I forgot a great reel that would do a good job for you. The new Daiwa Procyon LT AL, in the 3000D size. I've covered it before, in another thread. But briefly, its got an all aluminum frame, the better set of Daiwa's "Digi-gears," and a gear ratio of just 5.2:1 - which means it will pull hard on good fish, vs the 6:1 reels that are prevalent out there. Its basically a Ballistic LT, with an aluminum body AND NO MAG-SEAL. Nice! Plus, I can point you toward a more ergonomic handle knob for it as well. (Or for many if not most other reels, for that matter.)

Notice which reels I didn't mention for this purpose? Yep, that would be the newest, smaller Shimano spinners (3000 and below)- with the "Micro-module II" gears. I am not convinced that this type of gearing will hold up to the kind of punishment that heavy togging will dish out. Not over the long run anyway. And not in any reel under the 4000 size. Sure, a few seasons or so, probably O.K. But I hold my reels for the rest of my life, and I don't see this gearing to be robust enough to "go the distance" for me.

Shimano has had to modify their "new" MM gears once already, hence the latest "II" designation. So yep, I like the smaller Shimano spinners A LOT. But not for pulling on larger, harder-fighting fish. Not over the long run and not with those itty-bitty gear teeth that Shimano has gone to.

I suppose that this opinion will probably chafe some chaps out there, but it is what it is. I've never seen my role here as having to reassure anyone's purchasing decisions. More to give an honest eval, based on more than 50 years of pulling reels apart and trying to get them to perform as they best can.

So, opening a Micro-Module geared reel is all I needed to see. Wow, what tiny teeth Shimano has gone to. Just not for me, not for togging anyways. . . Otherwise and for most if not all other uses, they are indeed great reels.
 
Last edited:

Flukinit

Angler
Dec 19, 2018
182
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You know, I just realized that I forgot a great reel that would do a good job for you. The new Daiwa Procyon LT AL, in the 3000D size. I've covered it before, in another thread. But briefly, its got an all aluminum frame, the better set of Daiwa's "Digi-gears," and a gear ratio of just 5.2:1 - which means it will pull hard on good fish, vs the 6:1 reels that are prevalent out there. Its basically a Ballistic LT, with an aluminum body AND NO MAG-SEAL. Nice! Plus, I can point you toward a more ergonomic handle knob for it as well. (Or for many if not most other reels, for that matter.)

Notice which reels I didn't mention for this purpose? Yep, that would be the newest, smaller Shimano spinners (3000 and below)- with the "Micro-module II" gears. I am not convinced that this type of gearing will hold up to the kind of punishment that heavy togging will dish out. Not over the long run anyway. And not in any reel under the 4000 size. Sure, a few seasons or so, probably O.K. But I hold my reels for the rest of my life, and I don't see this gearing to be robust enough to "go the distance" for me.

Shimano has had to modify their "new" MM gears once already, hence the latest "II" designation. So yep, I like the smaller Shimano spinners A LOT. But not for pulling on larger, harder-fighting fish. Not over the long run and not with those itty-bitty gear teeth that Shimano has gone to.

I suppose that this opinion will probably chafe some chaps out there, but it is what it is. I've never seen my role here as having to reassure anyone's purchasing decisions. More to give an honest eval, based on more than 50 years of pulling reels apart and trying to get them to perform as they best can.

So, opening a Micro-Module geared reel is all I needed to see. Wow, what tiny teeth Shimano has gone to. Just not for me, not for togging anyways. . . Otherwise and for most if not all other uses, they are indeed great reels.
Pete, what are your thoughts on the 3000 Stradic FL for a fluke set up? Much different than the fiesty Tog. I've got 8-10 fluke trips on my set up no issues yet. Granted once i hit 3 ozs on the bucktails im going to a conventional set up. Thanks
 

Leprechaun

Kind of a Big Deal - In My Mind Anyway
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Yep, I agree, fluking is pretty far from cranking on big, nasty blackfish. So a Stradic 3000 should be good to go.

Did you see my analysis of the three spinners here?:


I really like all of those reels, but the out and out winner, from a dollars-to-value perspective is that Spheros SW Inshore. Jeez, for like $120, its a damn good dealeo. Extremely under-priced for what it offers!
 

Leprechaun

Kind of a Big Deal - In My Mind Anyway
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So just following-up on my point regarding the Shimano "Micro-Module II" gears. The image below demonstrates two pairs of gears that were fitted to the same reel - just a few years apart. As far as I am aware, it is still technically possible to exchange them, one set for another in those reels.

Note the size of the teeth on each. I think that's a good example of what I'm talking about. Fine for "normal" fishing, but probably not, over the long run for harder-fighting species. This is why the latest smaller Shimano reels are so very smooth the first season or two, but get a bit "geary" down the line. Of course you could shoot a new set of these Micro-Module gears into them in order to reclaim the smoothness, but why get involved in the first place?

It certainly appears to me (at least) that all these large reel companies are twisting and turning in order to gain a leg up on their competition. Shimano with among a few other "firsts" its "X-Ship," which Daiwa had years before but never really marketed, and now these dopey ultra-fine-toothed gears. Daiwa's far from angelic as well, with its Mag-Seal nonsense that ONLY THEY CAN PROPERLY SERVICE - because they refuse to allow we mere mortals to acquire their proprietary Mag Fluid, not to mention the new "MQ"-bodied reels, which take a "special" tool to open - which tool is NOT for sale by Daiwa. Nice, right? Can anyone say "Restraint of Trade" violations? Good thing these companies don't build cars - the Feds would be all over them.

Rolex tried this nonsense with their factory watch parts. Wouldn't sell the parts to outside watchmakers - because "Rolex couldn't vouch for the assembly quality" unless they made the repairs. And of course they had to charge a Rolex owner $800 -$1200 for the standard service. Didn't go well for them, once the Feds got involved. Now they HAVE to make those parts available. And Voila, a service now costs as little as $300 from a qualified 3rd-party watchmaker. In a perfect world it should be the same with these "unavailable" factory reel parts and tools.

Yeah, I don't see any of these newer reel "innovations" as great leaps forward. Hey, everything is nice when you're in the Tackle Shop turning handles, and even for the first season or two of use. After that, get ready to pay to maintain that "new" level of performance. Tech costs money. Silly, not-needed tech costs even more.

E.O.R. (End of Rant) ;)

FB5-CB5-E7-9-C6-A-4237-B211-E658-B50-F6098.jpg
 

CaptFP

Angler
Mar 25, 2020
121
82
28
Westchester County NY
That special tool is the reason why I sold my Saltist MQ 3000 before I even used it. I'm pretty hard on my gear and if I can't open a reel even just for inspection with what tools are on the boat then forget it.
BTW... My standard Saltist spinner just finished up its 3rd season. I can highly recommend it. Only hiccup it's had was in Oct when it took constant spray for over 11/2-hour ride home. The bail trip was very stiff. Some wd-40 on the boat and a good greasing at home took care of it. If the main gear goes it will probably be time to replace the whole reel after the service its given me.