Here is a little tip for those of you wishing to customise your hook baits and a real quick and easy way of preparing ‘wafters’ (slow sinking hook baits) or pop-ups.
It is a method I first used on the bank when I felt I needed a hook bait acting differently to what I had at my disposal and since then I have found myself using the method more and more.
Obviously you are also able to add your own little extras this way too.
From a personal point on difficult waters I like my hook bait sinking slower than the free baits to counteract the weight of the hook and hook link. I don’t want them critically balanced as larger fish can have trouble actually getting hold of a critically balanced bait as the carp’s body mass will create a bit of an undertow thus moving the bait from where it thought it was (all carp have a blind spot, the larger they are the greater the blind spot) and therefore not ending up in their mouth every time.
So, here is my simple way of making my own individualised custom hook baits.
All that is required for a slow sinker is…
- Tub of paste
- Bottle of Glug
- Pop-Up mix
Break the egg into a bowl and add some Glug to counteract for the added pop up mix which will dilute the taste a little. In this case I am adding 10 ml of glug as I want my hook bait to give off plenty of food signals in this case. These are barbel hook baits I am producing but exactly the same applies to carp baits.
Once the glug is added mix the two together with a fork.
Add the paste now, you may find it easier to prise from the tub with a spoon.
Now mix the liquid into the paste using the fork until you end up with a very soft paste
Add some pop-up mix a bit at a time, too much in one go will make it difficult to mix properly and evenly
Once the mixture is too stiff to mix with the fork simply start kneading it with your hands until you have a useable dough ball which allows the hook baits to be easily rolled.
Placing 3 little pieces of paste in these parts of your hand will allow you to roll 4 hook baits at a time
Add the paste balls to boiling water and boil for between 1 and 3 minutes depending upon what size you have rolled. 2 minutes is a good in between if like me you like to have an assortment of sizes and shapes of hook bait. I purposely never roll hook baits perfectly round, this is why I hand roll rather than use a bait table.
Pour the boiled baits into a sieve over the sink to get rid of the water leaving just the baits behind.
Lay them outside on a towel to dry – we have been having perfect weather for this lately (July 2014).
Once dry you can add more glug if you want or leave them as they are. A bit of a glug coating will stabilise them a little longer but if you want to be really safe without worrying about them going off, simply pop them in the freezer and just take what you need.
Put some aside to see how long they last out of the freezer, you may be surprised.
If you want to produce your own pop ups follow the same procedure with just half a tub of paste so that more pop-up mix is used.
There you are a quick and simple method of producing exactly what you want, when you want it. Just think, the next time you go off on holiday you only need to pack a tub of paste and a bottle of glug and then the sky’s the limit in regards to special hook baits.