Here are a few new bits of tech that are making waves around the angling community:
Lock your baits in place
Perhaps one of the most useful and cost-effective new technologies to hit the fishing industry in recent years comes in the form of a simple tackle box.
Anybody who has carried around a bunch of crankbaits or other hard baits in a tackle box knows how messy they can get, with treble hooks getting tangled and skirts getting tangled. They likely also know the heart-sinking feeling when your expensive soft plastics mix together on hot summer days and creating a goopy, rainbow-colored pile of molten plastic. And, if you’ve ever dropped your tackle box with the lid open, you’ve probably spent plenty of valuable fishing time cleaning up the mess after all of your hooks and terminal tackle fall on the ground or, worse, into the water.
The days of those sort of hangups may soon be over thanks to a relatively new technology called ElasTak — not to be confused with Z-Man’s ElaZtec plastic used in its baits.
ElasTak is a new type of liner used in the Lure Lock brand of tackle boxes that keeps lures firmly in place and prevents them from dropping out should the box be flipped upside down. The environmentally-safe, soy-based formula “holds and cradles fishing lures, hooks and fishing tackle,” according to the company’s website, keeping your hundreds of dollars of gear in place and preventing movement that can dull the hooks and mess up the baits.
In addition, it’s hand-washable with soap and water and doesn’t leave any sticky residue behind on the lures.
It’s an incredibly simple concept to grasp, yet Lure Lock is really the only company on the market with this kind of technology. It’s also fairly inexpensive, with the smallest lure boxes lined with ElasTak costing $15.99 and the largest just $19.99. The bright green dividers and latches also look great, and for those who just like the look of the box, you can even buy the boxes without ElasTak in them for $7.99 to $9.99.
The Shimano Curado 150 DC is a baitcasting reel that use a computer chip charged kinetically thanks to the spinning of the reel during casting to digitally control the reel’s braking system.
The microcomputer reportedly measures the line outtake by every 1/1,000th of a second and adjusts it to prevent backlashing and maximizing casting distance even in the toughest of conditions.
The reel comes in both left- and right-handed models, with gear ratios ranging from 6.2:1 to 8.5:1 for those who prefer reels that pick up a lot of line very quickly during the retrieve, and each reel retails for just $249.99, a surprisingly low price in the market given its technological capabilities. By comparison, other Shimano reels range anywhere from $80 to $600.
This is an intriguing new piece of technology, especially for spinning reel users like myself who are prone to backlashing on a baitcaster. The reel has yet to release for sale but is set to be available in the fall.
Humminbird’s new Solix and Helix series of fish finders are catching eyes and helping anglers catch fish thanks to their incredibly detailed 3D graphics that show everything underwater thanks to its new MEGA Imaging technology.
The scanner is practically video quality, as you are able to easily identify fish based on their silhouette and can tell exactly what structure is below you. The digital clarity is so good that you can actually see a fish’s shadow on the bottom of the lake as it swims past, according to the company.
The fish finders run from $999.99 for a Helix 9 CHIRP MEGA DI GPS G2N up to the Solix 15 CHIRP MEGA SI GPS for $3,499.99.
Find out more at https://www.humminbird.com/.
Animated Lure is just what it says — an electronic lure that swims all by itself.
The lure uses a USB adapter connected to the hook to charge the bait, and anglers can cast it out under a bobber and watch the bait swim around like a live bait. Once it hits the water, it takes 12 seconds for the propeller to kick in, and it pauses and changes directions to look exactly like a live bait.
The bait comes in several colors, including hybrid striped bass, common carp, spotted sea trout, wounded common roach and red tail chub.
The bait takes about 2 hours to charge and gets about 1 1/2 hours of swim time. It sells for $32.95 on http://www.AnimatedLure.com and ships in two to three business days in the U.S.
Besides being a great replacement for live baits, it also has the potential to be of great help to those who have disabilities or mobility issues.
I’ll have more information about new baits and terminal tackle coming out in the upcoming weeks.