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As many of you might know, I finally broke into baitcasting this year after many years with just spinning gear...Although i own quite a bit of BC gear, I still don't think I have the ultimate pitching rod...When i say pitching rod, i mean underhand jigging and t-rigging with as many casts per time unit as i can effectively get in...I just think it will be more advantageous for how and where I fish...

Currently i have been using 6'6" V-rods in the agressive tapers as utility rods for all my BC applications...They are the VSA 66 MH and the VSA 66 M...But I was wondering what advantage you guys might find in a little longer rod...I was thinking about a 6'9" (ie. Kistler Helium LTA) or a 6'10" Falcon Cara or Expert which are "H" power rods with fast action tapers...

Keep in mind that I almost exclusively fish standing in a jon or V-hull, many times up on the seat...But I still think that a 7' will be "pushing it" with the underhand cast techniques like pitching...

I am so excited about this relaitively new direction for me...You guys will see just how excited I am, when i put up for sale about half of the residual spinning outfits and back-ups I have accumulated...

Any info on the pitching rod idea is much appreciated...

Thanks

Mark D
 

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MarK: as much as the rod is important, when it comes to pitching, the baitcaster is what will really determine just how well you pitch that lure without constantly fouling up....

also, keep in mind, that on Jon boats, it is much harder than on the platform of a bass boat....much harder......you are below the level of the boat, plus the crowded gear situation.....a 6'6" would be the the max length for you on those jons....you will need a tighter arc also....

I am embarassed at the thought of you not having been on my bass boat even once this season, so that you could compare what I am talking about..we will HAVE to remedy that next season....
 

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Pitchin' Fool
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Pitching is my game

Mark , any rod can be a pitching rod, if you think about it. It all depends on what lure you'll use. One of the guys I fish with pitches with 8 lb test and surely, he's not using a heavy action rod.

Since you mentioned it, the rod I use to pitch almost all the time is the Falcon Expert -610H. It is rated as a heavy action rod, but really fishes more like a MH. It is light and if coupled with a Curado SF or a TDX, pitching is a breeze. I fish t-rigged plastics like Brushhogs and tubes on this rod.

Im not sure what lures will you be 'pitching' in the reservoirs. I have a couple more rods in the Falcon lineup that I can point you to.

Im sure youve checked the Falcon website . It describes all the rods and their uses....

Joe
 

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Keep in mind that I almost exclusively fish standing in a jon or V-hull, many times up on the seat...But I still think that a 7' will be "pushing it" with the underhand cast techniques like pitching...
Depending on how tall you are, I would aggree that a 7' rod would be too much for a low sitting john boat. I would stay in the 6'6'' area. The primary advantages of the longer rod are a longer arc for pitching which gives you better distance and accuracy and I feel more importantly, the longer rod gives you a better angle when setting the hook on a fish.

Personally, I use 2 different lengths for pitching. One is a 7'3" Daiwa TDA731HRB and the other is a Daiwa 6'6" TDA661HRB. Both rods are heavy action with a fast taper.:)
 

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Pitching rod

Basseracci,

I, too got the pitching bug this past season. My reels of choice are the shimano scorpions for any lure or the castaic sf (usa) or even nicer the japanese version for a little heavier lure.

I am 5'6 and found that a long rod from a jon boat was difficult to pitch with. Not enough room between rod tip and water to generate the lure/line speed necessary for a long pitch. (a long rod is great for flipping but I don't do much of it from a row boat).

I had a rod made for me from Kistler that is a much shorter length grip with good backbone(mh) and fast action. I think he used a senko blank and cut it down. It is 5'6 (my height) and I can pitch great with it and sidearm/underhand cast into really tight places. It is easily the rod i pick up most often. If i had more altitude either genetically or from a platform I might use a longer rod. If you want to check out my combo and you are ever in NYC just email me. I live across from capitol tackle.

This link will crack you up but it really shows the mechanics of pitching.

Pitching
 

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Mark,

With the correct rod action you don't have to blow big bucks on these fancy reels. A fast action is not the correct choice for pitching. You want more of a mod fast action so the bait can load the rod- this is true of flipping and pitching rods. The fast action rod demands precise timing on the cast or pitch. The precision required is hard to maintain over a period of time and is very tiresome in and of itself. This precise timing is the reason all have reccomended these super smooth reels. The reel can sometimes cover a timing problem so that you have lesser numbers of and less severe backlashes. Combine the correct line and rod and the timing does not have to quite so precise. As always you are welcome to borrow anything out of my quiver.

I don't understand the short rod/john boat theory. The rod is held upright and wouldn't seem to matter how long the rod is. If the short rod theory were true no flyfisherman would have ever caught anything out of a johnboat.

Paul
 

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not true Paul: a fly fisherman is moving that long rod up high, when pitching, the lure comes from up underneath and in a jon it is easy to get caught on the side of the gunwale or anything else in such crowded quarters........

the height of the person IS a factor...a taller person has more leeway in a jon for underhanded pitching...

the combo of being relatively short and the jon does make pitching more apt to get tangled on something......
 

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Pitching rod

pitching challenges from a jon boat is more challenging for me only because i am short. I do not have clearance of the water and the gunwale. The distance between the rod tip and the water vs. the length of rod is the problem. Less water clearance equals shorter rod/less line out to begin the pitch. When I learned to pitch I did not realize how challenging it would be. Backyard learning is difft than being in the boat/on the water. I learned with a long rod, got in the boat and all hopes for a long pitch got washed away as the texas rigged work go hooking into the side of the gunwale. I had to hold my arm up high to get it to work. Tried that for a while and then order the shorter rod. Gave me 'room' to pitch and also make seated side arm and backhand casts I was not able to with the longer rod.

When nymphing in flyfishing this is like a flip, sort of. The idea is the same but the technique is very different as the line has to generate all the speed vs the lure. Also, a longer rod is desired in nymphing as in flipping because trout, as opposed to bass, are a little more finicky.
 

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The bait is normally held at approx reel level. The bait is at the same position no matter how long the rod. Using a 5' rod you have about 4' of line out. Using a 7' rod you'll have about 6' of line out. The bait is always in your hand at approx reel level. If your reel clears the gunwale the bait won't have any trouble clearing it either.

Shorter person + short rod = more difficulties (less clearence)
 

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Pitchin' Fool
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I think the 6-10 length is just right, not too long, not too short.

There is a Falcon rod that is 6-8 and can be used for pitching purposes. ...
 

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I don't understand the short rod/john boat theory. The rod is held upright and wouldn't seem to matter how long the rod is.-

Paul, I agree with you, considering that I never point the tip downto the water, I also don't quite understand the theory. Also consider that it is easy to make simple adjustments and pitch in a sideways/underhand motion.
 

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Pitching.......

If you are in a boat and your hands held naturally at your sides don't clear the gunwale you need another technique or a different boat.
 

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LM BASS
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Pitching

Ball Breaker,
Pitching Jig & Chunks is one of my stronger points (if I have any). The All-Star Pitching Trigger Rod (6'10") SJ1 is what I love to use. I have three. One in the Bassboat, one in the Jon-Boat and a spare. No problem at all standing on a Jon-Boat seat or platform. I've used Garcia Abu casting reels for 35 years and just love 'em. The All-Star Rod has great feel and backbone. BPS sells it for $95 but it is on sale in their XMas special cat for $50 until 12-31-0, a great deal for sure.
I'm 5'11' and have no problem at all in small boats with this combo.
Gary
 

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Paul: the only solution is for you to be on my 12 foot jon, on Wampus, when it is fully loaded with equipment and then have you pitch, while standing and trying to balance yourself in the back of the boat.......

you are spoiled, because you only fish from a bass boat right now....going back and forth between the bass boat and the jon, I see many differences and difficulties.....

in classic pitching: you are forming a pendulum swing with the bait as it leaves your fingers....how tight the pendulum can vary, and can depend on what you are pitching to....if you are trying to pitch underneath something that is only a foot off the water, your pendulum arc must be a little bigger, as the line goes lower.....going lower is where you run into trouble in a crowded jon........

we are going nowhere with this argument....it simply has to be observed and experienced......
 

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gotta try it as john has said.

Basseracci,

Don't know how tall you are so a lot depends on that. Standing on a seat in a jonboat sounds awfully precarious even in the most calm of conditions to pitch a lure.

Check out the link above that I posted and look at the pitching demo. If the rod is parallel to the water and the lure is next to the reel at start, when you drop the lure to begin the pitch there must not be anything that will obstruct the pendulating motion of the line and lure moving downward and outward. Does that make sense? Sooo, if you are standing in a jonboat your feet are at the level of the water, not like on a bassboat where you can stand on a platform. The shorter you are the less room for error. The longer rod you have, the less room for error. Again, take a look at the link or better yet go try it out in the backyard but put a bench in from of you to mimic the gunwale of a jonboat and you will get the idea.

My ability to pitch is greatly enhanced if I am on a dock or elevated above the water than if I am water level. I wish i were taller so i could use longer rods but genetics won.

Here is the link again plus some others:

General baitcasting technique

Pitching diagram

Another pitching diagram

digram in motion of pitching and flipping

espn article on pitching

There are more but away we go!!!
 

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Pitchin' Fool
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Im 5/8 on a good day and I use 6-10 to 7 1/2 rods to pitch and flip no problem. ....

its all practise....

Joe
 

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Practice practice practice

Basseracci,

By now you have many options/opinions. Long rod, short rod, reel and rod action options. Only thing consistent so far is practice. What works for me may not work for you and vice versa.

I do think that the pitching technique is very different than flipping and both should be mastered. I think pitching would be used more if you do not have complete boat control with a trolling motor and also allows you to keep some distance.

I also have a couple of pitching/flipping videos if you want to borrow. Just have to pay for postage and send em back.
 

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A few weeks ago I designated my Falcon 7" MedHeavy as my pitching rod (which I previosly used for casting jigs and other big baits ). I had trouble throwing lighter baits( worms, baby brush hogs). I am going to start carolina rigging next year and I think I am going to use this rod to do it too. I got one of the bionic blades that were on sale at BPS, it is MedHeavy 6'6", which will be a little easier for me to throw worms and brush hogs on.

I fish out of a small boat too and pitching is tough. Sometimes I do the sidearm pitch or I just wrist roll cast which seems to be a little easier. Next year I hope to have a bass boat so I can become proficient at more techniques.
 
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