Monthly Archives: February 2010
Feb 27th 2010
Today being so rainy and nasty out side (what else is new right?), I was packing for my trip next week and catching up on things for the day. I got a call from Dale telling me that there will be a Grand Opening event at the Flint Creek Outfitters in Riverview, Fl their new store. Many of the people I know would be there so I decided to put things on hold and go check it out.
The store as been open there for a few months and many of my friends had urged me to check them out. For what ever reason I keep forgetting to go by there. When I got there the parking lot was packed! They were serving food, there were book signings, fly tying lessons, casting seminars, the place was happening despite the terrible weather. The store to my pleasant surprise was pretty large. They probably had abut 3000 square feet. I started shaking hands with old friends and new acquaintances right away. I check out many of the things they carry. They are mainly an out fitter.
They are an Orvis store, meaning they carry all the Orvis fly gear and clothing. They had lots of high end clothing. Some of the brands I have used and really like are Simms, Yeti, Native, Costa Del Mar, Victorinox, Exofficio.
I was especially fond of the Exofficio under garments. To me they make the best underwear for outdoors man there is. You could latterly travel the world with 2 pairs of under wear. You could wash one and let it dry(super quick drying and breathable) and wear the other and start the cycle every day. They are very very comfortable, super durable and has lasted for years. Many of the travels do carry these Exofficio underwear on many of these expeditions.
The Exofficio rep happen to be there and there was a sale today and tomorrow. To my luck they had buy one and buy get the 2nd pair at 50% off. I had to buy 2 and get the other 2 for 50% off.
There ya go, my underwear review.. .. sorry no video review this time.. lol
Flint Creek Outfitters
13425 Fishhawk Blvd.
Riverview, FL 33569
One of our good customers bought this gorgeous Shimano Calcutta 250DC and wanted a custom rod to match its quality. We’re doing our best to meet that high expectation. I just completed sanding the handle on the lathe, and this is what it looks like so far. This is about as fancy as we get with inlays and multiple materials. Any more fluff, and we would be missing out on some much valued R&D!
Feb 26th 2010
Tri Shear line cutting tool video review. This is my first video review of a product, as just writing about it will not do it justice.
I came across the Tri Shear by Innovative Fishing Tackle at the 2009 ICAST in Orlando Florida this past July. I was pretty impressed. The tool is light weight aluminum that will cut just about any line you could possible used on a fishing boat. It cuts mono obviously but it cuts mono up to 600lbs. It cuts braid all the way up to 200lb test. The most impressive is seeing it cut steel leaders all the way up to 600lb test, single or multi strand. It never gets dull so the next cut after cutting steel can be 10lb braid.
If it does get dull the company said they would replace it. For about $80 bucks, it comes with a lanyard and a holster plus a lifetime warranty. Not a bad deal.
I couldn’t get a hold of one and I’ve been looking for them in the stores ever since. Well, I started to see them in stores lately and got a hold of one. I sat in the garage and started to look for things to cut up. I got a hold of steel shark leaders, dacron, small diameter braided line. I have to say it did it’s job nicely. This tool will be staying with me almost every time I get on the water.
I will be putting up 2 versions as some people can’t view Youtube.com on their work computers.
Malibu Stealth 14 Kayak to put some Sea Dek material on the casting platform. Spending most of my time poling, the hard plastic deck of the Stealth 14 made for some sore feet. So I got some prepackaged Sea Dek material from Sam and planned out my project.
First I started out by making some templates of the casting platform and side hatches. Simple construction paper works really well for making the templates.
I then cut the material, which came in separate pieces. Sea Dek comes in several different sizes and colors.
Its very easy to cut with a razor blade, you can even cut it with a pair of scissors. I recommend using a razor blade or razor knife, and make your cuts against a hard edge. This will make a nice clean cut.
I had chosen to cover the side hatches, as I don’t use them at all and wanted the full padding while standing. It gives you additional traction support when pulling yourself up to stand, provides some padding for your feet, quiets noise from dropped objects and looks really cool.
This Sea Dek material is very easy to work with, but be forewarned. Be ready to apply it once you peel off the backing. Its very, very sticky and does not come off very easily.
Team Malibu site and shortly afterwards I got a call from Capt. Alex Gorichky
He is also on the Malibu Pro Staff and had been thinking of putting some of the Sea Dek on his Stealth 14 also. Shortly after talking with Alex I got a call from Tyler Shealey of Castaway Customs
Castaway Customs “We specialize in custom SeaDek applications. What is SeaDek? SeaDek is a closed cell EVA foam formulated for the marine environment. It comes in a variety of colors and thicknesses to suit any application. What is the purpose of SeaDek? The original purpose was to provide traction. Along with the great traction it also reduces fatigue, protects your boat, covers up chips and scratches, dampens sounds, and most of all looks great.”
Tyler was able to scan a Stealth 14 and cut some custom pads for the casting platform, side hatches and foot well area. These are really great in reducing pain and fatigue on the bottoms of your heels on those days you spend a long time on the water.
By cutting the side hatches in this manner, they are still readily accessible. They can be cut to cover the whole hatch if you so choose.
Plans are underway to scan other kayaks; Native Ultimate’s being the next one Tyler will be doing. Kits for the various kayaks will also be available, give them a call at 321-537-2039 for your custom creation.
Sea Dek, its not just for boats anymore.
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We specialize in custom SeaDek applications. What is SeaDek? SeaDek is a closed cell EVA foam formulated for the marine environment. It comes in a variety of colors and thicknesses to suit any application. What is the purpose of SeaDek? The original purpose was to provide traction. Along with the great traction it also reduces fatigue, protects your boat, covers up chips and scratches, dampens sounds, and most of all looks great.
It was Presidents Day 2010. Being that my employer gave me the option of taking the day off, I took it. The plan was to get some quality time in with my daughter, but I forgot that the kids in the Tampa area had to report to school that day, giving me a chance to get some needed errands completed, and maybe even a quick fishing trip. After shaking off the dust with a few cups of coffee, I prepped the boat for a possible fishing trip. Next, the middle school was my destination. Mission accomplished, the young one was at school and I’m making good time for once. I was getting a rushed feeling, almost like when you’re stuck in traffic and late for work. Over and over in my head I am planning everything out perfect in order to get some gas through the Yamaha. I sat at the house for a few moments with another cup of coffee, contemplating what to do and in what order. Checking the wind websites the previous night, it was possible if I played it out just right, the boat would be in the water by early afternoon. There was a front approaching that was supposed to stir up the water a bit later in the evening, but a window of opportunity. The errands needed to be handled had to be done early in the day due to time constraints, so off I went to handle my business. Taking a little longer than I wanted, my responsibilities were complete so I hurried back to the South Shore.
While driving home I did notice the wind picking up a bit, but it was out of the south-no worries; how bad could it be? I see fishing reports all the time with people going out in windy conditions. Well, the boat was prepped and all my gear was ready to go, my only task left was to hitch up the boat, grab a beer and some water, and make a sandwich. It turned out to be a good looking cold cut; I couldn’t wait to eat it.
Off to the Simmons Park boat ramp. Roughly being two o’clock, I still had time to catch some of the solunar and hopefully could pull some quick drifts for a trout or two. Seeing an acquaintance of mine at the ramp pulling his boat out, I said to him, “how’s it lookin’ out there?” The reply I got was simple. “It’s pretty messy out in the open, be careful dude”. He and his fishing partner left and it was only me at the ramp dropping in.
Entering the channel, the bay was not too angry. Making my way out to the open water, the weather quickly changed from the calmer, slightly covered channel. As I throttled up, the trout destination was in sight. I fooled around, organizing my stuff on the console like always when first heading out.
Shortly thereafter, I quickly realized paying careful attention to captaining my vessel was top priority. The direction of the bow was very important, as well as speed fluctuations. The wind and chop was a lot worse than expected. I’ve been in worse though, this was a manageable situation.
Carefully I make it to my favorite spot for winter trout fishing. My poles were rigged and ready to go, so I shut the motor off to check my drift. When floating up and down at the mercy of the bay, I soon found out that the strong south wind, combined with an incoming tide had me drifting way too fast. I made due, and made sure staying stable on the boat while casting for those speckled beauties was a main concern.
First cast, fish on. A nice trout was brought boat side and now it was time to fan cast very quickly, looking for that school. I had the live well running, so I left the fish in the well for a picture while hooked to the jig and tossed out my other rig. Nothing doing. I was off the mark. When taking out my camera for a picture or two, I knew this would be difficult, as I was alone and in rough conditions. As I was prepping for a picture, I realized it was way too choppy to put self timer on and get a snapshot. I reached in the livewell for the fish and found out the fish had circled around the strainer. Kneeling at the back of the boat, bobbing up and down, I freed up the fish, got some quick shots and threw Mr. Speck back in the well, as he was dinner.
What was not realized until too late was that I had set my other rod down, and not in the holder, so I became tangled in the line. Normally this would be no big deal, but today it made for a messy situation, trying to stay balanced and untangle at the same time. Carefully the tangle was fixed, camera put away, and I motored out to resume my drift. One more drift, one more fish caught, so I threw the anchor immediately. I found some fish, and things had calmed down as far as the chaos on the boat, not the seas. I can handle the two to three foot seas, it’s just a little bumpy and a matter of staying in a balanced position. All was well, and I was only in six feet of water anyways, right?
The bite died, but three nice fish were in the well. Needing enough for a dinner fish fry with the family, pulling the anchor and trying a new drift was next. Only one more trout and I was heading home. First pull on the anchor, no movement. Next try, no movement, except for my feet coming out from under me. Ouch. One worse move and I would be in the drink without a vest. The boat was rocking back and forth and water started coming over the bow; not much, but that’s never a good sign. After numerous tries to no avail, I had to motor the anchor out. Cutting the anchor was not an option for me unless absolutely necessary. Not in six feet. What the heck was I hooked up to? This is a grass flat?
I made sure the rope was tight to the front cleat, and at that moment, just briefly, I wondered how scared the young men that capsized in the gulf last year must have been. Motoring forward, the anchor would not budge. After a few more attempts it was free. Relieved, it was pulled up, but when I saw it there was a major bend in the anchor shaft. I never did find out what the cause was.
That was enough to send me back to the ramp. The bite stopped, the conditions were horrible and trout sandwiches were in my future. I got my two hours of fishing in and scratched the itch. The run back to the launch was not too bad, and I called it a day.
The main purpose of this piece was to reiterate how safety should always be a top priority. I made numerous mistakes. First, I shouldn’t have gone out in that weather. Second, being alone on the water at any time is a bad idea. Period. Third, the deck should have been cleared, especially in the conditions. All it takes is one bad move to trip over something, or slip and fall and your in the terrible chop of the bay. We as fisherman are so excited to get out on the water, sometimes common sense goes out the window; for me that day it sure did.
To top it off, I never got to eat that great cold cut I made…unfortunately it was soaked.
Feb 24th 2010
Last night I crashed at a house here in Islamorada, Key Florida. I met up with Robert Moore, Fred Hannon and their friends Chris and Scott from up north. The plan was to do some offshore fishing in the morning. The weather wasn’t so hot but we already had the plans.
We woke up at 6am to get out on Robert’s 23′ Andros Boatworks, a panga like hull. We got some ballyhoo and headed off to do some trolling. Fred had brought down some of the big offshore trolling Sebile Lures.
We got into some Blackfin tuna’s almost right away. The real surprise was getting a Wahoo on the troll using the Sebile in the mackerel color. A nice 30lb fish went into the box for dinner. We ended day using the same plug for cudas near one of the towers before the weather forced us in. For whatever reason they would eat the ballyhoo we had but didn’t want anything to do with the skipjacks we threw at them.
Photo notes: as you can see the skies were way overcast so the photos had gray tinged to them.
Feb 23 2010
Today at 2am I woke up and made the four and 1/2 hour drive down south to do some fishing and multi media shoot of Maverick’s New redesign tunnel hull, the HPX-T. With me was Captain Benny Blanco and Captain Steven Tejera.
After some breakfast at the local Cracker Barrel we made the drive down to Flamingo to do some shooting. The water was slick calm and we got som great stuff. It’s 11pm right now and I’ve been up since 2am so I only had time to put together a couple of photos befored needing some sleep.
Feb 22 2010
If you are around Tampa in 2 weeks. March 5th to the 7th, the Tampa fairgrounds will host The best outdoor show in the West Coast of Florida.
If you only have to pick one show to attend you should go to this one.
With everyone having some type of blog these days you might want to try this website I stumbled upon today.
It checks your blog for just about everything.
It’s called is “my blog working.com”
Just put in your URL and it there you have it.
Tomorrow I will be heading to do some shooting of Maverick’s new redesign HPX-T 2010 in the Everglades with Capt. Benny Blanco. It has the new Yamaha 70hp 4 stroke on it. Apparently that is like the rave in the small motor world.
Hopefully I can get my laptop on the network after wards to get you some pics from the shoot.
Went fishing today and braved the winds but the fishing was poor. The house project was getting on my nerves and I needed to get out. It sure did feel good to hang out with some buddies, have a few millers and really enjoy the day. My friend Jon has a big Eagle’s nest by his house so I decided to see if the big bird was there; to my luck he was in. I got some really neat photos but the bird was just to far and the pics don’t fill the frame like I had hoped. This is a shot as it went by for a close up
Feb 22 2010
I bought my East Cape Caimen in 2008. The boat has only 105 hours on it the 1.5 years I’ve owned her. The 100 hour service was done at 80 hours. Out of all the skiffs I’ve been in through out the year the ECC Caimen is the best riding, driest skiff I have ever ridden in, in this price range. I use to fish like crazy a couple years a go but now I’m doing more shooting videos and photos than I actually fish. The Caimen is an awesome fishing machine but it lacks storage that I need. I got so much gear I carry with me now that a skiff is no longer practical to own. So today I am putting her up for sale. I wanted to put it on Saltyshores for a couple days first before I put it on other websites hoping she will go to someone that fishes her more than I.
I spoke to Kevin over ECC a couple weeks a go about selling her. I was glad to hear that ECC will extend the warranty to the new owners no problem. Go check out their forum, they have a great family of skiff owners there.
The boat has been garage kept the entire time. It has seen the waters of Tampa bay all the way to the Keys. It has gone deep in the everglades to places that’s not even on the charts. From redfish, snook, bonefish to 100lb Tarpon in Miami she has seen it. I hope the fishing Mojo go with her.
2008 East Cape Caimen (Upgrades Galore)
50 HP Honda Electronic Fuel injection.
Full Hydrolic Steering.
Power Coated Black Ramblin Trailers
Lenco Trim Tabs
Boat is fully custom Seadek by Castaway Customs
Tibor Push Pole holder
Wang Anchor Bracket system
Blue under gunnel LED for night fishing
Cigarette lighter power
Stainless steel steering knob
Pivoting back rest for those long runs
Shark Eye lights
Minnkota removable trolling motor mounts
Recess push pole clips
Raised floor under the front deck
Upgraded 12 gallon gas tank