Sew On Smelts, Suckers and Shiners as
Bait for Trolling
trolled sewed smelts, suckers, and
shiners, over a period of more that
fifty years. Most of the time I use the
method taught to me by Harl Andrews.
This is my method.
sure to use sewing hooks with double
leaders ( I make my own) Why? Because
you take the single sewing hook and,
using the point of the hook, force it
down through the top of the head in the
bony part just above the eyes. Pull the
complete hook down through. Then bring
the hook up to the top of the head once
again, and put the hook down through the
same hole in the head a second time.
carefully "sew" the hook along the
lateral line of the bait(fish). Way back
to just in front of the tail. Complete
the sewing by making sure hook is
completely imbedded inside the bait.
the leader material taught enough to
give the sewed bait a bit of bend. Once
you have the bend you want, take the
leader and pull any excess back towards
the loop end of the leader.
step is very important---Place one side
of the double leader behind the gills on
one side of the bait, and the second
leader on the opposite side. Finalize
any needed adjustments to keep a slight
bend in the sewed bait. Attach the loop
of the leader to the trolling line
line overboard with the line short
enough so you can see the rolling
action. The sewed bait should be doing
only a slow roll at trolling speed. If
it turns too fast then loosen the double
loop on the head and take some of the
loosened line and adjust the sewed bait
to become straighter. If the sewed bait
doesn't turn fast enough, (and I
emphasize that it should be only a slow
roll) adjust the line so it is tighter.
I do attach a small treble hook to the
head, but I haven't found out a way to
use the treble hook to penetrate the
head, (between the eyes). I have heard
of the head knot, for use with treble
hooks, and even though I have never used
this method, I sort of remember it
involves tying a couple of half hitches
around the head, just behind the gills.
That's the best I have to offer.
almost forgot the most important part.
"Spit a big gob of goo on the bait as an