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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Please note that the image below is dated, to say the least. My Espri has undergone considerable evolution since then, mainly to cope with the exigencies of transiting the surf zone. Dodge has today (18Feb09) politely reminded me that I need to update, and I will in the next week or so, as I get time.

First update, 01Mar09; Improving the dry and secure storage space in an Espri:
http://www.akff.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=24959

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Two outfits, one for trolling, one for casting. I flat troll (rod horizontal and pointing along the troll line) because I can easily get at the ABU10000C's controls in that position. I troll on the left because I'm right handed. Both rods are stored in their positions also for surf entry and exit. On my third trip I had a complete roll-over when coming back in and lost nothing and did no damage, other than to my pride.

The plywood platform on the back is held down with elastic and can be lifted to place fish into the space underneath.
 

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Very nice sunshiner,

Now you have just given me some mighty fine ideas. Welcome to the forum.

Cheers Milt.
 

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Easy and practical set up sunshiner, and welcome to the forum
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've been developing my Espris quietly over the last few months and enjoying it as well as catching some fish. Ratruder asked how I'd set up rod holders without drilling or cutting holes in my Espri. So I thought that this might be the best place to air my idea. The attachments may be sequenced incorrectly but I'm sure you'll get the idea...

This is a rod holder specifically designed for trolling with an overhead reel (eg ABU 7000C or similar) in a flat troll configuration (rod horizontal and approximately aligned with the axis of the yak). It also doubles as the rod's storage position while transiting the surf zone, albeit with extra strap arrangements in case of inversion. I've used it with reels as large as ABU10000C and as small as ABU6500C, and fish as large as 9.8kg tuna. I have a mate who uses the same design with a large Daiwa overhead reel.

The holder itself is cut from a 135mm long piece of 40mm PVC and holds the reel and a portion of the rod butt so that the rod/reel can't be pulled to the rear during trolling or a strike, but the rod can easily be lifted vertically from the holder, even under heavy drag pressure and a screaming run. The PVC has two notches into which the front of the reel's baseplate is engaged. The result is that the reel is easily accessed at all times, without removing it from the holder, for paying out line, retrieving line, adjusting/testing drag settings, setting the line-out alarm or testing whether the lure's running OK. Note that I'm using 10kg line and appropriate drag settings. Heavier line or a different size reel may warrant a slightly different design. Another benefit of this design
for me (I'm slightly deaf) is that I'm more likely to hear the line-out alarm on a strike than if the rod was mounted behind me. I can also see the reel at all times while paddling, as long as my eyes are open and there's enough light.

The PVC rod holder itself is screwed onto a piece of wood which is cut to fit exactly and tightly between the factory-fitted saddles on that part of the hull. This wooden base is in turn held in place by a double strap of strong elastic cord and will not move in any direction unless both elastic cords are removed. If that were to happen accidentally on the water, and I can't imagine how, the rod holder and its wooden base would float and the rod itself would remain tethered to the yak, as it always is when in use.

I have been rolled on several occasions in the surf with the rod in this holder without gear loss or damage. Cost: less than $5, discounting about an hour's work to build it and ... no holes drilled in the yak.
 

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Unfortunately, due to the change in ownership of this web site and the lack of response by the owners to my requests to remove my email address from all administrative-level notifications and functionality, I have decided to remove my posts on AKFF. Thank you for the great times, the fantastic learning experiences and the many many fish. If you are desperate for the old content of this particular post, it is available below base64 encoded and bzip2 compressed.

Red.

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Hi Kevin - good to hear from you again, hows the fishing going down that way lately? Haven't been able to get back to Noosa for a fish for ages, keen to do it again when the Pelagics come back on.

Like the trolling setup, would be good being able to watch the reel without having to keep turning around. Do you find you need to service the reel more often than usual - it seems it would be constantly getting drenched while you're paddling about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Travis

The only time the reel gets wet (other than the odd splash) is when transiting the surf zone, when it gets wet if I mistime my entry outbound, and have to punch through a wave or have one break on the cockpit, or if I get rolled over (becoming less frequent, happily) on the way in. I can easily service the reel myself if it happens to get dunked, takes about 15 minutes. The usual alternative, having the rod/reel mounted in a vertical (or near vertical) rod holder is totally impracticable in our surf zone, as the threat of a rollover is ever present, with resultant serious damage to rod and reel. One of the regular yakkers here actually dismounts the reels from the rods before transiting the surf zone and places the reels in secure, dry storage and carries the rods horizontally through the surf zone.

Hope to see you back in Noosa soon. Things have been pretty quiet, pelagic-wise, during the winter (May-Aug) but there have still been some spectacular occasional yak captures and we're all gearing up for the warmer months to come. Having the river in such close proximity eases the wait -- and I have a very nice 64cm flathead in the fridge as a result of a sundown foray on Friday.

Tight lines, and regards, Kev
 
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