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Mustad Fastach Football Weights

By Stephen Booth

Our recent trip to fish the AYC Copeton Cod Classic highlighted several things to me and as always, we learnt a heap about Copeton and lake fishing for cod.

We've used the Mustad Fastach Football Weights for several years as chin weights on swimbaits, be that casting or trolling them, but this trip delved a bit deeper into the art and science of it all thanks to Josh Usher.

Let me take you on our trip and show you the thinking behind some of our tactics and how we used this amazing piece of terminal tackle to help us achieve our goals.

Saturday

The first morning in any tournament often sees you rushing around, finding your feet and getting into a groove and we did none of this. Josh had a plan and he took control as we cast the dawn with surface lures and swimbaits before heading off to troll some swimbaits as the sun got over the hills.

Here was the first lesson in choosing the right chin weight. The chunk of rubbly rock we were targeting on the troll was sitting in 22 - 30 feet and to reach it we needed to use 3/4oz chin weights. This had the lure swimming around the 20 foot mark on a slow troll of 1.5km/h.  On the first pass, my swimbait got slammed and after a short fight, 110cm of beautiful Copeton cod came to the net.

That night we chose to fish a stretch of water that Josh had spied some bait in the previous morning. He'd also noticed a bunch of shags and a couple of pelicans sitting on the bank resting as we drove home after the morning session.

As the sun was still in the sky we started off targeting the 15-20 foot mark and that meant we needed to drop down to 1/2oz chin weights on the swimbaits we were using. This change had the lures bumping bottom in about 15 feet. Managing the bottom contours was a job in itself with Josh instructing us when to lift the rod tips up to bring the lures up a foot or so, or he would increase the speed to 2.1km/h to get the lures to swim about 3 feet higher. It was a real lesson in working the lures at the right spot for the entire troll run, not just holding the rod and hoping.

As we trolled along, Josh and Shane were intently watching the sounder screen - especially the side imaging looking for fish. I was watching the building storm and lightning and wondering how good an electrical conductor a 7'6" graphite Venom Swimbait rod would be.

Josh and Shane saw a few fish marks in tight to the bank and as we were about to switch up and head in shallower the storm got the better of us and we decided to pull the pin for safety reasons. And a good decision it was as right when we got to the boat ramp, the front hit with some force.

Plenty of campers had a very ordinary couple of hours that night!

Sunday

The last morning of the comp was do or die time and we had discussed exactly what we would do. Josh was adamant we needed to be in tighter and shallower and that a good fish or three would be up there chasing the large bait.

We were going to target 5-10 feet of water and this meant another change of chin weight to a 1/4oz. This had our lures running around the 8 foot mark and with a bit of speed adjustment and rod work, we were able to troll across the ridges and humps easily.

We didn't need to wait long for the first bite in shallow with a solid strike leading to a brilliant 116cm fish being landed out of 7 feet of water. Three more bites in the low light of dawn for no hook ups had us confident but as the sun rose over the hills the fish moved out deeper.

This didn't stop us as we just clipped on a 1/2oz chin weight and headed out into 20 foot and continued trolling. We were joined on the bank by some mates and got to witness Aaron Lawson land a ripper of a cod at 99cm in the slightly deeper water, showing us that the theory of moving out deeper with the fish was solid.

We didn't land another fish that day as fishing finished at 9am but we were happy we had nutted out a way to keep us in the game whether that was trolling really shallow or much deeper, all thanks to the ability to easily change the chin weight with the Mustad Fastach Football Weight.

A small aside

The next morning, after the presentation and clean up were complete, we snuck out at 4am for a final fling. Josh was in another boat with Kane Demmery and Shane and I were in his boat and we again targeted shallow water in the inky pre-dawn darkness with 1/4oz weighted swimbaits.

Josh, always thinking, trolled even shallower with a swimbait with no weight and a Zerek Stalker, while Shane and I persisted with the 5-10 foot target zone.

Both Shane and I managed to put a fish in the boat with a 94cm fish to Shane and 103cm fish for me succumbing to the swimbaits.

Josh and Kane also got two fish, a 97cm model on the Stalker and a 103 for Kane on a swimbait - his first meter cod for the year.

Summing Up

It was graphically highlighted this trip that the same lure can easily be fished at a variety of depths to entice Murray cod. The ability to quickly change the chin weight with the Fastach attachment meant there was no time wasted on the water when the bite was on or we changed depths.

Yes, you still need to understand your tackle and how little things like speed and rod angle impact running depths, but the ability to change weights in small increments means you can target zones incredibly accurately.

 

Fact Box

Mustad Fastach Football Weights

CODE                  DESCRIPTION                                            WEIGHT    

MFTFW1             Mustad Fastach Football Weight                 1oz              

MFTFW34           Mustad Fastach Football Weight                 3/4oz          

MFTFW12           Mustad Fastach Football Weight                 1/2oz          

MFTFW38           Mustad Fastach Football Weight                 3/8oz          

MFTFW14           Mustad Fastach Football Weight                 1/4oz          

 

Fact Box

Mustad Fastach Worm Weights

While most anglers are accustomed to using the Fastach Football Weights, there is another alternative in the Fastach world - the Fastach Worm Weights. This weight is a more bullet shaped Fastach weight that comes in weights from 1/4oz all the way up to 3oz!

So even if you can't find the Fastach Football Weights, there is always an option available to you when you need to critically weight your lures to get the best performance.

Code                   Description                                               Weight

MFTFWW85       Mustad Fastach Lumo Worm Weight         3oz

MFTFWW70       Mustad Fastach Lumo Worm Weight         2.5oz

MFTFWW56       Mustad Fastach Lumo Worm Weight         2oz

MFTFWW42       Mustad Fastach Lumo Worm Weight         1.5oz

MFTFWW1         Mustad Fastach Worm Weight                    1oz

MFTFWW34       Mustad Fastach Worm Weight                    3/4oz

MFTFWW12       Mustad Fastach Worm Weight                    1/2oz

MFTFWW38       Mustad Fastach Worm Weight                    3/8oz

MFTFWW14       Mustad Fastach Worm Weight                    1/4oz

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