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Hello, I am a novice surf angler with all my experience limited to either Emerald Isle or Oak Island for summer vacations catching smaller fish. I am currently planning a trip to the either Hatteras or Ocracoke in April and need some recommendations on gear for targeting the larger Reds. I currently have 2 9' setups one rated to 4oz and the other 6oz. Whenever the OBX is mentioned, guys are always talking about throwing 8 and bait. My question is a rod capable of handling that much weight necessary to be successful there? I have been considering a new longer setup but it would be nice if I could choose a rod that would be more versatile.

Thanks,
 

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Welcome to the forum! To answer your question regarding a 8 and bait rod being necessary to be successful at catching big reds, no not ''necessary'' at all, just another tool to have if 8 oz. is needed. Your 6oz. rated rod will throw 8oz. in a pinch if needed, granted not as well as a rod rated for 8 plus oz., and yes a longer rod will generally give you some more distance if needed. There are many rods available with versatile ratings. Spinning or conventional?, and as I have mentioned, distance and ratings are just another tool, the fish can be right in front of you in the suds, good luck,...pop.
 

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Depends on what your definition of larger reds is. If you are talking about Slots then you should be good with what you have. if you are looking for 40+ inchers then you should be looking at a rod you can throw some weight with. I'm not saying you couldn't catch a big one on the rods you have now, but for the most part you won't be able to get to the big ones. Also i've seen many days where 8 OZ won't hold good.
 

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I see plenty of drum caught on lighter gear,(it's not ideal and not something I'd use if targeting them but) sometimes fish are close. USE A SHOCK LEADER, 16 lb running line and TIE GOOD KNOTS.
 

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Why plan a trip in April just to target big drum and not get a rod that will let you reach the fish? Get a rod capable of long cast with 12 oz... 8-n -bait is a real thing !
 

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I'd go with what u have. If u find that u need to change up/buy different gear then there are plenty of great tackle shops here that will give u excellent advice and sell all the best stuff. Hope u catch a lunker!
 

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12-13' Rod that can throw 8oz. Learn how to make a drum rig on your own. Make a bunch before you come down, it can get very sharky at that time of the year. Learn how to tie a good shock leader to mainline knot.

Not sure if you are throwing spinning or conventional, most people throw conventional reels on Hatteras. If you stop into TW's in Nags Head on your way down, they will get you set up with a good combo, be prepared to spend a few bucks though.

12' Penn Battalion XH with a Gen 1 Penn Fathom 12 or 15 is a good middle of the road set up. That's not a cheap set up by any means, but guys are using 500-1000 dollar heavers in Hatteras.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all the reply's! Both of my current setups are spinning on a Tica and St Croix rod. I would like to make my next purchase conventional and have $400 +/- a few bucks budgeted for a rod/reel setup for this trip. I really like the idea of buying while I'm there. I always think its a great idea to support shops at destination locations. However, the CCP line of rods have caught my attention and he is a forum sponsor. Unfortunately the the heaviest Gen 1 rod he has available is only rated to 8 on the top end.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
12-13' Rod that can throw 8oz. Learn how to make a drum rig on your own. Make a bunch before you come down, it can get very sharky at that time of the year. Learn how to tie a good shock leader to mainline knot.

Not sure if you are throwing spinning or conventional, most people throw conventional reels on Hatteras. If you stop into TW's in Nags Head on your way down, they will get you set up with a good combo, be prepared to spend a few bucks though.

12' Penn Battalion XH with a Gen 1 Penn Fathom 12 or 15 is a good middle of the road set up. That's not a cheap set up by any means, but guys are using 500-1000 dollar heavers in Hatteras.

Thanks for tip. What LB material do you recommend for the drum rigs and what LB for the shock leader?
 
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Keep your eye on Amazon for a first gen Penn Fathom 15.......about $100 or get one from Red Drum in Buxton. Get you a good rod to match. CCP are great and you may mind a used one on here someone has not sold. 8-12 is great and there have been several 6-10 in the marketplace.....check the history and they may still have them.
 

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fwiw, I don’t think us mortals will ever tax a CCP-8 rod on the cast no matter how much weight we are chucking.
 

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Surf fishing is like golf, and the heavy weight rods are like your big driver. You might not use it each trip but for certain shots/certain conditions you'll use it a lot. You don't have to spend big money to cast big sinkers and bait. If you become really serious you probably will eventually like the guys with sets of three hot-rodded Seiglers and Akios reels on Century rods, but starting out you don't need to spend crazy money to throw heavy sinkers.

My first "big" set up was a BassPro brand "Offshore Angler" 15 foot spinner that is as heavy as a broomstick and Daiwa DF100A. Probably less than $100 in the setup, but I don't know if these rods & reels are still available. That combo will cast 8oz and fish head no problem, and I caught my PB fish with it, a thick sandbar shark that was probably approaching 150lbs. 28" drum barely put a bend in the rod!

My current heavy casting set up is ghetto but effective. 11' Tsunami 6-10oz, with ebay Penn 113 HLW, 40# Sufix mono. I static-magged the Penn and did some other tricks from the Alan Tani website, probly $70 in the whole reel. I've not caught a drum on it, but I've reeledin a couple of 6 foot BlackTips, quickly. Reeled them in like winching a bass boat onto a trailer. They were very "green" when I released them.

I practice with it a lot. The important part for casting heavy weight, besides knots & leader, is practice. So, so much like golf. I find the "off the ground" cast to be easy yet effective. I wouldn't wait until you get to Hatteras to get a nice conventional combo and go fishing, I would research forums like this, get stuff ahead of time & practice casting.
 
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