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1. Basic Handline Tackle Setup

View Daggerfish Handlines and Accessories here.

Welcome to the hobby of handline fishing! This guide will show you the features of your Daggerfish handline, and cover how to set up the included tackle for your first fishing trip.

Unboxing your Daggerfish Handline

Whether you have a maple, cherry, or walnut handline, each kit includes a solid wood handreel body with 30 yards of 8lb premium monofilament line.

Daggerfish Black Walnut Handreel

Your handline has two storage areas beneath the corks, one at the top and one at the bottom.

Lead Free Tackle Kit inside a Daggerfish Handreel
Handle storage area in a Daggerfish Black Walnut Handreel

Inside the top storage area, you’ll find a bait and tackle kit including the following: 

  • 3 Trout Magnet rubber grubs
  • 1 lead-free jig head to use with your rubber grubs
  • 2 Aberdeen hooks for fishing with live bait
  • 3 lead-free sinkers
  • 1 float
Lead-free bait and tackle kit included in a Daggerfish Handreel

Basic Tackle Setup

To set up for your first handline fishing trip, follow these steps (also covered in the video above).

Remove your bait and tackle kit and float from its storage area. Choose one of the rubber grubs, and grab a sinker, bobber, and jig head from your kit. Set these aside and put the rest of your kit back in storage for now. 

Thread a rubber grub on jig head. The hook should emerge straight between the two tails of the grub. 

Lead-free jig head and Trout Magnet rubber grub included with a Daggerfish Handreel
Proper hook threading of a Trout Magnet rubber grub included with a Daggerfish Handreel

Set your grub aside for a moment and grab your reel. Remove the plastic wrap covering your line by tearing it along the perforated seam.

Removing protective plastic wrap from a Daggerfish Handreel

Find the tag end of your fishing line and pull straight off the top of your reel to unspool your line. 

Grab the tag end of the line on a Daggerfish Handreel to unspool it
Pull line straight off the top of the Daggerfish Handreel to unspool

Cut any knots off the end of your line using nippers or mitten scissors.

Cut line from your Daggerfish Handreel using nippers or Mitten Scissors

If you have a Handreel Sheath, pop your handline back in the sheath to make the next part easier. Otherwise stick the reel in a pocket or set it down beside you. Feed your line through the jig head eyelet and tie it on using an improved clinch knot.

Tying a Trout Magnet grub and lead-free hook onto a Daggerfish handreel
Using an improved clinch know to tie a Trout Magnet rubber grub onto a Daggerfish Handline

Attach one or more sinkers about 8-12 inches above the jig head. A pair of pliers or mitten scissors will make this easier, and you may want to wrap the line around the sinker jaws twice to help keep the sinker securely attached.

Using Daggerfish Mitten Scissors to attach lead-free split shot to fishing line

Thread the line through the slit in the float, then gently reinsert the black plastic pin to secure it in place about 8-12 inches above the sinker.

Remove the plastic pin to use the Trout Magnet EZ Float
Slide the line from your Daggerfish Handline into the slit on your Trout Magnet EZ Float
Gently insert the plastic pin into your Trout Magnet EZ float to lock it in place

This setup can be easily adjusted to fish at different heights; just remove the pin and slide the float to a new position to adjust your depth. 

A basic tackle setup for hand line fishing with your Daggerfish Handreel

With this basic setup, your're ready to start handlining! Next,try setting up for handline-style fly fishing, learn basic casting techniques, or see how to store your tackle


Next in series: Handline-style Fly Fishing

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