Different Types of Luncheon Meat for Different Methods of Fishing.
The are 3 main types of luncheon meat.
- Luncheon meat - the softest of the lot, ideal for fishing directly on a hook, but not very good at withstanding heavy casting or hair rigging.
- Chopped ham and pork type meats - slightly more firm than ordinary luncheon meat, will withstand the riggers of casting a little better.
- Bacon Grill - the firmest and toughest of the lot, ideal for mounting on a hair, withstanding casting etc., but still needs help staying on - more on that below.
Brands of Luncheon Meat I Use.
Firm Meats Suitable for Hair Rigging, Banding etc.
Chira Bacon Grill from Lidl is my
favourite for hair rigging, pellet banding etc. It's
that tough you almost have to saw through it to cut
it. Fish love it and at the time of creating this page
it costs 79 pence a tin. Well worth a trip to your
local store, I've got one shelf in the kitchen full of the
stuff. Not only that, if your feeling a little hungry
it's great fried or as it comes on butties - or even better
Also well worth a look at is their sweetcorn at 19 pence a tin and their catfood.
Another excellent bacon grill, I get it from Morrisons. Slightly dearer at just over a pound a tin, but if your not near a Lidl, then this is the stuff to go for. One advantage is that unlike the Lidl version above (which as a ring pull opener), it has an old fashioned key type opener. This means it's a little easier to get out of the tin, so I always keep an unopened tin or two in my fishing bag - fishery rules permitting!
Van Den Eynde are flavoured luncheon meats available from tackle shops, at just over £1.50 a tin. This meat is really firm and is an ideal meat for hair rigging etc. One serious complaint is that I used to love using the "nice and spicy" version, which seems to have been withdrawn. Still the others are excellent.
Soft Meats Suitable for Directly on the Hook.
To try and list all the available softer luncheon meats would take forever, but for all you margin and pole fisherman I really do like this meat. It's available in a number of flavours, I really like the tandoori , but my local tackle shops always sold out.
Luncheon Meat on a Hair Rig.
One of the problems with luncheon meat is that even firm types like bacon grill are just a bit to soft to stay on the hair properly. The hair material tends to cut through the meat on the cast, or it is easily knocked off by nuisance fish. The way around this is to either protect the meat from the hair using plastic tubing, or replace the bottom part of the hair with a bait screw or pellet band.
Meat or Bait Screws.
An excellent method of attaching meat to a hair is the Korum Bait Screw. A cube of meat is cut to the desired size and the bait screw, screwed into it to hold it in place. The screws can be bought on their own, in which case you would tie them on as with the pellet band below. Or ready tied to a hook, in which case you tie the hook on through the eye as normal.
I believe there are other brands available, but I have not had chance to try them out.
Pellet bands are small elastic, rubbery, latex type rings. They were originally introduced to hold hard pellets onto the hook. It has since been found that they are excellent at holding luncheon onto a hair rig. The pellet bands themselves come in a variety of sizes, so choose the ones that suit your intended hook and bait size.
To make the rig the pellet band is tied onto a length of line or braid.
The pellet band is then tied to the hook using the "knotless knot".
A cube of meat is then threaded onto the baiting needle, the hook the the needle is then hooked onto the pellet and the pellet band stretched.
Keeping the pellet band stretched, the cube of meat is then pushed onto the pellet band and the baiting needle un-hooked.
The end result, with the pellet band holding the meat onto the hair.
Please note that when using stiff hook length material such as ordinary fishing line, florocarbon etc., I like to thread a small amount of silicon tubing over the eye of the hook. This keeps the rig main line in line with the hook and not coming of the eye of the hook at an awkward angle, because of the way the knotless knot is tied. I know it's the fashion to have things coming of at awkward angles these days, but I just don't like it.
When selecting a baiting needle to work with luncheon meat, you must choose one with a proper hook. I've shown the main types of baiting needles on the right.
The top on of the three has a hook, but it just isn't deep enough. Luncheon meat and pellets are very greasy, so the band will slip off the small hook. The middle baiting needle has a barb, again this just isn't big enough to hold a pellet band or get your hook into. The bottom needle is ideal, it will hold onto even the biggest pellet band or hook because of the deep, wide hook. They are normally sold as "stringer needles", for putting boilies onto pva string.
Tubing on Hair.
The last method of hair rigging luncheon meat I want to look at, is where tubing prevents the hair, slicing through the meat.
A small piece of silicon or plastic tubing is cut to the same size as the cube of meat you want to mount on a hair rig. This is placed on a baiting needle first, followed by the cube of meat. The tubing is then pushed all the way into the bait. The hair is then drawn through the plastic tubing which is inside the meat and secured with a boilie or hair stop in the normal way, just as if you were mounting a boilie. The tubing, because of it's increased diameter (compared to the hair material) doesn't cut through the meat as easily. The hair or boilie stop shown at the top of the picture is made by Fox
The picture on the right shows the end result. I think the biggest problem with this method is that you seem to loose a lot of hair stops and plastic tubing as the meat seems to come off in the water sometimes. This is just my opinion, but it doesn't seem as secure as the other two methods detailed above.