I’ve never had any issues with those rather clever Delalande Agrafe Rapide lure clips, although a few anglers I know did experience a few problems with the 29lb size a while back - but I didn’t, and to be honest I use the slightly larger 35lb version far more anyway. Why, when I am not likely to hook a 35lb bass in UK waters? Because I like the fact that the slightly larger Agrafe Rapide clip seems to work better with the single weedless style hooks I find myself using more and more. I like trying different stuff out though, and a while back I asked for some advice on my Facebook page about lure clips along the lines of the Delalande one, but perhaps with a bit more of a rounder profile to help even more with larger single hooks. Don’t use a lure clip you might well say, but I like using them.
Anyway, a lure clip called the Mustad Ultrapoint Fastach came out in the mix of helpful advice, so I duly went ahead and ordered a couple of packets of them in their size 1 which is meant to have a breaking strain of 25lbs (great service as always from Alderney Angling). I have to say that I really liked the look of these Mustad Fastach lure clips when they arrived. I couldn’t find a lure that was remotely problematic to clip on or take off, albeit I am of course far more used to using the Delalande clips, and I liked the way that there seemed to be no restriction on how a hard or soft lure might move when you are using the rather clever shaped Fastach clip.
All good so far. I went fishing with the clips tied onto my fluoro leaders a few times and I was starting to really like them. OK, they’re a tiny bit more fiddly than the so easy to use Agrafe Rapide clips that so float my boat, but hardly something to worry about, and in time I was sure they could become second nature to use. We had a six day trip in Ireland coming up and I took the decision to keep on using them out there when I knew we would be fishing long hours and changing through a wide variety of lures. All fine again, until our second day out on the Copper Coast……….
We got some delicious looking bouncy conditions, and plans were set to make sure we were off one mark in time to get to another one about an hour into the push. We have hammered bass here on surface lures before, with my beloved and much obsessed about IMA Salt Skimmer in my favourite cotton candy colour never failing to leave my lure box when out and about in Ireland - hell, it never leaves my lure box wherever I am to be honest, and whilst I have caught bass on any number of different coloured Skimmers, we all have our favourite lure colours I am sure. This particular cotton candy Skimmer was nearly brand new, and I had rigged it up with single hooks to see how they might do.
So we’re as good as running across the fields down the rocks because the conditions look so good, with a couple of our group (mentioning no names) keeping well away from some pretty harmless looking bullocks. Men of men, we stride the Copper Coast!! Or at least some of us do. Anyway, on goes my cotton candy Salt Skimmer via that rather nifty Mustad Fastach lure clip, and in no time I’m fishing away and feeling pretty damn good about things.
So why’s my line suddenly gone very slack? I ain’t bait fishing and waiting for a slack line bite, so what’s happened? I keep trying to work my surface lure but I can’t get any tension or “bite” to the lure in my line or on the rod tip. I have no choice but to wind in, looking all the time as to what on earth is going on with my Skimmer to feel that slack, but I suddenly come to an abrupt halt when the lure clip bangs up against my tip ring - minus my frigging lure!! Call me a tit if you like, but messing around with different bits and pieces of fishing tackle fascinates me. At that exact moment when I realised that one of my favourite bass lures had gone and unclipped from the lure clip though? Well let’s just say that a couple or dozen choice words were offered to the scudding skies. Experiment sodding well concluded you might say. Was this simply a one off with a Mustad Fastach lure clip and I was just an unlucky sod of a bass angler? I don’t know, and I ain’t about to try and find out, put it that way. So there you have it - my midweek advice on another rather clever way to go losing one of your favourite bass fishing lures. In all seriousness though, please tell me if you have been using these Mustad Fastach lure clips for a while and have never any problems at all - a part of me does of course think that I was just unlucky, but experimenting and then losing a not cheap and much loved hard lure kinda jolts.
Anyway, below is my work that comes out in the new issue of Sea Angler this week, and I am really pleased that they have so quickly jumped upon a night fishing with white senkos piece that I wrote for them just after I first had a serious go at it back in July in Ireland. Lots more to come on this subject I can assure you……….