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Thursday, 14 March 2013 11:35

Elastics - What & How?

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When selecting the correct elastic for your pole, there are only 4 things that are very important:

1 - Balance to your pole rating.
2 - Balance to your line thickness.
3 - Balance to your hook size.
4 - Balance to the size of the fish.

All these items need to be in balance with each other as well to maximise the effect of your choice of elastic. When it comes to choice, there are also a few different types of elastic that you can opt for either complicating the matter for some anglers or expanding the spectrum for others.
In this short series we will address all the components of elastication in detail. Balance is up first, followed by length, tensioning, bungs, bushes, connectors and lubrication.

Solid elastics are like monograde oil. It is designed for a specific range and works very well within that range. However, the range is narrow and limiting. They normally stretch 5-6 times their length. A few clever guys have come up with the idea of doubling up the solid elastics, to expand the optimal working range. In the case of a single 8, it behaves like an 8 from beginning to bottoming out, where-as doubling up will start off like a 9 or 10 and behave something like a 16 to 18 close to bottoming.

Solids are however extremely effective with-in the range, and surely the most cost-effective option. For less than R50, you should be able to elasticate two top kits with the 5m solid or latex elastic in the pack.

The guide you always needed!

Note: This is a guide aimed at the middle of the road, and one size up or down can be used as well.

In the last decade or so, technology has really advanced and brought us more and more "multigrade oil" type elastics. These are Hollow elastic types that behave differently in different areas of the working range. They are slightly softer in the beginning, but can stretch much more, and become really tough at the end of the stretch, without bottoming out. Hollows can stretch about eight times their length and are more expensive, comfortably exceeding the R100 mark elasticating only one single topkit.

The crux of the working of the hollow elastic is the double-core construction. The centre is hollow and thus allows for a lock-up (flattening of the elastic) where it enters the bush. This gives more braking power and works like ABS brakes on a car. It locks up, but does not stop completely like when bottoming out. This reduces hook pulls and is great for landing the larger bonus fish, while bagging the smaller ones, as the hollow elastics are much more forgiving on the strike.

Daiwa has patented the Hydolastic, which is in essence only a hollow with a fluid in the centre core creating the bubble effect which slows down the big fish take-off considerably.

Although hollow are more expensive, they last much longer and covers a much wider range.

Read 1427 times Last modified on Friday, 15 March 2013 11:32

Werner manages the process flow, takes care of Photography, Match Angling and Feeder Fishing technical editing. He is also a veteran Protea angler and National angling coach.