Distance casting conventionals and baitcasters from piers?

#1
During the summer I have switched over from spinning to mainly conventional/baitcasting setups. Although IMHO they offer a more ergonomic and powerful platform for fighting large fish, I am consistently faced with the problem of distance casting for fishing trolley rigs and other rigs for large sharks/rays, as piers do not allow overhand casting. Whenever I try to get some distance underhand casting, I usually end up backlashing or short-casting. Any tips?
 
#2
Only two things I can think of to really help you out. The first one may not even be allowed on your pier, but pendulum casting. Swing the weight under the pier first for some momentum to help load the rod to launch it. You need be careful to not back swing too hard or you risk hitting the pier/knicking yor line etc.
The second thing that will help your casting is a more moderate rod. More flex means an easier time to load and launch baits, however, more flex might not be something you want when fishing for larger quarry.
 
#4
Only two things I can think of to really help you out. The first one may not even be allowed on your pier, but pendulum casting. Swing the weight under the pier first for some momentum to help load the rod to launch it. You need be careful to not back swing too hard or you risk hitting the pier/knicking yor line etc.
The second thing that will help your casting is a more moderate rod. More flex means an easier time to load and launch baits, however, more flex might not be something you want when fishing for larger quarry.
Haven't heard anything about pendulum casting. Will try it. Thanks!

imo 99% of the time if you still getting backlash it’s your casting knob or brake are not setup right
I rarely backlash when overhead casting. Exactly what forces and changes should I take into account when adjusting for underhand casting?
 
#8
Definitely pendulum casting helps. Just make sure you are between the pilings. Start with a couple of easy casts to get the line wet and make sure it is tight on the spool, but not sticking. Because of the way you are sort of sling shotting it while pendulum casting you need to use a little more thumb on the spool the first few moments of the cast as the spool is rapidly accelerating and can over run. Once in the air a short ways you can reduce the amount of thumb applied. On most piers I can underhand cast as far or farther than others over hand cast. Release point when underhand casting also takes some practice, otherwise your weight goes way up in the air or hits the water too early.
 
#9
Try holding the reel off to the side when you cast, ie, if you are right handed, the top of the baitcaster should be turned inward towards your left side, instead of having it facing upwards. I find that this can dramatically help with distance and reduction of backlash. Its also critical to make sure that the spool tension (small twist knob behind the drag adjustment) is properly set to the amount of weight you are casting. The general rule is that if set properly, the weight should be able to smoothly take line, not to slow, not too fast, when the button is disengaged.
 

Red Fish

Active member
#10
At Pacifica Pier, I rarely have ever seen anyone underhand cast a conventional set up there. The rail angle/pier design really blocks you from doing a swing pendulum style. What I have seen is the one or two guys that want to use a conventional will take the right outer corner of the L and do a side arm. But, so many times, even (30) years ago, I’ve seen guys look over their shoulder for enforcement and just launch an overhead cast there (spinning or not).
 
Last edited:
#11
It seems like with an overhand cast the thumb has a natural downward pressure on the spool, whereas an underhand cast would try to pull the thumb up and off it maybe causing overruns. I know zero about conventional reels, mind you. I, on the other hand, am considering my underhand casting technique with a fly rod (no joke). That should be easier than what you're attempting.
 
#12
Depending on what reel you have, you may be able to engage more brake blocks and tighten the friction control knob to tame the backlashes. Or, if you really want to make it absolutely fool proof, you can install a “mono mag” conversion kit. Some of the kits can be installed right through the reel’s clicker hole. But some others require that you drill a hole in the side plate.