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2017 AOTY/DOTY Entry

Topic: Do you brine tray bait before using?  (Read 1568 times)

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Great Bass 2

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I read a few articles which recommended "toughening" bait before using by brining them. I have never done this and was wondering if anybody does. It was also unclear how long to brine them for. Thanks! Scott
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There's a few good brining tutorials buried in the archives of the old PFIC board. When I have a bit more time at work today I'll see if I can dig them up.







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From PFIC
*Note - Sinker had tried many different brining methods back then and he felt that salting gave the best results.

Posted by Sinker (and Pierhead?) on June 9, 2003
Curing Your Own Bait

ANCHOVIES
I like to use FRESH DEAD if at all possible but will also use frozen if need be. I have tried all kinds of salt and all different kind of methods and here is the best I have come up with.
Use non-iodized salt - I like rock salt for making ice-cream
I prefer a pan or large Tupperware container that has small holes in it (I drill them myself) to let the water drain off.
I lay a good base coat of salt then a layer of Anchovies so that they will be completely surrounded by salt, then another layer of salt then Anchovies and on and on till it full, then I put the lid on it to keep flies and bugs out.
I have found that different batches require different times but have not yet had any ready in less than 6 hours. Many times they are ready right around the 6-hour mark though I have had other batches that took almost a full day (especially when doing large Sardines).
The trick is to check them and get them the way you want. I like a full figured (for lack of a better term) Anchovy that does not look dehydrated or like a mummy.
When ready I take them out of the salt. Save the salt as it can be used over and over and over again - a lot more than three times.
Make sure you get all the salt off them, I often times will mix up some sugar-water to rinse them in, the sugar water seems to give them a nice shiny look. Now when I say rinse I am talking just a quick dunk that's it. Pat them dry with paper towels - I lay them out on paper towels and cover with more and continue to I have all Anchovies rinsed, then I turn them over and start packing them.
I like to pack them in the Zip Lock Snack Pack Bags - perfect for about 10 Anchovies per bag. This way you just take what you need and are not re-freezing Anchovies over and over again.
Experiment until you get the right texture and toughness you are looking for.







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I've used lots of bags of chovies and end up throwing away the balance of a bag after the day's trolling more often than not.  This brining/salting sounds like a good method for getting more out of a $3 to $5 bag of bait, but I would caution that you're taking a chance of degrading a nice full-figured (lifelike) bait when you brine it.  Like Sinker says, don't let it get dehydrated like a mummy!

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I do if I have left over bait that is in OK shape. Simple brine is all you really need. I've added some powdered milk and "blueing" the stuff you add to whites when you do laundry. I think its mrs smiths. Overnight in a cooler with some ice. I either lay them and vacuum seal with or without using a left over grocery store meat tray. I do it 5-7 bait packs. Nice to have on hand for a quick trip. I've saved many a day by making bait for the season. Somehow makes the day seem better
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I can see doin it to impregnate scent but really don't see a need to brine fresh tray bait, never had any problems with it going soft  :smt002
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I have this dried tuna blood that I use to add scent to the bait.  I bought a brine recently that smells like some familiar cooking spices that is supposed to stimulate bites..  Both products are made by Pro-Cure, but I havent used the latter.  I also have tried using a blue dye made by Pautzke.


While typing this I found this great info on brining and coloring bait.  http://blog.theoutdoorline.com/post/2012/03/23/Dual-Colored-Herring.aspx
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For a nice looking long lasting firm bait here's what I do. Brine in a tupperware container I can fit in the yak hatch in the lap of my revo. Half fill with water. I put in a bit of Mrs. Stuart's blueing, (find it in the laundry section) (it gives the bait a great brightened blue color) a couple tablespoons of powdered milk (supposed to hold the scales better) and rocksalt. I stir it for a while to get the salt (preserves and toughens the baits) to disolve in the solution, then add the baits. If I want to use it soon I do this the night before, other wise it will last in your fridge for several weeks. Then when I want to fish I've got bait ready to go. Kinda like one of those tubs of power baits you see in the stores. If I don't use all the baits, they go back in the fridge. Some guys like to add scents too, but I stick with the natural. Figure they have enough of they're own....


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For a nice looking long lasting firm bait here's what I do. Brine in a tupperware container I can fit in the yak hatch in the lap of my revo. Half fill with water. I put in a bit of Mrs. Stuart's blueing, (find it in the laundry section) (it gives the bait a great brightened blue color) a couple tablespoons of powdered milk (supposed to hold the scales better) and rocksalt. I stir it for a while to get the salt (preserves and toughens the baits) to disolve in the solution, then add the baits. If I want to use it soon I do this the night before, other wise it will last in your fridge for several weeks. Then when I want to fish I've got bait ready to go. Kinda like one of those tubs of power baits you see in the stores. If I don't use all the baits, they go back in the fridge. Some guys like to add scents too, but I stick with the natural. Figure they have enough of they're own....

that the recipe I use!
-Eric Berg


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Some guys will also add krill powder for salmon for an extra kick


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I put in a bit of Mrs. Stuart's blueing,
a couple tablespoons of powdered milk

How much is a bit? Per say a tray of chovies.
What king of powdered milk? Coffeemate works? :)
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I put in a bit of Mrs. Stuart's blueing,
a couple tablespoons of powdered milk

How much is a bit? Per say a tray of chovies.
What king of powdered milk? Coffeemate works? :)

Just regular powdered milk you can find in the grocery store Darius, a little bit of sea salt, and bluing agent is the brine formula.
It works well. Keep the bait cold in a hand cooler with some ice and you should be good to go all day.
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I put in a bit of Mrs. Stuart's blueing,
a couple tablespoons of powdered milk

How much is a bit? Per say a tray of chovies.
What king of powdered milk? Coffeemate works? :)

Just regular powdered milk you can find in the grocery store Darius, a little bit of sea salt, and bluing agent is the brine formula.
It works well. Keep the bait cold in a hand cooler with some ice and you should be good to go all day.

Thank you!! Good luck tomorrow, I was told one of my project manager will be off tomorrow no go for me.
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Can these chovies be used for rock fish and ling cod? If so how do you rig them up, do you thred them on or just use the 2 hooks & put one in the tale & one in the head? Sorry if this is a dumb? Just never fished chovies before.