It’s been a while since I wrote my article “Special Delivery” about the Ardent culling clips that I purchased from the USA. If you recall, one of the dilemmas encountered with these is that the clips, which I can only describe as being like a very large kilt pin, are obviously designed for Bass in the USA not the smaller Bream that I purchased them for in Australia.
Without giving it a second thought, I removed these clips and replaced them with nappy pins borrowed from my daughter’s nappy draw in her wardrobe. I thought I was on to a winner. The nappy pins were ideally sized for the Bream and also easily attached to the fish. However, for some reason they weren’t as functional as I hoped. About twenty percent of the time when I grabbed one of the culling floats attached to a fish in the live well, the fish would manage to shake free of the nappy pin that meant I would then have to find and remove the fish from the live well defeating the purpose of the clips and the whole exercise.
After a little head scratching and a couple of conversations with a few other guys, I decided to dig out the original clips that luckily I hadn’t thrown away and re-attached them to the floats.
The first real test for these culling clips was at the Australian Open earlier this year, with the only trial run of the original pin/float setup taking place during the pre-fish for this event. To be honest, I still thought that these pins would be too big for Bream, especially on smaller fish in tournaments where a 26cm tip length rather than the standard 25cm fork length requirement is allowed.
The end result however is that the standard clips/pins on these Ardent floats are completely fine. I have found that as long as they are attached to the Bream from inside the mouth and out through the soft spot in the bottom of the lower jaw, the size of the clip is irrelevant.