A strong trace that can withstand the sharp, slicing teeth found in rows inside a pike’s mouth is crucial when fishing for these apex predators. Bottom line - do not target pike without some form of trace that will stop you being bitten off!
The strongest, most bite resistant material to use for this is wire, and positioned between your trace and your mainline you should be more than safe from bite offs when you hook an example of the species.
There is a large choice of extremely high-quality, ready-made traces available in the Rage range (check them out here), but what if you want to make your own? Sometimes it’s just more satisfying to create traces for yourself, you have more control over length and breaking strains, allowing you to adapt to the lure fishing situation in front of you. Going about it is fairly straight forward, but remembering the pressures and abuse these traces are likely to go through from casting and catching fish, you need to make sure you have the right tools to create them and the right technique. Luckily, we’re on hand to guide you through the process…
To make your own wire trace you will need: Wire (Rage Predator 49 Strand Steel Wire), crimps, clips (Rage Sure Fit Snaps ), swivels, scissors (that can cut wire), a lighter and crimping pliers (Rage Crimps). Look to make your trace around 16inches in length - go longer than you think as it’s better to be safe rather than sorry.
Using 49 strand wire makes for a much more supple trace that won’t kink and bend as easily as with other wire types. The drawback though is that when you cut it, it does tend to spread its strands at the end, making threading it through crimps difficult.
The solution to this is to use a lighter to heat the end of the wire after you’ve cut it, this works to fuse the strands together allowing you to push them through the crimps much more easily.
OK, so after cutting your length of wire from the spool – go longer than 16inches so you have plenty of extra wire to play with at either end to create the attachments – note that cutting at an angle will also help you direct the wire through the crimp.
Now thread a crimp over the wire, make sure you’ve got the right size crimp for the poundage of wire you’re using.
After this, take the end of the trace and put it back through the crimp, trapping the end of a clip in the loop that you’re making - again make sure the size of the clip you’re using suits the lure’s you’re going to be using with the trace.
The result should look like this. Make sure that the loop holding the clip is small but not too tight that the clip can’t move.
Now use the crimping pliers to close the crimp over the wire - make sure you leave an inch or so of tag end and that you put enough pressure on to make the crimp secure.
You can now cut off the remaining tag end of wire that’s hanging out the back of the crimp.
Do exactly the same with the opposite end using a swivel instead of the clip and you have a trace ready for action.