4/11/2021 – Weekly Specials

Seems like the bluefin have already started biting well so we are set for another great season. Get set up with the bigger gear if you’re looking to give it a try, supplies will be low this year due to shipping delays and increased demand.

We are seeing longer delays for products across the board, most of the overseas manufacturers like Daiwa, Okuma and Penn are running out of stock and are experiencing long delays to get more. With Daiwa and Okuma, the local strikes in the Port of LA & Long Beach along with increased shipping volume have caused 4-6 week backlogs for containers that are already here waiting to be processed. It seems like the first half of this year will be similar to last year when everyone was caught off guard and sold through stock due to the increased interest in fishing.

If you’ve got pictures of some of your catches with our gear feel free to send us some pictures either to me at sergey@charkbait.com or Mark at information-1@charkbait.com

If you have any suggestions, complaints, questions or comments about the website please feel free to email me at: sergey@charkbait.com or give me a call at the shop.

As always, thank you for visiting our Weekly Specials and hope to see you at the shop!

Sergey Smith


Tady decided to come out with their own pre-rigged versions of the TSP Tuna jigs, opting to use 4 large single hooks with a ball bearing swivel for each. The jigs are through-wired so you won’t have to worry about breaking them on a big fish, especially since these rigged versions come with welded rings throughout. Overall these are a great jig targeted specifically for the SoCal market Bluefin fishing, so if you’re targeting the bigger tuna these will be your best option. Considering how many swivels and rings were added to the jig they’re a good value, especially if you get a fish of a lifetime on one. The leader is 200lb mono which is plenty good for abrasion resistance and won’t impact the bite since you’ll be fishing these at night.

The new Tuna versions of the Tady TSP jigs are a much needed change in the jig market, the unique front and rear shape create a wide sweeping action when jigged and an erratic fall on the drop. These are a new design made with shorter and heavier sizes than the standard TSP jigs from Tady, specifically targeted for the big bluefin due to the extra weight and depth they can be used at. Since these are slow pitch jigs you can also use more specialized lighter tackle to really give a great action to the jigs, but they are still usable on bigger heavier reels for a quick drop and retrieve in-fact we encourage you to use them that way for the bigger bluefin. If you are lucky enough to have a nice Slow Pitch setup you can use these for many different species at a variety of current conditions, since they are a bit shorter than the original TSP’s they will work better on a drift or in higher current especially with the added weights.

All of the jigs come in classic holographic bait patterns with a brighter yellow pattern to attract fish in warmer water. Each jig has a patterned glow finish on the back to ensure that they are usable at night and at large depths, the last few years glow jigs have been especially popular for night time and gray light tuna fishing since they get down to the right depth and are easily noticeable by the fish.



The DTX Minnow is a revolution in trolling minnows, featuring the Nomad Autotune, Hydrospeed, Diamond Armour and Gorilla Through Wire advanced design technology. The pat. pending Autotune system was designed over years of testing by Damon Olsen and is a revolution in lure technology that will be applied to all deep diving lures across the Nomad range into the future. The Autotune design provides for 2 key features– maximum diving depth, and the ability to ensure the lure always swims straight.

Bibbed minnows have traditionally been made with an eyelet fixed into the bib of the lure. It is impossible to control the manufacturing process to ensure that this fixed eyelet design is always perfectly centered and the fixed wire eyelet is not bent. Therefore, virtually every type of bibbed minnow made with a fixed wire eyelet in the bib will occasionally either not swim straight out of the box, or will fail to swim straight after one or a few fish. The eyelet is either not straight to start with, or becomes distorted during use.

The pat. pending Autotune system developed by Nomad Design has eliminated this problem. The design eliminates problems during manufacturing and ensure that no matter how many fish you catch, the lure will keep swimming straight. During testing we had lures that had caught over 50 fish, and had been worn through from wahoo and dogtooth teeth to the point of the lure body filling with water, but the lure kept swimming perfectly. The DTX minnow with Autotune will always swim straight, first time and every time, no matter how many fish you catch.

​The other key feature of the Autotune system is the amazing diving depth that can be achieved. The ability of the system to perfectly centre itself every time on the bib means that the tow point can be designed to be as far back on the bib as possible, effectively just forward of the point where the lure becomes unstable and won’t swim. However, having the tow point as close to this “point of not swimming” is what achieves maximum diving depth, but it can only be done with a perfectly centred tow point. Traditional fixed eyelet trolling lures are unable to position the tow point this far back on the bib and have to allow room for error in the manufacturing process.

​The pat.pending Autotune system has eliminated this problem and has set a new standard for diving depth in trolling lure design. In addition to the Autotune technology, the concealed Hydrospeed belly eyelet allows faster trolling speeds with single hooks, and ensures the lure is balanced with single hooks, so the DTX minnow just keeps swimming straight and true. The additional belly eyelet in front of the Hydrospeed eyelet is designed to be able to fit an assist hook when targeting large tuna and marlin. For tips on how to rig your DTX minnow for marlin and tuna, please see the website videos.

The DTX 165 and 200 minnows are rigged with our purpose designed inline single hooks and will reach max. depth between 4.5-8kn.  Ideal for tuna, wahoo, king mackerel, yellowtail, mahi mahi, marlin and sailfish, and every other predatory fish in the ocean, The DTX minnow is your first choice in bluewater trolling lures.

Rigging – do not over-rig these lures, you’ll detract from their action and performance. Thinner diameter leader means greater depth with any billed diver and a heavy line improperly rigged can impede the Autotune system. Don’t go in for a lot of hardware, snaps and such. A simple loop with crimp, on 3′ of 175 cable terminating in a swivel for line attachment is plenty good enough and will outfish heavier lines. Don’t run ’em on 12 feet of 400  lb cable or 200# mono…! A shorter 3 feet of say 175-275 lb is recommended, and is more than sufficient if you are targeting wahoo on the troll. Same story for mono and tuna, keep it simple, and fish reasonable line tests for your target. Thinner diameters get you more depth and will catch you more fish. Going heavy on the rigging will take away from the lure’s action, not allow it to track well.  Go simple and skinny and you’ll gain depth and tracking will be spot on even at some speed.


United Composite Challenger Platinum Series

The Challenger Platinum Series (CP) from United Composite has long been one of my personal favorites. Here’s the background, the CP series was originally designed by Peter Williams from United Distributing in Australia. It was exclusive to the Australian market until Peter purchased UC and allowed me to buy blanks, which we turned into custom rods. Now that Randy Penny owns the firm he also saw the benefit of bringing these blanks to market as finished rods – THANK GOODNESS!

Here’s why we like the CP’s so much, and what’s different about this series in comparison to the US and Elite Series from United Composites (formerly known as Graphite USA). The CP series rods make use of upgraded carbon fiber, again used in the proprietary dual helix form, AND uni-directional fiberglass. The rod transitions to ‘glass at the tip. These rods are not nearly as light as the US and Elite series – they are more like a fiberglass Calstar in terms of weight – but they are strong, hard pulling, high use and abuse fishing rods. The blanks are the strongest made in my opinion, nothing else on the market like them in terms of design and inherent strength given the production materials and design. For light weight, go Elite –  no doubt about that. But for the most demanding conditions the CP’s are the best in the business in terms of lifting power and overall strength. These rods are also a bit “faster” in terms of their bend. The Elite’s offer a bit more parabolic action, and that’s great for many  applications and most fishermen. The CP’s are faster, put a bit more power in your hands and more control of the fish on the other end of your line, too. For the experienced angler who really likes to leverage a fish, the actions of these rods will be helpful in accomplishing greater control, but you will be a greater part of the fight since your strength comes more into play. That’s one aspect of a faster action rod to consider.

These are for the hard pullers out there, faster action (meaning you get good flex at the tip and then the rods shut off earlier than the US or CE series). The CP’s make use of Dual Helix construction plus uni-directional fiberglass. There is a transition to greater ‘glass towards the tip, but the dual helix construction extends butt through tip. CP’s incorporate higher end woven carbon fiber through the mid section of the rod. Five to six patterns are used in the build of the CP series, 1 fiberglass, three different types of carbon in four to five patterns.

Alps, ForeCast & Batson Rod Components

We’ve been a Batson Enterprises distributor for many years now, carrying their high quality Rainshadow blanks as well as an assortment of Alps and ForeCast components. With the growth of custom rod building we’ve seen over the last year we would like to slowly expand the line of products we offer and make them available to everyone online. Right now we don’t have too much variety due to the sheer size of their catalog of products, but we will be adding to it as we see demand. We mainly cover the popular saltwater components such as Alps XN frame guides, EPDM grips and their great aluminum reel seats but we have the ability to get anything they make so if you are in the market for specific components, colors or products we don’t yet offer online be sure to let us know and we can always order them for you. If you didn’t already know we also distribute the full line of Rainshadow and United Composites blanks, with some unique offerings from Temple Reef as well. Click here to see what we currently offer.


Temple Reef Innovate Slow Pitch Jigging Rods

The Innovate series is tailor made for the US market and works especially well for our SoCal fishing. Most people will go out on larger boats which aren’t catered to jigging specifically making it harder to get away with shorter rods and lighter lure weights. The longer length and stronger construction of the Innovate series makes it possible to jig on our bigger sport boats, which have larger rails and are higher off the water. The extra length keeps the line from rubbing the hull and also allows you to use the long fall technique, with longer strokes it will be much easier to keep your jigs in front of you on a drift. Since most of the boats won’t anchor up at every stop the boat will be more affected by current meaning you’ll have to go up in jig size, go down in line weight or utilize different techniques and these rods make it all possible. The larger jig weight range allows you to adjust your rig to any condition without switching out rods, making these more versatile and usable. Both of the models are a 2 piece 70/30 split, making them easy to transport in their soft rod case.

These will be the perfect rod for longer range trips and variety fishing out of San Diego, as well as island fishing for yellowtail and seabass. With a bit of extra pulling power these rods allow you to fight the fish more effectively with guys fishing around you, it will make it easier to control the fish and keep from getting tangled up. Made in collaboration with Benny Ortiz, an experienced pioneer in the domestic jigging scene, these rods are the best combination of power, length and action for our style of fishing.

SG MackStick Deep Divers

Following the success of Savage Gear’s 3D MackStick, at ICAST 2019 this innovative manufacturer displayed a new lure for 2020. This new Deep Diving 3D MackStick brings the realism of the MackStick to a deeper diving lure capable of reaching 30 foot depths with the larger 6 ¾” lures and 20 feet with the smaller 6 inch lure. The 6” lure weights 2 ounces, 60 grams. The larger going 2 4/5 ounces / 80 grams. The supplied 4X treble hooks are excellent, super sharp, stainless steel and rigged well making use of heavy duty split rings for connecting to a thru wire extending well into the lip of the lure. The lures also feature a built in rattle. The lures run $22.99 and 19.99 respectively for the 6 4/5” and 6” deep divers.

No doubt private boaters are going to love these new lures, just like a lot of us jumped on the 3D MackSticks. Those were wonderful lures on a slow troll or as cast and retrieve lures (where they shined the most – easy for me to say after watching them used by some guys on one of our charters in 2019). For a private boater, doing some prospecting for tuna, wahoo or whatever decides to dine that particular day, these lures will help you cover the water and they will indeed attract the attention of predatory gamefish. These new lures look great, beautiful cosmetics, and their beauty is far more than skin deep.

Mustad Underspin Shad Jig Heads

Underspin heads have been very popular the last few years and this is Mustad’s entry into that market. They come in a good variety of colors and sizes which should cover almost all inshore or freshwater applications. The underspin action looks great in the water with the inclusion of the ball bearing swivel, you don’t have to crank it in fast to get the blade turning. Pair these up with some Big Hammer swimbaits and you’ll have a great inshore combo.

  • Available in 4 Colors
  • Sizes: 1/4, 3/8, 1/2 & 3/4 ounce
  • Featuring black nickel Mustad hooks

YO-ZURI Bonita Lures

Yo-Zuri’s Bonita lures have had some changes over the years, all positive steps in the lure’s development. The current series posted here now represents their best efforts, and recognizes that pricing is an important consideration just as is the build quality, rigging and overall construction of lures like this. Knowing that the target species is wahoo, a fish with an incredible bite and razor sharp teeth, Yo-Zuri improved the materials used several years back. The new material is harder than most such lures  (Power Body). In the past Bonitas and Marauders were made with compressed foam which was prone to degradation with use. These lures are thru wired for strength and security, and they feature ball bearing stainless steel swivels to the hooks – which are also flat forged stainless steel. The color change technology which Yo-Zuri introduced in 2012 is maintained, only for the top of the lure. That feature has no real world appeal to fish in my humble estimation, but it’s trick to see. That was a huge talking point with the prior generation, now it’s downplayed – and that makes some sense since I’ve never noticed a wahoo approach the bait at 10 knots from two different directions before making it’s mind up about eating a bait or lure. There was little if any benefit from the feature other than adding cost, so it’s basically gone. Additionally, the ribbing which had to be incorporated made the lure’s body rough, not smooth. For best hooksets some feel that the more slippery body allowed the lure to slide through the ‘hoo’s mouth allowing for a better hook up rate. I’d tend to agree with that thinking. Rigging is done correctly, with quality components, material used for the lure’s body is also top notch. And, for the new lures, pricing is far more aggressive with costs of $29-39 rather than $55! The 2016 Bonita lures are just what we like to see, nice quality, good materials, and they are very well priced.