Without doubt the one of most used rod and reel
float in my tackle box! Probably accounting for more fish caught
in one season, than any other fishing method I use. The waggler was
developed for modern fishing quit late in the history annuls of
fishing, it was only recognised as a truly deadly method for catching
fish back in the early 1950s.
Who discovered or developed this method, is a
debated question among angling historians, records show that a waggler
form of an antenna float was first used in Holland, on the great
canals, before the 1900s. Although many great names have been linked
with its, modern day developments. Benny Ashurst, Billy Lane,
Johny Moult, John Toulsant just to mention a few. The grandfather of
match fishing the late Mr. J.H.R.Bazley won two National
Championships (1909,1927) using bottom only floats.
The waggler was once called the waddled float, the
story goes, that as the float was retrieved in the water, anglers would
say it was waddling.
Peacock quills only came to our shores just after
the Second World War and
before the import of peacock quills, waggler floats, came in many other
materials; swan quill, goose quill, porcupine, condor quill, crow quill
and even celluloid, which was perhaps the inauguration of the
modern day plastic floats.
These days wagglers are produced with
high-tech precision, made out of clear plastics, graded peacock,
sarcandas reed, nylon, tapered balsa, or a combination of each, coated
in varnish or airship polythene paint, interchangeable tips and
adaptors, with printed shot capacity on the side. Wagglers have
certainly developed considerably and within my Gold Medal Float
Website I hope to cover most of them.
A waggler float comes in different
lengths, they are attached to the main line by way of either an eye or
by rubber adaptors, I prefer a silicone adaptor and most of the
wagglers I market have these attached. The float is locked by split
shot on both sides, this is also where the bulk of the shot should be,
giving the float weight and balance. Under the float on the line to the
hook length should then go the remaining shots, these should be spaced
out in such a way that they don't tangle when casting. This is also
where the presentation of the bait begins.
Finding the right size of waggler to use on a venue
is very important and this can only come with experience, the rule of
thumb, is not to use a bigger float than is reasonably necessary yet
light enough to cast into your swim. The float is so versatile and
adapterble it can be used on most fishing venues and because of the
locking system it can be moved up or down the line very easily,
altering the depth to find the fish. One big advantage over most other
floats is the ease of casting without tangling, and it can combat windy
Casting the waggler is best done over head, wind the
float half way up the rod, sight an object on the far bank or skyline,
bring the rod back at a 45 degree angle, cast forward towards the
object up into the air, release the reel line and as the float
starts to decline then feather the reel with an index finger so that
the shots on the line spread out in a straight line.