brentwayne

DIY Crabbing Ring Traps

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If I see something that I can make better or make for less, I give it a shot.  I bought a 17' Montauk back in March and wanted to really get into crabbing this year with the family.  My wife and I sit back and eat a 1/2 bushel in a couple of days, so needless to say, we want crabs.  I was originally thinking about making topless box traps, but ran across ring traps in a crabbing forum.  These are not the cheesy cotton rope ones you can purchase at a bog box store for $2.00, rather, they are made from a heavy tarred twine and heavy duty wire.  They should last a really long time.  The thing I like about ring traps is the extremely small amount of space they take up.  The Montauk has very little space on it to begin with so stacking a few stacks of box traps was not ideal.  I should be able to stack 20-30 and only take up a 20"D x 15"H space on the boat.  So I did some research and bought the supplies needed to make my own netting, rings and bait clips and got to work.  Currently I have 5 traps ready to go (already used them) and 3 others ready to have rings, lines, floats, etc attached.  Should complete those tonight.  I have been dropping a string of traps attached to floats about 30 yards apart then going back to the beginning and pulling them one by one.  Last trip we put 34 crabs in the boat in 2 hours with 5 traps- which wasn't bad.  I figure with 15-20 traps, it should make short work of getting a bushel.  The kids are actually really good at it and the constant pulling, dumping, and dropping keeps them busy long enough that they don't start fighting (5 and 7 yr olds).  While they take a while to make, I really like sitting down with a couple of beers watching mindless TV and netting them up.  In all, it should only cost me about $4-5.00 a trap.  My first trap that I made on the first pull had 4 crabs in it... All of the time spent seemed like nothing at that moment.  :) 

Here is what they look like.  They are 20" in D.

Take care,

Brent

 

Ring trap 1.jpg

Ring trap 2.jpg

Ring trap 3.jpg

Ring trap 4.jpg

Edited by brentwayne

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Posted (edited) · Report post

If you Google search "Perfectionist ring traps", you will be able to get the basic information on supplies, etc. from his site.  I then did a YouTube search for making a crab net.  There is an old video by an old-timer who shows you how to make a net over a series of 4 videos.  It teaches you the basics, but my knotting technique is slightly different and holds a much better knot than what he shows.  My basic tools I bought from Amazon are: 8" netting shuttle, #15 tarred twine (1 lb spool will make 10+ nets?) and twisted nylon for the trap line.  I bought a large spool of tension wire used for fencing from Home Depot for the 2 rings (20" and 13") as well as the large diameter pool noodles for the floats and aluminum sleeves for connecting the wire. oh- and a champagne cork to float all 3 lines out of the trap so they don't push the crabs off when pulling.  In all, I want to say it cost me about $75.00 and I should have enough supplies to make AT LEAST 20 traps.  

Edited by brentwayne

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That is a sweet looking ring trap. I run 25 topless and do well, but as you know what Perfectionist says "his ring will always out fish all other traps." 

I forgot to ask, did you ever think about using a snood instead of a clip?

Edited by rockyoutdoors

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Thanks Rocky.  I made up a couple of snoods, but have only run bunker in my traps so far and am not sure how well they would work with a larger piece of bait...  I like the clips so I can stick them through the bunkers eyes on the head piece and run them through the fish close to the backbone on the others.  I feel like they can't be held on better with snoods- can they?  Do you use snoods?  What bait are you using?  I think I might try chicken legs next week when I go on some traps to see how they perform and will most likely use snoods around the bottom of the leg- it should hold better than a clip.

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Snoods and bunker (bunker falls apart) do not pair up well in traps so that makes sense why you are using clips. However if you decide to use chicken necks or legs snoods are the way to go. If you check out your supermarket circulars you can buy legs for under a buck a pound and they always caught better for me when I did bunker and chicken comparisons. 

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Perfect.  I just found Giant has chicken leg quarters for $.69 a lb. near me.  I have never seen necks around me (PA or SNJ).  I figure I will split the thigh from the leg- eat the thigh and use the leg for bait.  I am a little skeptical about using chicken since I never have before, but will start out with chicken and switch back to bunker if needed.  Thanks for your input Rocky.

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Thank for posting this Brent. I was about to go to your route until I remember a net that I bought longtime ago that I like very much. Stainless steel netting that the crab have problem to hold onto when you flip the net over to dump them in the cooler. It ways better than the cotton ( crap) and it is a improvement over twine in my opinion. I have been crabbing with ring trap for over 30 years...West and East coast. 

I bought a dozen of them on line they works great for me... You can find them under the name * Double Ring Wire Mesh Crab Net. under 5 dollars per piece.

Yours look great   ... well done!

 

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Sorry to answer late I was away ( Wachapreague Va) with spotty  cellular reception and no internet. Yes I am a first believer in float on the harness string. Mine was made from a cylinder cork 1" x  2" spray painted white for xtra visibility. 

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No worries- just making sure.  I make mine out of champagne corks with a hole drilled through the center and lines pulled through.  They seem to hold the lines up really well.

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