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Finger Test

Does your paste pass the finger test? Get the texture right and you'll bag up.

PastePaste is one of the summer's top polefishing baits. Right now, anglers who've got the bait worked out will be bagging up almost every time they put a line in the water. In waters containing a variety of carp, from small fish to lumps, it's the specimens that home in on a soft, smelly lump of paste. The major problem for newcomers to paste fishing is mixing it to the correct texture. All too often they make paste that is to soft and it falls off the hook before you get it in the water, or it is so stiff that you miss bitesBall of Paste because the hook  can't pull through the bait. Fortunately, Jamie Masson has developed a test that guarantees you make the perfect paste every time. Tempting though it might be to 'short cut' don't do it. Leave how to make the prefect paste below:

Step 1 Scoop an inch or so of lake water into a bait tub. Don't use tap water as it taint the bait with all sorts of chemicals.

Step 2 Add a teaspoon of sensas IM5 betaine green liquid additive. This is optional. If you have a favourite additive you can use that instead

Step 3 There are lots of ready made baits availabl that double up as paste powder and groundbaits.

Step 4 Slowly add powder to the water (in the ratio of approx one part groundbait to three parts water), churning it until you have a sodden slurry.

Step 5 Many anglers see this runny goo and panic, adding more powder to stiffen it up. DO NOT DO THIS! Leave the bait to stand so that the fishmeal soaks up the wxcess water.

Step 6 After five minutes the bait stiffens into a very soft paste. You'll be able to pick it up but it's still to soft to use. But things are going to plan!

Step 7 Leave the paste to stiffen for 15 to 20 minutes. Now's the time to fine tune the perfect hookbait. You can soften it with a dip of water or stiffen it with a pinch of powder.

Step 8 Cup the paste in one hand and rub your other hand over it. It should be slightly sticky and slide into a smooth spread. If it's too stiff it will crumble and won't smear over your hand

Step 9 Cup the paste between your hands, gently pressing for a couple of seconds. Opening up your fingers, the paste should be tacky and soft enough to fill the gaps between your fingers

Step 10 Finger marks should run across the paste. If it is too soft the finger marks collapse, If it's too stiff (the usual mistake) it will be crumbly and won't have any finger marks  

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