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10 Feb 2016
by Shaun Harrison
13 things we loved about the nineties
"The decade where it seemed everything you could possibly need, from rig bits to metal ware were manufactured and ready there for you," says CARPology’s historian, Shaun Harrison

Extra comfort

“With the 90’s came much greater comfort on the bank and protection from the elements. Kevin Nash had released the first oval umbrella and finally we had an umbrella that covered the bedchair. This was a great breakthrough in my own angling, as my local club didn’t allow umbrellas to be used with storm sides.”

A legend was born…

“Rod building materials moved on in leaps and bounds in the 90’s as well as rod performances. The legendary Daiwa Amorphous rods that Kevin Nash was involved with hit the scene in 1992 and many are still using them!”

Spools like buckets!

“Along with rod performances improving, the reels started to get larger as well. I had a set of (still use them) Daiwa SS3000’s in 1992 when they were released over here and I always remember the advert and the quote from Kevin Nash – ‘Spools like buckets’! These seemed absolutely massive at the time but these days are rather small when compared to some of the monstrosities in use.”

Carp care products

“By 1993 we had the first fish care/repair products. I remember the first one I ever used; I put a drop on a hook wound and on a freshly lost scale and the fish went ape and promptly lost another scale. Wasn’t sure what to make of that!”

New fabrics

“Clothing fabrics available to the angler improved and finally we had waterproof clothing that actually breathed, allowing you to wear them for long periods without getting wet through and clammy inside.”

Top quality

“Fleeces, that we so much take for granted these days, also hit the scene big time in the 90’s. The first ones were really expensive but having said that, I still have some of the first ones I purchased; that can’t be said of a lot of the cheaper ones I brought in latter years.”

Bait teams

“Baiting teams was a new thing to my ears back in the early 90’s and lots of new and forward thinking bait companies were emerging with some quite groundbreaking products. I was always stubborn and refused to join baiting teams preferring to do things my way but so many customers coming into the shop seemed lost if they weren’t part of a baiting team.”

Spodding was new

“I don’t know about anyone else but I never really saw anyone spodding until the 90’s. Another thing we very much take for granted these days but still a relatively new way of introducing bait.”

The Titan was born

“Kevin Nash seems to be appearing a lot here but he really was a major innovator at this time and my favourite and probably the strongest bivvy of all time hit the market: The Titan. I used one from the start, ventured off with other styles but now, 20 years on, find myself using a Titan again for the worst of the weather.”

Boat safety

“Boat safety was finally taken a little more seriously by carp anglers after the tragic deaths of Keith Selleck and Clive Rigsby at Savay lake. Others had drowned by baiting up from inadequate boats before but I think it was the sinking of the punt during a work party on Savay that really hit home and with it came the Fox K.S. Lifejacket (Keith had been a very significant part of Fox International).”

Abrasion resistance

“Another thing that seems strange in this day and age is that it wasn’t until the 90’s that we finally had a good selection of reliable fishing line to choose from. All through the 80’s it seemed that people used either Maxima or Sylcast. I had it in my head that I would do better with something ‘not brown’ and tried loads of different lines through the 80’s before I finally found one I could trust – that was Trilene X.L. By the 90’s Terry Eustace of Gold Label Tackle introduced us to Trilene ‘Big Game’ and suddenly a new phrase was on every ones lips: ‘abrasion resistance’.”

Cooking stoves

“Coleman petrol stoves also hit the angling scene in the 90’s. My first one (I still have it) was black and I brought it from Gary Bayes when he worked at Catchum 88, but it seemed they had all ended up a grey/silver colour by the time they hit most of the other tackle shops in the 90’s.”

Bigger and better

“And so the decade moved on with bivvies and beds slowly getting larger and shelters finally becoming properly waterproof. We had never had it so good in terms of comfort but now the ugly side of sponsorships was starting to raise its head…”

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