Posted on Leave a comment

Beginners method feeder fishing tips

Fishing with a method feeder blog

The method feeder is a popular type of open feeder than can be used for mixed coarse and small to mid-sized carp (if used correctly). There are various different types of method including the flat bottom method, banjo feeder and others. Here I’ll cover my top tips for method feeder beginners and give you an idea of how to use this method effectively.

First, let’s start with the most simple question

What is a method feeder?

A method feeder is an open feeder for pellets or ground bait where your bait sits on top of the feed. These are available as either an inline feeder or attached – called an elasticated feeder.

Top method feeder tips for beginners

Before we get into the different types of feeders you need to think about the type of water you’re going to fish and what you want to catch. As a rough guide, smaller feeders will be better suited to smaller lakes as casting distances are limited, as you would expect.

Recommended method feeder setup 1 – Preston innovation method feeder

This feeder is made by Preston Innovations and is by far my favourite feeder. It comes in two types – inline feeder (recommended) and elasticated – also know as a banjo feeder.

There’s also a separate mould to shape the pellets to present the bait perfectly. This is a really easy feeder to fish with a soaked pellet and small hook bait – 12mm boilies work perfectly along with 4mm pellets. As a method feeder for beginners here’s a step by step guide to fishing using this rig and all the components you’ll need.

What you’ll need (see below) – Method feeder in either 15g, 30g or 45g, pellets, short hair rig (Korum quick stop – short, size 10, 10LB break), plus usual terminal tackle you’d find in your box (rubbers, swivel etc).

Step by step guide

  1. Soak the pellets – You can do this at the bank but I prefer to soak them overnight depending on the pellets, just pop them in a tub covered in water and they end up as a nice sticky paste the next morning – perfect. If you’re using fin perfect stiki method pellets then you can do them on the bank in 10 minutes.
  2. Setup the inline feeder – Add the feeder onto the line, add a tail rubber and tie it to a swivel
  3. Add the hair – Loop the hair over the swivel, I use Korum quick stops as it means I can quickly change baits or add new baits after I catch.
  4. Setup the bait – Hair rig your boilie or pellet to the quick stop and place it in the bottom of the mould. Take some of the soaked pellets out and fill the mould with it – squash it down as much as you can but leave some out. Place the feeder over the top and press it out of the mould leaving you with a perfectly filled feeder with your bait sitting on the top. It’s a great idea at this point to add some liquid attraction over the feeder, especially if you are fishing for carp. I like to mix Beta Stim liquid with the water to soak the feeder with an extra attractant or pour an extra bit over the top (slowly) before casting out.
  5. Cast it out! – Then sit back and wait for the fish to bite!

Here’s what the finished article looks like

This is a 30g inline feeder with a 12 boilie on a 4″ size 10, 10lb break, Korum quick stop. This is done using slightly different pellets to add some variation to the rig – Skretting pellets. These are 8mm pellets that have been soaked overnight and are more a paste than the fin perfect pellets. As the video shows below they have a great effect under the water, rising out of the feeder and keeping the bait well presented.

Here’s what the rig looks like underwater (Filmed on a Water Wold HD underwater camera + carp bottom kit)

Some more tips

  • How far should I cast a method feeder? – Don’t try and give it all you’ve got in the cast! Get the right weight of feeder and a swift flick should be all that’s needed. Don’t settle for a “that will do cast”. It takes a little time to set the feeder up, if you cast short of your target don’t be tempted to leave it, reel it back in, refill, then recast.
  • Why do the pellets keep coming off my method feeder? – Getting the consistency right is key to success, too dry and it would hold in the feeder to wet and it won’t shape. As a general rule cover the pellets plus 1 CM if you’re soaking overnight. If you are struggling try using the fin perfect pellets mentioned above as the 2mm pellets are really easy to soak.
  • How often should I cast a method feeder? – You should be regularly casting your feeder out, this is not like bating a spot and waiting for the carp to come in. Every 30 minutes is a good guide but on some waters, you can cast as often as every 5-10 minutes to get more bait in and find the right spots.
  • Feathering – This is a technique of slowing the line down as it is about to hit the water. This means you are less likely to lose all your pellets on impact with the water. This takes some practice to finesse. (Here is a YouTube video showing you how it’s done – video here).
  • What size feeder should I use? For me the optimum feeder is 30g, I do not feel that I need anything heavier unless there is a strong wind or I am fishing on a steeper slope underwater.
Posted on Leave a comment

Best method feeder mix

Here’s my guide to the ultimate method mix for carp. This has been honed over the last few years and is flexible for changes when sticking to the planned core ingredients. This includes the SECRET INGREDIENT which will give you a compact mix in the cast making an open feeder more effective than ever!

Casual Carpers ultimate method mix

Here are the base ingredients –

Carp method mix – Bait tech super method is my current base mix of choice – Buy it on Amazon here

This is a great mix of hemp, molasses, 5 spices and other natural ingredients. Bait-Tech stuff is usually good quality and I really like this as a base for my mix.

1 tin of sweet corn – This does not need to be the flavoured variety or anything specific, a standard tin will do. You can use maize or flavoured corn if you want to mix it up more. A mix of smaller and larger corn can often work well.

1 tin of frenzied particles (or any tinned particles/ hemp) – 600g tin – buy it on Amazon here

A good squirt of liquid pineapple (again or similar) – I choose pineapple as it’s usually sweet and sticky and carp love it.

Carp paste powder (about a third of what you’ve used as method mix) – This by Ringers will do the job or any powered paste. This is my secret ingredient.

The Carp paste power is what makes it really sticky and compact together on the feeder and hold in the cast and on impact. I find with just a method feeder mix with any decent length cast the feeder tends to lose some on impact with the water. This is more for if you are fishing at range or want to pack a lot of feed onto your method feeder.


I usually make this the evening before I go fishing to give it overnight to take on more flavour and compact down.

Start with the method ground bait and paste power in a large tub or bucket. Then add a tin of corn and the particles and give it a very good mix round. Make sure all the liquid from these goes into the mix as well.

Then start adding the pineapple glug until the mixture starts to stick together in the turn. One key thing of this mix is to not add any water – everything that’s in it has a flavour for the carp. If you really need to, dilute the glug with water at a 50/50 ratio.

I then put it in the tub to take it to the lake and stack other tins of bait or a bait box on it to flatten it down. When you arrive at the lake just give it a quick stir with a bank stick and off you go using it. The flattening down seems to get a better hold of it – this is not tested and just my opinion.

In this setup to match the Pineapple, I will use one of my trusty 15mm carp wafters and I will trim it down to around the size of a large piece of corn. I like how the wafter sits on top of the mix and will be moving around with the fish stirring it up. Alternatively, you can use corn or maize as hook bait.

Then as the casual carper says – kick back and catch carp!

Posted on Leave a comment

Best method feeder pellets

best method pellets header

Method feeder fishing with pellets is becoming more and more popular, especially with day session carp anglers like myself.

There’s a wide range of weird and wonderful feeders out there as well as more pellets than you’d ever need. I’ve fished with a good few of them to bring you my top 3 pellets, how to prepare them and how to use the feeder to its full potential. If you’re completely new to feeder fishing you can find my guide to method feeder fishing here.

Top 3 feeder pellets

These are my top rated pellets for fishing the banjo style feeder and using a mould – The best way to fish them.

Number 1 – Sonubaits fin perfect

Kicking it straight off with my number 1 pellet – The Sonubaits Andy Finlay method feeder pellet – 4mm. I’m being very specific about this as these are the exact ones I always carry. This range comes in 2mm & 6mm and there is also a feed pellet in the same size and packaging so make sure you get the right ones. (You can the exact ones here).

Fin perfect method pellets

I prefer the 4mm as it just seems to work in the feeder better for carp and stay compact a little longer.

I fish these usually on a Preston innovations round banjo or a Dura banjo. These are the easiest pellets to mix on the market, all you need is a bucket!

How to prepare fin perfect method pellets

  1. Pour the bag into a bucket
  2. Add 150ml of water and mix well
  3. Get them in the feeder and cast out – easy as that.

If you want to mix it up, as we all do sometimes, add some flavouring to the water. I’ve used Beta Stim in the past or you can use a bait spray. You can also cover it in the latest goo style baits for an extra kick.

What hook bait should you use?

This is a really debatable issue as some people swear if you are feeding pellets you should be fishing pellets – I don’t agree (but do sometimes use pellets on the hook). My go-to method is to use a light coloured small boilie and this works really well for me. The carp aren’t really going to miss a boilie sitting on the top of the pellets! Corn or maize is another hook bait I like to use when fishing a method feeder, it’s a great visual bait sitting on the top of the feeder.

Number 2 – Skreting pellets

These are more of a standard fishing pellet that you can usually find for sale in your local tackle store- They usually look like the store has bagged them up themselves. These can be bought in these bags or in bulk bags from larger suppliers or on eBay.

These are a great pellet for fishing at long range and you can leave them in for a while longer if you use my method for soaking them.

Soaking pellets method

  1. Fill a tub 3/4 full of pellets, using either the 2mm or the 4 mm pellets – you add a flavouring at this if you wish – recommended.
  2. Fill the tub with water to around 1cm-2cm above the pellets, or a mix of water and beta stim liquid.
  3. Leave overnight and then get out on the bank.

These pellets will expand to almost be like a sticky paste but still pellets if you get it right. This means you can mould it a little in the feeder for a different presentation. It also lasts longer on the feeder. This is a video from my youtube channel showing how the pellets expand in the feeder. It really pushes the hook bait higher and higher in the water and the bed of pellets keeps expanding.

I’d skip towards the end as nothing really happens and I don’t catch anything in this video! It’s just always interesting to see what your bait does underwater. This was filmed on my water wolf HD – review here, in April time in a lake with visibility of about 2-3 feet at this time of year. The bottom is mainly clay with weeds coming up in June time and dying off in August.

I find the pellet feeder best for when the weeds are lower and especially good for catch carp in volume up to about 10LB. I have caught bigger on these feeders but the average I catch is around the 6lb to 8lb mark.

Number 3 – Bag up baits spicy sausage and halibut

These make the list due to their flavour and mixed colours. These are a good bait to have on hand on lakes where the feeder is heavily fished. It just gives you a nice differentiator rather than the usual coarse pellets. These are the type of bait I’d look for on busier commercial fisheries where you need something different at times. If you’re unsure at a venue I’d personally take a bag of these and a bag of the Sonubaits and swap between casts. This will help to find the feeder that works best for you.

These are prepared with a quick soak and can also be used as a loose feed. These are micro pellets and can be fished with any banjo or pellet feeder. I’d say they have a casting range of about 20-30 meters but I personally stick to the margins and smaller waters with pellet feeders.

Hook baits for method feeder fishing

Now we’ve got the pellets sorted it’s time to think about the hook bait we should use for fishing this method. I know there’s a school of thought that says if you feeding pellets you should use a pellet as your hook bait. I personally don’t subscribe to this view. Fishing a 4mm pellet on the and then an 8mm-10mm pellet makes no difference if it’s a boilie of a pellet on the hook in my opinion.

I always fish a boilie on the hook on these feeders and have had great success when fishing a white boilie as the hook bait. You can see my best small boilies guide here for some tips on exactly which baits to use.

If you have any questions about method feeder fishing drop me a tweet to @casual_carper or find me on Instagram – search “@Casualcarper“.