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Author Topic: Minnow Graders  (Read 1333 times)

DasRottweiler

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Minnow Graders
« on: Nov 25, 2011, 06:51 AM »
I am going to make my own minnow grader to separate different sizes of baitfish . Will be adding dividers into my two tank system to separate bait into at least 3 sizes/species , perhaps 4 sizes/species.  I am loosing  smaller baitfish to cannabalism over time. I often see larger baitfish in the tanks with a tail hanging out of thier mouths.  The following link is to a PDF file which explains the process and has alot of helpful info, including a "grade" size chart for golden shiners and other fish.  http://www.ca.uky.edu/wkrec/391fs.pdf.
 My first thought was refigerator or commercial racks with the proper "grade" size cut to fit into plastic tote. Add rubber edges for a tighter flexible fit and tada. But finding multiple sized racks may prove difficult. I have access to Acetylene torches for the cutting, so that part is do-able. I may have an easier route. I may pick up 3 identical totes, so that one will fit inside another.  Two of which I will take my trusty dremel tool to, cutting slots to the proper size , being careful to link the slots together at appropriate intervals to prevent the slots from flexing and allowing larger baitfish through. In theory, it sounds like a feasible plan for my small operation. Select a size "grader" tote, dump the 5 gallon buckets of trapped bait into the grader and then pull the inner tote out and dump baitfish into appropriate tank section.  Gutta find me some heavy duty totes on sale and implement this theory! Anyone else have a system for separating different sizes of baitfish, other than by hand? Any homemade minnow graders out there?

b turdy

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Re: Minnow Graders
« Reply #1 on: Dec 04, 2011, 08:48 AM »
sounds like a good idea -- keep us updated with how you make out and pictures.  I've been pondering the same thing and if you make it successful i just may try your idea..

Maineiac2

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Re: Minnow Graders
« Reply #2 on: Dec 04, 2011, 12:24 PM »
I could have used one the last few times hauling the traps tons of small minnows.Does anyone have any plans or close up pics of a small minnow grader? I would like to grade out any minnows under say 2 3/4".

b turdy

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Re: Minnow Graders
« Reply #3 on: Dec 04, 2011, 12:30 PM »
I could have used one the last few times hauling the traps tons of small minnows.Does anyone have any plans or close up pics of a small minnow grader? I would like to grade out any minnows under say 2 3/4".

Same thing with me, I ended up throwing half back for next time because I got sick of weeding out the little ones and damn tadpoles

DasRottweiler

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Re: Minnow Graders
« Reply #4 on: Dec 04, 2011, 02:47 PM »
I could have used one the last few times hauling the traps tons of small minnows.Does anyone have any plans or close up pics of a small minnow grader? I would like to grade out any minnows under say 2 3/4".
Check the links in my post above-plenty of pics and a helpful chart. Haven`t had a chance to experiment with the totes. Will posts pics of my success`s or failures when I do.

Maineiac2

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Re: Minnow Graders
« Reply #5 on: Dec 23, 2011, 04:15 PM »
Tried out a small grader i made out of a 5 quart bucket.I cut slots 1/4" by 4" it worked ok but I need to make the slots bigger 9/32 or 5/16 .1/4" only lets really small minnows out.I'll post results monday when I haul my traps again.

 

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