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RIFFE maximum rigged METAL TECH 3 & Fish Float... I did some testing.....

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Mr. Long Post
Apr 22, 2002

God been fair with me. My last dissapointing trip been compensated with quite a decent trip last Saturday. This is an Indian Ocean area but NOT my regular "DOGGIE" pinacle. 4 Hours drive + 25 miles boat ride. I thought the weather was bad but it turn out not so bad, dark cloud & low viz of dive 3 & 4...... but diveable. In spite of left engine starting difficulty in the start of the day and the same engine blew its gear case/box halfway down the trip ( a replacement boat came to the rescue later ), I still did 4 bubble dives as planned.

I took 5 shots with my #2 Riffe. All 4 scored a good hit, 1 shot being a stoned shot on a trevaly. A good holding shot on a small +-5kg doggie that actualy have the unbelieveable power of pulling me for some 30 meters around the rocks !!! 2 similiar shots on a +-3kg Spanish Mackerel ( Asia type of Mackerel ). One too far away shot on a +-3kg Spanish Mackerel that did not exit enough for the Ice Pick to toggle... :confused:

The fun of the trip was that I succesfuly experiment three things.
First, I tested my friends Riffe Metal Tech 3 which is fully rigged with aluminum muzzle, 5 x 9/16 bands, 3/8 shaft with Ice Pick and 3 wraps of 500 lbs coated s.steel cable of at least 7 meters. It also has Stabilizer Wing Kit.

I tested the gun after the second dive where the viz have gone down from the 40 feet to about 15-20 feet. I rigged a 1.5 liter clear plastic mineral water bottle, filled with sand and pebbles and sink in 1 meter down, attached to a float. I took only 2 shots. First was 4 bands from as far as viz permits, perhaps at least 5-6 meters. The sand and pebbles gave me a dark silhoutte to aim. The shot was good, I was not concerned of the up/down aiming, I was after left/right accuracy and recoil. The recoil is very low compared to my 4 bands Standard #2 shooting a 5/16" shaft. At 5 bands the 3/8" shaft penetrated the bottle and still have energy to tug the speargun away from my hand after having the speartip travelled at least 7-8 meters. The shot to was very good and the recoil ( I was on two hands ) was much lower than my #4 Baja. I was extremely impressed with the fully rigged MT3. I did not do 6 bands cause the owner only use 4 and carry one spare. The only sad thing is that, even with the extra flotation of the pizza like Stabilizer Wing Kit, it still sink slow...sink...sink..sink.
I realy like the gun, it is a "fake" mid handle but the balance is good. Swing easy like my #2, power almost 90-95% of my #4 and the recoil at 5 bands is like #4 Baja at 3 bands (5/8"). If at 6 x 9/16 bands and recoil is still within limit, this 127cm gun with 3/8 x 55" shaft can equal my 155cm #4 Baja at 4 x 5/8 bands with 60" x 3/8 shaft.

I must have this fully rigged MT3 and I will use 6 x 9/16" bands for sure........... But I will order it with additional floater wing kit and a reel with 150 feet of 1000 lbs Kevlar. I think the price will be in the US$1000+ region where US$250+ are already for the 2 teak kits alone with the expensive installations.

If I may estimate from the short test I conducted, this can be the world's only short 127cm gun with 7 meter effective on a thick 3/8" shaft and 6 bands !! Judging from the extensive test I conducted on the MT#0, MT series the rear trigger set and extra band strecth of this semi mid-handle is a real killer. This is the only mid-handle I am happy with cause the butt is 3" further from my mouth compared to Riffe teak mid-handles.

Looks like the RAs and Omer in my list have to wait much longer...:D I might even retire my #4 Baja.....:naughty

Second experiment is with what ABRI has spark an idea for me and it is like what DonMoore is doing. It is a float system that allows me to surface a fish without having to carry it with me. It is a Riffe 7 liter utility float that is all closed, not open bottom like scuba diver's surface marker. It has oral inflation like the Riffe Torpedo Float and an additional C02 cartridge system. I tried the CO2 inflation on land and it filled the float just firm and nice. I experimented it trying to lift my +-5kg doggide from 80 feet. It filled up about 1/3 at that depth and I let it float up, it expands as it shallows and my boat boy picked it up on the surface. I hook a stringer of +-15cm length with 500 lbs coated cable of 40 cm on the available D ring. Looks like the stringer got to be at least 25 cm long. At 15cm, I hardly can push it eye-to-eye of the doggie, any bigger thick fish will need a longer stringer. I checked around and the C02 cartridge I need, is only US$5 for a pack of 4. I can get it from the airgun store cause the C02 aiguns use those small tube ones. US$1.25 a "fish delivery" to the surface without having to drag it underwater in a current or attracting a shark is sure a CHEAP deal !!!!:eek:

Third experiment is "Playing With the Sand". I saw it done on video and it is also in Terry Maas book. I tried once but it never worked but this time it is different. It was a last dive with very murky water of some 4-6 meter viz. I went around the rock and found what I was looking for. Sandy area meeting the rock mountain at +- 65 feet, current coming at the proper angle and suitable bait fish hanging around. I grab and spread the sand for like 3 times. I waited only 2 minutes and comes the +-3kg Spanish Mackerel from my right and at an angle to the current. I could hardly see it , I charged forward to get closer and intercetp it making the "T". Took a shot and it was some 5-7 feet above the sand while I was only 2 feet above the sand. A nice shoulder shot. In just two minutes I got it hooked on my regular floating stringer. Next try, did the sand throwing routine again. I could not believe my eyes, here comes another Spanish of similiar size. I charged again like before but it accelerated a bit and I shot very far. The Ice Pick did not exit entirely and after some 30 seconds, it broke free. SHIT !!!. Again I tried the sand routine and again another Spanish came, again it was about the same size...........MAN, it is not the size but how come today it worked like magic !!!??!!!! Shot the fish and landed it in under two minutes. I was so happy and almost into deco mode, so I ascend slowly and did a 3 min saftey stop.

On the last shot of the Spanish, a rookie saw what I did and was amazed. He stayed and did the same. When he surfaced 10 minutes later, he caught 2 Green Job Fish of about 1.5kg each. It is not the size but I could nopt comprehend how come the sand throw thing worked so well. Is it the bad viz ? It is for sure also my observation of the current angle, other bait fish and the topography was a factor to this success. Man 5 fishes coming and 4 being landed under 20 minutes is sure like MAGIC:p :p This place is not exactly fish heaven. I spent the first 20 minutes of this 4th the dive seeing nothing and also TOTAL ZERO SIGHTING on the 3rd dive.

What did my friends get? A Spanish Mackerel of +-8kg. One guy took a shot on a 17+kg Potato Cod ( legal here ) but got dragged around and lost it. A newbie saw a big Spanish and a big Doggie but as with all newbies, I rate his big as "medium-2-small", their eyes are not trained to gauge size underwater, not with so little experience. He shot the doggie with his JBL Mini Woody and naturaly it was out of range for his 2.5 meter shoot range. That second dive the viz was still a respectable 40 feet. He was cursing and cursing and wanted to get a Riffe. We all 5 other divers were using Riffe-s. I also saw a +- 8kg Spanish and a +-5 kg Doggie on first dive but it was too far and current too strong for me to go against in open water. There were some 40 feet away from a wall in 120 feet of water and I was down to 300 psi at 90 feet deep, so no go.

I am a happy man. I am ordering another Riffe utility float so that I carry two per dive.:D :D Save some money and get that Dream fully rigged MT3 early next year...anyone wants to be my Santa ???

And MERRY X.MAS to you all ............

If Chief Anderson kind enough, you may en-small (is there such an English word:duh) my photo
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Let me try, I am making the photo smaller......

He he he he succesful.................

This is the +-5kg Doggie. Maybe only 4kg. We ate it on board 1/2 sashimi and the other half we make fire by the beach with wood...Grilled DOGGIE ........YUMMY !!!!!!
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Good work on those fish. It just goes to show that good technique is the most important part of catching fish. Sounds like the MT3 is a hell of a gun!! How do you attribute the minimal recoil in comparison to your #4 Baja? Is it the floater wing kit? Ballast? Or the alluminum itself?
Im still waiting on my Xmas gift Hawaiian. Reading your post almost has me second guessing myself....almost. It sounds like you will be able to deliver greater power to a 3/8 shaft with the MT3 than with a hawaiian- even with the muzzle stabilization. I hope I wont find this defeciency a problem. I guess I could always add an extra wrap of line...and take a lob shot.
Damn, the surf has gone flat, the early season seabass are probably right off the coast, and Im waiting on santa to arrive with my new machine....Oh well. There are worse things to be conserned with. Merry Xmas all.
Well done , Iya ; glad to hear the "fish lift" works .
Sand throwing is the best method for attracting jobfish and will also work to some extent with jacks . Have never had any mackerel show an interest though ... Flashers are my preferred method there .
Merry X-mas boet .
Nice stuff, Iya. Very interesting to hear of your reviews. Your hands on, albeit unscientific experiments are always cause to log on and read the latest tomes.

I think you can attribute the lesser recoil of the #3 to the increased mass of the gun's aluminum construction- it's denser and a tad heavier than the teak counterpart and thus absorbs some additional recoil. But 6 bands??:confused: That equates to being a mess of bunched bands in my book. Indeed the 5 9/16 and /or 4 5/8's appear to bunch up on my #4 and make loading that ;last wishbone a concentration exercise. I'm actually hmming and hawing about off-ing my #4, seeing as how I don't get down to the Gulf's rigs too often anymore and it's a armful to lug back from a half morning of dives... :crutch and swapping it for a #0 and rigging it for halibut. But damn I look good with it! :cool:

There's gotta be some way of getting you a #3 there for less cash...

I agree...I can't imagine loading much more than my 4 5/8's...thats alot of rubber up top. Sven, did you ever make those wings you were talking about back in the day for your 4?(been playing on the search:D )

Sven, maybe you should just visit the rigs more often:cool:
Nope, the girl's just been leaning in the corner waiting for me to get the wood ready. And the gun's been languishing too. :hmm
One of the tough things I've been trying to find, not too hard obviously, is the stainless threaded inserts that get installed in the barrel and the wings to accept the bolts. That and finding the bolts is enough to make me want to send the thing to Jay with a C-note and wish Julie well. :inlove

And yeah, hitting the rigs more and waiting for the lump to erupt would certainly put the useage up on the thing. And I could use my new BCD and computer too. Hmmm.


What u loose in terms of power in Hawaiian vs MT3 is counter balanced by better handling of a true mid-handle of the Hawaiian.
Yes the MT3 is very heavy especially the additional aluminum muzzle. I personaly have not seen a MT series with standard plastic muzzle. All my friends buy Riffe with me being the person in charge of the modifications. So naturaly I rigged them for FULL power. Sven is right the recoil is being absorb by the heavy construction of the alumimum barrel. I can only say that the #4 Baja at 4 x 5/8 bands give out more recoil MAYBE...MAYBE because the extra 5" of shaft length offer more mass. I think the MT3 offer higher launch speed than my #4 Baja if both at maximum bands. In all honesty I prefer teak for feel and longevity. Aluminum must corrode one day even if it is a Riffe but mostly cosmetic and not to the point of strength reduction.
I also do not know yet if I put a reel + aluminum muzzle, even with Stab Wing Kit and Floater Wing Kit..........will it float ??? Unless I can modify the teak kit with some lighter wood, but teak is the only thing that will last almost forever in speargun use underwater.

One important thing. At 4 x 9/16 bands and 3/8 shaft, the standard two wraps of shooting line will rob the gun off your hand. 3 wraps is just nice...trust me.


This MT3 comes with 4 loading tabs, 1 being a custom order...my idea :D :D . I also prefer 9/16 bands than 5/8. 5/8 is too much work for me, I rather load more bands at lower pressure than having fat ones.....I wonder how a 3/4" band will kill me underwater.

I am not worried of 6 bands cause that 5 bands is still in my hand recoil limit. I am sure 6 bands will translate to 4 x 5/8 bands of my #4 Baja in terms of recoil. I am quite crude on recoil absorption. I can also use the 6th band of 1/2" size. Whatever it is I will rig it till accuracy and recoil just about to exceed the limits.

Will let you guys know in about 60 days when I expect to be able to receive the fully rigged MT3. I think a few other #4 Baja friends of mine is also keen to get that MT3.

I have always wanted a shortest possible gun to do 7 meter effective if possible, it looks like MT3 fully rigged is the answer. Sorry Sven, the MT4 is rather long for short Moi....:D

I will get a flasher soon, a must have. I heard how effective they are. I will buy a proven one like RA unit. I will try more SAND method in other places, see how well it can do in various visibility.
I am still figuring a way out to import it cause 34% tax was what I paid for my floats and that includes 34% of the US$63.00 postage..CIF Value being charges...what a pain. Not in terms of the money but the proportion.
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