Sunday, July 15, 2012

Octopus Fishing with Rollers

Well, I've drawn the conclusion that blogging isn't going to win me any awards, so I'll just post when I can & try to provide you all with some useful information, or stories!!  :)

Often I get asked about how Hokkaido rollers were used for fishing.  For a while, I wasn't exactly sure because I had heard various stories & couldn't confirm them.  I was finally able to get some photos & the actual rundown on how they were used, so I wanted to share it with you!

Many of the rollers I sell in my Etsy shop are from Hokkaido, Japan & were used for octopus fishing.  They are made from recycled glass in iron molds.  Sometimes the rollers have the kawaguchi marks on the seal button.  This is an indication that the float was made at the Kawaguchi Glass Company.  When translated, kawaguchi means "river mouth".  Most of the time they are unmarked.

As you can see in the photos below, the rollers were tied to the line with several feet in between them.  Sometimes the smaller, 2.5" floats were also used in addition to the rollers.  Attached to the main line were vertical lines that had fine stainless steel hooks alternated with small rocks.  The fisherman stretched the lines out for miles along the coastline in shallow, sandy bottomed areas.  The octopus would swim through the lines & get entangled.  The size of the rocks used were based on the size of the roller used.


The fisherman also used, what is commonly known, as a cranberry dot float.  Here is an example of a cranberry dot from my collection.  It still has the original wooden tag on it.


Here is an example of a blue dot float, which was also used for octopus fishing.


Sometimes Hokkaido rollers were also made in a beer bottle brown color if the factory got that color of glass to use.  These are rather uncommon.  Here is an example of a beer bottle brown roller from my collection.



I want to thank my friend, Charles, for providing me with the photos & information on how the rollers were used.  And, if you have a roller & need a substitute for rolling out cookie dough, one will work in a pinch!  :)

Until next time, I leave you with this........

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