About René Potvin

Long time spearfisherman and competitor, I used a large selection of very good products but I wanted a speargun that made no concessions. I made a speargun that would not float or sink. I designed the speargun so the bands, the shaft and the hand holding the speargun were on the same level. This avoid the all too common loss of stability during release. Lastly, I produced a mechanism that is incredibly strong and smooth. I have been competing solely with my products since 2009 and I managed to win the North Atlantic Spearfishing Champion twice. The added range and precision really helped.

Spearfishing tips for Baja in winter

I spent february and march fishing in Baha, these are by far the worse months, but don’t let this stop you from visiting… unless you want easy fishing or are only interested in pelagics… Winter is a time for shooting deep Cuberas, yellowtails and finding the tasty but smallish groupers (15 pounders). The Pacific side is all but off limits during that season, unless you get creative and go out with a boat.

In this video I was using an odd version of my normal spearguns. This was a 126 cm Iroko speargun that I originally built has a travel gun. It could be divided but I epoxied the two parts since it the travel idea didn’t work very well. It’s been my workhorse ever since. I sell all the good ones lol.

For winter coastal fishing in Baja, I recommend bringing a 130 cm European style gun. The one I was using had tired bands, which were perfect since I often had to shoot towards rocks. I was still able to shoot fish at reasonable distances so it was an optimal compromise. I tried fresh bands but went back to the old ones, more power is not always best.

I also brought a 110 and a 150. I shot them only a few times. Seriously, 120 or 130 are the sizes that will be the most useful. I could have tried a 90 for the holes, but I doubt I would have bothered getting it from my kayak. Also, the visibility was limited, so I would have had a difficult time finding the same rock again.

Another Baja specific tip: pass the shooting line to the second hole of your shaft. This way you will be able to use your shaft as a slip tip by stringing the large yellowtails that pass close enough. This saved me a few shaft and fish, namely 35+ pound cuberas. Obviously, the shaft is more likely to get stuck in holes, but in Baja you will have to live with that. I was using 7 and 7.5 mm Spear Masters, Rob Allen and Makos. I bent and unbent all them repeatedly. Slip tips are out of the question.

If you use a reel, make sure you have enough line. I put 90 feet of 3 mm and another 60 feet of 1 mm line in mine. I got spooled a few times but always managed to reach the surface. I will bring a belt reel on my next visit. Alternatively, a float line will do a better job if you are not comfortable fighting a large fish from 80+ feet down all the way to the surface while managing a reel. In the following video you can see the sort of struggle you should expect to keep fish away from the rocks (somehow I managed to unbend the shaft!)

 

 

tbar speargun shooting a shark

So the tbargun or tbar speargun has a dedicated French name now, it’s the barrebalète! It was chosen by the member of the chassesousmarine.com forum.

In this video, you see a weighted down verson of the tbargun. I put one kilogram of led in the stock. It makes is perfectly neutral and helps reduce the recoil from the 3 kg metal bar!

Here I shoot a small edible shark. You can see how it simply obliterates it. It’s not a gun you’d call practical but it sure does kill whatever you put in front of it!

Tbar speargun trials

Here is the Tbar speargun prototype test video.

This speargun was built for entertainment value alone. I do believe this sort of off the wall design helps me rethink my spearguns. Spearfishing with this prototype is quite feasible though. I don’t thing spearfishermen would hesitate one second to bring this thing spearfishing.

The prototype was tested with three of the four bands I intended to use. I also added one kilogram of led to the stock mid test. This made is almost neutral.

The fish shot were walleyes, perch, malachigan and I did some tests on carps.

The advantages include :

  1. it’s hilarious,
  2. stops anything in it’s tracks,
  3. the bar costs nothing,
  4. the bar is indestructible,
  5. you can put any amount of power to the bar without fear of bending it,
  6. you don’t need an integral track,
  7. you can add a slip tip without changing the balistics,
  8. the inertia of the bar makes it almost unstoppable (high penetration),
  9. all the bands can be attached at the very back of the bar (no waste).

The disadvantages include:

  1. it’s very heavy,
  2. unmaneuvrable,
  3. takes a while to load,
  4. the recoil is severe,
  5. noisy,
  6. taking the shaft back up is like dragging an anchor back to the surface,
  7. it scares children.

 

North Atlantic Championship

The year I decided to use the Renesub Spearguns exclusively, I won the North Atlantic Championships. To win the Championship and earn the very pompus title of North Atlantic Champion, well it sounds grandiose, you have to accumulate the most points during the Open Competitions of the North Atlantic States that have a counsel. In 2009 and 2010, I had to compete in the New York Open, Massachusetts Open and the Rhode Island Open. I won both years. In 2011 I was busy kayaking from Miami to Montreal (http://miami2montreal.com). It took 114 days.

I think the gun with its extra range enabled me to score some very decisive points.

Winning the trophy in 2009, you can see my name on the trophy since I had won it in 2003.

This is me winning the first competition of 2009 and realizing what an advantage I had.

 

Stripe Bass taken with 90 cm

The 90 cm Renesub Speargun on this picture was the inspiration for my entire production. The mechanism had been hacked with a metal saw and a file. Everything about that gun was new. I won two North Atlantic Titles using mostly that gun. The decision to use only my spearguns to compete turned out to be a very good idea.

Mechanism and new casette

I designed a Delrin cassette for use with my mechanism. I normally install the mechanism directly into the wood stock but I wanted to have a cassette option in case I wanted to mass produce a new speargun model. It’s still entirely silent since the sheer swings without hitting the top of the cassette.

Owners’ images

I would really appreciate to get some pictures and videos of the renesub spearguns being used all around the world.

 

Redbeast with a 75 cm Renesub.

Guy from Gatineau got two 80s.

Lionel now in Boston, with a 130 cm with tree bands. Not a standard item. I kept one for myself.

Fish taken with a 110 cm Renesub. The perpetrator shall remain anonymous. Those fish taste bad and are likely to make you sick.