Most of my gear has been designed by either Mr Heath, or Mr Robinson, and looks it too, but if it does the job, then you won't find me complaining. The trouble is, that seminal item of floater fishing, the controller float always seems to be letting me down.

Just about every carp fishing company markets a controller float of one sort or another, the trouble is most of them are crap. I really wonder how much testing some of these products do get as there are many on the market that rarely last more than a few hours before they self-destruct. Others tangle on every cast, yet more appear to be designed to whip across the surface faster than the free-baits (something you definitely don't want to happen), whilst some offer so little resistance that the bolt effect is negligible.

No, when it comes to controllers I have tried the lot and have found most to be wanting. That was until a spark of inspiration struck me whilst perusing the wears of my local tackle dealer. There, amongst a myriad of different floats were some huge waggler type floats, apparently going by the name of carp splashers! Could this be the answer to my prayers? They were certainly heavy enough, with several models weighing an ounce or more. Designed by matchmen, they were going to fly straight and go for miles, but would they live up to the rigours of specimen hunting?

After much waggling (well what else do you do with a waggler?) I took the plunge and invested four quid in my new MAP carbon splasher. I went for the biggest 30 gram size to see what they could really do. That night the float took pride of place on my desk as I devised ways of fishing them effectively for the very special rudd in my local lake.

There are a couple of specific problems that I have with most controllers. Firstly, because I am using very light line (normally no more than 4lb) you get a lot of tangles where the float spins in the air. With heavy line this isn't really a problem, but with light gear it does make a significant difference to the strength of the line. This spinning also greatly cuts down distance. Now my plan was, that as a waggler float is designed for use with light line, it would punch out reducing tangles.

The rig was quite simple. To really test the set-up I used a six foot hook length of 4lb low diameter line tied to a size 12 swivel. Next was a 3mm rubber bead, followed by the splasher, another bead and finally a power-gum stop knot to hold the whole lot in place. Bait was to be a hair-rigged cork ball - standard bait when I'm floater fishing at range.

A few practice casts worked like a dream. Unlike the dumpy controllers I had been using, these kiddies flew straight and true. I actually ran out of line when the wind swung behind me, giving a cast of at least seventy yards. More importantly, no tangles! Unfortunately, the fish didn't want to play ball that night, but I have since returned to take several rudd, and more recently carp on these "wagglers-on-steroids". Even when using 12lb line you can still punch the float a good distance, equal, if not better, than dumpy controllers.

One other advantage of using a waggler type float is that they are much more stable in the water and are less affected by drag. Because the bulk of the float is about a foot down, below the level effected by wind, they act as an anchor greatly slowing the drift down. Having the line forced below the surface isn't always desirable though, so make sure that you have the line liberally sprayed with silicon to ensure it floats. Another little tip is to fix the hook length to the tip of the float using a small bait band, so that the hook length leaves the float on the surface. This will stop the hook length from sinking and bowing.

As you might be able to tell, I am really excited by my new discovery. After years of being dissatisfied with my controllers finally I have found the answer. Give these carp splashers a go, you might be surprised at just how much of a difference they make.