First of all that I just want to say that this rig isn’t my own – Tom Maker showed me how to tie it on a recent tutorial session. It’s amazing how complicated rigs can get, when I first started carp fishing I bought all the mags, watches the DVD’s and tied all sorts of weird and wonderful rigs in the hope that one would catch me a biggie. In reality it just confused the hell out of me and I couldn’t see the wood for the trees. I still don’t fully understand rig mechanics so I carried over a mind-set from my fly fishing – KISS (keep it simple stupid). Tom’s rig suited me perfectly – quick and easy to tie and can be used for bottom baits and popups. The other advantage is that when used with a helicopter setup it’s pretty tangle free.
These are the components I use to tie the rig:
- Fox SSBP size 5 (I buy barbed to cover all rules, if there’s a barbless only rule on the water I’m fishing I just crush the barb)
- Sufix Kameleon (I really like this stuff and I picked it up for £5 brand new from eBay)
- Blowback hook silicone
- Leader silicone (I use the Fox stuff, it’s meant for holding the bead in place on leadcore leaders)
- Short anti-tangle sleeve
So, here’s the step-by-step.
Take around 12 – 14” of the hook length material and strip enough back so that there’s around 1 – 1.5cm of uncoated braid coming out of the silicone after the rig is finished (this might take some playing around with but I tend to measure it against a small bits box which gives me the perfect length)
Next, tie a small simple overhand loop knot for the hair. I used to tie a perfection loop for my hairs as the hook link material exits the loop right in the centre meaning it’s very neat. Because the hair is always supple though I found that this is unnecessary and an overhand loop gives the same result. I also realised that there was more to life and I was being a bit sad!
Now slide your chosen hook bait (this is a popup version of the rig, I’m using a 12mm bait here) onto the hair and secure with a boilie stop. I use the Fox boilie caps, as you can see they look very neat.
Now the blowback hook silicone goes on. You only need a small piece, maybe 1.5mm – don’t stress too much about this! I use a leadcore splicing needle to get this on as it’s almost impossible to push through.
Slide the silicone close to the popup and push the hook point through the silicone towards the popup.
Slide the silicone around the bend until it’s on top of the shank but just before the bend. Then, push the braid down through the eye and tie a normal knotless knot (I normally use 7 or 8 turns).
Now it’s time for the tricky part – trying to get the leader silicone over the eye of the hook! Cut a piece about 1cm long and again using the gated splicing needle thread it onto the braid up to the eye. The trick is to grip the braid with the back of your hand while pushing the silicone over the eye with your fingers, it will go on eventually – be careful not to slip at this point as you could end up with a sharp, barbed hook in your hand! The silicone normally stays on even if it’s just pushed over the eye and not down the shank, you may have to use a slightly shorted piece of silicone though if this is as far as you can get it.
Now it’s time to add the shot. I’ve used 2 x no8 Stotz here but they were a bit light and I had to mould a bit of putty around them for the popup to sink. I normally use a number 4 shot which is about right but I wanted to try out the Stotz as they looked neat and the biggest the shop had was no8. Whatever size shot and popup you use, you are looking for a very slow sinking bait – perfectly balanced which will sit on top of any light debris on the bottom and also fly into the carps mouth.
To finish the rig, tie a figure of 8 loop knot at the other end of the hook link for use with a quick change swivel and add a short anti-tangle sleeve. The length of the rig is quite short (5” ish).
Here’s the finished rig.
To use as a bottom bait rig simply remove the shot and use a hair extender boilie stop to give you a longer hair.
Until next time, tight lines…