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Carp rigs have changed immensely during the last few decades. Since the early days of floating crusts and parboiled potatoes, more and more anglers have begun to specialise in catching carp, new specialist venues have appeared on the scene and carp rigs have become an important element in catching carp today. With this increase in popularity comes an increase in the amount of pressure on our waters. The fish become increasingly wary and to carry on catching specimen carp, we must continually come up with more and more ways to outwit them, and carp rigs play an important role.

The key to this is in bait presentation and to achieve this, we must be able to create and tie our carp rigs correctly. This section is dedicated to explaining the many types of carp rigs available today and to show you just how to get them right.

With the right carp rig and the right bait, presented correctly in the right place, you will stand a much greater chance of putting that personal best on the bank.

The Semi Fixed bolt rig

However, one more innovation was to change rig technology as we know it today and that is the bolt rig. Even with the softer trace materials and hair rigs, carp were still believed to be mouthing the baits and ejecting them without any indication of a bite. The bolt rig involves having the weight fixed to the line so that the line cannot slide through it. When the carp picks up the bait, it senses something is wrong and panics or bolts. As it does so, it immediately gets resistance from the heavy weight, which causes the hook to penetrate the carps mouth and it is hooked. This is the reason for the so called "screaming runs" we often see today, where the carp is already hooked and racing for the nearest safe haven it can find, meanwhile on the bank it is pulling line from your reel at a vast rate and your bite indicator is screaming.
The problem with fixed weights is that if a carp runs into snags and manages to break your line above the weight, it could end up towing a lead around until it becomes snagged, and if it can't get out of it, then it may stay snagged until it starves to death. To prevent this, anglers use what we call a semi fixed lead, where the lead is trapped to the line by some mechanism, but if it becomes snagged it will pull free. OK so you lose a lead, but that is always preferable to harming and maybe killing a fish.

Semi Fixed Bolt Rig
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The Inline Rig

In-line lead set-ups are probably the most commonly used rig's on Carp waters today. Many manufacturers produce quality in-line leads and rig components.

The in-line rig is best suited to weed free, hard bottomed waters, although I have found them useful when fishing with PVA bags in lilly pads. There are some leads available now that allow the lead to be removed without breaking down the entire rig, although supposedly the slot which houses the spigot can get 'closed' up in extreme circumstances - so the lead cant be discharged easily

The Inline Rig
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The Helicopter rig

The Helicopter rig was originally used for sea fishing and later adapted for carp fishing because of its anti-tangle properties.

The rig was named the helicopter rig after its helicopter blade like motion in flight.The baited hook-link rotates about the main-line axis by the use of the loose fitting hook-link swivel, usually on anti-tangle tubing or lead-core.

The Helicopter rig is probably the most commonly used rig when trying to achieve extreme distances because of its anti-tangle properties and it’s aerodynamic set-up.

The Helicopter rig is best used with a two or three bait ‘Stringer’, a ‘Stringer’ is usually free offerings of your hook-bait that are threaded onto dissolvable P.V.A. string and tied to your hook

The Helicopter Rig
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Rigs for Pop Ups

D-Rig:

This rig should only be used with pop-ups. It is especially usefull on waters where the carp are suspected of picking up baits, and then ejecting it without giving any indication on the buzzers. Basicaly this rig allows the Carp to pick up, and mouth the bait, but if the Carp trys to eject the bait... it basically can't!!! The rig itself is brilliant in design.

How D-Rigs work

The reason the carp cannot eject the bait is because of the d-shape on the shank of the hook. The bait can move up, and down this via a stainless rig ring and some bait floss. The carp will try to eject the bait, and the bait will just move up the shank of the hook leaving the hook itself still in position. Ingenius!!!

It is worth adding that the variations of the d-rig are quite large. You can tie it using either braid or mono.

Sliding Ring Rig:

The sliding ring rig works similarly to a d-rig, except that the bait doesn't slide down the "d" it slides directly down the hook shank, bypassing the need for the "d". This rig is best suited to pop-ups.

This is a really easy rig to tie, once you have the hook bit sorted. To do this you must:

1)First of all get a straight long shanked hook,

2)Then get a 2-3mm stainless steel ring (1.5mm is a bit small),

3)Thread the ring onto the hook and up the shank,

4)Get a small rubber bead ("Solar Rig Beads" are ideal),

5)Thread this onto the hook and up to the start of the shank, this will stop the ring from coming off.

This is the main hook bit done, now just tie on the hook link and the swivel. This rig can be used with either braid or mono. You can attatch the bait to the stainless ring by either bait floss or an elestic bait band. But check that either of these methods will remain in tact after casting. I have used bait bands before, and when i have retrieved the end tackle in the morning, the bait and the bait band has fallen off. This was because i'd had the bait bands a while and i guess they must have perished.

By the way this rig has been especially effective for me during the winter months. So give it a go, and remember it is most effective with pop-up boilies.

Withy Pool Rig:

This rig has been much publicised in the Carp angling media because it is so effective. This rig has been designed for pop-up boilies, and is an adapted version of the sliding ring rig, in fact the only difference is the curved shrink tube, but don't under estimate this piece of curved shrink tube. Because this is what gives the rig such good hooking properties. To make this rig you will need the following components:

1. Any good strong Carp hook.

2. 2-3mm Rig Ring.

3. Clear Shrink Tube

4. Split Shot or Putty.

5. Monofilament

6. Swivel

7. Elastic Bait Band.

8. Small rubber rig bead.

This rig works because the hook is almost spring loaded. And when the Carp sucks the bait in their is no way it can get it out again, because it always finds a hook hold. To tie this rig read the instructions below:

1. First of all get your hook,

2. Then get your 2-3mm stainless steel ring (1.5mm is a bit small),

3. Thread the ring onto the hook and up the shank,

4. Get your small rubber bead ("Solar Rig Beads" are ideal),

5. Thread this onto the hook and up to the start of the shank, this will stop the ring from coming off.

6. Now tie your hook link on to the hook using the palomar knot or the grinner knot.

7. Thread your shrink tube onto your hook link, and down to the eye of the hook. The shrink tube should be the right length so that when you bend it, the shrink tube reaches the line opposite the point of the hook (look at the picture if this confuses you!)

8. Now holding your shrink tube in place, place it over some hot steam until the shrink tube shrinks. But be careful not to heat the hook link as this can weaken it, but more importantly try not to burn your fingers.

9. With the curved shrink tube set, place your split shot or putty just where the shrink tube ends.

10. Now to finish your rig tie the swivel on to the hook link.

I know that this rig is quite complicated to construct, but it is worth it because of the hooking potential it offers when used with a pop-up bait.

Amnesia Combi Link:

This rig should only really be used with pop-ups, it utilises 25Lb Clear Amnesia of about 5 inchs in length, and then a braid link connected to the hook, and the amnesia is attatched via a stainless steel ring, or a small swivel. You should make the braid length as long as you want the hook bait to be off the lake bed. Tie the amnesia by using a loop at both ends, as this is easy to tie and also gives the rig flexibility. This is a good rig for fishing over weed with, using a light lead as the lead will sit nicely on the weed, and the bait will be suspended an inch or two above. The only bad point about this rig is that, you must tie it correctly unless you will get poor hook holds.

The "Terry Hearn Stiff Link":

The Terry Hearn hinged stiff link rig is an adaption of the above amnesia combi link, and the d-rig. Incoporating the best parts from each world. This rig has caught more large carp in recent years than anything. Again this rig should only be used in conjunction with a pop-up bait. this quite an advanced rig and if you are a beginner you may want to start off with something a bit more straight forward. To make this rig you will need a:

1. A Pen

2. A Cigarette Lighter

3. Any Hook of your choice (short shank)

4. 1 oval rig ring or 1 round rig ring

5. 1 medium sized rig ring (must be strong)

6. A stiff link material (Amnesia, or similar)

7. A good quality swivel, a swivel with a ring on is best.

8. Super Glue (Krston Bondage is good)

I know you need a lot of components for this rig, and thats why beginners should start off with something more simple. I will show you how to use all of these latter on. I'd recommend 25lb Amnesia as a hook link, but use what you want. So this is how you tie the devastating rig:

1. Cut a 10 inch length of your hook link material. Thread on the medium sized rig ring. This rig ring will be used as part of the hinge.

2. Tie a grinner knot around a pen or tie a loop knot, with the ring inside the loop. If you decide to tie the grinner knot, pull it tight to make sure it dosn't slip. If you want super glue the knot for extra security.

3. Get your swivel and tie the hook link material to it using a grinner knot. So now you should have the main hook link bit finished, now for the difficult part.

4. Now it's time to tie the second part of the rig- the hook end. Cut off about six inches of Amnesia and tie on your hook using the knotless knot, but without the overhand knot! Now you must thread the oval rig ring onto the straight tail left over from the knotless knot.

5. Loop the tail round and back through the eye of the hook, to create a big 'D'. The oval ring rig should be within the big 'd'.

6. Pull the loop untill it is a suitable size to make the 'D' out of, then trim the tag end of the 'D', but dn't trim it too short i.e leave about 1cm.

7. Get your cigarette lighter and making sure you don't burn the hook link or knot, just scorch the tag end. It should burn towards the eye of the hook as it does this the mono will form a little ball, this will stop the 'D' from coming apart.

8. You should now have the second part of the rig finished. This is the time to make sure the 'D' is not going to come apart.

9. Get your two parts of the rig, and now tie the hook part of the rig to the medium sized rig ring, make the hook part of the rig between one and four inches long. The length that you make this will depend on how far off the lake bottom you want your bait.

10. Get a little bit off putty, and mould it around the medium sized rig ring, this will keep the rest of the rig on the lake bottom.

You now have the most devastating pop-up rig ever designed, all you have to do now is tie your bait on. You can use this rig with both inline lead and helicopter set-up.

HOW TO TIE THE 'D' RIG

 

 

The 'D' rig is one of the most famous carp rigs ever devised. Used extensively during the late 80' and early 90's, it's use has probably declined in the last few years due to the popularity of the knotless knot. That was until some clever chap devised a way to integrate the sliding 'D' into the knotless knot.

 

1) Get your materials together and ready, this makes things easier when tying the rig. We'll be using Amnesia for photographic purposes, though it can be used in practice too.

2) Take the hook for your choice and thread it down the hook link. Don't tie the loop in the end of the link, you won't need one. Get ready to tie the knotless knot.

 

3) Carefully tie on the hook using the knotless knot (see how to tie the knotless knot). Notice where the whippings stop - just under half way down the hooks shank.

4) After you have tied the knot, bend the tail back and thread a sliding rig onto it as shown in the picture. This is where you will tie your boilie.

 

5) Now comes the clever part. Thread the tag end back through the hook's eye, the carefully burn it using a cigarette lighter. This creates a blob that stops the 'D' unravelling itself.

6) Here is the finished rig complete and a boilie ready to be attached. You can see how the lob works. Clever, eh!

 

7) Now it's time to look at tying the boilie on. There is no right way to do this, but it is advisable to use a good tying material - like Krystons Samson, for example.

8) One alternative is to create a groove in your chosen hook bait. Then carefully tie your boilie on as shown. Make sure you tie it as securely as you can - you don't want it coming off.

 

9) Thread the braided hair through the sliding ring as demonstrated, and secure the boilie in place. You can use some rig glue if necessary.

10) Now for the rest of the hook link. Tie a loop in one end of the link, complete with a sliding ring. Tie a swivel onto the other end of the link which should be about 8 inches long.

 

11) Now connect the hook section of your hook link to the loop. This part of the rig should be 2 or 3 inches long. Obviously there is room to experiment.

12) This rig should be used almost exclusively with pop-ups. To balance the pop-up, simply mould some putty around the knot of the loop as shown.

 

13) The rig is now finished. Here is the hook bait section, as it should appear just before casting. How can any self-respecting carp resist that!

14) Finally the lead is added. Here it is an inline lead, but you can use this rig with a swivel lead, tubing and a safety bead type set-up. It is up to you.

The "D" Rig
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It's not a hobby, it's a way of life!