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March 26, 2009

HOW TO: Tie pop-up rigs, shot before the hook

Pop-up rigs allow the angler to position a bait off the lake bed. There are a number of scenarios where you may find it benificial to do this, but in the main it is to do with positioning the bait above any weed or general detritus that could mask a bottom bait.

It has become common practice for many anglers to use a pop-up approach where there is no need for it, i.e. a clean hard bottomed lake. The feeling in such situations is that it just offers something a little different to the norm which may get a result.

Pop-ups can be set up to achieve a critical balance in the water. I believe this approach can offer a more natural presentation.

A top tip would be to try using bright, over-flavoured pop-ups in winter where there is often a lot of leaf litter on the lake bed. This allows the bait to sit just above all the decaying vegetation and hopefully right under the nose of any passing carp!

What you will need
1. Sharp braid scissors
2. A braid stripper (if using coated braid)
3. A baiting needle
4. Rig pullers

1. Hooks
2. Hooklength
3. Heat shrink
4. Fine diameter silicone tube
5. Bait stops
6. Split shot
7. Pop Ups

Step 1
Cut enough hook length for you to be able to work comfortably with the braid about 30-35cm is fine. Then strip about 12cm of coating off the braid.

Step 2
Tie a loop using an over-hand knot in the stripped end of your selected hooklength material. This loop is for your boilie stop to secure the boilie in place.

Step 3
Using a fine baiting needle, thread the pop ups onto the hair, because I am using two boilies on this hair I have left a very long loop. This will hold both boilies in place and ensure they don’t move during the cast and therefore change the mechanical properties of the setup.

Step 4
Thread a small piece of silicone tubing on to the hooklength and then on to hook. Adjust the length of the hair to your desired length; 1-2cm from the bend of the hook is a good starting point.

Step 5
Start whipping the knotless knot by winding the hooklength towards you as shown. This is to prevent the hooklength from getting trapped and cut by the gap in the hooks eye as it meets the shank of the hook.

Step 6
Make a minimum of 6 turns down the shank of the hook, trying to keep the line tidy, then pass the hooklength down through the eye of the hook before you tighten down. Make sure your hair is lying along the back of the hook and the knot is neat, now pull the knot down tight.

Step 7
Cut a 15mm length of heat shrink, pass it over the hooklength and down over the eye of the hook such that it is just covering the end of the knot. Carefully steam the heat shrink down over a kettle and allow to cool. Whilst cooling, hold the hook and pull the hooklength down to form a gentle downward-facing kick.

The finished rig should look like this.

Step 8
Now tie an overhand knot in the end of the hooklength, setting the length you require at the same time. Trim off the excess hooklength. Test the strength of you rig to ensure it is safe to fish with by using a set of rig pullers. Now test the rig in the shallow margins to ensure the rig has the correct buoyancy.

Step 9
Once you are happy with your rig you need to add your PVA bag of attraction. Due to the split shot we cannot pull the rig through the middle of a PVA mesh bag. To overcome this a small stick mix is used with the rig being threaded through the last third of the bag. The hook still sits neatly in the end of the bag minimising tangles. All that's left is for you to cast the rig out to those hungry carp.

Tight lines!

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