Big Carp Rigs
Dave Levy reveals his favoured rigs for three different types of fishing...
When fishing for big carp, like I do, you must have the utmost confidence in the rigs that you’re using. Leave nothing to chance.
There are three presentations that I have the most faith in and it is these I am going to talk about today. All of these rigs are constructed using strong, reliable tackle. I use hook link materials of at least 15lb breaking strain but often higher. My hooks are made from strong wire and generally a six in size. Big carp can put up one hell of a scrap and you need to know that you can give them some back.
The Chod Rig
The chod rig needs little introduction but for anyone that isn’t aware of it, it’s a very reliable presentation, which can be cast nigh on anywhere. The rig is constructed using an extremely stiff monofilament hook link and slides up and down your leader, which in my case is made with 50lb Kable Leadcore. The chod is a pop-up rig and due to the fact it runs along the leader, it can settle over almost any terrain.
I use this rig a hell of lot, especially when casting at showing fish. Why? Because I know that wherever it lands, it will be fishing effectively, with just one cast and limit risk of spooking the fish. Sometimes, making any more than one cast will totally ruin your chances of a fish and other than the solid bag presentation nothing is as fault-proof as the chod.
Not only is the chod very effective in the sense of how you are able to apply it to your fishing but it also provides excellent hook holds. Because the rig is sat cocked and ready, upright, the hook is ready to grab at the bottom lip from the word go. When the carp approach the rig, all they have to do is mouth it and there’s a strong chance the fish will become hooked, and more importantly, stay hooked!
When fishing the chod as a single hook bait, I’ll use it at around two to three inches in length, but when fishing over beds of boilies, I’ll make it much shorter, around an inch. It can be adapted to suit all situations and works equally as well.
The Stiff Link
This rig is very similar to the chod rig, identical almost, the only difference being the boom, which is attached to the swivel. This boom has a definite effect on the hook holds and I have found that they are generally deeper than that of the chod. Due to the extra length provided by the boom, the rig is able to fly up into the mouth, further inside, and therefore the hook can grab hold whilst further back than the chod.
I use the stiff link a lot, but rather than using it for casting at showing fish, which you still can, I use it for my general types of fishing. The chod is great when you’re unaware of the area you’re casting too, but the stiff-link is something I use when I know the area is relatively clean. The rig is perfect for use amongst silt or light debris and if I’m faced with either of the two, I’ll often opt for the stiff-link.
Both the chod and the stiff link are best suited for boilie fishing and I don’t use them unless I am introducing boilies. When using pop-ups you want the fish tilting as they feed, rather than hovering like they do with particle.
If you’re looking for the most reliable pop-up rig in the world, then I’d say this is the one. Some of the hook-holds can be quite simply mind blowing.
For a very long time, I used a combi-rig, constructed using IQ2 fluorocarbon and Supernatural Braid. More recently I have changed over to a presentation that is very similar mechanically, yet constructed differently. Rather than using two different materials and having to join them, which creates a weak link, I now use one material, Hybrid Stiff.
Due to the extremely stiff nature of the braids coating I am still able to create the combi-rig effect and the rig works in the exact same way. I have never had the combi let me down, but where you can eliminate the chance of problems, you should, and that’s exactly what I have done.
This presentation can be used in any clean-bottom situation, except for amongst weed when I much prefer a pop-up. Silt isn’t the ideal place for the rig to be cast either , unless attached to a helicopter rig, because of the risk of the rig poking up, which could be an issue with either a Lead Clip or an inline. The helicopter enables me to keep the rig from plugging in the silt and ensures that the rig sits pretty. The perfect place for this rig to used is over a clean hard ground such as gravel or clay. Like any bottom bait rig, where the hook is touching the bottom, the cleaner and harder the area is, the better.
If you’re looking to target big carp, and you’re unsure about which rigs to use, then look no further than these.