I’m not a massive fan of ready rigs – so it could be argued that I’m not the best person to be doing a review on them - but first let me explain my reasons why. I’m all in favour of ready rigs for those who do not have the available time, manual dexterity, or knowledge to work with, what let’s face it, can be quite fiddly materials at times. However, what I’m not so in favour of is the extortionate prices some manufactures like to charge for the privilege of tying one for us, not to mention the questionable build quality some try to pass off as the ‘ultimate’ in rig technology... hardly!
I’ve always tied my own rigs. Not just because I was constantly playing with endless combinations when I fist started out, but because I also liked the idea of fooling the carp with a rig made by my own fair hand. That said, I fully appreciate that there are many out there who are not able to tie rigs in the same manner. I remember on one club water several years ago when a middle aged angler approached me after setting up a few swims down and asked if I could tie some rigs for him to buy! I thought him a cheeky sod at first, but it transpired he had arthritis in his hands and as such, struggled to tie rigs. He said his local tackle shop had run out and so he was a bit stuck. As such, I spent the next few hours tying him a shed-load of rigs and charging just a cuppa for my troubles – to be honest, helping him weigh and photograph a nice upper double taken on one of the rigs just a few hours later was payment enough.
Ever since then I’ve had a different take on ready to use products – rigs in particular, and whatever the reasoning for their use, I’m fine with it, it’s just that there seem to be a great many out there which my two year old son could have made a better job of putting together… and that can’t be a good thing for the fish or the angler!
So, with all that aside, I was sent a few packets of the Prologic ready rigs for review on the site some months ago. First impressions were favourable, in that they looked neat and simple – something I like in most aspects of my carp fishing - and secondly, they seemed to utilise an effective selection of hook patterns, hooklink materials, sizes and breaking strains. Don’t get me wrong, I was not about to sweep aside my entire collection of rig paraphernalia in favour of these new offerings, but they had at least made it over the first hurdle, in that when the opportunity arose, I would give them a try!
Since the birth of our second baby a few months back, fishing had been on the back burner to say the least, but with things slowly get back to some sort of normality (if you can call it that!), I was eager to get back onto a quiet little water I joined last year in the hope of doing some quick overnighters when home life permitted. On the few nights I did last summer it had not proved difficult by any stretch, but now, in the middle of winter, I knew I’d have to think a little harder – especially as I would not be arriving till after 9pm, once done with making tea, doing dishes, bathing kids, and putting them to bed before sorting tackle!
My first opportunity arose a little sooner than I had imagined, and with just a couple of hours notice I managed to blag an overnighter once chores and kids had been sorted. This would be great, the only problem being that I needed to tie a selection of rigs before fishing. I’d be arriving in complete darkness as it was, so the last thing I then wanted to do was sit tying rigs – at which point I remembered the Prologic Ready Rigs - result!
On that first overnighter I opted for the ‘Viper’ rigs on both rods, mainly because previous sessions fishing to the same spots showed a preference for similar supple braid presentations of my own. On actual inspection prior to use, all the rigs were tied to a high standard; hooks were sharp, knots were neat and tidy, hairs were uniform in length, and in general they all seemed up to the job. Three fish during the night rubber stamped their effectiveness, and whilst none were massive, the last of the session, a nice upper double, certainly gave a good account of itself - and had there been any problems with the rig or its component parts, I’m sure it would have showed.
Impressed with results, I’ve also since used the Reptilian rigs and the Spectrum rigs. All have banked me fish on quick overnight sorties, and as such, I would have no hesitation in recommending them. There are three types available. The first, the Viper Ready Rig, twins Viper Prologic sinking braid with their C3 carp hook. The sinking braided hook link is blended for strength and whilst being very supple has no stretch. The C3 hook has a wide gape, straight bend, forged shaft, and has a straight eye. It’s a very versatile combination and I’ve used these rigs for a number of different presentations and have been happy with their performance throughout.
The second type utilises the Prologic Reptilian coated braid along with their C1 carp hook. The sinking multi-link material is held within a stiff, strippable, outer skin. This means you can fish it as a stiff rig right out of the pack, or for a combi-type presentation, you can strip back the outer skin to reveal the neutral density inner core. Again I’ve used these rigs to good effect over a number of winter sessions. The C1 hook features a wide gape, curved bend, forged shaft and a 5 degree in-turned eye, so again, as a package you have plenty of options.
Last but not least is the Spectrum Ready Rig, which combines the Prologic Spectrum fluorocarbon with their C2 carp hook. The C2 is a long shank carp hook with a straight needle point, straight bend, forged shaft, and a 5 degree in-turned eye. As I say, I’ve had fish on all three types and would happily recommend them all, but many who know me will know my love of fluorocarbon hooklinks on certain waters, and so it’s no surprise that I’d probably pip for these as my favourite, as I’ve been using them quite a bit of late, and they’ve thrown up several welcome winter kippers.
Have the Prologic Ready Rigs switched me from tying my own carp rigs? Well, no, if I’m honest, but that wasn’t really what the review was about. For me it was about seeing if I could recommend their use at all! Happily, on that score, it’s a resounding yes! Not just because they are well put together and constructed from quality materials, but because they come in packs of three for less than you’d expect to pay for pack of two from many other brands!
I have to admit that prior to reviewing these rigs I don’t think I’ve used any Prologic gear in the past. Not for any particular reason you understand, just that I’ve never really come across it on the bank or in the tackle shop before. As such, perhaps the best praise I can give is to say that I fully intend to track down various Prologic components used within these rigs to incorporate within my own rig combinations, particularly the hooklink materials, as I’m confident they can add that little extra something I’ve been looking for on a few tricky waters – I’ll keep you posted.
At the time of publishing, Trev`s Tackle is selling the above ready rigs in packs of three at £3.99 per pack (with all manner of hook sizes and breaking strains available) or for a tenner they are currently doing a special rig deal, which gets you twelve assorted Prologic Ready Rigs, which even to my mind seems pretty reasonable - more here.
Also worth checking out is the Prologic website. I’ve been on it a couple of times recently to browse a few bits and pieces, and it seems I’m not the only one having a few on some of their gear! http://www.prologicfishing.com