When I first started carping with my long-term angling companion, Mart, he was well into rigs and set-ups whilst I tended to spend more time concentrating on my watercraft. In the early years our catch rates were pretty comparable as we often fished together using the same methods and bait. However, after a few years, with Mart still concentrating on rigs and me on watercraft, a tangible difference started to show itself, and I slowly but surly started catching more fish, a tendency which continued for many years when fishing the same waters on a like for like basis.
Looking back, Mart freely admits that his problem was getting too caught up in the detail, which he puts down to the fact that he’s a qualified engineer who loves a challenge, looking for perfection in whatever he turns his hand to. However, in relation to carping, the evidence showed that perhaps simplicity overshadowed perfection. As anglers we have a tendency to wax lyrical about the benefits of many new fangled methods and approaches, however, I much prefer to chuck a rig into the water and actually watch how the carp react to it, as surly that’s the key; regardless of our elaborate theories, it’s what carp think that counts, no?
With that in mind I use simple rigs for 99.9% of my fishing, and the image above shows the breakdown of components from the mainline right through to the hook for the braid set-up I use. My preferred hooklink is Rod Hutchinson Edge 2000 braid in 12lb breaking strain. At one end I tie a simple knotless knot hair and attach a small line aligner with shrink tubing before tying a small overhand loop knot at the other end for fitment to the gizmo. My terminal set-up is to feed the mainline through a tail rubber, safety clip and another cut-down tail rubber, and then tie to the eye on the the Gizmo link using a Palomar Knot; which I’ve found to be one of the strongest knots there is with minimal slip or strangulation.
Complete braid set-up; Keep it Simple!
Once the loop on the rig has been slipped onto the gizmo it’s simply a case of clipping on the weight and pulling the whole thing together. The result is a very simple, slimline, and extremely effective braid set-up. Depending on how I want the braid to sit, I may rub some rig putty up and down the hooklink to drop it on the lake bed, but more often than not I will leave it free as I favour critically balanced approaches that allow the bait to move about when under the scrutiny.