Tweaks to this rig worth considering would include using a rig ring blow-back style trapping the hair to make the finished rig react faster when a fish inhales, mouths or tries to eject your hookbait. With pop up rigs it is normally best to position the rig ring so that it traps the hair on the hook shank opposite the barb (on barbless hooks this would be 2 or 3 mm up from the point) as this will naturally keep the hookbait set correctly in relation to the bend of the hook.
Another easy tweak is the addition of a section of 0.5mm silicone or shrink tube over the hook eye. By extending the shank and holding the hooklink so it is straighter to the shank with this tube, you are ensuring that the hook point is in the right position to catch hold as soon as the bait is sucked in, as it will be less likely to droop over.
The last critical adjustments relate to the balancing and height of the pop-up. The balancing is how slowly the hook bait sinks when the counter weight has been added onto the hook bait. How do you decide how fast your hookbait should sink and how high the pop up should be above the lake bed?
As a rough guide we recommend fishing pop ups that sink slowly over low weed and silt, using a slightly longer hooklink and with the pop up high enough to remain clearly visible and accessible to browsing carp. If you’re fishing on clean gravel, perhaps over lots of bait then a low pop up with counter weight only a few mm from the hook and over weighted so that it sinks at the same rate as a freebie is a good starting point. This is because the fish will tend to feed more aggressively, and with their mouths tight to the lake bed, and the heavier pop up will be less likely to swirl around as the fish moves near the rig.
What you need…
Step 1. Start by stripping off 12-15cm of your favourite skinned hooklink, using the Gardner Stripper Tool.
Step 2. Tie a small loop in the end to retain the hair stop when the rig is finished.
Step 3. Tie a small loop in the end of the stripped section and add tie on an extra small rig ring (allow a couple of mm over the diameter of the bait you are using).
Step 4. Thread the rig ring on the hook and secure with a knotless knot. As it exits the eye the last turn of the knot should be skinned.
Step 5. Thread an 8mm section of 0.5mm tube down the hooklink.
Step 6. Push the tubing up over the eye of the hook so 2-3mm are below the hooks eye…
Step 7. …your hook should hopefully now look a little like this!
Step 8. Create a hinge at the height you want to fish the pop-up by stripping a small section of hooklink.
Step 9. Mould some Critical Mass for the pop up counterweight on the hooklink just above the stripped section as shown.
Step 10. The finished rig.