Carolina Rig Basics

I thought I would take a break from tournament coverage and do a post more focused on tips & techniques.  I found this info on Carolina Rigging which is very informative.

Carolina Rigging
D. B. Jackson

Carolina Rig

The Carolina rig is one of the most effective  bass fishing techniques on the planet. Two top 2008 Bassmaster Elite Series pros – Peter T and Kenyon Hill – consider it a mainstay in their arsenal on the tour. Between them they have banked over $1,000,000 using the technique.

And, the great thing about Carolina rigging is that you don’t need to be an expert to use it effectively. It’s easy to make and even easier to use.

The basic rigging is as follows: Thread a sinker and a bead to the main line running off your reel. Then, tie a swivel to the line. The bead should be between the sinker and the swivel.

Tie a leader to the other ring of the swivel and a hook to the far end. Attach your favorite soft plastic lure. Toss it out over your favorite structure or near your favorite cover and you’ll should be good to go.

Those are only the basics, however. To make your rig more effective give these refinements a try.

1. Sound: Beads are made from different materials. Each has its own unique sound as it smacks against the weight; some are loud and clank, others are soft and barely tick. Change beads to create a different sound.

2. Line size and strength: The line running from your reel to the swivel is important but isn’t visible to the fish. It’ll have no effect on lure action or movement. Heavy fluorocarbon or braid increases feel and sensitivity while reducing break-offs. Give one of them if you haven’t already.

3. Tie knots carefully: There are three knots in a Carolina rig – two on the swivel and one on the hook. That’s three places for trouble to develop. Take your time, tie your knots carefully and retie frequently throughout the day.

4. Adjust leader length: The length of your leader directly affects the way your lure looks to a bass. Short leaders tend to keep your bait near the bottom and restrict its action. Longer leaders do just the opposite.

5.  Hook size and design matters: A round bend model is not an offset worm style. And, neither is a circle hook. Make sure your selection suits your style of fishing and the bite pattern of the  the day. 

Buy good, high-quality hooks. Keep them sharp and make sure they’re big enough. Bass have very big mouths. They can handle a big hook.

6. Get creative with your lures: You can rig darn near any bait available with a Carolina rig. Hill used a 10-inch worm on his during the Pride of Georgia. And, don’t think plastic lures are your only choice.

Small, shallow-running crankbaits can be Carolina rigged. They wiggle just fine as they’re being pulled behind a sinker along the bottom. (Rapala minnows and Shad Raps are especially effective when fished this way along sand and rock bottoms.)

7. Vary your retrieve: Most anglers drag the rig back to their boat. That may work some of the time but it won’t work all of the time. Try varying the speed of your drag, give the assembly a hop every now and again. And never be afraid to do something different – radical – if you’re not catching bass.

Fish Harder Carolina Rig Components
Larry Thornhill

Ask any angler on the 2008 Bassmaster Elite Series tour and they’ll tell you that Peter “T” Thliveros is the master of the Carolina rig. Simply put, there is no one that has his level of experience and expertise catching bass with this simple, yet effective, technique.

Fish Harder Companies commissioned Peter T to design component parts for Carolina rigging.  They very best available to anglers today.

“We wanted nothing but the best and so, we went to the best. There’s nothing on the market today that compares to them,” says Tim Gregory, CEO of the Norcross, Georgia based fishing tackle conglomerate.

Peter T Smart Pegs
Tru-Tungsten® Smart Pegs are the most innovative on the market. The peg is designed to recess into the weight for better line protection and easy weight repositioning.  Works great for finesse carolina presentations with lighter weight bullet sinkers.

Smart Peg

Smart Pegs are available in two sizes and two colors.

Peter T Force Beads
These natural composite beads attract fish and produce an extremely loud and unique sound. Each bead is coated with a Duraseal™ coating for added durability and they match our colored weights and your plastic lure to make a uniform bait. They are lead-free and environmentally friendly. The added sensitivity will allow you to Discover the Feel® and the increased loudness will allow you to Fish Harder!

Force Beads

Force Beads are available in 2 sizes and 6 colors.

Peter T Finesse Carolina Weights
Tru-Tungsten® Finesse Carolina Weights increase sensitivity and minimize hang-ups using our insert free 97% pure tungsten. The rounded front easily works through grass and rock, while the concave design on the bottom maximizes sound due to the contact with our Peter “T” Force Beads.

Carolina Rig

Finesse Carolina Weights are available in three sizes and two colors.

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

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