The Multi-Rig

Checking how your rigs work in the margin is vital, especially when using pop-ups

Sometimes, in order to suit certain situations, a change of rig is needed, and Oli Bowles has a perfect example

Like a lot of my rigs, the multi-rig found its way into my rig box through necessity. I’m a big fan of pop-ups and for a long time I had been using chods as my only means of fishing them. I like to fish my chods running over a long distance with the beads set a good distance apart. This was great whilst I was fishing over large areas of low-lying weed or deep silt, as I knew I would be fishing effectively over that type of terrain. However, as time went by, I found myself fishing a lake where I felt the need to start fishing smaller, cleaner spots, and this in turn would need a tighter baiting pattern instead of the loose spread of bait that suits the chod rig so well.

The areas I began fishing were fairly small spots that hadn’t been completely polished off; I was looking for areas that still had a little debris present. I was happy that fish would feed on this type of spot, but the freedom of movement with the chod meant that I couldn’t guarantee I was fishing near where my lead was landing. I could feel the lead drop on the spot but my hook section could be sitting three feet up the line, off the spot. Something needed to change so I started looking into different pop-up rigs which I could use with a lead clip instead of the long, running style arrangement that I had so much faith in. Making this change would ensure that I was fishing exactly where I felt the lead touch down.

I played around with a few bits and pieces, trying out different materials and setups, but the rig that caught my attention was the Jonny Mac rig or multi-rig as it is commonly known. The main reason I was drawn to this setup, other than the above-mentioned, was the simplicity of it. There is no connecting of separate materials with fancy knots, no messing around with weights here and filament there; just a few simple knots in one length of a hooklink then slip a hook on. It certainly appealed to me and my simple style of thinking about rigs.

Adding or removing putty enables you to control exactly what rate the pop-up sinks at
Oli likes to use bright and highly flavoured hookbaits during the winter
A bright pink pop-up was too much for this mid-double common to refuse

A big advantage with this presentation is that I am able to change the hook without having to tie a whole new rig. If the point gets burred or blunted I can simply slip the hook off and pop another one on in a matter of seconds. This makes a big difference when you’re turning up and trying to get rods out quickly; you can leave the rigs on from the last session and, if need be, quickly swap to a new hook, tie a bait on and you’re angling.

Another reason I think the multi-rig appealed to me is that the end section replicates a chod in the way the hook is held in place at an aggressive angle on the doubled-up N-Trap. Having something very similar to a chod hook section on a lead clip setup definitely cushioned the blow of changing over from a rig I had complete confidence in.

I played around with different ways of setting it up and settled on a rig of around seven inches total length. I felt that a boom section of between four and five inches is long enough to allow the necessary movement in order to settle over any debris that might be littering the spot. The hook section, of around two to three inches is short and aggressive enough to create secure hooking potential. If I thought a spot was particularly dirty then I would happily lengthen the boom section by another few inches. This gives me peace of mind that the boom is sitting nicely over any detritus and that my hookbait is going to be presented well.

I know that a lot of people like to use a shot below the hook section of the rig but I have been using the bottom bead from a No-Trace Naked Chod Safety System as my counter weight to the pop-up. I find it much neater and it permanently stays on the rig. It does need a small blob of tungsten putty around the bead for more buoyant pop-ups, but even with the putty I still think its neater than a shot. A large Sinker is something else I will use. In reality, anything that will sink it works fine, but I don’t like to waste things so for me it’s a recycled No-Trace tungsten bead or a Sinker, neither of which can fall off the rig like a shot.

I like to use a 3oz lead with the multi-rig. I find that this is a nice, happy medium. I like a heavy lead when fishing a lead clip to help drive the hook home, but I don’t want any risk of the lead pulling the boom section down into the lake bed either. I think if you step up to 3½oz or more, you may find that you run into presentation problems.

All in all, the multi-rig ticked all the boxes for me and the hook holds I have received when using this setup have been incredible! If you’re trying to be accurate in your fishing, putting baits on small spots, but you still want to use a pop-up, give this simple setup a try and I promise you will be impressed with your results.

 How to tie Oli’s rig

  • STEP 1: You will need some 20lb N-Trap Semi-stiff, size 6 Kaptor Choddy hooks, medium Rig Rings, Dark Matter Putty and either large Sinkers or barrel beads from No-Trace Naked Chod Safety Systems
  • STEP 2: Take around 12 inches of N-Trap and form a loop of around 1½in.
  • STEP 3: Remove a small section of coating beneath the knot
  • STEP 4: Slide a barrel bead (or Sinker) down the hooklink so that it sits over the break in the coating
  • STEP 5: Mould a piece of Putty around the bead
  • STEP 6: Pinch the top of the loop you created earlier and pass it through the front of the hook eye
  • STEP 7: Slide a Rig Ring on to the loop
  • STEP 8: Pass the hook point through the loop and tighten slightly
  • STEP 9: Tie another loop at the other end of the rig
  • STEP 10: Attach a bait using Bait Floss, check how it sinks in the margin, and it’s ready to cast out

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