Jessica's Gems

The Scorpion Rig – South African-style!

By: Nos Minnaar

Since I started fishing as young boy, I was making rigs that I thought must work. Needless to say, they did not always work, but I kept on and on…

In 1988 my wife gave me a book by Kevin Maddocks, the co-inventor of the hair rig, and I was amazed to see it and the boilie it carried for the first time. At the time there were no boilies available in South Africa and the sales assistants in the tackle shops looked at me as if I was from outer space when I enquired about boilies! I made my first boilie rig with a wood bead as a boilie (taken from a necklace of my wife!).

I formed a piece of brown bread around the wood bead and there I had a boilie..! In 1990 I caught my first 16kg carp and from then always caught the bigger carp over 15kg. I loved big carp fishing so much that I built a 10 000 liter fish tank in my living room! It is 7,5 meters long, 2,4 meters high and 1.5 meters high. In this tank I had carp from 10kg up to 21kg in size and I studied their feeding methods and habits intensively. Sometimes they fed aggressively, but at other times they fed very softly, which is when the hook presentation becomes very critical.

The “Scorpion Rig” (named by my wife who said the rig looks like a scorpion’s tail) is a rig made by me out of frustration. I needed a rig that could not get caught up in silt, weed or soft bottom dams, and I achieved this presentation by using foam and pop-up plastic maize and the right size and weight of the hook to sit on any type of bottom with its point off the bottom. It is based on a D rig, but instead of a boilie mounted on the D with a small ring, I placed a piece of foam and plastic maize on the D. The foam on the top of the maize ensures that the hook point will always be on the top, just like a Scorpion’s tail. When the hook penetrates the fish’s mouth, the foam and plastic maize simply slides down the hook shank towards the hook eye, ensuring a deep, solid hook set. After removing the hook from the fish’s mouth, you slide the foam back up the hook and you are ready to go again. In a short period of only two months, the Scorpion rig has caught many carp from 9kg to over 17kg in different dams by different anglers who initially were very sceptic about the Scorpion rig. The photos of these fish speak for themselves!

You can make the Scorpion rigs yourself or buy them readymade from your local tackle shop. It is my sincere hope that the Scorpion Rig I have created will bring you many big carp; remember to handle your catches with great care, for they are a gift from God for us to enjoy!

Here are the steps to make your own:

Use a still mono or fluorocarbon hook link material of about 40cm, folding over approx 20cm of material in half, giving you 10cm of loop, and a 20cm single strand.
2. Using a fine baiting needle – the gated one works best.
3. Thread on the required number of plastic floating corns, try to keep the alignment even for each.
4. Ensure you have the required number, which will balance and just lift the hook. This will come from trial and error, as the hook size and brands differ as to the buoyancy of the various corn brands.
5. Thread the corns smoothly onto the mono loop. Depending on the buoyancy, you might need to finish the stack off with a piece of high density foam to create the correct lift. With all the artificial corns in place, leave approx 5mm of the loop exposed.
6. Thread the hook point through the loop and slide the artificial down tight against the shank. The hook size can vary, but the rig concept works best with large #1 hooks and even larger, up to 5/0!
7. With the baits lying flat against the back of the hook, thread the two tag ends through the eye.
8. With the baits in place, wrap and tie a knotless knot using the longer piece and pull tight.
9. The shorter end can be trimmed closer to the eye, and even “blobbed” off with a lighter, to prevent it being pulled back through the eye.
10. Decide on the required length and tie to a swivel to complete your hooklink. Due to the nature of the stiff material a loop may also be used to attach to the swivel also.
11. The finished rig should sit like this on the bottom.

*This rig was designed and created in the winter of 2015, so we have no doubt there will be a number of alternate adjustments and modifications which will result on its release. – Editors.

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