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Rigs are probably one of the most discussed areas of freshwater fishing the world over. As a beginner in the sport of angling it is mind boggling how many different rigs are available and after waiting patiently for hour upon hour by the side of a lake or river without any success the first thing most anglers blame is the rig. The waters in the area we live are relatively unfished. This coupled with the fact that if we are new to the water then we do not know what fish are present. I always think it is best to go back to basics in these situations. Of course if you are an experienced coarse fisherman or woman then you will target a species and will soon find out if that fish is present through your experience. Unfortunately experience is something we cannot buy. If we could we would all be experts and there would be no room on the banks to fish anyway!!

Let us then get really basic and start off with a running leger using the main line straight to the hook. A three or four pound main line should suffice. Thread a swivel clip onto the line followed by a plastic bead large enough to stop the eye of the swivel passing over it. The next step is to add a plastic leger stop. This consists of a tiny plastic tube and a tapered pin. Slide the tube together with the bead and swivel clip already added up the line to around twenty centimetres and push the tapered pin in, trapping the line. This acts as the stop and prevents the weight sliding down to the hook. If you wish to alter the hook length do not just try and push the leger stop along the line, release the tapered pin with forceps or small pliers to prevent damage to the line. Tie a size 12, 16, or 18 hook to the end of the line depending on what bait you wish to present then clip a 30 or 40 gram weight to the swivel clip and you are up and running. Very simple but quick and easy. Cover the hook with any number of baits, luncheon meat, sweet corn, bread paste or maggots if you can get them. This is not for distance casting but will get you started 20 to 30 metres from the bank.
This can easily be turned into a semi bolt rig by adding another bead and a swivel to the end of the line instead of a hook then tying your hook length onto the other eye of the swivel. (This enables a change of hook length material and makes them easily interchangeable.) Over the coming weeks we will look at weight clips and why they are so important and move onto more complicated rigs and their uses but give this a try for starters.

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