Slip Bobber Rigging
Slip Bobber Rigging: Have you ever wanted to fish a float or bobber, but needed the bait or fly to be six, or eight, or 10 feet below it? Makes for some very awkward casting! Problem solved! With a slip bobber rig, the bobber, bait, and weights are all concentrated together on maybe a couple feet of line, but when out in the water, the bobber “slips” or slides back up the line to a pre- determined stopping point which can be as far as 8 or 10 feet above the bait! Try casting the with the usual fixed bobber setup with 10 feet of line dangling under it! For those of you not familiar with fishing with this rig, here a simple setup.
To rig up, follow these steps in order:
1. Attach a “bobber stop” to your main line. This can be purchased at any well-supplied tackle store or online at any of the major tackle houses. I’ve tried them all, and they all work. Some advertise they they will run through the line guides when cast, but I haven’t found any that actually did! But none are any better than taking a length of strong cord (I use carpet thread) and tying it onto the main line. Use several tight knots, wrap the cord around the line a few times, and add several more tight knots. The goal is to make a ball of knots that is tight to the line, but will still slide up and down it if you force it! If it slides too easily, keep adding knots and wraps! Not as hard as it seems, and neatness does not count! Trim off the loose ends.
2. Add a bead to the main line.
3. Add the slip bobber or float. there are many kinds of these available, but even a common red and white bobber (like in the Outdoor-Fishing Logo!) can be used-- just push down on the cap and turn it 1/4 turn so the wire hook on the bottom of the bobber doesn’t go back into its hole!). The picture shows a few style- the one on the far right, I hand- made out of styrofoam and a plastic straw. I needed a slip bobber that wouldn’t be pulled under by a 10- 12 inch baitfish when fishing for early season Northern Pike and couldn’t find any- so I made my own!
4. Add a swivel or snap to your line.
5. Now add your “leader”. This can be anywhere from a foot to four foot long. But remember, this is the distance that will separate the float from the bait when casting. A leader of any longer than four feet defeats the purpose of the whole rig. A suggestion--- use a leader of 2-4 pound test line LIGHTER than your main line! This way, if you have a break off to a fish or snag, you’ll loose only the bait or fly and maybe some weights, but NOT the whole rig including the float. I helplessly watched many a bobber float down the river on my Steelhead creeks before I learned this trick!
6. To the leader attached the “float weights” just below the swivel or snap. This is enough weight (removable spilt shot are good) to make sure the line will pull through the bobber when in the water. If using a heavier bait, these weights may not be needed.
7. Add the “bait weights”. This is whatever additional weight you need to get your bait to the desired depth. They can be attached anywhere from a few inches to a couple feet above the bait. At times, you may not want to add any additional weight here.
8. Add your bait or fly. I’ve used a slip bobber with everything from 12 inch baitfish, to minnow, worms, and Salmon eggs, to small lures and flies!
Make up a couple slip rigs at home. You’ll see how when the rig is help up for casting, everything “slips” down to the swivel and only the short leader and bait hangs below the bobber. You will still have a length of line from the bobber stop to the bait dangling from the rod tip, but the weight of the rig will be concentrated for much easier casting. In use, you can basically have the distance between the bobber stop and bait be equal to the length of your rod + the length of your legs! I can very easily cast with the bobber stop 10 feet up from the bait, and I’m short! NOTE-- DO NOT be tempted to wind the bobber stop in through the line guides! I broke the tip off of a rod doing that while trying to cast a heavy bait!
When the rig hits the water, the weight of the sinkers/bait will pull the through the slip bobber until the slip bobber is stopped by the... bobber stop. You will be fishing at a depth equal to the distance from the bait to the bobber stop!
One last thing- you can adjust the depth at which you will be fishing by sliding the bobber stop up or down the line! That’s why the stop should be tight, but still capable of sliding. You can be fishing 3 feet deep, move to another spot, and be fishing 6 feet deep in a second!
Rig up one of these setups, look at how it works, and take it out fishing! It makes a difference. Good luck! ---- JoeW
Last edited by JoeW; 01-07-2012 at 03:45 PM.
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