Anatomy Of A Carp Rig | James Armstrong's Soft-Hair Flurocarbon Rig

My fluorocarbon hair rig is a presentation I have been using for well over ten years now. I have caught literally hundreds of good fish on it from very tricky venues to runs waters, large or small. It really does tick all the boxes that I need in a bottom bait or balanced presentation.

For me such a rig needs the following properties. Firstly, it must not tangle - this is essential! Due to the relatively stiff nature of the fluorocarbon, the rig is always kicked away from the lead, especially if used in conjunction with a helicopter or safety clip lead setup.

The rig is also inconspicuous. Due to the use of fluorocarbon, the rig is almost invisible on any lakebed. If this is coupled with a fluorocarbon leader, even better!

Finally, it has great re-setting capabilities. Any rig will often be ejected several times before a hookup, so it needs to be able to reset every time. I prefer to use a nice soft fluorocarbon or fluorocarbon-coated mono with a relatively thin diameter. If it’s too thick it won’t sit right. Consequently, I actually use the Ridgemonkey Fluoro-coated mainline as opposed to a dedicated boom or leader material. It makes a lovely and supple hooklink, and the knots bed down nicely. I have also used the lower diameter RM-Tec Fluorocarbon hooklink effectively.

In terms of the hair, I opt for a nice supple braid, like the RM-Tec Soft Braid hooklink in brown. I whip the hair onto a beaked point hook using a knotless knot with some silicone tubing to keep the hair in place. I use a size 6 or 4 depending on the hook bait. I then blob the braid under the eye with a lighter which prevents it pulling through the eye of the hook. I then whip on the fluorocarbon using a Domhoff knot before trimming the tag end.

Another short section of silicone tubing is slid over the eye to finish, which ensure that it exits at the right angle – not narrowing the gape too much or too little. A dollop of putty is rolled halfway along the link just to ensure that it is pinned down and kept out of the way.

I will only use this rig with a bottom or balanced bait in the form of a wafter or a snowman rig. It doesn’t really lend itself to a pop-up because it’s a little too stiff. I’ve caught fish in the UK to over 48lb using this presentation so give it a whirl!

Step-By-Step: Tying James Armstrong’s soft-hair fluorocarbon rig

1. Tie a hair loop in a short length of soft braid.

2. Slide on a short length of silicone tubing and position it on the shank of a beaked point hook.

3. Whip the hook on with a knotless knot, before trimming the tag end and blobbing with a lighter.

4. Cut off a length of RM-TEC fluorocarbon.

5. Pass the fluoro through the eye of the hook and whip on with a Domhoff knot...

6. Position the fluoro along the shank before folding it back to form a loop.

7. Whip down the shank 5-7 times.

8. Before passing the tag end back through the initial loop created.

9. Moisten with saliva and tighten from the hooklink, hook and tag ends before trimming the tag end.

10. Slide a second section of silicone tubing down the hooklink and over the hook eye.

11. The silicone stops the hook gape from closing down too much.

12. Slide on a short anti-tangle sleeve.

13. Measure out the rig and tie a figure of eight loop before trimming the tag end.

14. Trim down a bottom bait or wafter hook bait.