How To Make A Hair Rig (An Illustrative Guide)


Are you ready to take your carp fishing to the next level? Making a hair rig is a skill that every passionate angler should have in their repertoire. This simple yet effective rig will help you catch big carp like never before.

With just a few essential pieces of tackle, including a strong hook and hooklink, you’ll be well on your way to success.

In this article, we will guide you through the step-by-step process of creating a hair rig, from tying the loop in the hooklink to tightening the knotless knot.

Whether you’re a seasoned angler or just starting out, this illustrative guide will give you the knowledge and confidence to master the hair rig technique.

Get ready to land those trophy carp and elevate your fishing game to new heights.

Key Takeaways

  • Embrace a tech-savvy approach to fishing with alternative hooklink materials
  • Consider water conditions, fish size, and bait type when choosing hooklink material
  • Experiment with different techniques for running hooklength through hook eye
  • Choose a hookbait that looks natural and enticing to carp

Hair Rig Basics

To make a hair rig, you will need a size 4 wide gape carp hook and a 20lb braided hooklink. These essential tools, along with the Daiwa Black Widow rod, Shimano Baitrunner DL 6000 reel, and Daiwa Sensor 15lb mainline, will set you up for success.

The hair rig is a versatile setup that offers various variations and advantages. One advantage is that the hair rig allows the bait to move freely, increasing the chances of a carp taking the hook. It also reduces the chances of the carp feeling the weight of the hook, making it less likely to spit out the bait.

However, there are also disadvantages to consider. The hair rig can be more challenging to set up compared to other rigs, and it may require some practice to perfect. Nonetheless, with dedication and practice, you’ll soon master the art of the hair rig and increase your chances of landing big carp.

Essential Equipment

For essential equipment, you will need a size 4 wide gape carp hook and a 20lb braided hooklink. These top-of-the-line tools are the key to creating the perfect hair rig.

When it comes to the best hair rig brands, you can trust that these choices will deliver unparalleled performance. With their cutting-edge design and innovative features, they are the go-to options for every angler seeking success on the water.

But the equipment doesn’t stop there. Hair rig variations are also an important consideration. Whether you prefer a standard hair rig or a more specialized pop-up rig for weedy or silty bottoms, having different options in your arsenal will give you the flexibility to adapt to any fishing situation.

Stay ahead of the game and explore the endless possibilities that these variations offer. Invest in the best equipment and explore the vast world of hair rigs.

Together, we’ll unlock the secrets of successful carp fishing, creating unforgettable moments on the water.

Step 1: Tie Loop in Hooklink

To start, tie a small loop in one end of the hooklink. This step is crucial for effectively catching carp with a hair rig. The loop serves as a secure attachment point for your bait, allowing you to easily switch between different types of bait like boilies or pellets. Additionally, the loop enables your bait to move freely, enhancing its presentation and increasing the likelihood of enticing a bite. There are various types of hair rigs that anglers can employ, such as the standard hair rig and the pop-up rig. The standard hair rig works well for presenting bait on the bottom, while the pop-up rig is more suitable for weedy or silty bottoms. With a securely tied loop in your hooklink, you can now proceed to the next step in creating your hair rig.

Step 2: Trim Tag End

Step 2: Trim Tag End

To ensure a neat and tidy hair rig, it is important to trim the tag end of the hooklink. Follow these tips to achieve a professional finish:

  • Use a sharp pair of scissors or line clippers to make a clean cut. This will prevent fraying and ensure a smooth edge.

  • Be cautious not to cut too close to the knot, as this may weaken the hair rig. Leave a small amount of tag end to maintain its strength.

  • Double-check your work to avoid common mistakes such as leaving too much tag end, which can affect the overall presentation of your rig.

By mastering the art of trimming the tag end effectively, you’ll have a well-crafted hair rig that is both functional and visually appealing.

Step 3: Run Through Hook Eye

After trimming the tag end, run the hooklength through the hook eye. This step is crucial in properly assembling a hair rig. Threading the hook eye correctly ensures that the rig functions effectively and securely. There are different types of hook eyes to consider, each with its own advantages. To provide a comprehensive understanding of this step, let’s explore the different types of hook eyes in a table format:

Hook Eye Type Description Benefits
Standard Eye Traditional round eye Easy to thread
Micro Barbed Eye Smaller and slightly curved Offers better hooking potential
Wide Gape Eye Wide and straight Ideal for larger baits

By using this table, you can gain insights into the various hook eye options available and choose the one that best suits your fishing needs. Threading the hook eye correctly is essential for a successful hair rig setup, so take the time to ensure it is done properly.

Step 4: Leave Hanging Length

To properly assemble your hair rig, it is important to leave a hanging length of 1-1.5 inches from the hook eye. This step should not be overlooked as it is crucial for the rig’s effectiveness.

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The strength of the hooklink is of utmost importance when targeting big carp. Using a strong hooklink, such as a 20lb braided hooklink, will ensure that your rig can handle the weight and power of these impressive fish.

In addition to the hooklink, the choice of hookbait also plays a significant role. Different types of hookbaits, such as boilies, pellets, or fake bait, can be used depending on your preference and the fishing conditions. It is essential to select your hookbait wisely and experiment with different options to find what works best for you.

Step 5: Hold Hair and Shank

Hold the hair and shank tightly together when making your hair rig. This step is crucial for ensuring that the rig is secure and effective. By holding the hair and shank tightly, you create a strong connection that will withstand the pull of a big carp.

As you hold them together, envision the success you will have with your hair rig techniques. Imagine the thrill of reeling in a trophy-sized carp using your own handmade rig.

To further enhance your rig, consider using alternative hooklink materials. Experiment with different types of braided lines or fluorocarbon to find what works best for you. These innovative materials offer improved strength and durability, giving you an edge on the water.

Embrace the tech-savvy approach to fishing and explore the possibilities that alternative hooklink materials can offer in your pursuit of the perfect hair rig.

Step 6: Wrap Around Hair and Shank

Now that you have securely held the hair and shank together, let’s move on to the next step.

Step 6: Wrap Around Hair and Shank.

This step is crucial in creating a strong and reliable hair rig. Take the hooklength and carefully wrap it around the hair and shank. Make sure to wrap it around 5-7 times, ensuring that it is tight and secure. This technique not only adds strength to the rig but also allows for better presentation and hooking potential.

Advantages of using a hair rig are numerous. It provides a natural and free-moving presentation, making it harder for the fish to detect any potential danger. The hair rig also increases your chances of hooking the fish, as the bait is positioned away from the hook, allowing the fish to take the bait more confidently.

When choosing the right hooklink material, consider factors such as the water conditions, the size of the fish you are targeting, and the type of bait you are using. Braided hooklinks are known for their durability and strength, making them a popular choice. However, nylon or fluorocarbon hooklinks can also be effective, depending on the situation. Experiment with different materials to find what works best for you.

Step 7: Run Through Hook Eye Again

After wrapping the hooklength around the hair and shank, carefully run it through the hook eye again to continue building the hair rig. This step is crucial for securing the hair in place and ensuring that the hookbait is presented effectively. There are alternative methods you can try when running the hooklength through the hook eye again. Some anglers prefer to use a baiting needle to guide the hooklength through, while others simply use their fingers to carefully thread it. Experiment with different techniques to find what works best for you.

When it comes to choosing the right hookbait for your hair rig, there are several options to consider. Boilies are a popular choice and come in a variety of flavors and sizes. Fake corn and plastic maggots can also be effective, especially when fishing for species like tench or bream. Don’t be afraid to get creative and try different combinations to entice the fish. Remember, the key is to present a bait that looks natural and enticing to the carp. By running the hooklength through the hook eye again and experimenting with different hookbaits, you will increase your chances of success on the water.

Step 8: Tighten the Knotless Knot

To secure the knotless knot, you need to tighten it by pulling the tag end of the hooklink while holding the hair and shank tightly. This step is crucial to ensure that your hair rig is strong and reliable for catching big carp.

As you pull the tag end, make sure to apply steady pressure to gradually tighten the knot. Avoid pulling too hard as it may cause the knot to slip or weaken.

It’s important to note that there are alternative knot options for hair rigs, such as the improved clinch knot or the Palomar knot, but the knotless knot is widely preferred for its simplicity and effectiveness.

When tightening the knotless knot, common mistakes to avoid include rushing the process and not checking for any twists or tangles in the hooklink. Taking the time to properly tighten the knot will greatly increase your chances of success on the water.


Now that you’ve mastered the art of making a hair rig, you’re ready to embark on your carp fishing adventure like a true tech-savvy angler.

To make a hair rig, you’ll need the following equipment:

  • A hook
  • A hair stop
  • A bait needle
  • A rig ring
  • A swivel
  • A length of hair material (such as braid or monofilament)

Here’s a step-by-step guide to making a hair rig:

  1. Start by threading the hair material through the eye of the hook. Leave a length of hair sticking out from the back of the hook.

  2. Slide the hair stop onto the hair material, pushing it up against the back of the hook.

  3. Use the bait needle to thread your chosen bait onto the hair. Make sure it sits securely on the hair stop.

  4. Slide the rig ring onto the hair material, positioning it just above the bait.

  5. Tie a small loop at the end of the hair material. This loop will be used to attach the hair rig to your main line.

  6. Attach the swivel to the loop at the end of the hair material. This will allow the hair rig to rotate freely.

Remember to choose the appropriate hair length for your hookbait and consider using a pop-up rig for weedy or silty bottoms.

For more fishing tips and information, visit the Strike and Catch website, your ultimate resource for all things fishing.

Happy angling!

About the author

Kimberly is an experienced angler and outdoor enthusiast with a passion for all things fishing. She has been honing her skills on the water for over 7 years, mastering various techniques and tactics for both freshwater and saltwater fishing.

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