I’ve been using this version of the stiff-hinge rig for a couple of years now as my go-to pop up presentation. To me, it ticks every box that I think a brilliant rig should. It always presents the bait perfectly on any lake bed, whether it’s slowly sinking onto a cushion of weed or holding tight on a gravel bed. It’s extremely reliable on the cast, helping itself with the prevention of any tangles and it has fantastic hooking properties with its stiff curved ‘chod’ section, angled perfectly to penetrate ¾ of an inch back from the bottom lip of your quarry. In short, there isn’t a lot more you need from a pop up rig; which is why, in its base form, the stiff-hinge rig has been and still is so popular.
The adaptations I have made to the rig are by no means ground breaking. I’m not trying to sell you the perfect rig here!
To me, each change improves the chance of me hooking and landing that prize by 1-2%. That doesn’t seem a lot, but when you add up all the tweaks you do to your rig, spot, cast, line lay etc… it makes a surprising difference!
As I tend to do with rigs, I change little bits here and there, constantly trying to add 1% as I go along, and this rig below is my ‘current version’. I posted an in-depth video on my YouTube channel some months ago now explaining this rig and how I made it. But, my confidence has increased quite a lot since making a couple of small amendments you’ll see below.
Lets get into it!
• A very strong, very sharp size 6 ‘Choddy’ hook.
• A stiff Chod filament.
• Rig Putty.
• A good quality coated braid.
• Bait screw.
Take about 4 inches of your chosen filament; I use Fox Rigidity for this in 30lb which is super stiff and when folded in half makes the chod section the stiffest possible. This is the first tweak I made from my previous rig, changing from 15lb Korda chod filament.
Fold it in half and squeeze the end to make it easier to work with. Then thread it through the back of the eye of your hook followed with a bait screw. If the bait screw has a ring on it I like to cut this off as I think it messes with the mechanics (this is another change I made, from a hook swivel).
Fold the loop over the hook, just as you would with a multi-rig and use your fingers to shape it like below. When you form it, it stays exactly as you left it because the Rigidity is so stiff – no need for kettles here!
Fold the bottom of the filament over to your desired length to set the depth of your pop up, I like it to be just less than 2 inches. This is in preparation to tie the Albright knot.
Take your coated Hooklink material and strip about 5 inches of the coating, leaving the bare Dynema braid.
Thread the stripped braid through the folded filament like so. Remember which way you threaded it, as it MUST go back through the same way.
Wrap the braid around the 4 strands of filament 7 times. Then, wrap it back down once. Thread it back through the loop (the same way it went in) like so.
Use your ‘tool’ to pull the knot tight, making sure to properly moisten it with saliva first. You may need to use your fingers to slowly ‘edge’ the knot down the end whilst tightening it.
Trim your tag ends off nice and close, and if you feel confident enough you can ‘blob’ the ends of them with a lighter, paying close attention not to damage the actual rig with the heat.
Mold your putty around the knot neatly into a cone shape, for stability and presentation on the lake bed. You can use what ever amount you need to either let it sink slowly or to hold the bottom tightly, test this in the margin before you cast out and adjust accordingly.
I use Hybrids ‘Pure Filth’ which is extremity dense and very sticky!
Take the other end of your coated braid and cut it to your desired length, I like to use it generally at about 9 inches to start with as you can shorten it from there, but remember: you cannot add more to it! Tie a figure of eight knot in it so it can be attached to quick-change swivels and alike.
And that’s it! Attach your favorite pop up which in this case is a Sticky Baits Manilla Yellow One. You can form the curve in the filament by pulling it between your finger and thumb to create the curve you want and it will stay how you’ve made it due to its thickness and ‘rigidity’.
Here is the proof in the pudding – a couple of fish taken on this rig recently at my favorite day ticket water!
Why not give it a try…. Head into store and pick up any bits you need, and let us know how you get on with it!