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Rigging the Eel's Head
(Eel Rigging Instructions - Page 2)
                      by Tim Surgent


Step 12
tying the eels lips - closeup 

     The lips.  Put the first one in front of you again, and hold the eel around the hook area and hold the Dacron from the mouth and pull, making sure everything is nice and straight and tight.  Pull the eel itself, from the head and tail and stretch it out, you should hear some popping and cracking as it gets to maximum length.  While it's perfectly straight and tight, put it down, belly up.  Take 1 12" piece of bowstring and place its center inside the eels mouth, about midway to the back of the mouth.  Make sure the Dacron is centered coming out of the mouth.  
     Now tie an overhand knot around the lower jaw and tighten it. Flip the eel over and tie two overhand knots on the top jaw.  Flip it over and tie two more overhand knots on the bottom jaw, make sure the Dacron is still coming out of the center.  Trim the tags carefully, and put Zap-A-Gap on the knots, some will get on the eels lips here, don't sweat it.  Pull the eel again and make sure everything's tight and straight.  Repeat on the other 5 eels.
Step 13
Tying the eel's lips
Step 14
how the rigged eel should look
This is how your eel should look at this point. Tail hook secured firmly, hook hanging straight down, lips tied securely shut and dacron between the head and the tail with no slack inside the eel.
 
The squid - Choosing the squids is a personal preference thing. I tend to choose them based on the type of water I'm going to fish - calm/rough, shallow/deep, current speed, etc. In general, the X-deep squids will swim bigger eels and will swim deeper. As you get towards the deep, medium, and then shallow squids, you'll need to use thinner or smaller eels. Also, as the squids get lighter, the water they'll fish must be calmer. In other words, a "deep" squid or "medium" squid is a good starting point...with more emphasis towards the "deep" ones. From there use X-deep in rougher/deeper water and medium/shallow squids for calmer/shallower water. Ok, we got the squids picked out ;-) 
Step 15
align the tin eel squid
Get the first eel again, choose it's squid out and insert the point of the squid hook at a point just behind the gills, forward a little of the pectoral fins.
Step 16
Make sure the hook is going straight into the eel, and when it hits the spine, work the point around the spine and make absolutely certain that it comes out of the eel in the dead center of the top.
inserting the tin eel squid
Step 17
There's a handy little line built into the eels on the top center...make sure the hook comes out on that line. It should look like the picture below. Note the eel is straight and not bunched up and the line coming out it's lips is straight. This is critical.

properly inserted tin eel squid
(You can navigate through the 5 pages of eel rigging instructions through links at the top of each eel rigging page)


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