zudo

thoughts on hi/lo vs Carolina for surf perch

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I have always used the Carolina rig and done well most every time, but this weekend the surf was pounding with continual wave after wave and my Carolina rig was tangling more often.  I was wondering if the hi/lo rig with short loops would work better in those conditions?  Also what are your general thoughts between the two setups?  

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Yep, I swap to some version of a double dropper or drop shot.  Will often add a couple of orange beads for better visibility if it's that gnarly.

 

Fluoro is stiffer, so that helps too.

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How about a shorter, stiffer leader on your Carolina rig?  I use 25 lb with a tiny homemade crosslock affixed with a tiny loop knot of my own design.  Leaders are always stretched under a bit of tension when stored on rod to stay straight which really helps.

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32 mins ago, bass11 said:

How about a shorter, stiffer leader on your Carolina rig?  I use 25 lb with a tiny homemade crosslock affixed with a tiny loop knot of my own design.  Leaders are always stretched under a bit of tension when stored on rod to stay straight which really helps.

how long do you make the leader and can you post a pic of your design?

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I used C-rig for waaay too long, disgusted with tangles, before i learned about the hi-lo.

Hi-lo is ALL i will use now...it's tangle free, and weight can be instantly changed to suit conditions.

Edited by cityevader

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On 11/10/2021 at 0:37 AM, zudo said:

how long do you make the leader and can you post a pic of your design?

Wonky currents & waves can cause leader tangles.  As others have suggested, stiffer and shorter leaders

can help address the situation.  Perch are small fish and many prefer to use lighter leaders which is all well

and good, but that means leaders that are less stiff and more difficult to keep straight or non curly.  I use

20-25 lb leaders with pretty decent results.  Stiff Mason leader material is not readily available locally so I

use 25 lb. Big Game mostly.  3.5 ft. is standard for me.  I would not go under 2.5 ft. even with wonky

conditions.  Stiff leaders are important, but keeping them straight without a set or kink  is even more

important.  In order to keep my leaders straight, I fashioned a hook keeper by bending some wire and

stuffing in up the pin hole of my Fuji ball butt cap.  The distance from this to the stripper guide is 45".  If you

notice, when my rod is broke down and stored, the braid is bent on the stripper guide instead of the leader.  

Stored under a little tension, your leader stays straight.

There are many "right" ways to set up for perch.  I claim no expertise in such matters, but since you asked,

rightly or wrongly, this is how I do it.

The rod is a 40 year old Kunnan 8'6" steelhead rod.  The reel is a 35 year old Quantum E7-2 filled with 6 lb.

Sufix Performance braid.  Shown is the perennial 1.5" morf (motor oil red flake) curly tail grub.  Most leave the

 curly tail intact, but I prefer the action of a cut tail grub.  Many would argue that a lighter leader gives better

action when drifting through the trough, but I prefer stiffer straight 25 lb. Big Game leaders.  I attach with a

tiny home made crosslock clip from .020" stainless wire tied with a loop knot of my own design.  This allows

full 360 degree rotation.  Loop knots are shite knots.  Most ( homer rhodes, rapala, left kreh, etc.) have a

KBS (knot break strength) of less than 60% of ABS (absolute break strength).  Mine is well over 60, but any

will do for small fish like perch.  The thing I like most about my loop knot is that it allow me to easily and

consistently tie a very tiny loop.  The other end of the leader is tied with a Palomar to a 3mm tippet ring

which is attached to the main line with my version of an improved double line Trilene knot.  The tag end is

wound through the tippet ring until it meets the mono leader and finished with a few half hitches and a drop of

super glue.  The reason for this is so that the braid improved Trilene knot and the mono stay the same

distance apart on the tippet ring and don't slide around.  Through the unwrapped portion of the tippet ring

goes an 8" dropper with loops on each end.  The weight goes on the other end.  You can use a dipsey

sinker of your choosing or weight or get some cheap egg sinkers from Wally Mart.  Bend some wire and

you're good.  I think Wally Mart has a bag of sixteen 1 oz egg sinkers for around $5.00 or so.

Now I know you're thinking that this is an entanglement nightmare waiting to happen, but it is surprisingly

trouble free if done correctly.  If not done correctly it will be a nightmare.  The reason for wrapping the braid

through the tippet ring is to limit the movement and space for the weight dropper so that it sits perpendicular

to the main line and leader.  

Whether real or imagined, I feel this rig offers more sensitivity than a Caroline or fish finder rig.  I also like it

because of the flexibility it offers.  In early spring there is a coincidental and cross over season between

larger perch and schoolie stripers.  The quick fix is to take off the grub and replace with a Zoom Super

Fluke.  Surprisingly effective for stripers.  If you want to plug with an LC110 or Swarter or jig with no distance

penalty, simply unloop the weight dropper and you're good to go.  HTH  Now about that fish ball & noodle soup................

IMG_0223.JPG

IMG_0219.JPG

IMG_0220.JPG

IMG_0221.JPG

IMG_0222.JPG

Edited by bass11

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On 11/8/2021 at 10:41 AM, plinker said:

Yep, I swap to some version of a double dropper or drop shot.  Will often add a couple of orange beads for better visibility if it's that gnarly.

 

Fluoro is stiffer, so that helps too.

+1

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On 11/11/2021 at 7:14 PM, cityevader said:

I used C-rig for waaay too long, disgusted with tangles, before i learned about the hi-lo.

Hi-lo is ALL i will use now...it's tangle free, and weight can be instantly changed to suit conditions.

+1

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On 12/8/2021 at 3:52 PM, Mike Mendez said:

When sand crabs are abundant in summertime, this is my go-to rig.

 

Gangion detail.jpg

Is perch not line shy? I mean that double line is very visible 

Edited by ING

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6 hours ago, ING said:

Is perch not line shy? I mean that double line is very visible 

It has been my experience that Perch, Croaker, Corbina and other assorted surf fish will key in on a soft shell crab, or a hard shell crab with eggs and not care about the line.  I've used mono and fluorocarbon and there's no difference.  I have also noticed that single strand leaders tend to tangle in this above configuration.  The loop and out-facing knot help to keep the line pointing out with less tangles.

 

Note that 1 ounce will still move a little with current and waves.  Keep the line snug and work in the slack.  Definitely not "bait and wait."

 

Even the white sea bass in my avatar ate a crab on this setup.

Edited by Mike Mendez

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6 hours ago, Mike Mendez said:

It has been my experience that Perch, Croaker, Corbina and other assorted surf fish will key in on a soft shell crab, or a hard shell crab with eggs and not care about the line.  I've used mono and fluorocarbon and there's no difference.  I have also noticed that single strand leaders tend to tangle in this above configuration.  The loop and out-facing knot help to keep the line pointing out with less tangles.

 

Note that 1 ounce will still move a little with current and waves.  Keep the line snug and work in the slack.  Definitely not "bait and wait."

 

Even the white sea bass in my avatar ate a crab on this setup.

Good info here Mike.

Thanks for sharing!

JD

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10 hours ago, Mike Mendez said:

It has been my experience that Perch, Croaker, Corbina and other assorted surf fish will key in on a soft shell crab, or a hard shell crab with eggs and not care about the line.  I've used mono and fluorocarbon and there's no difference.  I have also noticed that single strand leaders tend to tangle in this above configuration.  The loop and out-facing knot help to keep the line pointing out with less tangles.

 

Note that 1 ounce will still move a little with current and waves.  Keep the line snug and work in the slack.  Definitely not "bait and wait."

 

Even the white sea bass in my avatar ate a crab on this setup.

Thank you, Mike! I only would like to notice then main line going from the surf not perpendicular to bottom but under some angle about 30-60 degree and tangling of hooks is not so critical...

Edited by ING

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On 11/9/2021 at 11:18 AM, Midnightpass said:

I agree with this...

Butch

 

On 11/8/2021 at 1:41 PM, plinker said:

Yep, I swap to some version of a double dropper or drop shot.  Will often add a couple of orange beads for better visibility if it's that gnarly.

 

Fluoro is stiffer, so that helps too.

 

On 11/10/2021 at 3:04 AM, bass11 said:

How about a shorter, stiffer leader on your Carolina rig?  I use 25 lb with a tiny homemade crosslock affixed with a tiny loop knot of my own design.  Leaders are always stretched under a bit of tension when stored on rod to stay straight which really helps.

 

On 11/11/2021 at 10:14 PM, cityevader said:

I used C-rig for waaay too long, disgusted with tangles, before i learned about the hi-lo.

Hi-lo is ALL i will use now...it's tangle free, and weight can be instantly changed to suit conditions.

 

On 11/14/2021 at 3:13 AM, bass11 said:

Wonky currents & waves can cause leader tangles.  As others have suggested, stiffer and shorter leaders

can help address the situation.  Perch are small fish and many prefer to use lighter leaders which is all well

and good, but that means leaders that are less stiff and more difficult to keep straight or non curly.  I use

20-25 lb leaders with pretty decent results.  Stiff Mason leader material is not readily available locally so I

use 25 lb. Big Game mostly.  3.5 ft. is standard for me.  I would not go under 2.5 ft. even with wonky

conditions.  Stiff leaders are important, but keeping them straight without a set or kink  is even more

important.  In order to keep my leaders straight, I fashioned a hook keeper by bending some wire and

stuffing in up the pin hole of my Fuji ball butt cap.  The distance from this to the stripper guide is 45".  If you

notice, when my rod is broke down and stored, the braid is bent on the stripper guide instead of the leader.  

Stored under a little tension, your leader stays straight.

There are many "right" ways to set up for perch.  I claim no expertise in such matters, but since you asked,

rightly or wrongly, this is how I do it.

The rod is a 40 year old Kunnan 8'6" steelhead rod.  The reel is a 35 year old Quantum E7-2 filled with 6 lb.

Sufix Performance braid.  Shown is the perennial 1.5" morf (motor oil red flake) curly tail grub.  Most leave the

 curly tail intact, but I prefer the action of a cut tail grub.  Many would argue that a lighter leader gives better

action when drifting through the trough, but I prefer stiffer straight 25 lb. Big Game leaders.  I attach with a

tiny home made crosslock clip from .020" stainless wire tied with a loop knot of my own design.  This allows

full 360 degree rotation.  Loop knots are shite knots.  Most ( homer rhodes, rapala, left kreh, etc.) have a

KBS (knot break strength) of less than 60% of ABS (absolute break strength).  Mine is well over 60, but any

will do for small fish like perch.  The thing I like most about my loop knot is that it allow me to easily and

consistently tie a very tiny loop.  The other end of the leader is tied with a Palomar to a 3mm tippet ring

which is attached to the main line with my version of an improved double line Trilene knot.  The tag end is

wound through the tippet ring until it meets the mono leader and finished with a few half hitches and a drop of

super glue.  The reason for this is so that the braid improved Trilene knot and the mono stay the same

distance apart on the tippet ring and don't slide around.  Through the unwrapped portion of the tippet ring

goes an 8" dropper with loops on each end.  The weight goes on the other end.  You can use a dipsey

sinker of your choosing or weight or get some cheap egg sinkers from Wally Mart.  Bend some wire and

you're good.  I think Wally Mart has a bag of sixteen 1 oz egg sinkers for around $5.00 or so.

Now I know you're thinking that this is an entanglement nightmare waiting to happen, but it is surprisingly

trouble free if done correctly.  If not done correctly it will be a nightmare.  The reason for wrapping the braid

through the tippet ring is to limit the movement and space for the weight dropper so that it sits perpendicular

to the main line and leader.  

Whether real or imagined, I feel this rig offers more sensitivity than a Caroline or fish finder rig.  I also like it

because of the flexibility it offers.  In early spring there is a coincidental and cross over season between

larger perch and schoolie stripers.  The quick fix is to take off the grub and replace with a Zoom Super

Fluke.  Surprisingly effective for stripers.  If you want to plug with an LC110 or Swarter or jig with no distance

penalty, simply unloop the weight dropper and you're good to go.  HTH  Now about that fish ball & noodle soup................

IMG_0223.JPG

IMG_0219.JPG

IMG_0220.JPG

IMG_0221.JPG

IMG_0222.JPG

 

On 12/8/2021 at 6:52 PM, Mike Mendez said:

When sand crabs are abundant in summertime, this is my go-to rig.

 

Gangion detail.jpg

 

On 12/11/2021 at 3:35 AM, ING said:

Is perch not line shy? I mean that double line is very visible 

 

On 12/11/2021 at 7:54 PM, ING said:

Thank you, Mike! I only would like to notice then main line going from the surf not perpendicular to bottom but under some angle about 30-60 degree and tangling of hooks is not so critical...

Hello everyone,

Thanks for all of this useful info here.

It seems some have mentioned that the hi-lo is used in summer when mole crabs are abundant.

Are they still around and available during Winter, e.g. Dec - Jan in SoCal, i.e. North San Diego County? 

Would you every use the Hi-Lo rig w/ Gulp Sand Worms, grubs or those Zman crusteaz?

Seems almost like a double (hi-lo) drop shot.

I say this as I prepare & pack for a trip to visit son & fam in Carlsbad.

Respectfully,

JD

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