….for me anyway, is a rig/concept I came up with a couple of years ago. The standard perch rig, also known as a crappie rig, consists of two perch arms called lears with two snells attached at the end. Since in Michigan we are allowed to fish with three rods and a total of six hooks, it has become common practice to fish with two rods, and six hooks. When the action is really good, one rod is all you can handle, but I tweaked the rig a bit.
Almost all the action takes place on the bottom two hooks, so I got rid of the top arm and placed the remaining lear 10 inches above the snap. Since I tie my snelled rigs in eight inch lengths, the hook rests 2″ above the lake bottom, right in the strike zone for the perch. On the bottom, I have several options, but placement, where I attach the snell is the key.
At first, myself like many others were attaching the snell to the snap where the sinker goes and it worked. Over time though I learned that this way is a headache waiting to happen. The reason is simple, after catching a few fish the line that makes up the snell can get tangled or will rub on the edges of the wire that makes up the snap. To get a fool-proof, rock solid placement for the line, I started attaching it to the eye on the sinker. Simply run the loop through the eye, snake the business end through the loop, and snug it tight.
No slip, no fuss and less of the line getting caught up in or nicked from the snap. Now you have the last snell free-floating on the bottom, waiting for a perch to pick it up. In the picture I have a fly of sorts from Dave Domka’s new bait shop on LaPlaisance Rd, but I think they are available on his website also. If you strictly launch out Sterling and never make it down that way, no problem. That was something new to try this year, but a single hook by itself works, and a single bead on the snell just above the hook always works. Do colors of the beads really matter, I don’t think so, but there is something that make a difference. Glow beads are a nice change of pace, and since they don’t glow really bright, they don’t spook the fish, but do seem to bring them in for a subtle approach to the baited hook.
Here is a quick rundown for the materials needed to make your own version of my perch rig.
-20 lb monofilament for the main line on your rig.
-12 lb mono or fluorocarbon for your snells, the fc lines holds up better, but is more expensive. Perch don’t have the best vision, so I don’t think the line makes a difference in catch rates.
-#6 hooks, I like the red sickle octopus hooks from Matzuo, but if you like the traditional gold hooks, they work too, but don’t go bigger than a #4 size.
-#5 mm beads for the snell, usually four works best.
-#1 indiana blade, I color mine with Sharpie markers, but silver or gold work ok too.
-#7 Swivel for the top of the rig
#2 or 3 snap for the bottom, sometimes the size three is just easier to deal with
– 4 inch hook lear, available at Janns Netcraft in Ohio
-(2) six mm beads for securing the lear 10 inches above the snap
-1 ounce sinker, that is my preference, but if you like 3/4 oz or heavier than one, go for it.
There you go, the basic instructions for a perch rig, just like the one I use. Good luck, and remember, it’s always better when you make your own gear and catch fish!