The sole rig is essentially a flapper but with an additional weight above the main rig body. This means that when the rig hits the sea bed, it’s pinned down at both ends, ensuring that the baits are where the sole want them – on the deck and not waving around in the current above their heads. For these secondary weights, it’s best to use a lead that won’t roll around, so use something flat, like a coffin lead or as I do, get some of the ‘egg’ weights or balls. I insert heavy gauge wire through the hole and then bash the hell out of it with a hammer until it is flattened sufficiently, then remove the wire. This ensures that the hole isn’t squashed and preventing you putting your line through it. Depending on the conditions, I use anything from ½oz to 1½oz.
Some rigs , have the secondary smaller weight permanently fixed to the rig body, held in place with crimps or similar. I prefer to have mine fixed on a short length of line (same poundage as the rig body) with a swivel at the top end and a split ring at the lower end. I can then quickly change between rigs – clip the secondary weight to the end of the main line and attach the lower end to the top end of a flapper and I have this rig. If I want to change to a flapper, I simply unclip the weighted segment and clip the flapper back to the end of the main line. I keep a selection of the secondary weight attachments, with varying weights to suit the conditions – another advantage over fixed weights. The only drawback to this rig is that it’s no good for long distance or power casting, the added secondary weight makes the whole rig ‘helicopter’ when in flight. My version also has more links, which means more knots and can seem too over-complicated but I find the versatility out-weighs the complication.
Hook lengths are short, no more than six to eight inches – again, this makes sure the bait is on the deck. Hook size is also small; I use size 4 fine wire. If I need anything bigger, I just use another another flapper with a larger hook.
This rig will in fact take any bottom feeding species, not just sole. I have had success using it to take flounder, bass, eels, bream, gurnard, whiting, Pout as well as sole.