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October 26, 2001

Slimmed-Down Sabiki

Remove shiny objects from your rigs to discourage bluefish and mackerel from snapping your line.

Because bluefish and mackerel like to snap up the Sabiki or gold-hook rigs I use to catch bait, I make two modifications to my rigs to help reduce the number of unexpected cutoffs. First, I get rid of the shiny snap swivels that come on each end of the rig to keep from offering a tempting target to the toothy predators, and I tie loops in their place. Next, I paint a variety of sinkers (from 1/4 to 3 ounces) flat-black to use on the rigs. Depending on the conditions, just attach the sinker size you need to the bottom loop - you'll be amazed by the number of sinkers you'll save from snapper blues when using flat-black sinkers.
You can also substitute a pompano jig for the sinker to catch blue runners, but keep in mind that you'll spend a lot of time fighting fish bigger than you really want to on the light line that makes up the
bait rig.

Capt. Ken Roy
Crystal River, Florida