Top 3 Tungsten Finesse Fishing Rigs
Top 3 Tungsten Finesse Rigs
When we are talking finesse, we are talking light line, small hooks, small weights, small everything. For line and hooks, we can simply use lighter strengths and smaller sizes respectively. Lures? Use smaller plastics. When it comes to weights, if you want smaller, you must go with Tungsten. Tungsten is much denser than the widely used lead weights and therefore has a much smaller profile. This makes it perfect for finesse rigs! So, without further ado, here are some of my favorite finesse style presentations using Tungsten weights.
Drop Shot Rig
The ol’ tried and true drop shot flat out catches fish. My go-to setup is a 10 lb braid mainline to a 6 or 8 lb fluorocarbon leader. I like to use a size 1 VMC Spin Shot hook, Fish On Tungsten Round or Cylinder weight (weight depends on the depth and current), and a drop shot style plastic. I like Keitech’s Sexy Impact or Strike King’s Dream Shot the most. The deeper I’m fishing, the heavier I’ll go. Anywhere from ¼ oz up to 1 oz. The reason I like Fish On’s Tungsten Round Weight for the drop shot is because of its ring eye. Most drop shot weights feature the quick pinch-style connection. Tungsten costs more than lead and I tend to lose more weights with the pinch style and therefore lose more money. When a snag occurs the pinch-style tends to pull the weight off the line. I more often than not can free my snag with the ring eye by messing with it. However, to avoid losing my whole rig on those serious snags, I will often tie a lighter line going from the bottom of my Spin Shot hook to the weight. So, if I’m using an 8lb leader, I’ll use 4lb or 6lb going from the bottom of the hook to the weight. This way if my weight gets snagged, I can break off just the weight and not my hook.
Small paddle-type swimbaits might be one of my favorite ways to fish due to their versatility. You can drag them slowly along the bottom or rip them fast along the surface. I really like working them in and around weed edges, lily pads, docks, and various types of structure. To help create a nice smooth presentation, I’ll use a Fish On Bobber Stop, a Fish On Tungsten Worm Weight (usually 1/16th oz), a Keitech 4” Swing Impact, and a VMC 2/0 Fastgrip Wide Gap Hook. With the bobber stop's shape combining with the worm weight's shape to make a narrow point, this lure slides in and out of weeds flawlessly and gets where the fish are without getting hung up.
I love the Neko Rig’s action and the results I get when I fish it. Around rocky and hard bottoms, the Neko Rig has landed me some incredible Bass. For this rig, I like the Fish On Tungsten Nail weights, Daiwa/Gary Yamamoto Fat Neko Worm, a weedless or regular size 2 VMC Wacky Rig hook, and a VMC Wacky Rig O-Ring tool. This rig looks awkward as can be but the way the bait twitches and bounces along the bottom, Bass just can’t resist.
For all three of these rigs, I like to use a Medium Light style rod, something like the Dobyns Champion XP DC682SF, a 2500 size spinning reel, 10 lb braid mainline, and 8lb fluorocarbon leader. I’ll downsize the leader line on those painfully slow days or in ultra-clear water but for the most part, this is my go-to setup for finesse fishing. Each of these styles of fishing has its place and can be a solid producer in the right conditions. Adding them to your arsenal can provide some real benefits, so make sure to give them a shot and see for yourself!
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- Seth Willoughby