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Meat Rigs


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Fished out of manistee this weekend, lots of boats caught some nice fish using meat rigs while our meat rigs stuggled to catch fish. We ran big weenie brand meat rigs staight of the package with regular salted and unsalted herring strips on 8" and 11" blades... Why were these not catching many fish? Do they need to be rigged differently? What are our a couple of other good meat rigs brand that might work better? Any suggestions?

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Stew,

I was there Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, too. Friday and Saturday morning, I had one Big Weenie meat rig that was producing VERY GOOD for us on a wire dipsey. It was the super UV blade with a white glow head and green superglow beads. I could not get another meat rig to fire. Saturday night and Sunday that one shut down, too, and spoons were the ticket. IMHO Gary (Big Weenie) makes the best meat rigs on the market and I have total confidence in them. But its all in what the fish want. Stick with them. They'll produce.

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Siggs meat rigs are the best, slow down 2.0 or slower, and run all meat. My meat program added 2 fish to our catch last Sunday. But the spoon bite was definitely the thing and smoking fast 2.9 to 3.2 SOG. St Joe was rockin in 40 to 60 FOW 2 Steelhead, 2 Browns and 8 Kings Stingray Blue dolphin neon, was the ticket. Moved out deep late morning and picked up a king and a small lake trout on the meat pattern in 140 FOW.

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Big weenie makes good meat rigs but if you want to add some variety my favorite is capt John king. He was one of the original innovators on meat rig fishing and has been doing it a long time with a proven design.

They are available on the calumet marine webstore

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Here is a pc that Captain John did a few years back.

One thing to keep in mind when running Meat rigs is speed! You need to be going slower than normal pulling these big rigs. If you go your normal "spoon" speed, its to fast. I think its a big reason many people have issues producing when they just throw a meat rig into their normal spread. If your heavy spoons have the right action in the water, your going to fast for meat rigs. This is why the guys that are very successful running meat almost always run a dedicated spread to that tactic, they don't just drop one into a spread of random lures.

My normal meat fishing spread is 2-3 riggers with meat rigs, 2 wire divers with meat rigs, and maybe a few very LIGHT spoons on the leadcore. I will also drop an SWR rig below all rods in the spread to catch any stragglers hanging below the other rigs. Maulers, FINN spoons, and Super Slims are great spoons for slower speeds. You don't need to stack tons of rods into the spread. Better to concentrate on running 5-7 rods properly than to have a dozen just randomly thrown in. I consistently out fish guys with 20 rods in the water with my normal daytime spread of 5-7 rods. Its more important to run 5 rods properly, than 10+ rods just thrown in with no thought. Keep in mind....they are NOT separate rods and baits in the water....they are a SPREAD, that should work together, not alone.

I run almost exclusivly the 12" John King Flashers for meat rigs, ALWAYS White or Glow, with the 3 fly rigs and Herring strips or whole Alewife. **Important note...I don't care what anyone says...Fake meat WILL NOT produce like the real thing. If your gonna fish meat, use MEAT! Herring,(whole or strips) or Alewife work the best for me. You should always be running the big flashers with a Meat rigs as well. They give a far bigger and slower roll than the smaller ones and produce 10x more fish on rigs. Remember, unlike a flasher/fly, the paddle on a meat rig is NOT imparting action to the bait behind it, its simply an attractor.

Finally, the most important part of running a meat rig in getting the correct "roll" of the bait head. A baithead that spins real fast wont cut it, and neither will a head thats not turning. Put the rg in the water next to the boat and watch the baithead. You are looking for 2-4 rolls per second. If it needs to be adjusted, just bend the tab on the baithead to adjust it. This should be checked after every fish, as the head may have straightened out after catching a fish.

The one tip I remember getting directly from John King about running meat that helped me the most was SLOW DOWN! Especially during the day and especially when targeting bigger fish! Hope that helps!

Everything above is just my opinion. I know there are different ways to do things and I dont want to upset anyone. But running meat has won me more money in tourneys and full boxes on charter days than any other single tactic in the water, and I have spent a lot of time trying to perfect it. But its a touchy tactic, as everything needs to be done correctly to really produce.

__________________

Captain John Tomczyk

DAYBREAK CHARTERSwww.daybreakfish.com

Marquette, Michigan

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One big thing you really have to remember with meat riggs is it is Very VERY hard to run any other program WITH meat riggs, Captain John Tomczyk makes some very good points on their use. If you want to run the meat then run ONLY meat. Our typical program is a 5 rod spread, 3 riggers and 2 dipises, and all carry meat riggs, if you learn how to run it, IT will produce more and Bigger fish in Lake Michigan (IMO) it has for us..And just as a side note I am not related or affilated with the John King from Manistee...

Edited by Yoda
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  • 9 years later...

May sound funny, but I'm for real. Are Big Weenie glow meat strips "thicker" and cut differently than other meats. They don't fit into a Diabolical brand meat rig. I've trimmed them down and they crumble and fall apart within 30 minutes. Are the Big Weenie meat rigs designed to hold thicker meats? 

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