The “Method” Carp Rig
The ‘Method' as it is known, is a rig that incorporates a frame which essentially can have bait moulded around it. The idea is to have a nice, neat pile of food right by the hook bait. As the bait is moulded firmly on to the frame, the fish have to attack it to get the food off, and because they are competing to get the food, they don't check the rig out. In locations where the method has been used before, the fish hear the splash of the feeder as the “ringing of a dinner bell” and home in to it like a shoal of piranhas.
A Fox inline method feeder the fin design holds the bait on even on the hardest of casts, making them perfect for long distance work.
The ‘Method' was first developed on the match circuit in this country where it was designed to catch carp quickly in heavily stocked carp/match lakes. Most importantly it worked! The Match anglers using it won almost all their matches with colossal weights. Right from the moment the feeder touched the bottom of the lake the carp where on to it. After taking the match circuit by storm, specimen carp anglers started to use the “method” with great success.
Ideally it is best to use the ‘Method' Carp Rig on carp waters with plenty of fish when the weather is warm. This is so that the carp actively compete for the food on the feeder. Although it also works well on sparsely stocked waters as it draws attention much like a PVA bag, with one difference, wet/water based baits can be put on to the ‘Method' feeder. When using the ‘Method' Carp Rig I advise that you re-cast in the same spot regularly. This helps to build up the swim and keep pulling those fish into your location.
In my experience I have found that Bolt Rigs whether they are inline or made to hang on the side, hook more fish then Running Rigs or Startle Rigs. I feel the reason for this maybe that the fish aren't moving far from the feeder. They hit the feeder grab what they can and then hit it again.
With a bolt rig the fish hook themselves causing them to spook and shoot off. A short hair rig should be used to present the hook bait right by the feeder.
When it comes to using the ‘Method' Rig, there is nothing complicated about loading the ‘method' feeder, as long as what you are putting on it isn't too soft or too stiff. Ideally you should : -
Mould some of your chosen mix around the feeder and really squeeze it on so that it is rock hard
Push your baited hook into the edge of this layer
Add another layer of your mix but don't squeeze it on as hard this time because this will break up when the feeder hits bottom leaving your hook bait on top.
Shape your feeder to be as aerodynamic as you can, this will make accurate casting easier and ensure the feeder flies straight.
There are many mixes available that work particularly well on the ‘Method' Rig. Pellets, Vitalin and ready-made method mixes are usually used. If you want to use pellets on the method feeder you need small pellets. I use 2.3mm carp/ betaine pellets, this is because they mould easier on to the feeder. First of all put the pellets into a bucket and slowly add boiling water, be careful here as you will only need a small amount of water. The pellets should start going a bit soft and when you squeeze them together they should stick. If they crumble rather than stick you will need to add more water, however if they fall apart then you have used too much water, and it's a simple as that! You can also prepare Vitalin in much the same way.
In your method mixes you can add whatever you want ,for example samples of your hook bait will work well, as will small particle baits like hemp. Over the last few years I have been playing around with method mixes a fair bit and so far I have found this mix by far the best :-
For approximately a 1kg mix
400grams of method mix,
150grams of sinking pellets,
hand full of crushed floating pellets,
200grams of vitalin ,
A hand full of corn,
100grams of oats,
100 grams of ready brek ,
I mix this up with hot milk and sweet corn juice,
As hook bait I use corn, 10mm boilies , or pellets although with the way carp compete when attacking the method I am sure they would take almost anything. I have even heard of people catching on a cold potato chip!
I just want to add a quick bit about tackle requirements before I finish this piece. A loaded method feeder will weigh about 3oz maybe more and if you plan on using the ‘Method' Rig then make sure your gear is up to it! Rods with a test curve of at least 2½lb should be used otherwise you will stress the backbone of the rod leading to a break later on. Line of 12lb breaking strain is the lowest strength required, otherwise you will be losing your rigs when the line cracks. However if you plan to cast a method feeder a long way then you will have no choice but to use lighter lines. In this case use a shock leader line only on the end of your line nearest your rig.
Now just get out there and give it a go!
Chris “ thecarpingkid ” Payne