One rig that did make a positive difference in my carp fishing was the D Rig. I was fishing that well known Cheshire carp water capesthorne hall at the time and the fishing was difficult to say the least. I was getting very few runs despite being on fish every session. I came to the conclusion that the carp must at least be picking up my hookbaits but somehow getting away with it and cleaning me out of bait. On a normal carp water that hasn’t been subject to the same kind of angling pressure capesthorne has, the knotless knot hair rig was fine but these capesthorne fish were extremely crafty and I found myself struggling.
The answer to my problem came in the form of a variation of the famous d rig that was known as the ‘reflex’. This particular version of the d rig was commercially available from a tackle company called big fish adventure, it was made using my favourite kamasan b175 hook and involved whipping a small length of amnesia line to the back of the hook with the ‘hair’ itself being made from a loop of drennan double strength mono that was passed through the amnesia ‘D’, tied at the required length and glued so it didn’t come undone.
I went from carp showing over my baits and no action to carp showing over my baits and plenty of runs so the rig definitely worked. On close examination it’s obvious that the stiff mono and amnesia looped together allowed for more movement of the hook bait than the conventional hair rig and I think this extra movement certainly had a big hand in tripping up those cute capesthorne carp.
The next step after using the big fish adventure version of the ‘reflex’ d-rig was to tie my own as they were on sale at £3.00 for a packet of 5!. I bought some 30lb amnesia, some fly tying cotton and a fly tying vice and set about doing them myself. The self tied d rigs worked a treat and in the long run they saved me quite a bit of money.
If you look closely at the above picture you can see that my kryston silkworm hooklength is actually tied to the shank of the hook just underneath the whipping then threaded back through the eye of the hook. With the hooklength coming off the inside of the eye like this you get the same ‘flip’ effect that the knotless knot and the line aligner both rely on. The advantage of this rig is the extra free movement of the hookbait that comes from the stiff amnesia and the 8lb mono being looped together, if you put one of these rigs next to a conventional hair rig you can see the difference straight away.
I’ve never needed to use this d-rig variation very much, apart from capesthorne I generally tended to use it on pressured day ticket waters where the carp had a reputation for being cute, linear waters like hardwick and st johns being good examples, this rig worked a treat on those two particular carp waters and I caught well from both after ringing the changes and switching to the d rig. If you're fishing a pressured water then give this rig a try. I’m not sure if big fish adventure still sell the Kamasan B175 hooks already whipped but they are easy to do yourself. I found that using the fly tying vice and tacking the amnesia in place with superglue prior to whipping was a big help.
Although I don’t use this rig that often I always have a few b175 hooks already whipped up and sitting in my tackle box just in case, the rig has done me proud on pressured carp waters and it’s definitely worth trying if you think your carp are clearing you out of bait on a regular basis and not getting hooked.