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The Helicopter Rig

Personally I use the Heli-Rig for 90% of my fishing, partly down to the venues I fish but also for its sheer versatility and effectiveness.

YES a lead clip is fantastic and is used by most anglers out there on a daily basis, but it does have its limits as we know.

Firstly the Heli-Rig casts like a dream. As its name suggests the rig should spin around the line / leader whilst in flight negating any tangles and with the lead being directly at the front it is more streamlined, therefore it will go further.

Secondly, your rig is attached to the mainline itself; It is between the lead and rod which means the indication and sensitivity is much improved as the lead does not need to move for you to see a result on at the rod tip (or alarm). Whereas on a conventional lead clip set up the rig is after the lead meaning for you to receive any indication the lead must first move.

Finally, its versatile, really versatile! Fishing over a weed bed? Move that top bead up. Fishing over gravel? Move that bead right down! Drop the lead, or keep the lead? Simple to change. Fishing in shallow silt and want to really plug that lead to aid in the hook set? Move that top bead up and smash it one!

bottom line is that I love it. I have used the Korda Heli-Safe set up since the dawn of time but it has some serious downfalls! You can either keep the lead on or drop it on the take, there is no middle ground of just dropping the lead if you need to. If you cast it into a snag you can wave your lead goodbye, if you hit the water to hard you can kiss your lead good bye and god forbid you fish in a sand pit or anywhere with fine particles as they will clog it right up forcing you to take it apart and blow on that bad boy like its a flute.

This was all until recently when a coincidental release from two companies made what I think is the best helicopter rig possible. and here is how to make it.

Start by taking about 3ft of NASH 40lb Cling-On Leader. This is Lead free as I don’t like Leadcore personally and this is super heavy and very supple anyway. You can also use fluorocarbon if you like.
Now you want to splice on a THINKING ANGLERS Heavy Ring.
Tip: The FOX Easy Splice needle is a god send. Ignore all other splicing needles!
Make sure it is spliced nice and tight to the Heavy Ring.
Now use your needle to thread on one of the new NASH Tungsten Helicopter Sleeves.
Followed by a size 8 Quick Change Ring Swivel.
Thread a NASH Tungsten Leadcore Bead onto your splicing needle.
Then thread it onto your leader.
*I have found this to be the perfect fit. It slides over the top loop and knot easily if you loose the rig and fish making it rig safe. Its Tungsten so it will help sink you leader and its oval… which is nice.
Now splice the top loop.
I use the E-S-P Gizmo Tool to help keep the loop the right size.
This is where it gets interesting….. Now you take a THINKING ANGLERS C Clip and clip it onto the Heavy Ring.
These come in two sizes, 3lb and 6lb. This denotes the strength they will break at. To put it simply; use the 6lb if you are going to be giving it a big chuck, and the 3lb if you are not! The lead will break the clip and pull free if it gets snagged up or stuck in weed, which is perfect! If you are using the 3lb clip and you have an absolutely mental carp on the end there is a change it can come off mid fight, but that is still better than every time IMO.
Attach your lead to the C Clip. KORDA Heli Leads work perfectly, if you are using a conventional lead with a swivel I suggest cutting the swivel off.
Slide the Heli Sleeve down to over it all up.
Add your favorite rig on the Quick Change Ring Swivel. I use a cut down piece of Anti Tangle Sleeve to cover up the clip, this way there is still plenty of movement.
Here is a view of what would happen internally with a 3lb C Clip. As you can see the Clip pulls straight enabling the lead to be dropped.
the rig in all of its glory ready to be cast out. Super neat and tangle free.
This rig is a Slip-D Ronnie rig which you can see how to tie HERE with a Yellow Mulb pop up.
The proof in the pudding, and I didn’t loose the lead which would have been pointless in this situation even though there was weed out there. But the reassurance that if I got weeded up the lead would have dropped was invaluable.

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