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How to Tie a Fish Finder Rig for Surf Fishing


The Fish Finder Rig is a popular surf fishing rig used to find where the fish are congregating. It’s similar to the Carolina Rig, but rather than a sliding egg sinker, it typically is used with a pyramid weight to keep the rig in one area.

In this guide, we’ll cover what the video above illustrates including when and when not to use it.

Fish Finder Rig Setup

Tackle Needed

When it comes to weights, most anglers opt for lead, but there are other options better for the environment. Instead of buying storebought weights, experiment with using steel which will corrode in the saltwater environment if you lose it.

The plastic bead helps protect your line from your weight in the water. If you choose not to use one, you’re risking an unnecessary breakoff of your line.

Depending on the fish you are targeting will determine which leader line you use. If you’re going to be fishing around rocks then you should likely opt for monofilament which is a bit more abrasion resistant than fluorocarbon.

Your hook size should be based on your bait. If you’re going after perch for example and plan to use sand crabs, your hook will be around a #6. However, if you’re going after bigger fish and want to use a chunk of cut bait, then you should think about going up to a #2 or more. We like to use circle hooks since they are self-setting.

Steps for Tying a Fish Finder Rig

  1. Start by cutting a piece of leader line, generally, around 18 inches will work.
  2. Tie one end to your hook using a Palomar Knot.
  3. On the other end of your leader line, tie on your swivel using a Palomar Knot.
  4. With your main line, fish the line through your pyramid sinker and your bead.
  5. Tie your main line to the other side of your swivel using a Palomar Knot. The Palomar makes it a bit tricky since you need to pull your entire leader line with the hook through to finish the knot but just take your time.

Fish Finder Rig Advantages

  • It allows you to cover water
  • It allows roaming fish to find your bait in the water

Fish Finder Rig Disadvantages

  • It puts three knots between your hook and your mainline. Each knot if not tied well is a chance to break when you hook up on a fish.

Fish Finder Rig Tips

  • When you’re tying your rig at home, use a small bucket of soapy water to help you cinch down everything a bit easier.


You can use the Spider Hitch Rig and cut the main loop to have your hook attached to one line. This will allow one knot between your hook and your mainline which can be safer if you’re not proficient in tying knots.

The Anglers Behind This Article:

Jon Stenstrom

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