Sabiki Rigs (Guide On How To Use Them)

The Sabiki rig is arguably the most effective rig for catching bait fish.

It is also quite popular, as it is used by many anglers in Asia, North America, and other parts of the world. The reason for the popularity of Sabiki rigs is not far-fetched, as they are effective and versatile.

Sabiki rigs are reliable for catching live bait but can also be used for bigger fish such as bass, trout, and panfish.

In this article, we will shed light on the history of Sabiki rigs, provide tips on how to use them, and suggest our recommendations for you to check out.

History of Sabiki Rigs

There is a lot of misconception about Sabiki rigs and their history. Learning the history of the Sabiki rig will equip you with information about the purpose of the rig. This will ultimately enable you to use a Sabiki rig to its full effectiveness.

The Sabiki rig is a multi-lure fishing tackle that was developed in Asia. Contrary to popular belief, Sabiki is not the Japanese word for “bait catching rig.”

Factually, Sabiki is the brand name of the first commercialized Japanese rig for catching multiple fish. Hayato Tajiri, a Japanese entrepreneur, is credited with the commercialization of the Sabiki rig in 1974.

The idea for the Sabiki rig came in the 1960s when Tajiri came across some anglers tying multiple flies and small rigs to a mainline in order to catch multiple small fish. At the time, his fishing lure company Hayabusa Fishing Hooks Co., was already in business.

Tajiri decided to recreate the rig that he saw the anglers using and named it the Sabiki rig. In the decades that followed, Sabiki rigs gained popularity and eventually became a mainstay in the Japanese fishing sector in the 1980s.

The Sabiki rig made an entrance to the United States of America around the same time.

How to Use a Sabiki Rig

For a fishing tackle as effective as the Sabiki rig, it is surprisingly very easy to use. They are also quite versatile, as you can use them from a dock, boat as well as fishing pier.

When fishing with Sabiki rigs, you can either make your own rig or purchase a pre-tied one from a tackle shop. Making your rig is quite straightforward if you have the right tools.

Making Your Sabiki Rig

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Tools that you need to make a Sabiki rig are hooks (3-6), snap swivel, barrel swivel, beads, and a line, usually 5 to 6 ft. Once you have gotten all the required tools, you can proceed to make your multiple hooked rigs.

  1. Start by threading your hooks onto the rig line.

    Follow this by attaching your snap swivel and weight

  2. Fold your fishing line in two and wrap it around two fingers of your left hand.

  3. Pick your hook and pass it under the wraps in your fingers twice.

    Repeat this process for every hook. Wet the line and pull it tight.

  4. After the hooks are attached, you can trim them to the desired length before attaching them to your barrel swivel.

To ensure the effectiveness of your rig, use suitable gear, including a fishing rod and reel. Also, be sure to check with your local laws and legislations on the hooks permitted in your area.  

Using A Sabiki Rig

The best way to use a Sabiki rig is by letting it sink to the bottom of the water by opening your rod’s bail. By using this technique, you are sure to get the best bait that you are unlikely to get when you cast net.

Simply tie your rig to the main line, attach your fly and weight, and cast it. Once the rig hits bottom, you need to be patient, especially after you feel the first bite. Do not pull immediately, as you do with other hooks.

Wait for a few seconds instead, ensuring that the other hooks catch fish before you. Jigging the rig should be done slowly and gradually. This is because jigging the rig quickly will cause the fish surrounding the hook to run away.

Hence, reducing your chances of catching more baitfish. Pull gently, and you will reel in as many baitfish as you desire.

If your rig is not getting bites as expected, then you should consider chumming. Shrimp and other baitfish can be used for chumming.

Just add small pieces of the shrimp to the tip of your hook, and your chances of catching fish increase. The best areas to look out for baitfish are structures within the water, such as markers around deeper waters and bridge piling.

Make sure to jig your hooks when fishing in deeper water. In conclusion, it is best to use a Sabiki rig with a fishing partner, as you will be dealing with multiple baitfish. Pulling and dehooking the baitfish usually requires the effort of two or more people.

Our Sabiki Rig Recommendations

Before talking about our Sabiki rig recommendation, it is important to highlight the features to look out for in a rig.


The depth at which you are fishing determines what color of the Sabiki rig works best. For deeper water, lighter colors provide needed visibility, while darker colors are best for shallow water.

I believe various color patterns such as silver and red work best for targeting shoal fish such as mackerel, and colors such as brown and gold work best for targeting slower species such as wrasse.

Hook Size

The hook size is another thing to consider when choosing a Sabiki rig. A small hook might not be able to hold the fish, while a big hook might be too large for the fish to bite. It all depends on the type of species that you are fishing.

Fish Type

Consider the type of fish that you are going after when choosing a Sabiki rig. For small species like perch or bluegill, thin hooks work perfectly. However, you need something larger for mackerel and other species of big fish.

Durability and Strength

You want to choose a Sabiki rig that is strong and durable in order to avoid spending on rigs every other month. Look out for the materials when choosing a rig.

For the main line, high carbon steel or monofilament line is reliable, while fluorocarbon filament is great as a branch line.

Hayabusa Sabiki Hot Hooks

The Hayabusa Sabiki Hot Hooks is a rig that is suitable for every fisherman. The rig is designed with unique features to enable you to target species of baitfish.

The flies are designed with fish skin in order to make them more attractive to the baitfish. The hooks come in different sizes, compatible with a fly of your choice. The rig is designed with a monofilament line as the main line and a fluorocarbon line as a branch line.

Using this rig, you can be sure to catch minnows without trouble.


Catching fantastic, energetic baitfish will help to catch the best game fish such as redfish, trout, and pollock. Using a reliable Sabiki rig will allow you to catch thousands of baitfish.

Choose a durable Sabiki rig with a suitable color and hook size. Ensure to be aware of the regulations governing the area where you are fishing. Also, go with some of your angling friends, so you can easily net and dehook your catch.

Conclusively, always wear protective gear, from fishing hats to wading boots and sunglasses.

Daniel O’Neill
Fishing Expert
Daniel specializes in fly, predator, and saltwater angling. He has practiced angling from a young age, quickly developing his knowledge of fishing fundamentals. His angling journey began in Ireland, primarily targeting rainbow trout on a fly rod. His passion for angling grew extensively as he ventured into other forms of fishing. He primarily targets freshwater and saltwater destinations in Ireland and the UK. His favorite catch to date was a 7lb / 3.6KG thick-lipped mullet from the Northern Irish coast—a prized fish to target on a fly rod. He is now the owner of DON Angling, a business that intends to inform and educate anglers on the best techniques, methods, and etiquette available.
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