Home Fishing Tips & Advice How to Fish a Neko Rig

How to Fish a Neko Rig

It’s rare to encounter a rig setup that remains popular for so long. Most rigs will come into popularity amongst anglers for a few seasons and then the next big thing will come along to replace it. With the Neko rig, this trend seems to be fading away as this setup continues to gain traction even after it’s made such a name for itself.

The popularity of the Neko rig comes from its effectiveness with many types of bass as well as its simplicity. Many anglers have their traditional setup that seems to work fine for them so testing out this new rig isn’t on the top of their list. However, once they’ve tried it out, many anglers never go back to their old setup. The Neko rig is quite impressive and there’s a reason why it’s used by some of the most prolific anglers.

Before we learn how to set up your Neko rig, it’s important to get a basic understanding of what exactly is gained by using this rig. Why should anglers use this setup over others? What makes the Neko rig so great and why is everyone talking about it?

Understanding the Neko Rig

Basically, you’re looking at just another work rig. Nothing too special in terms of basic appearance, but the specially placed weight in the center of the rig allows for some exciting motions while in the water. These movements can appear quite natural and are said to attract the bass “when nothing else will.” It’s one of the most effective rigs out there for catching stubborn bass.

So what is the Neko rig? Essentially, it’s just a wacky-rigged and nail-weighted worm. This weight distribution between the midsection of the rig and the worm itself is what creates that unique movement. Most other rigs aren’t able to function the same way because of the weight setup, but the Neko rig disperses the weight in the perfect way to create a unique and natural movement.

Setting Up Your Neko Rig

Set up is simple and can be done in as little as three steps. If you’re looking for a rig that can be tied within a few minutes so that you don’t have to stall your fishing experience, then this is a great one for you. Simply slide the gear on, tie the knot, and cast your line. Start fishing today with the Neko rig.

The first step is to start with the O-ring. This adds weight to the midsection of the line and keeps any hooks and baits attached. With an O-ring, you can avoid losing your hook to any stronger fish that come by. This ring should be connected to the midsection of a finesse worm. Next, you’ll slide a Neko fishing weight into the head of the worm. This provides the necessary weight to the worm so that the unique movement can be attained. Keep it straight or the line will spiral.

Finally, you need to skin hook the worm with a size 1 or 1/0 Neko hook. Make sure that the hook runs inline with the worm, attaching to the O-ring. This keeps everything nice and tight and allows for your rig to be perfectly weighted. Once this setup is achieved, tie everything into place and cast your line out for the bass to go wild over.

When and How to Use the Neko Rig

A Neko rig is a type of rig that works year-round. It doesn’t have a specific season where the fish go crazy most over it, but it does have the right condition. The best time to utilize your Neko rig is when nothing else is working. If you’re clear waters with new clouds or grasses, then the Neko rig will work wonders for you and will bring in even the most stubborn fish.

Try to keep near structures as this is where most Neko-loving fish will hang out. The bass specifically love to linger near the docks and any ledges under water. Fishing the Neko rig is best done with water is clear, the docks are near, and the fish aren’t biting. The Neko rig is one of the best imitations of a small fish scouring the bottom of the water for algae.

Here’s the best way to fish the Neko rig: it all starts with the cast out. Send it high and far, and then let it sink to the bottom. This rig works best when it’s allowed to hit the sandy bottom and rest there. Once it’s on the bottom, the nail weight will rest in the sand and the tail will create the special movement that attracts any stubborn fish in the area.

If there’s still nothing biting, then you can always try a bit of bottom bouncing or trolling to drag out the attention of the fish in the area. Sometimes the tail movement isn’t enough and the waters are too dark. With the extra movement, the Neko rig will become much more effective. Treat it like a typical bottom bouncer if the fish still aren’t biting.

Bring the Best Gear

Many anglers who use the Neko rig utilize the Neko-specific gear. These are the Neko weights and the Neko hooks. They’re specifically designed for this rig setup and other similar ones so you know you’ll be quite effective with these tools. However, you can also go with standard hooks and weights that are similar in dimension to the Neko tools.

Some anglers use little items they’ve found around the house that mimic the gear needed for a successful Neko rig and have found perfectly similar results. Anything from drywall screws to nuts and bolts can be a fine replacement for the nail-weight or the O-ring. As long as they’re similarly weighted and shaped, there should be no problem using them instead.

The Neko rig is one of the most effective setups an angler can use when the fish simply aren’t biting. You can even put it together with items from around the house if you need. Don’t let the stubborn fish get the better of you; set up your Neko rig and get fishing properly.

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Growing up on the south shore of Long Island, Chum Charlie has always had a passion for fishing. His favorite fish to catch is a striped bass and his favorite bait to use is bunker. Off the water, he enjoys blogging and sharing his favorite fishing tips & tricks that he has learned over the years.