How to Rig a Slip Float

Casting a rig with a set float over 4 feet away from the bait seems like an awkward situation that calls for a lot of help. If that distance is well over the range of 7 feet, then the task is nearly impossible. This is where slip floats come to save the day.

Slip floats, also known slip bobbers or slip corks, are a convenient piece of equipment to have in any angler’s fishing gear. The mechanism of the stopper and float’s weight calibration works in unison to reach the desired distance. Slip floats give you an extensive array of rig depths to choose from, which makes it especially important to learn how to rig a slip float.

Here, we discuss the mechanisms of the slip float, its importance and how you can successfully rig a slip float. Rigging a slip float correctly can be quickly learnt by merely employing the techniques we mention. 

What is a Slip Float?

Before anything, it’s essential to understand clearly, what is a slip float exactly?

A slip float sits on top of the weight or jig before you cast it. Then the float slides up the fishing line until the stopper is hit. This stopper is set at the required distance away from the hook so that the rig’s depth could be determined. 

The stopper for the slip floats is explicitly designed to be removed from the reels easily and glide through the line guides. This allows you to cast the slip float rig with ease at any desired depth. Slip floats are also known as slip bobbers or slip corks. 

Why use a Slip Float?

Slip floats enable you to make sure that the bait stays off the bottom of the water body and remains within the strike zone. This float also assists in avoiding snags which is a common problem with other rigs such as the high low or even the fish finder. 

Slip floats appear more natural-looking in their appearance. This is because the slips float allow the bait to move besides the hidden game fish instead of letting the bait sit in one area continuously in hopes that a fish would find it. 

Difference between Slip Bobbers and Fixed Bobbers

So, do all bobbers work in the same way? The answer is no. Most people end up confused between selecting the fixed bobber or the slip bobber and aren’t aware of the differences. Well, for this specific situation, you cannot choose a fixed bobber. 

Fixed bobbers have more constraints to their usage and provide minimum assistance in casting correctly. Unless the bobber is tightly and closely secured to the bait of your choice, casting this kind of bobber is near to impossible. If you fix the bait to the cork, the fishing depth will be limited to shallow fishing only. While fixed bobbers are useful in their own situations, slip floats are much more versatile in their use. 

The slip float is incredibly convenient for any use. The rig compresses while you cast, which allows longer distances to be covered with accurate placements. The stopper proves to be incredibly useful in adjusting the depth you want to fish at. From the shallow surfaces to deep bottoms, this rig provides you with endless choices. 

Slip floats can also be rigged for any specific species which includes catfish, tarpon, trout and so many more! The possibilities of casting and baiting are endless when using a slip float.

How to Rig a Slip Float

Now, that we have a general idea of the slip float and the purpose it serves, we can move onto how to rig a slip float and all the equipment you need to be able to rig it correctly. 

What will you need to Rig a Slip Float?

Rigging a slip float is not a difficult task. In fact, anyone can do it with little to no supplies and be done in minutes. The essential equipment you will require includes:

  • Slip Float
  • Stopper
  • Bead 
  • Weight
  • Swivel

The stopper plays a crucial role in the slip float’s mechanisms. Specific slip bobber rigs come with a set of stoppers and bead included as well as split shots and hooks. However, if your kit doesn’t come with the stoppers included, you can easily pick up bobber stops form your local gear store. 

Bobber stops follow slip knot mechanism so that once it gets tightened, it will hold its position for the angling process. However, it can easily be slid across the length of the line to achieve the required depth. The placement of the bead is responsible for ensuring the stopper knot does not glide through. 

Steps on How to Rig a Slip Float

  1. Attach your stopper to the main fishing line. The specific position of the stopper depends on the location of fishing and the kind of fish you’re aiming to catch. The stopper can easily be positioned later on. 
  2. Slide the bead over the line and below the stopper. Now, adding a bead is an optional step however, it prevents the bobber from getting stuck on the plug. 
  3. Slide down the float on the main fishing line and make sure that it passes through correctly from top to bottom.
  4. Now attach the swivel to your rod and connect a leader with the swivel.
  5. Now add weight to your leader. You can either use a weighted bobber, add a slip weight in between the bobber and the swivel or even add a split shot to the leader.
  6. Now add a hook and your desired weight, and you’re good to go. 

Now you can adjust the depth as you wish by just sliding the knot across the line in an upwards or downwards motion. If you happen to leave stopper knot on the line, all you will need to do is slip in a float and a bead before you tie the hook and you can easily use a slip float at your convenience. 

Tips for Using a Slip Float

While you’ve learnt how to rig a slip float successfully, here are some tips that you should beware of when using a slip float. These tips will help you have a successful fishing experience with a slip float.

  1. Selecting the suitable bobber: Try to opt for a bobber that is light weight enough to float but also large enough in size so that it does not get pulled under by the bait and the additional weight. Try selecting a bobber that is brightly colored to track it easily.
  2. Correctly using weight: There are three options through which you can add value. These are at the bobber, a split shot or a sliding weight. A weighted bobber has a more considerable casting distance without weighing down the line. These are suitable for heavy baits and free lining. Split shots are adjustable and create a just of the bottom appearance. Sliding weights enable better casting and give off zero resistance while fish takes the bait.  
  3. Setting up a drift: Drifting the bait to the strike zone makes one of the most successful presentations for the fish. You can easily cast it and enable the rig to drift across ambush points. You can adjust the weight to achieve the appropriate speed. 


With that, we hope you learnt how to rig a slip float successfully along with other tips and tricks that can help to up your angling game. Slip floats are easy to rig, and with the right equipment and proper guidance, you can easily rig a slip bobber. Happy fishing


The founder of Catch and Fillet, “Chum Charlie”, has been writing articles within the fishing community for over 9 years. He got his nickname due to his preference for chumming while he is fishing. Chumming is a common practice that is used in the ocean to lure various types of fish to the boat. Chum can consist of various fish parts that attract fish due to its overbearing odor.

Leave a Comment

Looking For

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive our tips & advice in your inbox