How to Tie an Egg Sinker Rig

Posted by nick under Rigs

This is a very simple and effective rig.

The egg sinker rig is used to fish off or near the bottom. It works so well because the egg sinker allows the fish to pick up the bait without feeling any resistance and it presents your offering where many fish spend a lot of time… on or near the bottom. This is also a great rig for casting from the bank.

You will need:

egg sinker rig diagram

STEP 1 :

First thread the egg sinker onto your main line.


STEP 2: Tie the barrel swivel onto the main line using an improved clinch knot.

STEP 3: Tie 8 to 12 inches of leader onto the barrel swivel. If your are fishing in clear water, use line that is lighter than your main line (like 2lb to 4lb test) for your leader, otherwise you can use the same test as your main line.

STEP 4: Tie your hook onto the leader using an improved clinch knot. The type of hook you use will depend on the fish you are targeting and the bait that you choose.

Small Fish (Trout, Panfish, Minnows): #12 – #8

Medium Fish: #6 – #2

Large Fish: #2 and larger

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29 Responses to “How to Tie an Egg Sinker Rig”

  1. Pickendi Says:

    This is the rig I use quite often when I go fishing in salt water estuaries. Biggest fish I caught with it was 105cm (over 3ft) just over 11kg (around the 24lb mark). Only used 8lb trace and 6lb mainline. Rig held up nicely.

  2. Kumaresan Vibhakar (India) Says:

    Hi there
    It is Fantastic. Congrats. I had been Surf fishing past one year & I fish last 2 days of every week ends. I had never caught a fish more than 2 feet long & weighing not more than 4 kg. The last & heaviest was a 4.2 kg. This Week End I Will Try an EGG SINKER RIG. Thank U.

    I have tried all sorts of live baits, including sand crabs & the plastic ones early in the morning 4.30 am till 7 am & the evenings from 5pm to 9pm. after 9pm it is not safe to be on the beach alone or ever two with no police protection.

    I use the Ugly Stik BWS 1100 10′ & 2 piece spinning rod & Daiwa Emcast Sport spinning reel. The Sufix Mono Filament Line is th 16 lbs & Cajun Lightnin Red 14 lbs line with a steel leader line. The sinkers are Lead Pyramid, rubber core & brass swivel sinkers. All the best & Have a Nice Sun Shine Day
    Raysun Bhakar

  3. Mike Says:

    Why use the egg sinker? I would like someone to explain to me what is its benefit over any other sinker?

  4. sherb Says:

    Hi Mike… The hole through the middle of an egg sinker is smooth, allowing the line to move freely through the sinker. When the fish bites, it won’t feel any resistance and will be more likely to fully take the bait. This is in contrast to split-shot sinkers, which will create an unatural restance and perhaps cause the fish to release the bait.

  5. nick Says:

    Thank you sherb, you beat me to this response… perfectly explained.

  6. Jim Says:

    Thanks for the great articles!

  7. Mark Says:

    I will be using this type of rig. What of other rigs for example a Carolina rig, wacky rig , Texas Rig and possible variations that seems to work. I see only one rig here

  8. Ray Says:

    What gets me is that there are so many kinds of fishing lures, rigs, and such and very few descriptions on how they are used effectively whenever I see them advertised in a catalog, store display or whatever.

    It’s almost like they expect everyone to know what they are and how to use them, or they don’t want to sell them.

    Guess this is why I should buy Nick’s book and the fly and bubble.

  9. Tom Says:

    I agree with Ray. I used to fish a lot as a kid but now that I’m grown, and forgot a lot of things I used to know, I’m finding fishing to be more and more difficult since no one seems to explain things anymore. Why cant companies write in explanations? I’s obvious how to use some of them but every year new plugs come out and I’d like to think I’d buy more and have more fun at fishing if I knew what these things were. I mean …I’m a guy and I love fishing, but being a man doesn’t mean I was born with a fishing gene. Then my wife asks me questions and I feel like crap cuz I cant answer her or help her out with it. I’m sticking to my local shop; at least the older gentlemen who runs that store (when he’s feeling nice) will explain a few things to me or lend some tips without me asking.

  10. Tom Says:

    and thanks for posting this. I’ll use this trick the next time I go out fishing

  11. mo Says:

    this might be extra noob but, if the egg sinker is on the bottom of the lake, wouldn’t the hook just lie on the bottom as well??

  12. nick Says:

    Generally, the hook would be baited with something that floats. So, the bait would will float tantalizingly off the bottom.

  13. mario Says:

    Hi,i’m new to fishing,went and bought some gear(rod,reel, sinkers,…),the salesperson gave me an egg sinker, but he installed it differently, he put the weight and directly afterwards the hook(/swivel to the hook) is that right as well? Or he doesn’t know a thing about it and i should follow the instruction on this website?
    Thanks a lot,

  14. nick Says:

    Hi Mario,

    The way the salesperson set it up, your baited hook can slide all the way up to the egg sinker when you pull on the line. If your sinker ends up at bottom in some weeds, the bait may be hidden on the floor, and fish may not see it. But, experimentation in fishing is a good policy; Try it both ways and see how you do.

  15. Cindy Says:

    I have seen some egg sinker rigs with a red bead between the sinker and the swivel…what is the purpose of the bead?

    I’m glad I’ve discovered this website 🙂 I’ve learned more on here in one day than i have on all other sites in the last few months!


    PS: The links in the “categories” column on the right don’t work…I just get a page saying:

    “Not Found
    The page you are looking for is not here.”

    I had to Google search your page to find most of the info.

  16. nick Says:


    The red bead is there mostly to protect the knot from getting knocked into by the heavy sinker, which can sometimes cause knot failure. The other reason is that the bead (especially glass) will make a “click” sound as you work the rig on the bottom, that fish will be attracted to investigate.

    I’ll look into these dead links, thanks.

  17. Angel Says:

    First of all, thanks for all of this very useful information. Second, is there a reason as to why you insist on an improved clinch knot? Would this be more effective than a palomar knot? Thank you.

  18. nick Says:

    The Palomar knot is a very strong knot, you can use it in place of an improved clinch knot if you wish. The Palomar knot would even be prefered in braided line, as the improved clinch can slip in braid. They are both good knots. I teach the improved clinch knot for beginners because its easy to tie and easy to learn, and can be used for almost everything.

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  20. Pookela Says:

    Aloha, I recently started shore fishing and was tired of my hooks getting caught in the reef so I gave the Egg Sinker a try. Great tip on how to connect everything. Much Mahalos!

  21. Rick Droske Says:

    If the main line is wound taunt wont this defeat the purpose? Does one need to leave slack or even bail open to use this rig correctly?

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  24. Dave Linder Says:

    Please send me a catalog.
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  25. Andre Says:

    Mr.Patry May 24, 2012 at 8:56 PMDo you like fishing Kennedy? I like to fish, I rllaey don’t like taking the hooks out of the fish when they are caught. Did you learn about any other animals or interesting facts about Wood Buffalo National Park?

  26. Dex Says:

    Hi there guys. I’m from south Africa, really enjoy the site. I know we’re on opposite sides of the planet so fishing here would be alot different. I mostly fish from the beach but find myself only catching at night. Would be nice to catch something for the family to see during the day. Any ideas how to make my bait more interesting during the day?

  27. K pro Says:

    Hi i new to this site and would like to help ! I cannot explain all but can help a lot with fly , float and some . Egg sinkers yes are made to help your hook up with the fish as they cannot detect the resistance of say split shot set up . They also are easy to cast far a point not noted , say you are on a bank and it shallow then it drops off fast how you get it down and out there well an egg sinker is your solution ?

  28. K pro Says:

    Hey Dex yes if You only fish in the early morning and night think on this point most fishermen have it in there heads that the best time . granted it a very good time but fish slow down a bit in the fall winter and the angle f the sun also is lower at least this end of the world . All this plays factor in your catch try mid day you may get some ! If float fishing on a stream for example your shadow casts on the water in fall and can spook the fish there so much and if you need help just ask ?

  29. K pro Says:

    Dex back to your question yes use attractors and jigs , spoons , jerk baits , crank baits etc.. That have a lot of action (movement ) lots of flash and different sizes . U can use live or plastic if using plastics add sent to them . Try flies they can if you get in the nitch catch 20 / 1 ratio more fish then most conventional fishing but what a battle lol . Fly fishing is another game but wow it works . Happy tight lines Dex . Again you need more detail just ask ?

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