In this video, Wired2fish staff member Kobie Koenig discusses the 2023 Bassmaster Classic winning bait, the Damiki rig, what it looks like underwater and a few keys to fishing this simple yet effective bait. Watch Wired2fish’s in-depth how to fish the Damiki rig video with Classic winner Jeff “Gussy” Gustafson to get the full scoop.
GUSSY’S SETUP (retail links)
- JIG HEAD – Bass Tactics Smeltinator Swimbait Jighead Buy at Omnia Fishing Buy at Tackle Warehouse
- PLASTIC – Z-Man Scented Jerk ShadZ Buy at Omnia Fishing Buy at Tackle Warehouse Buy at Bass Pro Shops
- BRAID – PowerPro Spectra Braided Line Yellow, 10-pound Buy at Omnia Fishing Buy at Tackle Warehouse Buy at Bass Pro Shops
- FLUOROCARBON – Shimano Mastiff Fluorocarbon, 10-pound (NEW product, currently unavailable)
- ROD – G. Loomis NRX+ Spinning Rod, 7’3″ Medium 872S JWR Buy at Omnia Fishing Buy at Tackle Warehouse
- REEL – Shimano Exsence Buy at Omnia Fishing Buy at Tackle Warehouse Buy at Bass Pro Shops
The Damiki rig involves threading a fluke-style soft plastic bait onto a jig head. The use of ElaZtech or other buoyant soft plastics helps the bait sit horizontally in the water. A horizontal posture presents the bait more naturally, making it more appealing to bass. Tossing a dab of superglue on the jig head locks the plastic in place, which is crucial when dealing with schooling fish.
Use jig heads with set-back line ties – they evenly distribute the weight and allow the bait to sit horizontally in the water column. A knot that goes through the line tie multiple times, like the Palomar or shark knot, is also recommended to keep the bait stable.
Overall, the Damiki rig is a straightforward and effective rig that catches various species. Follow these simple guidelines to create a bait that looks and acts like a natural prey item to increase your chances of success.