Meet the Damiki rig

An obscure wintertime lure rig popular in east Tennessee is in the spotlight this week. Meet the Damiki Rig. It’s a small shad bait rigged to a jig head. That’s nothing unusual you say? Think again.

All week fans have wondered why no drop shotting in the otherwise prevailing light line, deep water, offshore patterns used all week. The answer is the Damiki Rig.

Here’s the reason. The smallmouth getting caught are holding very tight to bottom objects like rocks. That makes the free-swinging lure attached to the drop shot weight useless and less accurate. The Damiki Rig can be guided precisely to a lure target while the angler watches the screen of the fish finder.

The rig gets its name from the Damiki Armor Shad, but think Coke. That’s what we folks in the South ask for when wanting a cola drink. You can use any fluke-style lure and that’s another benefit of the rig. This week, choosing the most lifelike imitator is a big deal.

The jighead is another key. The Lake Erie-style head features a 90-degree line tie behind the pointed nose. The keel-like weight is balanced on the underside of the hook. By design, the entire package sinks vertically instead of nose down. As a result, you get an even more lifelike look.