Over the last 20 years I have tried many different decoy rigging ideas that employed a variety of weights and string, always looking for a more simplistic method that was also offered the versatility of adapting to various depths of water. Several years ago I was getting some decoys ready for the upcoming season and stumbled upon the below rigging idea, so simple but yet very effective. When choosing a rigging system many factors should be considered such as time required to set decoys, pick up, cost, and durability. An important requirement for many hunters is depth adjustability in order to reduce pick up time from winding excess string around the keel in shallow water, keeping decoys placed so they don’t get to close because too much string was out, and most importantly the versatility to hunt virtually any depth of water.
Decoy Weights – Many styles of weights have been manufactured over the years and I have tried many of them, even large bolts and nuts when I was in high school and couldn’t afford anything else. Weights that become loose from the decoy not only chip the paint of others when carried in a bag, they cause the string attached to them to become a real trip hazard in duck boats. Unattached weights along with string can also freeze to the floor in cold temperatures. Today my top choices are J-style weights from Avery or Ace along time proven strap weights. The only disadvantage of strap weights is they can detach if wrapped around the keel versus the head which does risk paint damage.
String - During the last few weeks of season in the Upper Midwest hunting in freezing temperatures is quite common. These cold temperatures can cause many plastic tangle-free style cords to become brittle and break. This becomes a real problem of course as those decoys with broken string stay in the boat versus out in the spread to attract ducks, and then require fixing after getting home. Even though the original Tangle-Free is decent at preventing this it still happens. This is why I have now switched to tarred cord. This stuff will last forever and is very strong even in freezing temperatures. Because it is tarred is also less prone to becoming tangled as the coating removes some of the strings flexibility.
Depth Adjustment - To many times in the past I found the ducks in water that was too deep for my decoys to hold and as us duck hunters know versatility is the key to success. This is why now I insist upon using a rigging system that is adjustable, durable, and able to function in freezing temperatures. The freezing temperatures leave out the little plastic deals that clamp to Tangle-Free style cord as they don’t work when the water freezes inside them along with the fact they become brittle from the cold and break easily.
With all of the above mentioned here’s a video how I now rig all of my decoys that I keep in my boats. This system uses tarred cord that will last forever, your choice of J-style or strap weights, and a small fishing snap. The key to this rigging system is being adjustable, rugged, longevity, and can be switch out easily as it utilizes a snap to attach to the keel.
The below video will show you step-by-step how to rig your duck decoys and solve every problem listed above. Close up photos are also included below the video. Click the play button below to start the video.
Although this type of cord will float when new, it's not an issue if the cord length is adjust properly for the depth.
12 J HOOK 4 OZ. DUCK DECOY ANCHOR WEIGHTS, GHG CORDS
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If you’re looking for a quick no hassle method of setting out and picking up your decoys Texas style weights are definitely worth taking a close look at. Texas rigging style is perfect for shallow water hunting and is my preferred choice for a bag of decoys I keep ready for walking in to a spot. Using heavy mono-filament fishing line along with sliding weights this system is a great idea. There is no need to wind the string around the keel which saves a lot of time when picking up a decoy spread. The cons of this system would be it’s not the best match for hunting deeper waters. Because of the smooth egg shaped sinkers used I would also not recommend it for use in river currents or wind exposed waters much more than thigh deep unless the bottom is really soft like the Mississippi river back waters.
MOJO TEXAS STYLE DECOY RIG DUCK GOOSE DECOY WEIGHTS ANCHORS 6oz 48" 12 NEW!
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Texas rig duck decoy weights
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When first starting out hunting ducks I can remember scrambling to get my decoys rigged, which meant just buy something and get it done. Spending the time to step back and think about the water depths and conditions you will most likely setup up in and choosing rigging system that will best work in these conditions will save a lot of frustration on the water.