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September 21, 2007

Live Bonito Hook 'n Go

A two-hook rig makes it easy to rig smaller members of the tuna family, such as bonito, as live baits for offshore game fish. The rig consists of a ring-eye big-game hook (such as a Mustad 7754) that's attached to a smaller trailer hook. First, crimp the big-game hook to the leader. To attach the second hook, crimp a piece of cable to the eye of the first hook. Measure the cable so that it is a bit longer than the shank of the first hook and crimp it to the eye of the second. Once the rig is connected, line up the hooks so the bends are in the same plane and heat-shrink the first crimp, cable and shank of the first hook. Find the "sweet spot" in the roof of the bait's mouth with a fingertip and push the point of the second hook through the sweet spot, up and out the top of the bait's nose. Now the bait is ready to be dropped back and slow-trolled.

- Steve Kantner, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida