How to Make a Rig for Fishing Sheepshead


What this rig is all about:

Sheepshead are a saltwater fish with a flat body, 5 or 6 black stripes down its body, and have a row of teeth that resembles a human mouth. Kinda weird but they are good eating and are often fished for in Florida. Read on to learn how to make a rig that works great for catching this fish.
Here is a list of materials/items that you will need to construct this rig:

Links include pricing info on Amazon.

15 pound fluorocarbon leader line

1 ½ or 1/4 ounce egg sinker

1 Barrel swivel

1 small, red, plastic bead

– scissors/nail clipper to cut the line with

1 Owner’s Mutu Light Circle hook (2/0 size)

10 pound braid for the main line

Optional Recommended Equipment:

Penn Battle II Spinning Reel

Penn Squadron 410 Inshore Spinning Rod, 7-Feet/Medium


How to use this rig:

This setup is best used to fish for sheepshead around sunken ship wrecks, structures, or rock piles. Sheepshead love hanging around those areas. Be careful though as sometimes you may get snagged. You don’t have to cast far and can even just drop the rig down into the water. There is also no need to work the bait either especially if you are using live shrimp. You’re just kind of hoping there’s fish where you’ve dropped the bait and hoping that they’ll pick up the bait. Patience is a virtue.

A great bait to use for sheepshead with this rig is live shrimp. Hook the shrimp in the tail about an inch from the end of the tail. This will keep the shrimp alive the longest. Another good bait to use is fiddler crab or sand fleas if you can come by some. Catch sand fleas using this tool.

This rig is basically a Carolina rig used for medium depth of water from 15-30 feet. Sheepshead also are more active in warm water so do go fishing during the warmer days if you are targeting this species of fish.

Setup guide:

  1. Slide the sinker onto your main fishing line such that it is free to move. Then, slide the red bead on after the sinker. This bead is to help prevent the knot that you will make with your make line from unraveling and the impact between the egg sinker and the bead will create some noise to attract the fish.

    1. Attach the end of your main line with the sinker on to the barrel swivel using whatever knotting technique works for you. I recommend the following knot called a palomar knot.


Now, your setup should look like this:

The sinker and the bead should be free to slide along the main line.

  1. Cut a 3-foot (excluding scope for two knots) section of the 15 pound fluorocarbon leader line. Attach one end to the swivel.
  1. The last step is to tie the hook on with a sturdy knot. Use the Owner’s Mutu Light Circle hook (2/0 size) for the best results.

That’s it in 4 simple steps. Let me (and the fishing community) know if this rig is working for you and rate this rig at the top of this article. Check out the finished product below:

Check out a very similar rig to catch red and black drum in deep water here.


Don’t forget to check out the Pro Fishing Rigs store for more cool stuff!

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