- A Quick Change Haywire Twist
- by Steve Hicks
- Change the way you make your haywire twists and you can create quick-change
rigs for trolling lures. I devised a simple wire-forming tool from a flat
- The washer forms a narrow eye that passes easily through the leader
channel down the center of a lure. The thickness of the washer determines
the width of the eye of the haywire. The washer itself aids in forming
the haywire by providing leverage and a secure fingerhold.
- The match between wire, washer and lure can be critical. I use #9 stainless-steel
piano wire of 105-pound test to rig the skirted bullet jigs I troll for
yellowfin tuna, wahoo and mahimahi.A-,-washer 1 /16 inch thick creates
an eye about 3 /32 inch across (due to the double thickness of the wire).
That's slim enough to pass through the 1/8-inch leader hole found on most
medium to large bullet-heads. The length of the eye is determined by the
diameter of the washer, but eye length isn-. It really critical. Pick a
washer big enough to suit your fingers. I use lk-inch washers (sonowI have
something to do with the discarded drag washers from my 6/osenator reels).
You turn a washer into a haywire twister by hacksawing a slot along one
radius. The slot allows you to withdraw the leader - eye after it has been
- To form the eye, pass the wire through the center of the washer and
bend it back across a radius. Lay the two wire sections next to each other
and grasp them firmly with pliers about an inch from the washer. Twist
the washer as you maintain a steady pull on the wire. At first your shoulder,
muscles might not be quite up to providing enough resistance. To beat this
problem, grasp the wire k inch from the washer, allowing you to make the
first part of the twist with very little effort. After the first rotation,
you can finish the wrap easily by moving the pliers to a new position '-2
inch farther down the leader. Your eyes might not turn out as slot-like
at first, but to fix this just give a gental squeeze with your pliers.
- I finish my leaders in the traditional way with four or five turns
of a barrel wrap. The barrel wrap just locks the twists and finishes the
eye neatly. I cut my leaders 5 to 6 feet long. That-Is enough for fish
like tuna and wahoo, and you can always snap on an extra length of heavy-duty
nylon or fluorocarbon leader when marlin are around. I arm my quick-change
rigs with a single, stainless-steel tuna-bend hook. To position the hook
within the skirt, I add spacer beads.
- With this system, I can keep all of my skirted(bullet jigs in the same
tackle drawer unrigged without fear of tangling. I store the rigged leaders
separately. To rig a lure, I uncoil a ready-made rig, run the eye through
the rear of the lure and snap it to a trolling line.
- After a fish is brought aboard and in the chill box, I slide the lure
up the leader and off the end. With a new quickchange leader, the lure
is right back in action.