A lot of people think the Tokyo Rig is just a short leader dropshot, which it kind of is, but you don’t get the same action as you would from a dropshot. The action is just a little bit different. And it’s different enough to make a difference in the catch rate.
I went from fishing a dropshot down in Florida to a Tokyo rig and went from catching 2 or 3 an hour to 40 an hour.
The difference to me is the weight itself goes down in the mud and keeps the bait up above the silt and gives the fish an easier target. Other than that, I can’t put my finger on it. All I know is the bass destroy it. A month later, my son had a high school fishing tournament on Lake Lanier with all spotted bass and he finished 6th fishing the Tokyo Rig.
3 Ways to Apply a Tokyo Rig
You can do a lot with the Tokyo Rig. My favorite three applications for it so far are fishing grass lines, flipping docks and punching grass. I like to drag it up to grass lines and shake it kind of like you do a dropshot where you don’t move the weight and only move the bait. Or I’ll punch it like a normal punch rig but the difference is that it really does penetrate a whole lot easier than a regular punch rig.
What I’ve been doing lately is fishing it under docks. It gets pretty silty under docks, especially post docks, but bass like to hangout around those wooden posts. If you throw a jig in there it’s going to sink right down in the silt where the Tokyo Rig is going to stay up above the silt. It still acts just like a jig but the bass can get to it a lot easier.
My favorite three style baits for it right now are some sort of creature bait like aStrike King Rage Bug, aZoom Brush Hog or Baby Brush Hog and then a big worm. Larger profile baits.
You’re still kind of finesse fishing it but with bigger baits.
I just kind of think of it as power finesse fishing. It’s really one of those things that I tell people you just have to try it. I just tried it one day and was amazed at how well it worked.