What Is a Knocker Rig?

Last Updated on January 12, 2022

The technique of using a knocker rig is applicable in many fishers and works well to catch large fish. A knocker rig requires weight on the end of a line, which can be released and then reeled in quickly to sound like hitting something, which attracts fish. In this article, we will discuss what is a knocker rig, how it works, and how you can make one catch larger fish.

What Is a Knocker Rig?

A knocker rig is a popular fishing technique used to catch large fish. A knocker rig will use a weight on the end of a line that can be released and then reeled in quickly to create the sound of knocking and attract fish. The weight is usually a larger lead sinker, so it sinks quickly, and then a smaller weight is added before the hook for more stability.

Knocker rigs are mostly used by anglers who are trolling or drifting with live bait instead of casting because they offer less control when fighting the fish after it’s hooked. 

They also require some experience with knots for attaching hooks, weights, etc., which most novice fishermen lack. Knocker rigs don’t come pre-assembled like other types of fishing tackle.

How Does It Work?

The idea behind using a knocker rig is that as the lure drifts with the current, it produces knocking noises in the water column. The noise attracts fish who believe something is attacking their food supply. The lead sinker on the line has enough weight to let it sink quickly and then rise slowly, which attracts fish better and makes it harder to reel in.

Although this rig is based on the idea of imitating natural sound, it also uses various other methods such as color and flashes to draw interest from large fish that can quickly devour smaller prey. How a knocker rig works is actually fairly simple. 

A certain amount of weight must be used so that the sinker can get to the bottom while also allowing some time for it to rise back up in the water column. The heavier the weight, the faster and deeper it will sink but the less time above the water on its way back up.

The size of your bait or lure is also an important factor since something too small may not attract fish because it doesn’t have enough weight to get down, while something too large will be slow and therefore less likely to attract fish.  

Choosing the right sinker size for your bait is an important factor, which we’ll discuss in more detail later in this article.

The knocker rig can be fished while drifting over a large area or trolling slowly along a specific track. When drifting with live bait, you should use a fairly slow speed to give the fish time to swim up and take the bait. Some anglers will use small lures while drifting to get more bites since they don’t have to fight much current.

It can be a slow or fast speed when used with trolling, depending on what you’re catching. Most fish are caught in the middle of these two speeds, but some species prefer different speeds for their lure and water depths. 

Another factor is that faster-trolling speeds produce more noise which attracts fish but makes it harder to control where the lures go without line tangles or getting snagged on something. So choosing the right speed also involves finding how deep you want your luring area to be.

Carefully observe any fish that swim near you when using live bait or lures. Watch how they swim to determine where you need to drop your line and which baits attract them the most.

Choosing which Knocker Rig Components to Use

While knocker rigs are simple enough for anyone to make using components that come pre-assembled, it’s also doable if all of those components need to be chosen from scratch. 

There are different variations of what is a knocker rig, but it will usually use three main components — weight, swivel, and hook. When choosing the correct configuration for your knocker rig, the first thing to decide is what type of weight you’ll be using.

There are many options available ranging in size (ounces or grams), shape (round or tear-drop), design (flat or cupped), and finish (smooth, plated, or rough). Weights are made of lead for their density, with each step up in size also increasing weight. 

The industry standard has been 1/4 ounce weights being the norm for decades now, although there are many other options out there.

Fish like catfish and walleye can be caught on much smaller sinkers since their mouths aren’t very large compared to some other species such as muskies which may have a jaw full of razor-sharp teeth.

The smooth vs. rough surface is more cosmetic than anything else, but if you’re fishing in clear water, it can help give depth perception to fish once they swim close enough to see the sinker. A smooth surface will create a smaller shadow, allowing you to evade detection and get bites faster.

Shapes of weights are also important because different types of fish have evolved to feed in specific areas depending on how their mouths work. For example, most catfish prefer baits that move just above the bottom, while walleye tend to live near cover or weeds where they ambush small fish who swim into their territory. 

So a tear-drop-shaped weight is good for targeting catfish since it looks like an injured baitfish trying to escape, but if your target species is walleye, then something more round would be better for swimming above rocks and vegetation.

What Is a Knocker Rig – Conclusion 

To summarize, a knocker rig is essentially just an assembly of components that can be used to catch fish.  It’s an incredibly simple design that really just involves a weight, swivel, and hook; but the right combination of these parts plus additional add-ons can create many variations.

Hopefully, this article helped you understood what is a knocker rig.