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How to rig Riffe breakaway system

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New Member
Mar 2, 2005
Hi, I'm fairly new to spearfishing. I recently purchased a new breakaway rig for my Riffe gun but can't figure out how to rig it and neither did the anybody at the scuba shop where I bought it. I can't seem to be able to hook it up without shortening my line. I'm afraid of cutting my line and re-crimping because if I do it wrong I'll be totally out of luck. I live in an isolated part of Costa Rica, so I don't have easy access to lines or other accessories in case I make a mistake. I have a float system, but instead of hooking it up to my gun, I want to hook it up to the breakaway system (it's basically a small bungee loop with a clamp). Thanks for any advice!
You didn't say whether the Riffe was a wood gun or a metal tech. If its the breakaway he sells for the wood gun in which a piece of rubber tubing goes through the hole in the butt, I wouldn't use it. Will the shop let you return it?

I shot a tuna with a Riffe Island and that breakaway, and the rubber thing did not pull out of the hole in the butt. It almost tore the gun out of my hands before my slip tip pulled out of the fish, and I am not the only one who has had a similar experience. There is a much simpler and fail-safe system that is usually referred to as the Hawaiian breakaway. I would require you to cut and recrimp your mono, but that is a skill that you are not going to be able to get along without as a spearfisherman, so you might as well get your feet wet now.

To rig the system, cut your mono or cable shooting line so that the loop in the rear end is about 6 inches from the trigger-activated line release. Tie a loop of bungie cord through the loop in the mono and stretch it over the line release. Clip your float line to the loop in the shooting line. When you pull the trigger, everything is released and nothing has to pull out of any holes. Its breathtakingly simple and effective.

The photos show it before and after the trigger is pulled. Unfortunately its shown on two different guns, but don't let that confuse you.


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Wow, pictures and all! Thank you very much - I understand exactly what you're saying. By the way, I have the wooden kind with the hole in it.
costaricahunter said:
Wow, pictures and all! Thank you very much - I understand exactly what you're saying. By the way, I have the wooden kind with the hole in it.

You understand me? Wow, wait until I tell my wife I don't have a communication problem after all.:)

I realize that you did say that access to things like line and crimps and crimpers may be a problem, but you can hardly spearfish long without solving that problem. If all else fails, there are many on-line sources for that stuff.

BTW, in the interest of fairness I should say that I had that Riffe thing pull out of the hole OK many times, so its not as if it never works. But when you shoot that fish of a lifetime and the damn thing sticks, it ruins your day. Another alternative that some friends have used is to simply screw a proper sized stainless steel screw eye into the side of the butt and stick that rubber thing in it. Then the rubber thing doesn't have to make a 90 degree turn to release. But I still prefer that simple Hawaiian system.
Ha! I'll just have to stock up on supplies next time I'm in the US. The mail system here is not reliable for that sort of stuff. Thanks again!
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