Author: RiverCrawler (Hunter King) ….
“Swim baits are becoming a greatly used bait in the fishing world and the reason for this is simply because they CATCH FISH. But, people tend to over look them for many reasons. The most common excuse I hear is ‘they are too big’ or ‘the cost way too much’ and both are not true. Yes, some swim baits reach the $50 range but, there are many more swim baits in lower range of $7 to $25. Another thing that many people do not realize is there are the many different types of swim baits; hard baits, soft baits, and twitch baits are the most common. But, there are also ‘swim baits’ that sport a bill. In this week’s tip I am going to discuss the different types and sizes of swim baits more than I am going to discuss the way to use them.
The first thing I want to talk about is size. There are many different sizes and shapes to choose from. Sizes range from 3 inches all the way to 9+ inches. They can also be thin and streamline or fat and bulky. When selecting a swim bait, size is a factor but only to the buyer (not the fish haha). The larger swim baits get the more expensive they are. When you start looking at swim baits you do not have to go with the smallest bait on the shelf to catch fish, do not be afraid to go big. Big baits catch big fish; it’s that simple. But, do not go with 9 inch swim bait if you want to catch numbers because that truly is a big fish lure (even though I have seen 10 inch bass caught on 10 inch swim baits). The most reasonable length is a 5 inch or 6 inch in soft bodied baits, in hard baits it is different but again go with a reasonable size.
The color of swim baits range greatly. The best way to choose is match the conditions and the local bait.
The first type of swim bait I want to talk about is the hard swim bait. It’s just as it sounds; it is a hard bait and swims when it you reel it. But there are variations of these baits and some even have bills to get them deeper (basically a jointed crank bait). The best swim baits I have used are the Tru-Tungsten swim baits. (Partially because of Drew haha, but I really do like them.) There are also lower end baits that are just as good. But basically these swim baits have a profile really close to a fish and have a very life like swimming action. This makes them easy to use and very effective. The only type of swim bait with a bill that I am aware of is the Strike King, King Shad.
The second type I want to talk about (and my personal favorite) is the soft bodied swim bait. There are many sizes and lengths like I talked about earlier but I would recommend using the 5 inch to 6 inch range and save the 9 inch lures for the stripers. These baits are usually fish shaped with huge paddle tails that work really well as visual attraction as well as vibratory attraction. My favorite is the Yum Money Minnow. Again another simple to use swim bait that produces fish.
And the last type is going to be the Twitch Bait Swim Baits. These are hard bodied baits long and slender in shape and usually 3 or 4 joints. They have really good swimming action but are best when twitched and reeled or twitched and let drift. Most are slow sinking to moderate sinking and range in size from 5 inches to 10 inches. Learning how to and how not to work this bait takes patience. And if you have a pool to learn in, it makes it much easier because you can see the different presentations you can create before you spend a whole day casting and reeling not catching anything.
The reason behind this article was not to teach you how to use swim baits, but to make you aware of the different kind and sizes there are. So hopefully you will feel better about trying them in the future.