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Spinning Jerkbait Set-Up...what Rod, What Line?

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So, I'm deciding to use spinning gear for my jerkbait set-up this year.  I have a cus68m Shimano Cumara paired with a stradic 2500.  I don't want to use a rod longer than 6'8" because at 5'9" I lose some comfort in my ability to jerk the rod the way I should.  The highest lure weight suggested (actually printed on the rod itself) is 3/8 ounce.  All the LC jerkbaits I throw are 3/8 ounce.  Does anybody else use this rod or a very similar rod for throwing 3/8 ounce jerkbaits?  Does it do okay?

 

I was watching Hook n Look (2014 Episode 2 - Suspension Comprehension) and they were using the Newer Crucial Spinning rod for throwing their KVD 3 treble jerkbaits.  The rod (CRSJ610MA) is rated to throw up to 5/8 ounce.  But they were using braided line with a fluoro leader.  Does anybody else use braided line on their spinning jerkbait set-ups?

 

I was thinking just straight 8lb Fluoro.  I'm guessing Braid would launch the heavier jerkbaits, but how does it do on hook-sets?  

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I've used spinning gear for jerk baits for years, mostly because it always seems to be windy during prime jerk bait times and the spinning gear is just easier for me.  I use a 6'3" Shimano rod (I forget what line right now)  I know it is a medium action with a fast tip.  I use a US Reel Supercaster 240 reel, because I like the extra wide spool, and it comes with an arbor so that it doesn't take a huge amount of line to fill it up.   Yes, I know that the reel doesn't say Shimano on it but it was pretty cheap and it works - for me - currently.  When I've made my cast and I'm jerking the bait down to where I want it, I kind of like the loosey/goosey feel that the reel has - or anyway I am used to it.  

 

I've used  14 lb Berkley Fireline Crystal for the past few years.  I generally use a short 18" or so fluorocarbon leader in  10 or 15 lb test.  I can throw a half ounce Lucky Craft pointer a long ways with this rig.  I can throw an adequate distance into the wind with this rig, so I don't have to be anal about boat positioning or always have the wind at my back, like back in the old days using a bait caster for jerk baits.  Lots of times, the bait will be around 100' away from the boat and 5 or 6 feet down and strikes will be very obvious.  With the Crystal Fireline, you will see the line move way before you will feel anything, kind of like using a strike indicator when you are fly fishing.  The 14 lb Fireline has the same diameter as 6 lb mono.  I think that if you used straight 8 lb fluorocarbon I think that your bait would dive about the same.  It might be a little more stealthy.  I think hook set ability would decrease some, but I don't see that as a deal breaker.  With the 8 lb fluorocarbon your rig could also function as a back up shaky head rig - something to think about if space is a premium on your boat.

 

Fishing jerk baits on spinning gear is a trade off.  If I went to a longer rod I would get more distance, but every time I jerked I would be slapping the rod on the edge of the boat.  If I found a shorter rod (less than 6') that I could get the same distance that I'm getting now, I would probably switch, but that really isn't a priority this year.

 

So anyway, that is the synopsis of how come I use spinning gear for jerk baits.

 

Oh yeah - one more thing - this rig invites tangles with other rigs on your boat.  When you aren't fishing with it I STRONGLY recommend using a lure wrap to cover the jerk bait and a nylon rod sleeve to cover everything else when you are transporting it or it is idle in your boat.

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I use my 6'8" Avid med/xfast action St Croix paired w/ Shimano Stradic 2500 spooled with 8# PLine.

Last year I was trying 20# Braid and 10# leader. Was so so, not use to fishig braid on spinning gear. Guess I have to get used to it. I'm one to always use as light of line as I can get away with.

Generally catching Smallies with this technique. Use Smithwick and LC jerkbaits.

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There's a big difference between 10 or 12 lb braid and 20 lb braid. I used to have a cus72ma one of the newer red blank cumaras with microguides and using 12 lb braid with a leader made whatever I was throwing fly! My biggest fear is ripping the jerkbait out of the mouth before he really has a chance to get it good. FLuoro still has that little stretch - think I'm going with that - plus the versatility of using it as a shakeyhead setup / tube setup etc... Helps as well.

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I fish jerkbaits on 8lb Fireline on my spinning rods. I use all  7' rods to give me maximum casting distance. The light line also helps with casting distance. I'm convinced that no stretch braid makes working the jerkbait much easier. All the action I impart goes right to the bait and not absorbed by the line stretching. Leaders in open water are of no help at all. I do a 2 week spring trip for pre-spawn smallmouth in very clear water and use jerkbaits most of the time. I've never seen the need for a leader. The fish are not spooked by the line, they do get spooked by the boat sometimes. Jerkbaits don't get into the rocks, so abrasion resistance is not an issue. I learned long ago how to set the hook when using braid so tearing the hooks out of a fish because the line doesn't stretch just isn't an issue . My only problems come from wearing out the hooks from pulling them out of so many fish.

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I also use 7' foot rods for the longer reach but do use a longer 7' or 8' fluoro leader, mostly because I like not cutting into the superline every new knot, and just plain confidence when I let a suspender sit there for looong pause. Hooksets? You'll get great hooksets with a leader or not, unless you choose a really super soft rod with braid or fused.

My favorite the past few years is the old BPS Bionic Blade 7' Medium/Fast. I don't jerk downward much in colder weather, more of a pull, or twitch. I'm also tall, so 7' might be a bit much for most folks.

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I fish jerkbaits on 8lb Fireline on my spinning rods. I use all  7' rods to give me maximum casting distance. The light line also helps with casting distance. I'm convinced that no stretch braid makes working the jerkbait much easier. All the action I impart goes right to the bait and not absorbed by the line stretching.

 

That's a good point.  I didn't think about that.  So, the hook set you're talking about...Are you just kind of leaning into the fish?  I did not catch a jerkbait fish at all last year, but I caught plenty of fish on a super fluke.  The fluke and jerkbait are different with the hooks obviously, but they hit it the same way when it's paused or not.  

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You still have to set the hook, but it's a short, firm hook set. The long, hard, cross their eyes hook set just isn't necessary. That's when you rip the hooks out. Because you are often working the bait with the rod pointed down, it isn't hard to get a good hook set with a short movement of the rod like it might be with stretchy line.

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Here in Ontario almost every angler fishes with a spinning rod for jerkbaits. I use a 6'6 st Croix premier medium fast. 20 lb braid to a 15 lb fluoro leader. The key for me is making sure my drag is set properly, using braid the lack of stretch makes it paramount to avoid losing fish.

 

When I'm working the bait I typically use short quick snaps to the 8 oclock position, occasionally I'll switch it up my cadence and add a 10 oclock pop to the rod.

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