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I'm sure many of you have known about bucktail jigs but I myself just got on board! I was throwing the Prayer jig by Cumberland Pro but stock has dried up around here so I started making my own. Plus I made a giant version around 7 in. long! Big fish catcher! I guess this should go in the tackle making section but I was wondering who all has had success with them and what presentations have worked best? I like to reel it and kill it!

 

 

post-3309-0-85343600-1434923618_thumb.jp

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Do you fish it with a trailer? I've never fished hair jigs before... What weight are you using?

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Do you fish it with a trailer? I've never fished hair jigs before... What weight are you using?

 

The hackle feathers serve as a trailer. They have a subtle kick with just a straight retrieve. I've been throwing 5/8, 3/4, and 1 oz. pending on depth and wind. 5/8 for 8-10 fow, 3/4 for 10-16 fow, and 1 oz. up to 25 fow. On windy days I may go a little heavier. I also use heavier ones if the fish are off the side of the ledge to keep better contact and to get a more vertical fall.

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I use hair and feather jigs a lot during the pre and post ice periods, but they're rarely over 3/16oz.  I tied up a bunch over the winter, some with  feathers and hair, and haven't used them yet as I was on the DL until May.  Until I started experimenting with smaller tubes, they were also used for a finess presentation. I use basically two retrieves, the one you mention and what I call hip-hopping it through the water column.  It's basically a yo-yo swimming retrieve.  If they're looking for something more verticle, I switch to a BitsyBug and a smally chunk.

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Ain't that what KVD was throwing at Bassfest?

 

YUP. So was Edwin Evers and a lot of the elites.

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It's also what Jacob Wheeler won last years Bassfest on, in part at least.  If the one pictured is one you made, nice job, it looks great!

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I love hair jigs for smallies..

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The thing with that type of hair jig is you have to have the right kind of water. The only time you see or hear of pros throwing the hair jig is when they are on the Tennessee river lakes and there is good reason. They have deep ledges and other structure and most importantly, water with high visibility, it is water where they also use magnum size spoons which isn't something you are going to use on a lot of other bodies of water. I've been tying all kinds of hair jigs for a long time, most are for ice out/cold water conditions but I do make a few larger ones for swimming with a grub trailer and that isn't as effective when the water is in the 70s and higher. The thing that is hard about tying the jigs the pros are using is finding the right buck tail, there are only a few sources for it, for those that don't know, those jigs are long, most are over 7" and you heed hair that is at least 6" long, I had 2 suppliers of this stuff and they are no longer selling, I'm guessing big manufacturers have got all the supply now as there weren't many to begin with as the tails come from specially farmed deer with massive tails. The tails are expensive, I've paid $20 for a tail that had 5" to 7" long hair and you can see it in the price of some of these jigs, and if you do some research and dig around, you'll see some guys are using jigs tied with a synthetic hair, it is a material called imitation Yak Hair or fur, it comes in a bundle and it 20" in length, this is really good stuff. The way you use it is to tie it in first as the base to set the length, then tie in the long hackle feathers and then tie in shorter buck tail over top, the yak will give you length, the feathers will provide tail action, and the buck tail will provide a minnow or baitfish like profile and then you add in whatever kind of flash you want, flashabou and/or Krystal flash and then you have a hair jig that will get them big fish to bite.

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I like to fish the hair jigs as part of "float n fly" rigs...with a small, sensitive, pear-shaped float, just big enough to suspend the jig.  I let the current take it downstream with occasional twitches.  Then I swim it back.

Also works extremely well with some wind when the water's nice and choppy.

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The thing with that type of hair jig is you have to have the right kind of water. The only time you see or hear of pros throwing the hair jig is when they are on the Tennessee river lakes and there is good reason. They have deep ledges and other structure and most importantly, water with high visibility, it is water where they also use magnum size spoons which isn't something you are going to use on a lot of other bodies of water. I've been tying all kinds of hair jigs for a long time, most are for ice out/cold water conditions but I do make a few larger ones for swimming with a grub trailer and that isn't as effective when the water is in the 70s and higher. The thing that is hard about tying the jigs the pros are using is finding the right buck tail, there are only a few sources for it, for those that don't know, those jigs are long, most are over 7" and you heed hair that is at least 6" long, I had 2 suppliers of this stuff and they are no longer selling, I'm guessing big manufacturers have got all the supply now as there weren't many to begin with as the tails come from specially farmed deer with massive tails. The tails are expensive, I've paid $20 for a tail that had 5" to 7" long hair and you can see it in the price of some of these jigs, and if you do some research and dig around, you'll see some guys are using jigs tied with a synthetic hair, it is a material called imitation Yak Hair or fur, it comes in a bundle and it 20" in length, this is really good stuff. The way you use it is to tie it in first as the base to set the length, then tie in the long hackle feathers and then tie in shorter buck tail over top, the yak will give you length, the feathers will provide tail action, and the buck tail will provide a minnow or baitfish like profile and then you add in whatever kind of flash you want, flashabou and/or Krystal flash and then you have a hair jig that will get them big fish to bite.

 

I use only real bucktail. I guess I'm lucky cause I got some really nice ones with long hairs(5-6 in.) I tied the lure in the pic, it measures a little over 7 in.

 

The thing with these jigs are that I wouldn't call the technique "finesse" at all. If anybody watches Bassfest, you will see it's more of a power technique and it's deadly.

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That's a beautiful jig you tied.  Great job.

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That's a beautiful jig you tied.  Great job.

 

Thanks! I'm really addicted to tying now. I've weighed in two 20+ LB. bags recently on jigs I've tied. Haven't won but been in the money. It's still extra special to do well on your own lure. I make them from pouring the head to finish. I made a huge order for hooks and other stuff today so everybody that wants can give them a try. I'm also tying some that will be downsized for other types of water. I saw that Mann's had the copyright on the original Preacher Jig. They were 14.99 at BPS. Ridiculous! They didn't really have enough bucktail to hold a good profile once wet.

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I could probably slay Bass where I fish with a 7 inch hair jig. The bass where I fish feed on shad, anywhere from 1-15". Those 12-15" shad are what big momma (7lbs is the biggest to come out of the reservoir) is feeding on. Catch em good on spinnerbaits, crankbaits, lipless baits, and in cold water, jerkbaits. I hardly ever finesse fish, and I can see a big 7" hair matching a shad. I would probably have to tone the weight down as the water I fish is mostly shallow (10' or so probably being the deepest) , but there are a few "ledges" off the edges of flats, right near the main creek channel. I may have to try some out as I'd be interested in what they can do... If you plan on tying extra jigs, I may just have to try one.

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Thanks! I'm really addicted to tying now. I've weighed in two 20+ LB. bags recently on jigs I've tied. Haven't won but been in the money. It's still extra special to do well on your own lure. I make them from pouring the head to finish. I made a huge order for hooks and other stuff today so everybody that wants can give them a try. I'm also tying some that will be downsized for other types of water. I saw that Mann's had the copyright on the original Preacher Jig. They were 14.99 at BPS. Ridiculous! They didn't really have enough bucktail to hold a good profile once wet.

 

What mold and hook combination are you using? That tends to be another problem with the large hair jigs, finding the right hook, I've made them using 60 degree hooks but really haven't found a 90 degree that can hold up to heavy line.

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What mold and hook combination are you using? That tends to be another problem with the large hair jigs, finding the right hook, I've made them using 60 degree hooks but really haven't found a 90 degree that can hold up to heavy line.

 

Teardrop mold with a collar and a 32786 Mustad. I also have the the Poison Tail mold. I cut the pins off flush with the mold to eliminate the brush guard. I think this head swims better and sits upright on the bottom. It takes a 32886 Mustad. Most of the bucktail jigs I've seen have a small lightwire hook. My partner and I have noticed we lost some fish on smaller hooks but the heavier ones will get them in the boat.

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Teardrop mold with a collar and a 32786 Mustad. I also have the the Poison Tail mold. I cut the pins off flush with the mold to eliminate the brush guard. I think this head swims better and sits upright on the bottom. It takes a 32886 Mustad. Most of the bucktail jigs I've seen have a small lightwire hook. My partner and I have noticed we lost some fish on smaller hooks but the heavier ones will get them in the boat.

 

A video with JT Kenny is on you tube and he talks about using the light wire hook more often but he goes with a heavier hook option if he knows he is around big fish. I have the tear drop mold and I use the Owner 5319, I didn't know you could use a 60 degree hook in that mold. I use the 32786 with the Snootie mold, a lot of guys like it because it has a different look on the fall and it swims well when reeling it up off of the bottom. For a light wire version I use the Ultra Minnow, but I haven't tied any of those jigs in a while since the extra long buck tail is so hard to find. I'd suggest if you can find buck tail with 5.5" to 6" long hair to stock up, it won't be around long and if you can point me in the direction of that stuff I'd really, really appreciate it!!!

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god I would love some of those 7''ers!

That's what she said

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A video with JT Kenny is on you tube and he talks about using the light wire hook more often but he goes with a heavier hook option if he knows he is around big fish. I have the tear drop mold and I use the Owner 5319, I didn't know you could use a 60 degree hook in that mold. I use the 32786 with the Snootie mold, a lot of guys like it because it has a different look on the fall and it swims well when reeling it up off of the bottom. For a light wire version I use the Ultra Minnow, but I haven't tied any of those jigs in a while since the extra long buck tail is so hard to find. I'd suggest if you can find buck tail with 5.5" to 6" long hair to stock up, it won't be around long and if you can point me in the direction of that stuff I'd really, really appreciate it!!!

 

The Ultra Minnow swims decent but falls over on it's side on the bottom. I've caught many fish with big gizzard shad, little drum, and even small Asian carp tails hanging out of there mouth lately. Drums and gizzards feed on shellbeds. I really don't know but I feel part of the presentation is that jig needs to stand or lay straight up on the bottom(some bigger fish have picked it up while sitting on bottom). The reeling it up simulates a fleeing fish which engages the reaction from the big fish, kinda like you don't run from a mean dog instict. I don't feel it's a reaction strike though cause some fish will chase it all the way out to deeper water and to the boat on occasion.

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Too cool!

 

 

 

:fishing-026:

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Looks great, but I use hair jigs for cold weather and under a float(buy them from a local maker). It seems it might be effective, but expensive (7" versions) when there might be a better technique. Would bear hair work?

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Looks great, but I use hair jigs for cold weather and under a float(buy them from a local maker). It seems it might be effective, but expensive (7" versions) when there might be a better technique. Would bear hair work?

 

A lot of anglers believe bass will only strike hair jigs when it's cold, almost like a "last possible resort lure".  I'm not really sure why that is though as that has not been my experience.

In the past I've caught a decent amount of largemouth with them fished under a float (or by swimming them) in the heat of summer on lakes. 

Hair jigs are possibly the world's oldest artificial lure, and they work the same reason a large streamer works when fly fishing for bass.  Very good imitations of bait fish but with a subtler action than plastic swimbaits.

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