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A-Jay

It's Almost Blade Bait Time

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Excellent video, A-Jay!  Thanks for the tips.

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Been doing well on the blade all week ~ 

 

Even though the water still needs to cool off a little, the fish didn't seem to care.

 

Video's loading up now and will post it up here in a bit.

 

A-Jay

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Also check out Barlows.  You can experiment with finish, eyes, hooks, etc for a lot less cash.  Good action on these.

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Do you guys find these baits effective in shallow water, less than 6'. Maybe the 1/4 or 3/8oz?

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Do you guys find these baits effective in shallow water, less than 6'. Maybe the 1/4 or 3/8oz?

Yes.  It's one of the best winter time baits you can throw on the Potomac.  Some of my best bass fishing days ever were in freezing cold water on the river with a Silver Buddy.  I use the 1/2oz most of the time.  Shallow or deep...But even 'deep' on the river is usually not that deep by normal bass fishing standards.

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Do you guys find these baits effective in shallow water, less than 6'. Maybe the 1/4 or 3/8oz?

 

During the colder water periods, which is when I've had the best results with blade baits, the bass in my area are rarely in that kind of skinny water.  It's just too clear.

 

So I'm routinely fishing at least 15 ft anyway.  The 1/2 ounce size works well for me on days with less wind and down to 20 feet or so. 

 

With any kind of wind and past 20 feet - I'm going with a 3/4 ounce bait or bigger; offers more control & better feel.

 

The bigger bait does seem to generate more strikes from the bass I'm looking for, meaning Long & Fat.

 

I have a few of the older Original sliver buddy baits that are 5/8 oz - these have become a real fan favorite - perfect size compromise.

 

A-Jay

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Yes.  It's one of the best winter time baits you can throw on the Potomac.  Some of my best bass fishing days ever were in freezing cold water on the river with a Silver Buddy.  I use the 1/2oz most of the time.  Shallow or deep...But even 'deep' on the river is usually not that deep by normal bass fishing standards.

 

 

During the colder water periods, which is when I've had the best results with blade baits, the bass in my area are rarely in that kind of skinny water.  It's just to clear.

 

So I routinely fishing at least 15 ft anyway.  The 1/2 ounce size works well for me on days with less wind and down to 20 feet or so. 

 

With any kind of wind and past 20 feet - I'm going with a 3/4 ounce bait or bigger; offers more control & better feel.

 

The bigger bait does seem to generate more strikes from the bass I'm looking for, meaning Long & Fat.

 

I have a few of the older Original sliver buddy baits that are 5/8 oz - these have become a real fan favorite - perfect size compromise.

 

A-Jay

 

Thanks guys.  This is my first year fishing the Potomac (started in March, so almost a full season), but nearly 90+% of the time we fish less than ~6' of water.  I just wasn't sure as anytime I see videos or read about these types of baits and many are fishing in 15'+ FOW.  

 

I guess there is only one way to find out.

 

Matt

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For Dypsis - The Potomac, like most tidal rivers, fishes differently from 'normal' fisheries...The majority of fish are shallow year-round, even in the coldest of water.  You'll catch more fish from deeper water (8-12' or so) in the winter but there will still be plenty up in shallower water.  A slow lift/drop or yo-yo retrieve is a good way to start out.  Most bites come as it falls, so try not go completely slack when you drop it.  The trickiest part is not losing all your baits to snags ;).  Someone else already said it, but it's definitely true...Every species of fish will eat a blade.  

 

FWIW I like to replace the hooks on the Silver Buddy with similar sized Owner/Gama/etc...But I don't add a split ring.  I cut the hook-eye with wire cutters, bend it out just enough to slide into the hole on the Buddy, then bend it back (so they hang directly from the bait).  The hooks foul way to much if you add a split ring and the stock hooks are junk.  

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I see a lot of references to smallmouth fishing with this type bait but how well do you guys do with largemouth on it? I don't regularly visit smallmouth fisheries in my state(arkansas) and no one I know fishes blade baits. I usually winter fish in the 14 foot range at a few local lakes using bigger bodied flat coffin billed crankbaits but wouldn't mind trying these out if you think they would be productive.

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For Dypsis - The Potomac, like most tidal rivers, fishes differently from 'normal' fisheries...The majority of fish are shallow year-round, even in the coldest of water.  You'll catch more fish from deeper water (8-12' or so) in the winter but there will still be plenty up in shallower water.  A slow lift/drop or yo-yo retrieve is a good way to start out.  Most bites come as it falls, so try not go completely slack when you drop it.  The trickiest part is not losing all your baits to snags ;).  Someone else already said it, but it's definitely true...Every species of fish will eat a blade.  

 

FWIW I like to replace the hooks on the Silver Buddy with similar sized Owner/Gama/etc...But I don't add a split ring.  I cut the hook-eye with wire cutters, bend it out just enough to slide into the hole on the Buddy, then bend it back (so they hang directly from the bait).  The hooks foul way to much if you add a split ring and the stock hooks are junk.

Awesome thank you. Yes the Potomac can be a fickle beast. I'm still learning so much.

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I see a lot of references to smallmouth fishing with this type bait but how well do you guys do with largemouth on it? I don't regularly visit smallmouth fisheries in my state(arkansas) and no one I know fishes blade baits. I usually winter fish in the 14 foot range at a few local lakes using bigger bodied flat coffin billed crankbaits but wouldn't mind trying these out if you think they would be productive.

 

Largemouth definitely gobble up a properly presented blade bait.

 

Remember a cleaner bottom is key - and may be why the bait is not fished in your area.

 

 Either way, a killer way to fish it is to position your boat over or just back up onto a grass flat and then cast out into what is usually a deeper but cleaner bottom area, and work it back.

 

Working up to or along that bottom composition change (from clean to grass) is often a bass gold mine. They seem to want to grab it right before it "escapes" into the grass.

 

Good Luck

 

A-Jay

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Timing seems about right so, I'm bringing this one back.

 As one of The Best Cool to Cold water brown bass technique's I fish, this thread contains quite a bit of useful information from some experienced & successful Blade Bait Believers.

This video by Scott Dobson is very good regarding the tackle & how-to's of fishing a blade bait.

 

If you haven't fished a blade bait and you have the deeper clean bottom areas these baits excel in, I like to encourage you to pick up a few and give it a try. (they are not expensive).

But please be careful - you might get your arm broke . . . . 

 

Below is a clip of a decent late season day I had a few years ago in the Old Town where a 1/2 oz Silver Buddy did most all of the heavy lifting. (and before I get it again, I have already been counseled by the masses regard the way I was holding these fish up to the camera.  I don't do that any more.)

 

Additionally, in a effort to 'update' my own offering here, since the OP I have had been fishing a rattle bait in many of the same places & in the same manner as the blade baits.  The results have been Really Good.

And while most any fast sinking rattle bait will get bites, the thinner & heavier bait styles seem more suited to this often deep(er) water presentation.  Specifically the Duo Realis G-Fix Vibration Tungsten Lipless Crankbait has been my go-to. 

I talk about this bait here ~ 

:smiley:

A-Jay

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Probably my biggest bass (or one of them anyway) ate a silver buddy two days after Christmas . 7-8 lb northern strain LMB (just guessing on the weight)large.IMG_2388.PNG.37d1ea60bd9971b372e91fc989d2c507.PNG

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That bite starts here in about a month. 

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Every year you bring this up, I convince myself I'm going to figure these baits out. Maybe some day that last part will actually happen 🤣 I think I did catch about a half dozen bass on one last year, so that about doubled my previous total with them, so that's something I guess.

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