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Bassguytom

Open water cranking

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What is a good open water crank besides a lipless. Does anyone have any success without grinding cranks off the bottom or deflecting off of cover? If so what? Just wondering if I'm missing somthing. 

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You can give a crank a twitch or pause at the end of a cast to trigger a follower but other than that it's rare. Jerkbaits are what you're looking for.

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Yes.  I think I understand what your looking for.  There are times you just want to cover water in featureless banks that are somewhat flat and fairly shallow, maybe mud or clay.  I fish tidal effected sloughs that have sections like that which run a hundred yards or more at a time but they hold fish. Try  some of the thin sided billed baits. Varying your retrieve will make a huge difference. Experiment with your retrieve.   A buoyant bait may be helpful because they rise in a brief pause and that can generate a reaction bite.  I'm confident you already know that.  A bait I like and will use as an example is the Luhr Jensen Speed Trap.  It has a very tight wiggle, much like a lipless but it's a floater with a short bill.  It's pretty effective in that scenario.  There are countless baits that have similar characteristics. Look at the Normans Thin N, 6th Sense Crush 75 and so on. Standard squarebills can be just as effective.  Hope that helps.

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The strike king 3xd has caught several open (and clear) water bass for me. Stop and go retrieve is definitely something to look into, the bait never actually stops but changes pace and definitely triggers strikes.

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I'm not sure what you mean by open water, but I will use cranks for suspended fish and for targeting the area above the weeds.  A change of direction is what will trigger strikes and that direction can be up, down, or to the sides.  Although I've caught many bass with a stop and go, or pause and restart if you prefer, I find that a sharp jerk of the rod tip seems to trigger more strikes.  I hold the rod tip around 8:00 when cranking and jerk the tip down sharply. It takes a little getting used to as you end up slapping the water with the rod tip if you're too aggressive. That's easy to do with small billed baits. 

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The only crank I've consistently done well with without deflecting it off cover is a Rapala Scatter Rap. 

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The only time I cast into open water and not target the bottom or cover is when Im casting at feeding bass  and whatever I have tied on works ..

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like Bluebasser86, scatter rap is one of the best for covering water.also flat rap is good.

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Yes.

Think about some other lures that catch bass at various depths in open water like swimbaits, glide baits, spinnerbaits, A-rigs etc, are often retrieved in open water without bottom bumping.

Deep diving crank baits that are bait fish colors like Shad work good cast and retrieved at various depths and varying cadence in open water. Shore anglers often fan cast the area they fish and discover bass out in open water away from the bank. Boat anglers should do the same thing fan cast the area they fishing because sometime the bass are out in deeper water.

I rarely cast and crank the deep divider back at a steady pace, usually get the lure down to depth and vary the retreive and or pump the rod tip to create strikes.

Tom

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I fish some sand flats with pockets of reeds on them. When moving between reed beds I always toss either a square bill, shallow swim bait, or of course the lipless. While not a high percentage play because most of the fish stay in contact with the reeds, I have caught enough bass and hooked up with enough Musky to make it worthwhile.

One thing to think of too, is that since you are moving relatively quick to cover water, most softbaits and jerkbaits don't work well for this. While not a crank spinnerbaits would do well for this too. 

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I've caught tons of fish on open water cranks. The key is throwing a twitch in here and there, changing speeds, pauses, and changing hte angles of your retrieve. That can have nearly the same effect as a deflection. Ticking the tops of grass works too. I still believe cranks are at their best bumping off rocks and wood cover though.

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2 hours ago, iceintheveins said:

I've caught tons of fish on open water cranks. The key is throwing a twitch in here and there, changing speeds, pauses, and changing hte angles of your retrieve. That can have nearly the same effect as a deflection. Ticking the tops of grass works too. I still believe cranks are at their best bumping off rocks and wood cover though.

^ This x2 twitches, pauses, and changes in speed and direction will trigger bites.

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Lucky Craft Slim Shad.  They are a suspending deep crank.  They are disco'd, but you can find them.

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JOINTED shad rap. Back in shallow coves (6-12 feet deep ) this bait rocks for me. Nobody talks about the jointed version, only the original shad rap. But I promise the jointed version is dynamite . 

Slow retrieve with a pause and twitch. Or a rip and pause. And only 6.99 if you find a deal. It's hard to beat IMO. 

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