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Spinnerbait blade type and color selection?

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Hello! 

It's pre-spawn here in Rhode Island and I'm really trying to get into selecting the perfect spinnerbait for my conditions (I normally fish from the bank). Spinnerbaits are killers this time of year and I wanna fish them correctly. So, I was wondering: what are your general rules of thumb for selecting blade type (willow leaf, Indiana, Colorado) and color for your blades? 

 

I think I understand the skirt type should be brighter for dirty water and realistic/darker for clear water - but not entirely sure where one blade color and type would benefit over the other? 

 

Thanks a lot! 

 

 

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I'm convinced just about any spinnerbait will catch bass in the spring .  I use a lot of maufacturers plus ones I pour . A good choice year round for me is 1/2 ounce Gold willow rear blade , Colorado front blade with some chartreuse in the skirt  . Make sure it has a quality swivel because a lot of bites come when the lure is paused and those blades need to keep spinning .

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Around her the general thinking is to use silver blades in fairly clear water, gold in stained water, and painted blades in really dirty water. This time of year I like a short arm spinnerbait with a single Colorado blade on it.

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There is a fella here who fishes the Potomac and claims that after years of experimenting, he has found the kicker combination.  A small gold Colorado on the back and a bright red Colorado on the front.  I could not resist, so next week I am going to try it and see if they jump in the boat..  

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Image result for single gold colorado blade spinnerbait

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It is all trial and error but I have a few "rules" that I go by to get me started. The first is blade type, muddy water with less than 1' visibility I go with a single Colorado blade. For water that is 1' - 2' visibility I go with an Indiana blade with a smaller Colorado on the clevis. For water 2' - 3' visibility I go with a willow with small Colorado on the front and more than 3' I use double willows. For blade finish, well if the sun is out I go with nickel or silver and overcast I go with brass/gold. Now those are just the basic guides I use, there are times when the water is clear that I will use the Indiana and Colorado combination but that is another discussion altogether. The best thing to do is when they aren't biting the bait you are throwing rather than switching to a different type of lure, try using a different color or different blades as this will help you get an idea of what works in certain conditions and what doesn't. You want to make 1 change at a time, don't change the color and the blade configuration at the same time or the blade configuration and skirt color at the same time. This way when you hit on something you know what it was and you may be able to duplicate it in the future.

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I'm fishing mostly clear water from the bank most of the time. My perfect spinnerbait is a double willow leaf gold rear, silver front most of the time. Sometimes it's silver rear and gold front. I'm trying to imitate bluegill and pumpkinseed, those combinations work for me.

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In use to think  Colorado's worked better in muddy water ,just last year I was using them . Last week I tried a willow/Colorado   combo and slayed them in 1 foot of visibility and water temps in the high 50's.   Those fish are so attuned to their surroundings that willows are not going to sneak by   unnoticed .

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Fish change color. All of them.

Clear water=more natural colors, faster action

Stained water= more colors, slower action. 

As far as water temp? I’m in central Florida so I can’t help you with that. Theres a lot of spawning done around New Years Eve....not much unlike humans

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I opt for a double Colorado most days on my local rivers. Gold blades preferably. Muddy I put on black skirt, clear ot tannic I put on a white. 

 

Lake fishing, white skirt, double Willow most time. Keep it simple and experiment, find what works best on your local waters

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On 4/19/2019 at 11:17 AM, scaleface said:

I'm convinced just about any spinnerbait will catch bass in the spring .  I use a lot of maufacturers plus ones I pour . A good choice year round for me is 1/2 ounce Gold willow rear blade , Colorado front blade with some chartreuse in the skirt  . Make sure it has a quality swivel because a lot of bites come when the lure is paused and those blades need to keep spinning .

I agree with this 100%. Also colors that usually have sexy shad in the name are often a fairly safe bet in most water as well. I generally catch more fish on a willow/colorado blade or dual willow blade than I would on colorado or indiana blades even often in dirty water, but the colorado or indiana blades do seem to attact bigger fish.

 

This time of year (still colder water in the northeast), I will usually tend to fish a spinnerbait with colorado or indiana blades. Also if you are fishing between weeds, colorado and indiana blades can be quite effective -- indiana is the better choice if the water is generally clear, there is a sun that's visible and visibility is only limited by the weeds.

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On ‎4‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 2:19 PM, OnthePotomac said:

There is a fella here who fishes the Potomac and claims that after years of experimenting, he has found the kicker combination.  A small gold Colorado on the back and a bright red Colorado on the front.  I could not resist, so next week I am going to try it and see if they jump in the boat..  

Not sure about that combo but the Penrod special is a #3 chart. Colorado over a #5-6 Gold Indiana blade, black head with chart/white w/purple pearl skirt. Everyone asks me to make them some sort of version of this  at our local shows. Personally a whitish/shad colored bait with 4.5 and 5 size silver willows on a compact 1/2oz bait works best for me.

 

Allen

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All posts above gave great advice. One thing I do consider when fishing a spinnerbait is depth. Single willow will roll better along the bottom than say a double Colorado.

 

Thinner blades = fish faster, tighter spin, more flash, less lift - I.E Willow blade

Wider/Bigger blades = fish slower, wider spin, less flash, more lift - I.E Colorado blade

Because there is always a compromise in life - Indiana blade. Good middle ground blade

 

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I do have two of the Penrod special, 1.4 and 1.2oz

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I prefer double Colorado almost always, because that combo rarely fails me, and it forces me to fish it slower, which I think probably gets more bites.  The lift that two Colorados gives also helps me stay above the weeds in my preferred, shallow haunts.

 

I stick to either black/red or white for skirt colors.  I keep it pretty simple for colors on these type of lures.

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Except for maybe poppers, spinnerbaits are my favorite lure. I think to really have a meaningful discussion about "best" or "perfect" spinnerbait it's best to start with the obvious, there is no such thing. Next is to identify the fact that there are distinct ways to fish spinnerbaits in different places and times which require a different spinnerbait and approach. For simplicity, I will break it down to the main three here, although these can be further subdivided.

 

First, and easiest is casting to schools of baitfish with breaking fish underneath. Easy, a double willow silver blades with a white or mostly white skirt in 1/2 or 3/8, Hellen Keller could do this, and if you substituted some other combination, not sure the fish would care, but non the less this is the best tool for this particular job.

 

Second, covering water, looking for active fish and/or fishing an area holding cooperative fish, willow/colorado tandem with blades/skirt matching forage in clear water, and brighter/louder colors in dirtier water.

 

Third, slow rolling along bottom, and/or along or to cover. Here a single colorado, Indiana/colorado tandem, or a willow/colorado will work best. If I barely want to move it, I'll go with the single colorado, if I'm snaking it around things, the indiana/colorado does a good job, and seems like they can't help but bite it when it passes by them. The willow/colorado gets the nod when I want to roll it a tad faster, and sometimes it flat out outfishes other combinations. Weigh should be whatever gets the lure to run at the depth I want at the speed I'm trying to fish. This is usually 3/8 shallow, and 1/2 or 3/4 (sometimes bigger) deeper or in current.

 

The accent blade thing is real, I like red, orange or chartreuse. Lastly some blade combinations work and some don't at times, I've come up with a few that get it done for me, and it's usually a subtle change like downsizing or upsizing one of the blades. I would advise to experiment and go with what works. (or just go with what the InterWeb® recommends). :)

 

Did I just type all that? I must be getting old... 

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I know several anglers that specialize fishing spinnerbaits. The combinations are nearly limitless with size, weight, blade types and skirt colors.

My suggestion is determine first what size and type the baitfish the bass are feeding on before jumping into the world of spinnerbaits.

The basic 3/8 oz pearl white Shad color with combination of gold willow and silver Colorado blades with split tail white soft plastic trailer catches bass everywhere. The 2nd would be the same size and blade combination except blue and green skirt with chartreuse bluegill color skirt and split tail green soft plastic trailer if your bass are feeding on bluegill.

From there you can go whereve you like to fine tune a spinnerbait to your conditions. Blade type determines running depth and speed; willows shallow and fast, Indiana mid depth and medium speed and Colorado deeper running at slow speeds. Any combination changes depth and speed, plus increasing or reducin the spinnerbait weight.

My preference is Nichols spinnerbaits with double holographic Indiana blades is Shad colors.

Tom

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Like the double willow leaf in a natural color or white. I use 3/8 ounce most the time.

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First step is understanding what you are trying to mimic and then think about what you want to accomplish with your color choice and blade combination. As a rule of thumb a willow leaf blade will move through cover and vegetation better but a Colorado or Indiana Blade will displace more water and allow the fish to track your lure better, this can be helpful in off colored or muddy water. Regarding color , I’m in the camp who believes in matching the forage as closely as possible , except in muddy water . Finally when fish are busting on schools of baitfish it’s pretty hard to beat a tandem willow spinnerbait, but in areas where you think the bass may be trying to focus in on one large meal (big Gizzard Shad or large panfish) then try a single large willow blade or Indiana blade. But always try various combinations including adding zoom Flukes or smaller paddle tail swimbaits as a plastic trailer this can provide more loft and realism. Good luck !

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On 4/24/2019 at 12:57 PM, Pickle_Power said:

I prefer double Colorado almost always, because that combo rarely fails me, and it forces me to fish it slower, which I think probably gets more bites.  The lift that two Colorados gives also helps me stay above the weeds in my preferred, shallow haunts.

 

I stick to either black/red or white for skirt colors.  I keep it pretty simple for colors on these type of lures.

Up in the northeast, I find that dual willow blades are generally the most effective (although like I said in my prior post colorado will often target larger fish -- and indianas are becoming my slow rolling spinnerbaits of choice in stained water!). We do have an abundance of clear water as well so the flash is rather important.

 

As for colors, I generally use at least four: white, white & chartreuse, black with colorado blades for night fishing and sexy shad or War Eagle's mouse. Mouse and sexy shad are generally effective in most water, white for clear water and white and chartreuse for stained water. Brown should also be effective in stained water, although to be honest I've hardly tried it.

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