Using Snaps For Bass Fishing

How-To Fishing Videos
When is the right time to use a snap or a snap swivel for bass fishing? Or should I tie my fishing lure directly to my fishing line? We reveal when to use snaps and snap swivels, and when to tie directly to lures in this tutorial video. When To Use Snaps or Snap Swivel or When to Tie Your Fishing Lure Directly to Your Line


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Hey, folks. Glenn May here with And if you go to our forums, you'll notice we have a lot of people on there at any given time, hundreds of people. Sometimes thousands. And we get a lot of questions from people that are first starting out in bass fishing. One of the ones I see a lot is can I use snaps when I'm attaching, you know, connecting to a jig. Can I use snaps with spinner baits? Can I use snaps with a Texas rig? Those type of things.

And so today I wanna help clarify some of that and help you out because with bass fishing, it's a little bit different than fishing with other species. A lot of times people are asking these questions because they are fishing the other species and they're starting out using...going after bass and they wanna know can I use the same setups.

And with snaps, not so much. Typically, because with bass fishing, you're throwing your lures into heavy cover, into bushes, into weeds, things like that and snaps tend to get gunked up with that. It'll collect algae, it'll collect weeds, it'll collect moss and any kinda gunk that's around. It usually just gathers up on that snap and then ruins the action of that lure.

But there are exceptions. And so today that's what I wanna go through is what are the exceptions? What are the times when you do use a snap in bass fishing?

Snaps typically...there's only a few lures where you really use them. One of them would be topwater baits such as a Zara Spook and maybe a Sammy where you need to walk the dog and get that action, that walk the dog back and forth action. A snap works really well attaching it to the lure. Now there's a lot of guys who like to use a loop knot which is perfectly acceptable. That's actually the preferred method of tying to a topwater lure like that.

But, you know, if you're new to bass fishing, learning yet another knot, you know, there's a lot to take in all at once. Using the snap is perfectly acceptable and it'll work just fine for you. So that's one instance where I'd use a snap.

Another one would be jigging spoons. Sometimes they're called flutter spoons. These jig up and down, you let it drop down. It falls and flutters erratically as it drops through the water column. So, you need that snap in order for it to get that action. If you tie it directly to the lure, you're gonna kill that. So, a snap is a really good use for jigging spoons.

One type of lure that doesn't get used that much but the snap works really well on it is a Johnson Silver Minnow, you know, a weedless spoon. Because it sashays side to side as you go through the water. And using that snap allows it that latitude to move back and forth a lot better than if you tie directly to it. The caveat is of course using those weedless spoons, they're designed to be thrown in heavy cover where there's lots of weeds, moss, hydrilla, algae, things like that and those type of things can typically...they get gunked up on the snap and can actually ruin the action of the lure. So, if you're getting a lot of gunk, getting caught up on that lure, then you can tie directly to it. That's fine. It won't swing as much but it's better than getting it all gunked up with moss and weeds and stuff.

One thing I didn't mention quickly is use of snap swivels. There's really only one use that I can think of for me that I would use a snap swivel and that would be an inline spinner such as a Rooster Tail. Those things by nature they spin and they can cause a lot of line twist which can really mess up your line and ruin your casting and get all tangled up in your rods and your reels. So, using the snap swivel helps alleviate that issue.

I also use snaps in using jerkbaits. Some people tie directly to jerkbaits. I like to use the snap on the jerkbait because I like to give it a little bit extra movement. Especially when you stop and pause it. It'll maybe dart a little bit more one side to the other and if you've got a little snap on there, it accentuates that. So, I like to use the snap there.

And then there's one kind of lure that... People have their preferences and I'll tell you mine in just a second but that's a crankbait. Now crankbaits, typically when you buy them from the manufacturer, they have a split ring on them. And there's two different kinds of split rings.

One is the circular or round split ring and the other is an oval shaped split ring. If it's a round split ring, I'll immediately take it off the crank bait. I won't use it at all. The main reason is because on a round split ring, you've got the two wires that come together real close and inevitably your line's gonna find its way into that notch. And as you're casting or retrieving that lure, those wires are gonna rub against that line and eventually wear it down and that's a spot where it can break. So, to me, a round split ring on a crankbait is useless.

The oval ones do what they can to alleviate that because the wires are on the side. And it's really difficult for the line to find its way into that notch. So that solves that problem. And a lot of people love to use oval split rings for crankbaits. There's nothing wrong with that but I like to use snaps and I'll tell you why.

There's really two main reasons. One is the snap, I can go up in size because that is a little bit larger than the split rings that come on a crankbait and that gives it a little bit more wobble, a little more action, a little more latitude to move about and look more natural as it goes through the water. So, I like to use a snap on that. Plus, when I'm using crank baits, typically, especially when I'm first starting out, I'm trying to figure out what depth the fish are at. What is their disposition? Do they want a fast-moving crankbait? Do they want one with a wide wobble, a tight wobble, one with rattles? What colors do they want? So on and so forth.

So, I am going through a lot of different crankbaits in a hurry trying to figure out what the bass want for that day. And it's a lot faster and easier if I'm using a snap to just take one lure off, put another one on and I'm good to go rather than cutting off and retying every time I wanna throw a crankbait. So that's why I like to use snaps on crankbaits.

Other than that, there really aren't any lures that you would use to use snaps, you know. Using the...tie directly to a jig, tie directly to a spinnerbait. You tie directly using pretty much all forms of finesse gear. Any kinda finesse fishing. That's a drop shot, split shot, tubes, jigs, you know, grubs, whatever. Also, tying directly to Texas rigs. You don't use snaps with that either.

So by and large, except for the exceptions that I just made, you don't use snaps in bass fishing. So, I hope that helps. For more tips and tricks like this, visit