When it comes to classic bass fishing lures, the spinnerbait is one that definitely fits the bill. They've been around forever and have proven staying power as generations of anglers have used them with success. Unfortunately, in recent years, they've taken a backseat to other techniques that fit similar situations, such as the ChatterBait, swim jig, and swimbait.
Now, the spinnerbait is making a comeback on the pro trails, and it never went away for some anglers. These baits have also improved with quality designs and catch fish, just as they have for decades. If you are new to spinnerbaits or just taking them for another spin, here are a few tips and tricks for catching more bass with a spinnerbait.
Taking Advantage of Advancements in Spinnerbaits
One of the most critical components of a spinnerbait is the wire itself, as it can significantly affect the vibration and durability of a bait. Nothing is worse than breaking a spinnerbait with a fish hooked up as you lose the bass and ruin the bait, but it happens with some wires. Unfortunately, it was a more common occurrence in years past, especially after multiple fish catches required anglers to bend the bait back into form.
One significant advancement is that many of today's spinnerbaits use stronger wires than ever, including 17-7 stainless steel wire, also used in pianos. Spinnerbaits with these blades offer more vibration than standard wires and are much more durable.
Modern spinnerbaits also offer high-tech finishes on the blades for more flash and shine. They also don't get tarnished easily after being stored in tackle boxes.
Mix Up Your Trailers
One of the easiest ways to adjust your spinnerbait's action, look, and performance is to fish them with different plastic trailers. Spinnerbaits are great because you can use them and catch fish without a trailer, but adding a soft plastic bait on the back will change how the bait performs.
Using a bulkier swimbait as a trailer will cause the bait to ride higher up in the water column, which can be suitable for fishing around submerged grass or ultra-shallow water. A thinner or smaller plastic trailer will allow the bait to get down deeper and come through the water with less resistance.
Experiment with Line Size
Like trailers, line size and, more specifically, line diameter plays a significant role in how the spinnerbait will perform. A quality 15-pound fluorocarbon like Seaguar InvizX is an excellent all-around place to start with spinnerbaits. However, adjusting the line size will significantly impact how deep your spinnerbait will run without adjusting your reel speed.
20-pound test is a good option on lakes with heavy cover and when trying to keep the bait higher in the water column. However, dropping down to a 12-pound or even 10-pound test dramatically impacts how the lure moves through the water and can be a better option when slow-rolling a spinnerbait in deeper water.
Learn the Blade Configurations and What they Do
Spinnerbaits come in various blade configurations, with the double willow or combination of a Colorado and willow blade being among the most popular. But, there are many more options out there that can help cover your bases.
Indiana blades are a cross between a willow leaf and Colorado blade and have a taper that gives them good flash and a decent amount of vibration. Going with two Colorado blades will pump up the vibration factor and give you a solid bait for stained water and during lowlight conditions. A single large Colorado will also provide you with plenty of thump and excels in these exact situations.
Try Colored Blades
Silver and gold get the most attention for spinnerbaits, but there are more to choose from. White and chartreuse blades have long been known as excellent choices for smallmouth fishing, but they will work in many more situations, including dirty water.
A recent trend in spinnerbaits is the addition of a small orange or red blade, often called a "kicker blade," which has proven to be great for extremely dirty water. Early in the year, when the water is generally the muddiest of the year, adding some bright colors can help your bait be seen and increase your odds of getting the attention of bass.
The Great Trailer Hook Debate
Adding a trailer hook to your spinnerbait is one of the best ways to ensure that you catch fish that are short striking your bait, but there are also some downfalls. The added hook can sometimes grab more vegetation and increase your odds of snagging cover. As a result, it has led to a debate among spinnerbait fans for years.
It doesn't hurt to add one in open water, but there are times when the bite is so good that bass engulf the baits, and one isn't needed. We can settle the debate by just going with your personal preference and how the fish are biting that day. If you are missing fish, adding one is probably a good idea and if you are fishing around thick cover, try fishing without one.
The spinnerbait is a time-tested lure that has continued to evolve over the years while staying true to the classic design. The skirts, wires, hooks, and blade selections may have changed over the years, but the spinnerbait is catching fish today just like it did decades ago. So if you've forgotten about the effectiveness of the spinnerbait, it may be time to give it another spin.
BassResource may receive a portion of revenues if you make a purchase using a link above.