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Chatterbaits


Norm M
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I finally decided to see what a Chatterbait could do and if it could live up to the hype . Unfortunately my timing stinks as we got the highest flows I've ever seen . For the most part there wasn't enough large slackwater pockets to use it with a steady retrieve and cover some water which is what it looks to be best at .

 

When I tried pitching it to trees and pockets it just didn't produce on short retrieves . It also didn't handle the current real well but maybe I'm just not used to what it's supposed to do .

 

Anyone else use them and have any thoughts ?

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I finally decided to see what a Chatterbait could do and if it could live up to the hype . Unfortunately my timing stinks as we got the highest flows I've ever seen . For the most part there wasn't enough large slackwater pockets to use it with a steady retrieve and cover some water which is what it looks to be best at .

 

When I tried pitching it to trees and pockets it just didn't produce on short retrieves . It also didn't handle the current real well but maybe I'm just not used to what it's supposed to do .

 

Anyone else use them and have any thoughts ?

 

 

I personally hate that bait. But partner Mike throws it all the time. It's his main weapon of choice. If you want some tips on that thing drop him a line mike@customfish.com

biggestsmallie063.jpg

We must have 50 pictures like this, all from that bait.

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Actually, I've seen them work really well in current. The reason I started using them was to pull fish out of riffle areas- this requires a heavier bait. retrieve 'em hit a rock, pause behind the rock like a jig then bust out of there.

 

 

I don't know if they are a winter bait. I usually crank them in fast, bounce them off things, and pop them. They are now one of my favorite baits based on the end of the year. They don't always work, but when they do... look out.

 

I use the 3/8oz bait because the 1/4 doesn't get down in the water column or cast as well.

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I've had great success, fishing "chatter" type baits in moving waters.

The 1/4 oz size in slower and shallow waters, and the 3/8oz size in faster and deep waters.

 

I generally swim it across current and on a diagonal---

using a slow retrieve---allowing the current to carry it along,

and allowing it to "tap" the top of the rocks.

 

Using 10lb test superbraid line on a 6.5ft Med to MH action rod, [like the GLoomis SJR782 or SJR783], works great for me.

ML action rods are too soft.

St Croix Avid or Tourney Series AS68MXF [6-8 Med X-Fast action] is other ideal rod.

 

Rigging a 2/0 trailer hook, is a plus.

 

TIP: Darken a silver colored blade with a "yellow" or "brown" permanent marker pen, to reduce the flash and glare.

Sometimes the "bright flash" does not attract fish, I think it spooks them.

 

My #1 choice is a "hammered copper blade", on my spinnerbaits, fishing for smallies.

 

Works for me.

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It sounds like you guys are using a chatterbait to do the same thing I use a crankbait for . Thanks for the ideas , I'll give them a try .

 

If it ends up performing the same function as a crankbait I imagine it will get sidelined as I just prefer crankbaits to anything else .

 

Lord , I need some bigger slackwater areas and a little less current , I'm jonesing for some crankbait action .

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It sounds like you guys are using a chatterbait to do the same thing I use a crankbait for . Thanks for the ideas , I'll give them a try .

 

If it ends up performing the same function as a crankbait I imagine it will get sidelined as I just prefer crankbaits to anything else .

 

Lord , I need some bigger slackwater areas and a little less current , I'm jonesing for some crankbait action .

 

 

Norm, you need to master the chatterbait, too. Then I can gleen what is possible with them. B)

 

I guess CHB's are alot less snaggy (I'm sure you have no problems working a crank without hanging it up often) and can be made to drop vertically.

 

Brenden

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Norm, you need to master the chatterbait, too. Then I can gleen what is possible with them. B)

 

I guess CHB's are alot less snaggy (I'm sure you have no problems working a crank without hanging it up often) and can be made to drop vertically.

 

Brenden

I guess I can squeeze a couple into the ziploc with the spinnerbaits without straining the back . May as well play around with them as long as I'm in the mood for trying different stuff .

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It sounds like you guys are using a chatterbait to do the same thing I use a crankbait for . Thanks for the ideas , I'll give them a try .

 

If it ends up performing the same function as a crankbait I imagine it will get sidelined as I just prefer crankbaits to anything else .

 

Lord , I need some bigger slackwater areas and a little less current , I'm jonesing for some crankbait action .

 

Norm,

The past couple years, I've found the chatter-type bait more productive over a crankbait.

[Less snagging and hang-ups]

 

One exception---the very shallow runners---the models that run less than a foot deep---like a Mann's Minus-One or equiv (Lucky Craft, Bandit, Bomber, or the like).

 

The short puggy wide bodies models displace more water---they're very productive.

Square-lipped models are better over pointed lip models---they glance or bounce off rocks, and turn on their side, wiggle a bit before returning to their normal attitude---

this is when I find that the fish takes the lure.

 

Running these lures over grass and weeds, with that SLOW side-to-side wobble, is very productive.

 

PS---water levels will be receeding soon---no rain or thaw in the forecast for over a week.

Bring-on the ice!!!

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Ken ,

 

In many cases I use an agaiinst the current retrieve with the cranks that doesn't snag real often and when it does usually unsnags easily . I like to use cranks that are rated to run deeper than the area I'm fishing . This allows me to fish it slower and they also push more water which the fish seem to like .

 

I would think that a lure that is designed to float at rest would be a little more snag resistant than one that sinks at rest . I guess time will tell how snag resistant the chatterbaits are .

 

You can keep the ice unless you are using it for iced tea . I'm getting too old to drill holes and sit still freezing my bum on the ice . I'd much rather freeze while wading .

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Ken ,

 

In many cases I use an agaiinst the current retrieve with the cranks that doesn't snag real often and when it does usually unsnags easily . I like to use cranks that are rated to run deeper than the area I'm fishing . This allows me to fish it slower and they also push more water which the fish seem to like .

 

I would think that a lure that is designed to float at rest would be a little more snag resistant than one that sinks at rest . I guess time will tell how snag resistant the chatterbaits are .

 

You can keep the ice unless you are using it for iced tea . I'm getting too old to drill holes and sit still freezing my bum on the ice . I'd much rather freeze while wading .

 

 

Keep the line tight and you'll never snag up. Give it slack, the bait will turn the hook sideways and you get hung up. Otherwise, it just surfs over everything

 

Also, the blade makes the bait ride up a bit while the weight wants to take it down. The opposite of a crank except fot the weight. The 3/8 feels really nice to me for this reason.

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Guest rich mc

speaking of crankbaits. i listened to mike mladniks seminar yesterday. he found last year that all white cranks did great last fall in dingy water when water was below 55 degress . he uses yozuri rich

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Light colored stick-baits, (baitfish immitators), are very productive in bodies of water,

where fish primarily feed on bait fish.

 

Minnow immitators, such as Lucky Craft, YoZuri, or the like, light or whitish in color, that resemble

emerald shiner, smelt, or equiv are most productive in clear bodies of water in the northern regions,

such as Wisc, Mich, Minn, Canada, New York, Ohio, etc.

 

The larger size Lucky Craft, like the Pointer 100, in Pearl Ayu or the like, has accounted for some HUGE Smallies.

A very popular lure smallie hunters use in Lake Geneva, Green Bay, Washington Island areas and Michigan, as well as other northern region lakes.

 

Rapala has introduced "glass-like" minnow type baits, in recent years.

 

1/2 - 1oz size double willow spinner-baits, are another good choice, for fishing deeper waters.

Yamamotos 1oz double-willow spinnerbaits are designed to run deep and can be run fast without the "rolling" motion that results with most other large spinnerbaits.

 

The Senko, light colored #301 (watermelon over creamy white) is an awesome lure, fished shallow or deep.

 

When deeper water fishing, rig the Senko on a dart-head jig, and get some amazing results.

When falling, the dart head jig swims erratic, side to side or waving motion, vs falling straight down like when using a ball-head jig.

Cast it out, allow it to fall to the bottom, pause, and reel in the fish. Its pretty much that simple.

Allow it to fall on slack line, or

allow it to fall on a taught line (cast it out and close the bail---with the bail closed, the Senko will swim on a slanted direction, akin to a baitfish swimming in a downward direction, vs a nose dive).

 

Bait fish contain higher protein over crawfish, hence the fish will grow larger in bodies of water, where fish feed primarily on bait fish.

 

In lakes where there is an abundance of crawfish, such as in rocky areas, fish feed on crawfish---

hence a crawfish immitator can be is more productive.

 

In bodies of water, where there is a low population of crawfish, then the baitfish immitator seems to be more productive.

 

In clear bodies of water, I scout the shallow water areas, looking for crawfish burrows in the mud or sand bottom areas

that contain weed, wood or any visible structure.

If their are burrows (holes) present, then I use crawfish immitators, if none are present, then I use baitfish immitators.

 

In rocky areas, I prefer to crawl a jig/craw along the tops.

 

Works for me.

 

PS---The above are just some food for thought---

info you don't get at the big box stores, or read about on other websites

;);)

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Light colored stick-baits, (baitfish immitators), are very productive in bodies of water,

where fish primarily feed on bait fish.

 

Minnow immitators, such as Lucky Craft, YoZuri, or the like, light or whitish in color, that resemble

emerald shiner, smelt, or equiv are most productive in clear bodies of water in the northern regions,

such as Wisc, Mich, Minn, Canada, New York, Ohio, etc.

 

The larger size Lucky Craft, like the Pointer 100, in Pearl Ayu or the like, has accounted for some HUGE Smallies.

A very popular lure smallie hunters use in Lake Geneva, Green Bay, Washington Island areas and Michigan, as well as other northern region lakes.

 

Rapala has introduced "glass-like" minnow type baits, in recent years.

 

1/2 - 1oz size double willow spinner-baits, are another good choice, for fishing deeper waters.

Yamamotos 1oz double-willow spinnerbaits are designed to run deep and can be run fast without the "rolling" motion that results with most other large spinnerbaits.

 

The Senko, light colored #301 (watermelon over creamy white) is an awesome lure, fished shallow or deep.

 

When deeper water fishing, rig the Senko on a dart-head jig, and get some amazing results.

When falling, the dart head jig swims erratic, side to side or waving motion, vs falling straight down like when using a ball-head jig.

Cast it out, allow it to fall to the bottom, pause, and reel in the fish. Its pretty much that simple.

Allow it to fall on slack line, or

allow it to fall on a taught line (cast it out and close the bail---with the bail closed, the Senko will swim on a slanted direction, akin to a baitfish swimming in a downward direction, vs a nose dive).

 

Bait fish contain higher protein over crawfish, hence the fish will grow larger in bodies of water, where fish feed primarily on bait fish.

 

In lakes where there is an abundance of crawfish, such as in rocky areas, fish feed on crawfish---

hence a crawfish immitator can be is more productive.

 

In bodies of water, where there is a low population of crawfish, then the baitfish immitator seems to be more productive.

 

In clear bodies of water, I scout the shallow water areas, looking for crawfish burrows in the mud or sand bottom areas

that contain weed, wood or any visible structure.

If their are burrows (holes) present, then I use crawfish immitators, if none are present, then I use baitfish immitators.

 

In rocky areas, I prefer to crawl a jig/craw along the tops.

 

Works for me.

 

PS---The above are just some food for thought---

info you don't get at the big box stores, or read about on other websites

;);)

 

 

Good post, kend. Pearl Ayu is my go to color for LC's. Baitfish immitators were the bee's knees the last 6 months. I had some crazy fishing on one eastern Indiana stream that is absolutley chuck filled with Craws- but they wanted big minnow immitators over tubes. Suppose there are always exceptions to every rule.

 

I thought baitfish have protein in different levels- Shad near the top, chubs not as much. Could be completely mistaken, but I thought craws had more protein. Now you've got me cornfused.

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Good post, kend. Pearl Ayu is my go to color for LC's. Baitfish immitators were the bee's knees the last 6 months. I had some crazy fishing on one eastern Indiana stream that is absolutley chuck filled with Craws- but they wanted big minnow immitators over tubes. Suppose there are always exceptions to every rule.

 

I thought baitfish have protein in different levels- Shad near the top, chubs not as much. Could be completely mistaken, but I thought craws had more protein. Now you've got me cornfused.

 

Bterrill:

 

Thanks.

Some days, the fish just perfer a minnow over a crawfish.

(Not everyone goes to McD's for burgers.)

 

One Lucky Craft minnow bait I like best, is the light grey back, white underside with a chartreuse stripe along the sides.

(Can't remember the name right now <_< ).

Best "emerald shiner" immitator I've found, to date.

 

TIP: Take a "white" Senko---with a permanent maker pen, draw a ""yellow"" line along each side, from head to tail.

OR, use "Chartreuse" plastic worm dip dye---apply the "line" along the sides, using a Q-Tip.

[Nice emerald shiner immitator].

Works for me.

 

Yo-Zuri's Pins minnows are another of my top choices.

 

The Pins runs a tad shallower than the Lucky Craft. Outperforms a Lucky Craft when working it "VERY SLOWLY" over weeds.

Those fish just swim up and suck it in.

My top choice is the 1/16 and 1/8oz sizes, when fish are feeding on smaller size baitfish.

 

The scale patterns on both lures are very much life-like to a natural shiner minnow.

 

In my experiences, they both out-perform all other minnow immitators on todays market.

 

They cost more, ---but---oh well, still cheaper than a round of golf.

 

When fishing with crawfish immitators, and not catching fish, I downsize!

I go to a BitsyBug and with a YUM BabyBug, or the like.

That gets 'em everytime.

Sometimes they just don't want to tackle a larger craw.

 

Yamamoto BabyCraw are AWESOME! I see very few anglers using them---oh well, it's their loss.

Shorten the body about 1/2-3/4"---making the overall length about 2-2.5" is the most productive---

especially in May and June, when the crawfish are in the 2-2.5" size.

Just prior to that, I use 1 to 1.5" crawbugs.

Fish eat 'em up, like my dog gobbling-up on buttered popcorn.

 

Various species of baitfish, have different levels of protein---some more than others.

 

Shad may be at the top of the list, but most upper region lakes do not contain shad.

However, they do appear in some river systems, in Mich.

 

The great lakes were stocked with alewife---hence the results of the huge salmon.

Walleye and smallmouth bass are in the great lakes. Some areas in the northern lakes, contain some HUGE smallies.

I've seen some in the 6-7+ lb range.

 

Smelt, shiners, ciscos, and the like, are the available baitfish, in the northern regions.

The shad would die off in the cold water lakes.

 

Crawfish have less protein than shad, shiners, smelt, ciscos, (so I was told by those in the know).

 

Hope this helps.

===========

Gotta go, my dog wants his Friday night fish dinner.

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Fish eat 'em up, like my dog gobbling-up on buttered popcorn.

 

Gotta go, my dog wants his Friday night fish dinner.

 

Your dog is eating better than me. :blink: That's just not fair! ;)

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