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Crankbaits, Jerkbaits, Lipless Crankbaits, What's The Difference?

Devon Cartwright |

Crankbaits, Jerkbaits, Lipless Crankbaits, What's The Difference?

Devon Cartwright |

Fishing for bass with hard lures including crankbaits, jerkbaits and lipless crankbaits

This KastKing blog article is from the KastKing Channel fishing video Crankbaits, Jerkbaits, Lipless Crankbaits, What's The Difference?  See it here https://youtu.be/VDT4M-3MR2g

 Devon  says, “Hey everybody, Devon here, a.k.a. the World's Okayest Fisherman and today I'm going to do a video for you talking about the difference between jerkbaits, crankbaits, and lipless crankbaits, because to a brand new angler they look very similar. However, they are meant to be fished at different times using different techniques and I'm going to talk about that a little bit today about what makes them similar, what makes them different and when you should use one versus another so stick around.”

This article covers:

  1. How To Fish The Jerkbait
  2. Bass Fishing With Crankbaits
  3. Different Size Jerkbaits
  4. Lures That Make Rattling Noises
  5. Sinking Floating and Suspended Jerkbaits
  6. Winter Fishing With Jerkbaits  
  7. Summer Fishing With Jerkbaits
  8. Fishing Around Cover With Crankbaits
  9. Square Bill Jerkbaits As Deep Diving Lures
  10. Micro Jerkbaits
  11. How To Fish Lipless Crankbaits
  12. How To Fish Lipless Crankbaits
  13. Lipless Crankbaits For Every Season

MadBite, a sister brand to KastKing, offers bass fishing lures in this 187 piece fishing kit:

“Let's talk about the similarities first. Okay, these are all hard sided lures. They are all designed to mimic bait fish, sometimes crawfish, but for the most part bait fish and traditionally they all have treble hooks on them. Sometimes you can get them with single hooks but for the most part they all come with treble hooks.  Let's go ahead and talk about the three different lures. This is our lipless crankbait right here. It's called lipless because there's no plastic lip on it as you will see with the crankbait which has a plastic lip on it.

How To Fish The Jerkbait

“Then you have a jerk bait, also has a plastic lip on it, all three of these lures here were hand painted by Eric at fish head custom lures here in San Diego. You guys can check him out on his Instagram page at fish head 15. Let's start off by talking about my favorite. We're going to start with the jerkbait. The jerk bait is meant to be fished exactly as the name implies --  by jerking your rod tip to impart the action on the lure.  What you do is you cast it out, you retrieve just a little bit, and then what you're going to do is you're going to jerk pop your rod tip one, two, three times. It doesn't matter rapid succession, how hard you pop determines how the lure is going to maneuver.  But, when you're cranking the lure back to you it does a very tight wobble and then when you pop that rod tip it's going to dart off one way or the other.

Bass Fishing With Crankbaits

“Okay, so you're meant to reel it back a little bit, give a couple good pops, and then just pause and let the lure sit there. What it's doing is it looks like a dying or injured bait fish. Sometimes the strike will come on the pause when you just let it sit there a bass might think. ‘Oh, it's injured. It's not moving. I'm gonna get it.’ Other times it's right when you do a pop right after a pause that looks like that bait fish is trying to get away and a bass will be triggered to strike.

Different Size Lures

“These lures come in different sizes. The way they are named; this is a 110. They are named things like 110, 100, 90 and that's in millimeter length, so this is a 110 millimeter lure plus one it's called a plus one because it has three hooks one, two, three. The plus one is the third hook . This lure here is also a 110 plus one because it's got the three hooks. But, as you can see, this plastic bill on the front is actually much larger. That's because this is a Rapala Shadow Rap Deep. It is designed to go to a deeper depth than this one.

“Then you have like a 90. So, as you can see, this only has two hooks and it's a little bit shorter. But this is a 90.  It has a short bill this is very shallow. This is my absolute favorite jerkbait right here in this exact color. This one's my favorite. And then you have like this one you can see the body shape is a little bit different. It's a little bit wider. It's got a little bit more of a curve to it this is what's known as a slash bait by Rapala X Rap.  Again, long bill is meant to go to deep to deeper depths.

Lures That Make Rattling Noises

“They all have usually some kind of rattle in them if you can hear it. They can be silent, you can get them without. That depends on you know, what your presentation is. If you have some skittish fish and you don't want to make that rattling noise you might get a silent one.

Sinking Floating and Suspended Jerkbaits

“And then, jerkbaits are usually either floating, suspending, or sinking, and that is what happens when it hits the water. A floating jerkbait obviously will float to the top of the water.  A suspending one,when you crank it down, and you're popping it, it will sit at the depth that it was at. And then a sinking one will sink afterwards.

Winter Fishing With Jerkbaits  - Rely On The Pause

“These are great winter lures. You should be fishing these when the water's cold when the bass are lethargic because this is not a fast presentation. You can cover a lot of water in the winter time. This is probably one of the faster presentations you can use because you're going to cast it out, you're going to reel it back a little bit , you're going to pop up,  you're going to let it sit the length that you pause. The pause can be very important.  The colder the water usually the longer you want to pause. Ten seconds seems like forever, but when the water's really cold that ten seconds can be the key to getting a bite out of a fish. If you fish it any faster they may not be interested in chasing it down. If the water is a little bit warmer, maybe in the 50s or something like that, and you're throwing this, maybe you only pause for two seconds.

Summer Fishing With Jerkbaits Pause The Pause

“You can even throw these in the summertime. It's not a big summertime lure, but there are some people who will throw these in the summertime and you can fish it very fast just crank, crank, crank, pop, pop, crank, crank. No pause whatsoever and it can be a very effective technique to use in the summertime.

Fishing With Crankbaits Around Cover

“Let's talk about the crankbait again it's in the name crank bait these lures are designed to be cast out and cranked back to you. This plastic bill gets it down to whatever depth it's designed to go to, but this is supposed to deflect off of cover so you should be fishing these around cover. When it's a deep diving crankbait like this, the cover can be the bottom of the lake. If you have a lake that doesn't have a lot of cover around, maybe you just cast it out and use a deep diving crankbait that gets down to the bottom and just bounces along the bottom. What it's doing is it's kicking up mud and silt there might be some rocks down there that it can deflect off of and it's creating a lot of noise and it's going to entice a bass to come bite it.

Square Bill Jerkbaits For Deep Diving

 “Okay, these have very wide bodies on them compared to the jerkbait.  So, that's because when this is coming through the water it's doing more of a rolling motion rather than like a tight shimmy.  These are very active baits. They're designed to be constantly moving. You can pause them sometimes kind of like a jerk bait. You can try and fish them a little bit like a jerkbait, but overall you are supposed to cast these out and crank them back. Because they are an active bait these are best fished during the warmer months starting probably in the springtime right around the spawn into the summer. That's when these are good because the bass are active.  They're going to be chasing after bait fish and stuff like that, so that's when you should be fishing crankbaits. The bigger the bill the deeper they go. This right here is what's known as a square bill.  These typically only dive down to about three to five feet. They have a square shaped bill.  That's how you know it's a square bill.  Again deflect off cover, fish it around sunken trees and things like that.  You're going to lose a lot of these. The treble hooks love to get hooked up in trees and things like that.  You're going to lose a lot but that's where you should be fishing. As you can see, they do make some that have like a much narrower body on them.  Again with a deep diving bill. That's because this is meant to be fish probably in cooler weather. It has a very a tight wobble very similar to a jerkbait or a lipless crankbait, but this dives deep so this is more reminiscent of what a bait fish would look like in cooler weather.

Micro Jerkbaits

“And then they even have like micro crank baits super tiny. Kind of cool, good for finesse or panfish. Just thought I’d throw that one in there because it was it's kind of neat as far as sizing goes. Excuse me these come in different sizes typically like a 2.5.  A 1.5.  2.5 is going to be bigger than a 1.5.

How To Fish Lipless Crankbaits

“All right, lastly let's talk about the lipless crankbait. Again, no plastic lip on it, but these are designed to be cast out.  And then there are various ways you can fish this.  You can just do a straight retrieve. It's going to be a very tight wobble or you can do like a yo-yo.  You're going to cast it out.  You're going to let it sink all the way down to the bottom and then you're going to pop your rod tip and it's going to swim up; up off the bottom and then fall back down and then swim up off the bottom and fall down. That's typically how I fish these.  They’re also very good to fish around grass lines and weed lines because what you're going to do is you're going to cast parallel to the grass line and you're just going to start reeling back right over the top of that grass or weed line. Sometimes these treble hooks are going to hook into that grass and what you're going to do is you're just going to aggressively pop your rod tip and it's going to rip out of that grass and that motion, that action, is what's going to cause a lot of the strikes to happen. It looks like a fish trying to get away. A bass will come after it.  As you can see, they come in kind of different shapes. This one has a very rounded body. This one has a little bit a little different shape to it. This one's painted kind of like a crawfish. This is a  red eye painted like a threadfin shad. And then this one's a little bit smaller. So you can see these also come in smaller sizes. These are typically sized by weight so quarter ounce, half ounce, three quarters ounce.

Lipless Crankbaits For Every Fishing Season

“These are really good to fish all year round. They're kind of like the best of both worlds. Over here you can fish them fast, you can fish them slow, they will entice bites any time of the year depending on how you choose to fish them.”


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