crankbait321

Crankbaits That Hunt....why?

40 posts in this topic

I am learning about crankbaits that hunt. I would like to know how far off center does some of you guys favorite (that means one's that catch fish. LOL!) crankbaits come off center, ie. 3 inches, 3 feet? and for how long? Do you know if there is any good video of a good hunting square bill in a swimming pool etc. What is your opinion to what makes a crankbait hunt? Can someone explain their philosophy on the crankbait basically oscillating so fast that it causes this bait to hunt? What brands of crankbait have you found that hunt? I know old Bagleys but what other ones? Any plastic baits you find out of the package do this? The RC 1.5 crankbait is one of the most popular crankbaits around right now does it hunt and what makes it so good in your opinion?

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I have a lot of RC's and have never seen one that hunts, its just a very good bait all around. I think its best attribute is how it bounces off cover.

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I have a lot of crankbaits that hunt, and IMO it is an overrated attribute, and one I actually find undesirable in anything but a shallow crank.

The only plastic bait I've used that hunts out of the package is the Lucky Craft Flat CB SR - which is discontinued. They're great crankbaits (IMO one of Lucky Craft's best designs).

I can impart all the action I want to with my rod tip and retrieve variations........how a crank responds to those inputs is far more important to me than whether or not it hunts.

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Rayburn Guy, that's an interesting website, thanks. I basically agree with Stringjam about "hunting". If you fish a shallow crankbait properly and it's hitting lots of cover, hunting becomes a non-issue. Guys hear about hunting crankbaits being in some way magical but many don't recognize hunting when they see it, and some confuse it with a screwed up, poorly running or badly tuned crankbait. And in a sense, I think they're right! :) I think you build hunters by designing the bait to be near (but not over) the edge of instability. And there's no general rule on exactly how to do that - it depends on the specific bait design. No doubt, the guys who built tens of thousands of square lipped shallow Bagley balsa baits know how to make that design hunt and can describe how they did it. Does that translate to all other shallow baits? I don't think so. But if you are building shallow round baits with square Lexan lips, you can get some good direction from the website articles that Rayburn Guy cited. The problem you run into with this is that when you push the stability envelope, it's always gonna push back. You're going to build a certain percentage of baits that surpass the limits and are worthless. Another percentage will run OK but will never hunt. I build a variety of bait types as a hobby and the total numbers are small. I know I can build a shallow round square lip bait that has lively action and catches fish. I prefer not to have a percentage of them that have to go directly from the workbench to the trashcan. JMHO.

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If you think of hunting in terms of degrees of divergence to both sides from a base course, most of the good hunters I've seen have 10-15 degrees of divergence. Enough to be noticeable but not over-do it. You still want to be able to guide the crankbait through (and into) cover to get deflections.

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My thoughts about the effectiveness of the hunting crank, is that it is all about the change of direction, this change of direction is what triggers the bite. We have all seen fish follow the bait as you retrieve, apparently interested, but not convinced. Fish are not smart, they work from instinct.

My theory is that if the predator attacks, the prey can change direction and evade the attack. But if the predator waits for the change in direction before attacking, it has more chance of success, because the prey has committed itself to a new direction and cannot change again immediately.

We all quickly learn when we start cranking, that a steady retrieve is not nearly as successful as a varied retrieve. This is the skill part of crank fishing, in addition to choosing the correct action, depth, size shape, color etc. I believe that a crank bait with a wide hunting action on a steady retrieve, will produce more than a non-hunting bait on a steady retrieve. But, we rarely perform steady retrieves anyway, so this idea is pointless.

When you work a hunter with twitch, jerk and all the other movements in your armory, the action and changes of direction are far more erratic and pronounced. I don’t fish nearly enough to say whether the above is proven and when I do fish, I only use my stuff, so I cannot compare.

All my baits hunt and remain stable, unless I apply a very violent burn. It is possible to make consistent hunters and I know of a couple of TU members who can do this. Am I going to tell you how? Sorry, the answer is no, same answer you will get from the others. Hunting baits are my edge on the rest.

Dave

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When I am bass fishing and casting there is no need for a hunting bait but when I am trolling open water for walleyes or pike a hunting bait becomes much more valuable. The reason is directional changes. When casting I am imparting all the directional changes myself through speed changes or hitting objects.

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Well now I've heard it all! Hunting crankbaits?? Hunting deer, yes. Hunting squirrels, ok. But hunting crankbaits? Wouldn't that be like shooting fish in a barrel??

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Well now I've heard it all! Hunting crankbaits?? Hunting deer, yes. Hunting squirrels, ok. But hunting crankbaits? Wouldn't that be like shooting fish in a barrel??

Milia- This is serious Blokey talk here ;)---------------- Dave I was going to refer CB321 to you and the vids, welcome back. Pete

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I have built many baits that hunt. I have fished, for many years, baits that hunt . There is no doubt in my mine that baits that hunt do catch more fish. When a predator is after prey, the prey never runs in a straight line. Watch a fox and a rabbit or a big cat and a deer. The rabbit and the deer will run a zig zag pattern every time or die. Same thing with fish and all of nature. Now, Bob P and Vodkaman are exactly right on with the instability thing. To make a lure not stable, and want to run a little crazy, try adding a little weight to the top of the lure. Shallow running square bills work the best. Deep cranks have a hard time recovering from running one direction and then the other.

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I like to add a little weight on top and at a slight angle towards to front of the bait and just off center ever so slight.

Jeff

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For Muskie trolling we modify many baits to hunt or dart. I like to run them when the water is clean or clear. Muskie will follow for an extended period of time and the darting action from side to side will create the appearance that the lure is fleeing from being lunch. I do not like to use a wandering bait in dirty water I find I will have more strikes where the fish is lost from not as good of a hook up, or short strikes. I believe they wander when they are on ragged edge of blowing out. They run out to one side then correct there way back only to dart off in the other direction, We modify wooden lures to do it by running over size bills, and you can also bend the line tie screw eye down a little at a time. I think some of the darting comes from pressure building up on and flexing the bill. I am talking about baits being trolled from 3.9 to 4.5 m.p.h. It is usually more often on a straight bait than a jointed however a jointed will wander as well. I usually modify the bait to have a split ring on the rear treble for a little more action as well. I have lures from many companies that have the bill off center or crooked and after tuning the lure to run they are fish catching machines. A lure that wanders on the ragged edge will blow out at trolling speeds from a smaller amount of weed fouling than a real true running bait which is part of my reasoning for calling it running on the ragged edge.

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I am learning about crankbaits that hunt. I would like to know how far off center does some of you guys favorite (that means one's that catch fish. LOL!) crankbaits come off center, ie. 3 inches, 3 feet? and for how long? Do you know if there is any good video of a good hunting square bill in a swimming pool etc. What is your opinion to what makes a crankbait hunt? Can someone explain their philosophy on the crankbait basically oscillating so fast that it causes this bait to hunt? What brands of crankbait have you found that hunt? I know old Bagleys but what other ones? Any plastic baits you find out of the package do this? The RC 1.5 crankbait is one of the most popular crankbaits around right now does it hunt and what makes it so good in your opinion?

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ABOUT CRANKERS THAT HUNT,I MAKE ABOUT 200 BAITS A YEAR AND YES THEY HUNT .I AGREE WITH VODKAMAN AND THAT IT TAKES TIME AND WORK TO GET EVERYTHING RIGHT IN A BAIT TO "HUNT" .THE FIRST FLAT BAIT I MADE TOOK 27 BAITS TO GET IT TO DO WHAT I WANTED IT TO DO AND IT COUGHT A BASS ON THE 3RD. CAST .I MAKE 11 DIFFERENT STYLES OF BAITS NOW AND THEY ALL ARE 2 PC. BALSA .IT HAS BEEN SO MUCH FUN AND I WOULDN`T HAVE TRADED IT FOR ANYTHING .THE ONLY THING I CAN SAY IS IF YOU GET REAL GOOD AT MAKEING BAITS BE CAREFULL OF THE BASS PROS .SOME ,NOT ALL WILL SELL YOUR STUFF TO ANOTHER COMPANY .PUT IN YOUR TIME AND ENJOY THE UPS AND DOWNS OF THE RIDE .

FISHING IS "FINTASTIC" ,

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Congrats Ken on cracking the hunter. Once you understand the geometry, it can be reproduced. I like persuing hunters because I doubt that a mass produced bait could made to such close tolerances, being so close to instability.

I have a design for a high speed trolling hunter. Not even built never mind tested, but I am very confident that it will work. The lip does not need to be over size to achieve hunting. Some think that the lure has to be off centre or some other build error to achieve hunting. This is not true, the bait must be perfectly aligned.

For those wishing to explore hunters (zig-zag) action, everything you need to know is in this thread. The subject seems quite popular at the moment, being discussed on another forum.

Dave

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Well, apparently there is a "cheater" way to accomplish it; Imakatsu has achieved it with a lure they are calling the Waddle Bat (I don't think it is released yet). It looks like they are getting the erratic action with something installed near the tail of the lure, but they are trying to keep it under wraps until its on sale, I guess. All the pictures they have on the website have the tail of the lure blurred out:

585_1278574230_s.jpg

Whatever it is, it does achieve a pretty erratic action, although I have never fished a hunting balsa bait, so maybe the hunting on the balsa bait is more subtle (this hunting action seems a bit over the top)

Edited by SmokeyJ

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I could take a purists view and say that is not hunting, but that would be foolish. What we are looking for is that extra, that makes the fish bite and this lure definately has it. Can't wait to see the design.

Dave

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I got a bait I made where I tried to carve flaired out gills on the lure.. one of the gills is bigger than the other because IM RIGHT HANDED, Blind and it was made by hand. I molded that design and now they all hunt. WHY? I dont have a clue.. they just hunt and catch fish. My guess is that the bigger gill is pushing water and causing it to run off balance and throw off the action under the water.. I compare this to NASCAR Drafting. IF you ever notice those cars at Super Speedways how the draft effect the movement from the in car camera shots.. That is the main reason HANDMADE baits are KNOW FOR HUNTING ACTIONS.. they arent made by a machine and they just arent perfectly balanced.. no matter how hard we try to make them perfect.

A good bait that hunts wobbles left right left right in perfect harmony and doesnt flip over.. but itm must not track in a straight line back to the fisherman.. the bait I made that hunts tracks in a zig zag track line back to the both while it wobbles left right in harmony. Basically a hunting crankbait is a walk the dog wobblin crankbait.

BUT HERE IS WHAT I BELIEVE THE MOST...

You catch the most fish on the baits you use the most.

The Rookie.

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Rookie, would love to see some pics of the bait.

Not so sure the gills are causing the hunt, but that hardly matters. The fact is that the body is molded and you can reproduce the effect. What shaped lip are you using, I am guessing square?

Dave

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snipped.........

All my baits hunt and remain stable, unless I apply a very violent burn. It is possible to make consistent hunters and I know of a couple of TU members who can do this. Am I going to tell you how? Sorry, the answer is no, same answer you will get from the others. Hunting baits are my edge on the rest.

Dave

Rookie, would love to see some pics of the bait.

Not so sure the gills are causing the hunt, but that hardly matters. The fact is that the body is molded and you can reproduce the effect. What shaped lip are you using, I am guessing square?

Dave

You are hardly playing fair here Dave.... You are hunting teef.gifteef.gifwhistle.gifwhistle.gif

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LOL, yes it does look that way. Just professional curiosity I assure you.

Dave

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LaPala, I think the explanation is very simple. Dave knows very well about one way to achieve the hunting action, but if they are more, he would like to know them all. Just professional curiosity, as he says ... :)

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Rofish, yes I am convinced that their are more causes for hunting. True, I have only found one of them, but up until Rookies post, I haven't been tempted to look for more.

So far, I cannot get my rudimentary knowledge of fluids to explain a hunting action from Rookies gills. This probably just means that I need to learn more. What are your thoughts, as you studied fluids, if I remember right?

Dave

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V-man,

Sorry, I didn’t study fluids, and I’m not an engineer. I just have some ideas, based on my feeling about how a hunting action could be done. But I do not have the necessary time to experiment. Up to know, I have made just one crank bait that hunts, and I guess the action is related somehow to the 2 step lip the lure has. But further on, there are a lot of variables in the lip itself (the lip has 2 angles, which can vary, the lengths of the 3 parts of the lip can vary as well, also the angle of the lip, or the angle of the lip slot may be different, etc). I have not even tried yet to duplicate that lure, and I do not know if its action could be viewed as a hunting one. The crank bait would go to one side a little, then come back at the center for 1-2 seconds, then go to the other side, and come back again to the center, and so on. I do not know if anyone would consider such action as a hunting one.

As I have noticed so far, there is no a totally agreed upon action that could be considered as a hunting one. Some would say that a badly tuned crank bait will have a hunting action. BobP explained in his post very well this situation. That lure is on the edge of instability, as he says. It is very simple to make such a lure. You only have to make the lure not perfect. For instance, if the lip has a slight angle to the left or right, you can achieve an action much like the action of a badly injured fish. You can use such a crank bait at low speed only, because at high speed it will blow out.

But if I find a way to constantly achieve an action which is not “true”, and couldn’t be even considered as a “hunting” one, I will surely post my findings here.

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