Hardbait Special: Cover the water column,  cover your bases.  

Lipless Crankbaits

Yo-Zuri Sashimi Rattl’n Vibe

Yo-Zuri’s newest lipless crankbait, the Sashimi Rattl’n Vibe, incorporates proprietary color-change technology evident in all Sashimi series baits. As the bait slashes through the water, side ripples and notches cause the lure to reflect different colors. The Rattl’n Vibe pulses a distinct low frequency rattle sound which serves as fish attractant. Weights and BBs inside the plug help increase sound distance underwater, while also increasing casting distance. Work the Vibe fast just below the surface, stop-and-go through the shallows, or even vertical jig. The Rattl’n Vibe weighs ¾ ounce, is 3 inches long and comes in 15 color combos. Price ranges from $14 to $16. For more, visit www.Yo-Zuri.com.

Sebile Spin Shad

Resembling a pair of baitfish swimming in desperation, the two-part Sebile Spin Shad is as versatile as it is fun to look at. Larger ¾-ounce and 1¼-ounce versions can be slowly jigged as deep as 40 feet, says Patrick Sebile, designer of Sebile lures. New ¼-ounce and ½-ounce versions might be better suited skimming over the flats. Cast the plug and let it fall to a specified depth, says Sebile, then begin your retrieve. The tail blade starts spinning and never really stops while the lure’s in the water. A downward facing head and wide body protect the treble hook from catching snags when fishing near structure. Spin Shads are made from bismuth metal then enclosed inside a hard-plastic body. Prices start at $14.99. For more, visit www.SebileUSA.com.

Twitch Baits

MirrOlure MirrOdine Mini

At 2¼ inches and 15 percent smaller than the original, the Mini is the smallest suspending twitchbait in MirrOlure’s MirrOdine series. Ideal for waters slimmer than 18 inches, the hardbait might imitate a thumb-size scaled sardine even better than its predecessors. Sixteen color patterns are available including Electric Blue and Bayou Green. All MirrOdines feature a luminescent insert, rattle and durable 3-D eyes. Other size ‘dines include the XL 27MR (3 inches), the original 17MR (2 ½ inches) and MirrOminnow 19 MR (3 ¼ inches). Suggested retail price is $7.79. For more, visit www.MirrOlure.com.

Bomber BaDonk-A-Donk SS

The Bomber BaDonk-A-Donk SS pops, locks and drops underneath the water’s surface like an injured baitfish. Internal parts include a proprietary weight system and rattle that allows a sink rate of 1 to 2 feet per second. The Donk SS measures 2½ inches, weighs ¼ ounce and features No. 5 saltwater grade treble hooks. Fifteen colors are available, including natural finishes like menhaden, mullet, pilchard and pinfish. Other Badonk-A-Donk models include the original, low pitch and high pitch variants. Price is $8.99. For more, visit www.BomberSaltwaterGrade.com.

Lipped Baits

Rapala Clackin’ Minnow

Rapala made sure to include its “exposed” sound-chamber technology into the Clackin’ Minnow—the rattle chamber makes direct contact with the water. The Clackin’ Minnow combines pieces of three different lures—the Clackin’ Rap, X-Rap and Flat Rap—to elicit a hard wobble or jerking action on the retrieve, rattle cadence throughout and slow fall at rest. Durable holographic finish and VMC black nickel and rear SureSet hooks stand up against fish, structure and pliers. Two sizes (CNM09, 3 ½ inches and CNM11, 4 3/8 inches) run as deep as 5 feet and come in 16 different colors. Price is $13.99. For more, visit www.Rapala.com.

Berkley Flicker Shad

Anglers who fish in deeper sections of lakes and rivers can reach those suspended bass with the Berkley Flicker Shad. The Flicker name derives from its fleeing action, similar to a wounded baitfish. “Crankbaits are the way to go when fish are suspended,” says Berkley’s Gary Parsons. “The Flicker Shad was designed to provide an erratic action through the water that catches the fish’s attention.” Features include an internal weight transfer system for casting distance and Mustad UltraPoint treble hooks for durability. Two sizes are available in 12 color choices. The 2-inch version dives from 9 to 11 feet; the 2.75-inch bait averages 11 to 13 feet. Price is $4.49. For more, visit www.berkley-fishing.com.

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