Alex Rudd holding a crankbait lure.

Crankbait Fishing Tips No One is Talking About


It's no secret that the crankbait is one of Alex Rudd's favorite baits to throw. They're super fun, can be used most nearly year-round, and nothing gets your heart pumping like a great reaction strike. But for as popular crankbaits are in bass fishing, there are a few key techniques to fishing them successfully that rarely get talked about. After spending thousands of hours with a crankbait in his hands, the Bearded Bad Man has developed a few incredible hacks to create such unique action out of his crankbaits, it gets even the most sluggish bass to react. Prepare to be blown away.

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Video transcript:

Speaker 1:
What's up guys? Welcome back to the MONSTERBASS channel. Today, I've got a pretty cool video for you guys. Today, I want to explore an idea that doesn't get explored very often when it comes to fishing, crankbaits. Now crankbait as a tool itself, is one of my favorite baits to throw, but it is also a tool that I think a lot of people overlook key aspects of that really help them to turn this thing into a much more versatile tool than it is just right out of the box. And so today that's what we're going to be talking about. I want to be talking about how hook size and how line size can really take the crankbait and turn it into something that I think a lot of people didn't even know that it could be.

Speaker 1:
So let's start with line size. For the most part, when I'm cranking a crankbait, it doesn't matter if I'm cranking my big 10XDs, or if I'm cranking a little bitty flat-side like this, for the most part I'm going to be using anywhere from 10 to 12 pound floor carbon.

Speaker 1:
And the reason that I do that is I want to use that smaller diameter line because it's going to allow that crankbait to reach its maximum diving depth, and it's going to allow it to stay there longer. Because when it comes to a crankbait, it doesn't matter if you're talking about a medium-range diving crankbait, or you're talking about something like a Squarebill. You want that bait to get to its maximum dive in depth, and you want it to stay there as long as it possibly can, because that is the strike zone that you're trying to get those fish to eat within.

Speaker 1:
But playing with your line size can be huge and playing with your line top can be huge because it can really make these crankbaits do some very different things. So say I were to bump this floor of carbon up to a 15 or even a 17 pound floor carbon, something that's a little bit bigger diameter than that 10 or that 12, that crankbait isn't going to go as deep. So by doing that, you can take something like our Seeker 6 crankbait here, and if you throw it on something like 15 pound floor carbon, it can be a crankbait instead of diving anywhere from six to eight foot of water, it's going to two to four foot of water, or the same thing can be said about something like your 3XD, your 3XD is a crankbait that's going to go anywhere from 12 to 15 foot of water.

Speaker 1:
But if I were to say, drop down the line size and throw it on eight pound test, I can get this thing to go 15, 16, even 17 foot of water. And so the smaller the line, the deeper that crankbait's going to go the bigger the line, the shallower that crankbait's going to go. So playing with your line size can be huge because it's going to allow you to fish different types of crank baits in different depths of water, more effectively.

Speaker 1:
And so line size can be so imperative because it really allows you to fish that bait as deep as you can get it, or a little bit shallower than you want it to go. Now, line top is also huge for the most part. I'm using floor carbon on almost every single crankbait rod that I have almost every single rod that I have in the boat. I either use floor carbon or braid and or spinning applications. I'll do braid to floor carbon leaders, but for the most part, I'm using floor carbon, but mono, especially with crankbaits, can play such a huge role in getting more fish to bite and or presenting those baits in a way that you've not presented them before.

Speaker 1:
Now with your mono, those baits are going to float up a lot faster. The reason for that is monofilament floats. Floor carbon sinks, monofilament floats. And so that monofilament has a lot more buoyancy, and it's going to add buoyancy to your crankbait. One great example is something like your Wiggle Wart. A Wiggle Wart is a bait that is already fairly buoyant and it does a really good job of floating back up when you stop reeling it. And it's really good at getting through cover like wood and stuff like that.

Speaker 1:
But if you were to fish this thing on some monofilament, especially a little bit heavier monofilament, like 12 to 15 pound monofilament, this thing is going to float a lot faster. And so what that allows this bait to do is it allows it to just give that fish something that's never seen before. When you're burning and stopping a crankbait, a lot of the times what those fish actually react to is that crankbait floating back up. And so when you start to play with different line types and line sizes, and you can get these crankbaits to float up either faster or float up slower or not even float at all, you can get those fish to react at a completely different bite out of those fish that you don't normally get.

Speaker 1:
Now, this is some advanced stuff here. These are some advanced tips. These are some applications that if you've got into crankbait fishing, and you're looking to show these fish a little something different, these are going to be some great tips that you guys can use. And this is me being the guy who spent thousands and thousands of hours with a crankbait in my hands, my favorite way to catch a fish, that you get to a point where you start doing weird experiments with line size and things like that, to really figure out what you can get these crankbaits to do.

Speaker 1:
And so messing with line size and line top can be so big because it's going to either allow you to get those crankbaits deeper, get them a little bit shallower or to completely act differently in the water. And this is really huge on line type. When you start talking about things like balsa crankbaits, and balsa crankbaits being made out of balsa wood, they act completely differently as well. You're talking about a bait. That's very, very buoyant balsa is a very buoyant material, more buoyant than any of the plastics out there. And so this bait is already going to want to ride up in the water column a little bit higher and really float back up a lot higher and do really good in wood.

Speaker 1:
Now, if you pair this balsa style crankbait, either this or a little Shad Rap or something like that, or any of those Rapala-style crankbaits that are made out of balsa wood with a monofilament, you're going to start turning this crankbait into something that can be even of a powerful tool in wood than your Squarebill can. Squarebill is designed to bounce off that wood. If you have a very high buoyancy bait with a very high buoyancy line, even with a bill that's designed to dig a little bit deeper, it's going to be able to perform a completely different way and give those fish a crankbait look in shallower wood than even the Squarebill can go.

Speaker 1:
And so it's just one of those things to keep in mind. If you're playing with different crank baits, if you're playing with the diving depths, that smaller diameter lines going to allow it to go a little bit deeper, bigger diameter lines going to allow it to go a little bit shallower. And then those line tops are really going to help you to determine whether you want that bait to ride a little bit higher in the column, If you want to float a little bit faster, just those different things.

Speaker 1:
Now hook size can be huge too. And I think hook size is also something that can kind of play in unison with that line top decision. So you guys can see here on this little bandit, I have some really thin wire number six size hooks. These are smaller hooks, smaller wire. What it's going to allow this crankbait to do is it's going to allow it to float up just a little bit faster. It's not going to suspend in the water column when I stop it and stuff like that. But, if you take a very similar bait, like in your 3XD or something else you guys can see here, this is a little bit bigger hook, on this 3XD I'm actually running a 2X hook, actually running a little bit bigger split rings as well.

Speaker 1:
And so when I fish this bait in comparison to that Bandit or something like that, relatively the same buoyancy, but when you run that little bit bigger hook, it's going to allow it to just have a little bit more weight on there. And what it'll actually do is it makes this crankbait suspend. And so when I'm fishing for fish that are sitting up in the water column or I'm fishing through fish and not exactly touching the bottom, or even in scenarios where I am hitting the bottom and digging into the bottom, what those bigger hooks allow me to do is it allows me to crank that crankbait down there and stop it. And instead of it floating back up really slowly, it's just going to stop and it's going to hang in their face. And I've talked about this before, jerkbaits being one of my favorite baits to throw as well.

Speaker 1:
There's nothing that is on the market or in the fishing toolbox that we have that suspends like a jerkbait, but by messing with hook size, by messing with split ring size, by messing with line size on these different crankbaits, you can get them to suspend. Another great example is this right here. This is a flat-sided, KVD crankbait. I'm running the same hooks on this crankbait that I run on my Squarebill. Those big number 4" 2X strong hooks, a very heavy wire hook. And what it does is it makes this crankbait suspend in the water. So it's just showing those bass something with a crankbait that they don't often see, a burn stop. And when it stops, it's not floating back up, it's simply suspended in their face.

Speaker 1:
You can get those fish to react, especially when you're dealing with really high pressured fish. When you're dealing with fish after a cold front, or even when you're just dealing with some late winter bass fish and which we're about to get into. But guys, that's just some quick tips from here in the beer barn from me. These are kind of some advanced tips, some things that I don't often hear a lot of people talking about. And I think a lot of people do know about it, and they just don't want to talk about it because of some of the advantages that you can have on the water by just applying some of these simple tips, like messing with your line size, messing with your hook size and stuff like that.

Speaker 1:
But as always guys, thank you for watching, questions or comments, please go leave them down there. I'll try to answer as many questions as I can. Please come check out my channel, it's Alex Rudd Fishing. It'll be linked down below, but as always, you guys are awesome, thank you for watching.

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