Basic essentials of a crankbait collection

Discussion in 'Tackle Talk' started by ohiou_98, Jul 30, 2008.

  1. My crankbait box is severly lacking. I want to build my crankbait selection to handle most situations, shallow - deep, clear to muddy.

    Right now my plan is to go to BPS and get shallow divers, medium, deep and super deep. I plan on getting a few in natural colors of each depth range, along w/ a few brighter colors of each depth range.

    Up until now, I didn't fish crankbaits much (due to cost) but I am aware of all the manufacturers. I'm aware of the big names, Rapala, Bomber, etc. When I do buy my cranks, I'll probably go w/ Rapala (mid-range priced & good name).

    These are the basics. I'm looking for any advice in starting my crankbait box, brands, etc. Where I get lost is with all the different styles--jointed, floating, suspending, sinking, different actions....geez..... I feel like I'm buying in the dark...which is the best for all purpose (or do I actually need to buy one of each??)

    I would like to find a collection put out by a mfr. that has the depths and major colors covered. The only thing I've found so far are the collections put out by BPS.

    For now I will be happy to cover all of the basic essentials of a good crankbait box, what would you recommend on getting started on a budget of $200 or less?
  2. Strike King makes a Red Eye Shad, its a lipless crankbait, 1/2oz, rattle. Sexy Shad pattern is sort of a must have. And they're relatively cheap. my fav lipless crank. Also like the Craw pattern.

    Rapala makes a DT kit with maybe a half dozen DT series lures that crank to various depths, and a DVD about 'em or something. Never used it. just seen it in stores.

    Strike King also makes your typical lipped cranks, from square billed to big billed. travel anywhere from 1-3ft all the way down to about 16ft depending on the model.

    Strike King cranks are a bit cheaper than Rapala, and I like 'em alot.

    Rapala X-Raps are maybe my favorite jerk baits. tho they're not cheap. in the #10 size. Hot Steel is prob. my favorite pattern.

    So those are my favorite baits in the major categories.

    Lipless-Red Eye Shad (Sexy Shad, Craw colors)
    Diving-Strike King Pro Model (Sexy Shad colors, various depths)
    Jerkbait-Rapala X-Rap

    Rapala's DT series come in both fat bodied and flat. They're nice baits, for sure. Husky Jerks as well are popular jerkbaits, but I much prefer the X-Raps. Rapala Shad Raps are a longer bodied bait than the DT series, for a little different profile.

    I don't fish topwaters much at all. and as far as jointed goes, I tend to go with softplastic swimbaits, or hardbodied swimbaits, which are jointed, but not cheap at all. Don't know much about standard jointed baits just because I don't fish them much.

  3. OSU_Fisherman

    OSU_Fisherman Bassin' Buckeye

    Like MDisbrow said, Strike King is very good. For a mid-depth... go with a Series 3 diver, Deep... Series 5.

    If you're looking for some good topwaters... get at least one wake bait.
    Lucky Craft makes a jointed wakebait with a dressed back hook that swims amazingly. Well worth the $15... plus it floats so you really shouldn't lose it.
    Mann's is my second choice for wakebait. But, if you're going to the Rossford store, they don't have any.
  4. soua0363

    soua0363 Master of Nothing

    Do not overlook the BPS Nitro series crankbaits. They come in super shallow down to 10' deep. I have quite a bit of them and to me, they are a cheaper version of the Rapala DT's. Besides the super shallow one, they all have a nice tight wobble. The super shallow makes a good wake which is good when the basses are up shallow. I have caught a ton a basses on these crankbaits. They also float too if it matters to you.

    I also like the Strike King 4S crankbaits too. They have a larger profile and they run down to 4'. I like the Fire Tiger and the White with Black stripes (forget the color scheme name). They have a wide wobble.

    For lipless crankbaits, I like the BPS version and the Strike King Red Eye. They both have performed flawlessly for me. My only suggestion on these is that you replace the hooks with with EWG (extra wide gap) trebles or go with some triple grip trebles. When a bass hit these baits alot of time they are just wacking it and not enhaling it so with the smaller hooks that comes with the bait you will tend to just barely hook them. I had this problem until I changed the hooks to EWG and since then I have not had any issues with the fish popping off the hook.

    An expensive crankbait that I also like is the Strike King "King Shad". It is a great bait that goes down to about 3'. It is about 4" long with a shad profile. Do not be afraid of the size of the bait because I have caught a ton 6" to 8" basses on this bait. Remember a bait is never too big for a largemouth and that a largemouth will eat a bait up to half its size.

    Aside from the crankbaits, I would suggest a slow action rod with a medium power so that you will not yank the bait out of the fish's mouth or tear the fish's mouth. I use a 7' medium power with a moderate action with a 5.4:1 baitcaster with 12 lbs mono.
  5. As mentioned below the strike king lipless (sexy shad, red eye shad) are great baits. Just last weekend caught a couple nice LM in the canels up by port clinton on the red eye shad (of course I lost it to a snag) so buy more than 1.

    I have also had a ton of success this year with the rapala DT series. Silver and blue shad color. I have caught LM, crappie, stripper, blue gills, and even 2 muskies on them. My 2nd favorite is the rapala jointed shad in both the 2" and 2 3/4" size.

    Not sure if you do any river fishing but the rebel crawfish is a must have.

    Dicks sporting has had several sales this year offering 20% off on Rapala, and also check out the Bargin Cave on Cabelas site. You can make the $200 go long way.
  6. Rapala is my personal favorite brand of crankbait...the DT sseries is phenomenal. Strike King makes a solid bait too...especially the red eye shad, as mentioned.

    Don't overlook Bandit crankbaits either...they come in 86,000 colors/models!!
  7. MUST HAVE MANNS 1- crank. get a bright one like white or chartruse for stained water and a flashy silvery one for sunny days. Anytime bass are 3 ft or less they are dynamite. Im sure ive caught over a thousand bass on these.

    ALSO had amazing success this spring right after the spawn on a Manns waker. Only runs 1 inch deep. Texas sunrise color. (orange and yellow with black tiger stripes)
  8. crittergitter

    crittergitter Multi Species Angler

    Rapala, Bandit, and Storm make some of the best cranks in my opinion.

    Shallow: Rapala Shad Rap Shallow Runner is a must have, Bandit 100

    Medium: Rapala Shad Rap or Fat Rap, Storm Hot N Tot, or Storm Wart(any variance)

    Deep: Rapala X-Rap Deep, Bandit 300 or the Storm Deep Thunderstick.

    I fish mostly shallow cranks in shad color patterns. I like a bright Hot N Tot. I really don't fish deep cranks a lot.

    Hope this info helps.

  9. Strike King Red Eye Shad (I have been killing bass on them this year)
    Rapala DT series always a good choice
    Bomber fat free shad and gupys
    Mans baby minus 1
  10. Before you buy any crankbaits invest in some type of lure retrevier. There is not much sense in losing baits when it is easy to solve the problem, best money on cranking equipment you will spend.