Bass Fishing: Swimbait Lure
One of the newest types of lures to come on the market in recent years are the swimbaits. The idea of a swimbait was to get a more realistic appearance and swimming action than any other kind of lure on the market. Swimbaits are usually either made from soft plastic, like artificial worms, or from hard plastic like a crankbait. They come in all kinds of designs and colors so it should be pretty easy to find a bait that looks like your local baitfish.
The soft plastic swimbaits have a body about three to four inches long and have a tail that looks like a base to stand the fish vertical. The idea behind the odd looking tail is that when the bait is moving through the water the tail will flap just like a real fish does. The body will also look like a fish moving its body to propel its self through the water. The result is a very realistic looking swimming action. The soft plastic swim baits usually do not sink on their own so you must attach a weight to get the bait down to the depth you want. The bad part about soft plastic swim baits is they are not very durable, and fairly expensive.
Swimbaits also come in hard plastic just like a crankbait, and just like a crankbait have a clear bill on the front to make them dive to a predetermined depth. Some swimbaits do not have a front bill and are designed to sink, for those you just let them fall until they hit the depth you want they start your retrieve. The difference from standard crankbaits is the swimbaits are broken into multiple sections and jointed by wire or hooks. They are also usually much larger than a standard crankbait. The result is a slower swimming action that looks much more realistic than the fast wobble of a crankbait. Again these hard plastic swimbaits are very expensive. Quite often you will pay two or three times are much for a swimbait as you would a crankbait.
Swimbaits are definitely a step towards are more realistic looking lure, and with the increasing pressure on fish the better lure you have the better your chances. But just like any other lure you must practice your technique and be patient. Swimbaits will definitely attract big fish but the reason is that bigger fish like bigger lures. So I only use swim baits if I am going for the biggest fish in the pond but if the big guy isn't hungry then your missing all the smaller fish who might be. For me swimbaits are inconsistent and as a result they are not my favorite bait. But if you have the patience they do produce big fish.