By Walker Smith
Crankbait fishing isn’t the mindless, chunk-and-wind technique that many folks think it is. There are many idiosyncrasies and quirks that make it a killer year-round technique. The most important thing to understand, however, is that not all crankbaits are the same. I’ve been using the Bomber Fat Free Shad BD7 for years, and 4 particular characteristics make it one of my all-time favorite crankbaits:
• Dives quickly
• Unique wobble
• Runs true
• Great finish
Gets to the fish quickly
The Bomber Fat Free Shad is designed to dive to the desired depth with minimal effort. While most similar lures require very long casts and aggressive winding to reach maximum depth, the narrow cross section of the Fat Free Shad allows it to dive very quickly. This also makes it easier on the angler— your arm won’t get worn out from fishing the 14- to 18-foot model all day.
This seemingly miniscule detail has led to hundreds of fish catches for me over the years. If you’re trying to crank deep docks, most crankbaits simply don’t have time to dive deep enough to reach the fish. A quick pitch cast next to the dock is all that’s needed to ensure the bass get a good look at the Fat Free Shad.
Fast and wide wobble
This crankbait has a very unique action that allows it to maintain a wide wobble at high retrieve speeds. Whether you’re targeting sluggish, cold water bass or aggressive post spawn bass, the Fat Free Shad’s action triggers reactions.
I consider this bait a very effective “in-between” crankbait. Its aggressive action appeals to bass in all water clarities and temperatures.
The Fat Free Shad doesn’t require any tuning before you make your first cast. Every one I’ve used has run straight as an arrow, right out of the box. When you hit a piece of cover with it, they tend to kick out a good bit, so don’t mistake that action for a poorly tuned crankbait. I’ve caught some of my biggest Fat Free Shad fish after colliding with cover.
Not only does it run straight, but it also reaches the advertised depth with no problem at all. You don’t have to worry about buying a 8- to 14-foot model that only runs 7 to 9 feet. This saves a lot of time and frustration while giving you the confidence that your bait is running where it needs to be.
The high-shine, light reflective finish that Bomber puts on the Fat Free Shad makes it a phenomenal crankbait for sunny conditions. Small flecks of glitter scattered throughout the body make it an insanely realistic bait. I’ve out-fished a ton of buddies with a Fat Free Shad on sunny days—I’m telling you, the finish makes a big difference.
Fortunately, the reflective finish is durable, too. Don’t be scared to chunk this bait around hard cover. It can take it.
I can’t think of a better time to throw the Bomber Fat Free Shad than right now. The bass are beginning to stage on their prespawn hangouts throughout most of the country and you can be sure that I’ll have one tied on this weekend.
The Bomber Fat Free Shad is available at TackleWarehouse.com and retailers nationwide.