By Terry Brown
I have never been a fan of gadget baits. I define gadget baits as those baits that have to be set and adjusted to do different things. Don’t get me wrong, I am the “King of Piddlers” and love to tweak plastics, jigs, spinnerbaits and other baits to make them look different or do something special, but baits that take a degree in nuclear physics just to get tossed are ones that usually end up getting tossed in the bargain bin in the Man Cave. Most of these types of baits take way too much time in the boat and there are way too many that work well without having to be precision adjusted.
It's one thing to dye the tail of a chunk or tune a crankbait, but it’s another to put together a puzzle bait where hooks, threading line through small openings and tying multiple knots comes into play. Baits that have to have magic formulas injected into them, lights that blink or a pile of easily lost component parts are bad business in my book. Call it a old age, bad eyesight or maybe it’s my A.D.D., but these kinds of baits drive me nuts. I like simple and I like baits that work right out of the package.
Megabass has a bait that many might call a “gadget bait”. The XPod Jr. has an adjustable lip, which honestly, I was skeptical of at first glance. Would it make the bait walk differently, would it be durable, and simply, would it catch fish.
In recent weeks, fish have begun to school on one of my area lakes. I felt there was no better time to test this bait and knowing that they have blasted a Lucky Craft Sammy, Zara Spook, a Sexy Dawg and a Duo Realis Pencil 110, I was confident the fish would bite.
I like to use braid -- Sunline FX, Seaguar Kanzen or Sufix 832, a long 7-foot, medium-heavy power rod and a high speed reel for this type of fishing because long casts are mandatory and hook-ups have to be quick. I also like braid that floats and I will actually use 30- to 65-pound braid for this technique. I have been using a 735 Dobyns casting rod and the Halo 7-foot, 3-inch medium-heavy power rod. I have been using the new Revo Premier 6.4:1 and Team Lews 7.1:1 reels.
I like to use an oval split ring on most walkers but do not on the X-Pod. I tried it, but felt it walked tighter with the lip closed and with the lip open chugs better. This bait has a tight walking action and sits tail down on a pause. It has a very different rattle, like a deep one knocker and casts extremely well.
The color combinations are superior and the scale designs make it so realistic bass won't refuse them. I use a walking and dragging cadence. Walk, walk, walk, slide and many of the best hits came when it was pulled.
The body of the X-Pod Jr. narrows in the middle and widens at the tail section. The head is masterfully designed with flared lifelike gills, 3D eyes and a tapered fish-like mouth. The adjustable lip adjusts to six different positions and with the mouth is completely open it chugs like a popper. The X-Pod Jr. is 90.5 mm, which is a little less than 4 inches long. The line tie is on the very top of the mouth and that design provides better walking action.
The design, composition, size and sound of this bait really seemed to set off some big bass. I guess after spending some time reviewing the bait, one could now say I'm a gadget-bait-loving angler.
You can find the Megabass X-Pod Jr at select retailers and there are plans to have more distribution stateside in the next year. To see the colors and more about the x-pod jr, visit megabassusa.com/products/xpod-jr.