Easy Trick to Fix Warped Soft Plastics

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I don’t tweak my fishing tackle for enjoyment—I only do it when absolutely necessary. With that being said, I’ve been using this particular trick for years and it has saved me a lot of money and frustration. It solves a very common problem we’ve all encountered at some point.

Stick with me for a minute and you’ll become a believer as well.

The problem

When the tails of your soft plastic baits become bent, warped, crimped, crooked—whatever you want to call it—they don’t look natural in the water. It messes up the entire presentation and makes it darn near impossible to get bites. Especially when you’re fishing them weightless.

This can happen for a number of reasons. You can leave ‘em out in the sun for too long, you can stuff ‘em in your tackle box the wrong way or they can get all whacked-out during the shipping process. Regardless of the cause, you’ll run into this issue sooner or later.

Lots of anglers might toss ‘em in the trash, but that’s a waste of money.

The solution

You can actually boil these crooked tails and restore your baits to their original shape.


Go into your kitchen and find some sort of pot—something you’d boil noodles in. Fill it with water and crank the burner up until the water boils. Grab your soft plastics with a set of tongs (safety first) and dip the tail of the bait into the water and let it sit for 10 or 15 seconds.


Remove the tail from the boiling water and immediately dip it into cold water for a few seconds. This will help “set” the plastic to its current position.


Lay the bait flat on a cookie sheet to let it dry for a few minutes and you’re done. Your once-crooked soft plastic bait will now be straight and ready to fish. In addition to straightening the tails, I also believe this makes them a bit softer than normal which can further enhance the underwater action of the bait.

Once you get the hang of it, you can boil several tails at a time and the process will become much quicker. Carefully put ‘em back into the original package and you’re ready to go fishing.