Little baits get more bites. This is the idea Yo-Zuri chose to run with in their new lineup of hard baits, the 3DR-X Series. Offering 10 undersized baits of all shapes and sizes, this company chose to flood a demographic of the market that is sometimes underserved, when it comes to quality baits in particular.
There appears to be a push of late by many companies in the arena of small baits. Undersized lures have always gotten bites, able to be used to target smaller fish that might hit a big bait on occasion, but are much more susceptible to smaller lures as a rule.
The increase in fishing pressure, however, is likely most responsible for this recent surge in small baits. More anglers are on the water now, many with ridiculously capable cutting-edge electronics. This has the bass a little gun-shy with bigger baits. Turns out, little baits get more big bites too. Enter the Yo-Zuri 3DR-X SR Crankbait.
BUILT TO GET BIT
Yo-Zuri kindly sent out the whole lineup of 3DR-X hard baits for me to test out, but my eyes were drawn to one in particular right away, the SR (Shallow Runner) Crankbait. This little nugget (particularly in the Ghost Sexy Shad color I was sent) oozed bite-drawing potential.
I’m a big fan of small crankbaits, especially in the fall in forage-dense environments. Baits like the Norman Deep Little N have gotten bites for dad and I in high-pressured situations for decades. The Team ARK MiniDiver is another sweet little crankbait I was exposed to a couple years ago, that simply gets bit. There are some small squarebills too that I really like.
But this new find, the 3DR-X SR, was a little different. Unlike the Deep Little N and ARK MiniDiver (which both have long bills), this bait has a short bill. And, unlike the small squarebills I like (which have short, square bills), this 3DR-X SR has a rounded bill. A bait this size, with a bill design like this, is something I haven’t personally stumbled upon yet. And it looked like it was built to get bit.
CREEK AND BANK FISHING
Occasionally, I’ll venture out to wade a creek or fish from the bank fish. I’ve done this more the last couple years. I still have a fiberglass boat, that I was actually gifted by a friend’s wife when he passed. He was like a grandpa to me, and his wife gave me his most prized possession, an early 2000s Triton TR 20.
I sold my truck though a couple years ago and bought a ’99 Buick Century, after heavy conviction from the Holy Spirit to start clawing my way out of debt. Proverbs 22:7 landed hard at the time, “… the borrower is slave to the lender.” I realized, very suddenly upon hearing this verse from the Bible for the first time, that I was slave to about a dozen different people and businesses.
Praise God, $47,548.48 of that debt is gone now. I don’t tell you this to boast. I tell you to hopefully encourage you that you too can grind your way out of a hole, if you find yourself in one. I did, I believe by the power of Christ who lives inside of me. I’m not trying to beat you over the head with that part of it either, but I do believe in giving credit where credit is due, so all glory goes to God.
All this to say, I’m still in the Buick for the time being. And the Buick, as surprisingly reliable as it’s been, just can’t pull the big rig. So, I’ve spent more time bank fishing and wading creeks the last couple years than I had the previous couple decades.
Once I started fishing smaller waters more regularly, often with friends, I found that the big baits I had tied on paled in production up against the Beetle Spins, tiny jigs and Rooster Tails my buddies were fishing with. So, I’m on the lookout these days for quality little baits. That’s where the 3DR-X SR comes back into the picture.
I took this little crank out a few times to small waters, once to a fairly large creek, where I was able to launch it all the way across the waterway with pretty good accuracy. Though the 3DR-X SR weighs only 1/4 ounce, its compact size at only 2 inches makes it an easy bait to cast, even into a little wind. I caught a few really pretty little spots and shoal bass on it during that trip.
A couple other times I took it to a pretty sweet pond I have access to, once from the bank and once from a boat. I like to test products out in this pond, especially rods, reels, lines and hooks because I can get lots of bites in a hurry and really put products through the wringer. The biggest bite of the day (about 5 pounds) came on this little nugget, fishing it up higher in the water column out off the bank.
In my time testing this bait, I found that its versatility is what impressed me the most. Able to dive to 3 feet, the 3DR-X SR can get down to the bottom in shallow water and grind its way around. But it really stands out as an open water crankbait. I don’t feel comfortable fishing many crankbaits (other than deep divers) out off the bank. Maybe it’s just a confidence thing instilled in me at a young age, but I really do believe a crankbait needs to be making contact with the bottom or some type of structure to get bit, most of the time.
However, the little rounded bill of this bait and its small profile lends itself more to open water fishing than most others. The wobble of this bait isn’t as aggressively wide as say that of a 1.5 size squarebill would be, moving it towards the action of some other open water baits like Scroungers, small vibrating jigs and small spinnerbaits. So, I found that I could confidently cast this bait out over deeper water and just fish it high in the water column, only a couple feet under the surface, and still get bit.
Taking a comprehensive look around this bait, the round bill is again the deal that sets this bait apart from other small cranks. Two appropriately sized round bend trebles hang from the 3DR-X. These can be a point of vulnerability if you don’t pair this bait with complementary gear.
You’ll want to use a moderate to light action small cranking rod, or even spinning rod with this bait. I fished it on a 7- foot, 2- inch Jenko DCVR High Roller casting rod that had plenty of flex. I had my drag set fairly loose and these small hooks held up fine, even with the 5-pounder. Just be mindful of them, and you shouldn’t have a problem. The increase in bites are worth the diligence.
There’s a fairly broad spectrum of 8 colors available, with a little something for every water color, forage and season. At $7.99, this is an affordable bait, but it’s also not a cheaply made a bait. The 3DR-X SR is a bait that should hold up for you for a long time, though you may want to swap the hooks out a few times across the lifespan of the bait. Offering a little something different, and giving you the ability to get more bites in small waters and/or high-pressured situations, the Yo-Zuri 3DR-X is a pretty sweet little confidence bait that occupies a unique spot in my tackle box now.
You can find the Yo-Zuri 3DR-X SR Crankbait at these online retailers: