Most anglers like lures that serve multiple purposes so they can carry less tackle and cover more bass fishing scenarios. Plastics often are designed with one purpose in mind, whether it’s dragging behind a Carolina rig or punching into heavy cover. I too have an affinity for plastics that can do a lot of different things and provide a lot of options for anglers. That’s probably the attribute I liked most about the new V&M Baits J-Bug.
The J-Bug was designed by Bassmaster Elite Series pro Jacob Powroznik, and gives an angler a great flipping bait, finesse Texas rig bait, sight-fishing lure and even a Carolina rig option. Although we didn’t fish it this way, you could probably swim it around on a small jighead or buzz it on top like a toad if so inclined.
WHY I LIKED THE J-BUG
The compactness of the bait makes it unique as does the ability to change the design and application on the fly. If I’m punching the bait into thick cover, I can peel the two front legs off to make it really streamlined but still have the tail that will kick and slither through the cover attractively. If I’m fishing a nipping fish on a bed, I can take the front legs off and most of the back legs and make a real compact bait.
If I want maximum attractiveness I can leave it as is and cast it around on a Texas rig or maybe swim it around grass on a weighted hook or on a small jighead.
The bait has ribbed sides but is narrower. Both the front legs and back legs kick easily so hopping it, swimming it, and shaking it in place gives it a lot of lifelike action.
The colors are good and they covered the bases well in this first release. I could see a few more colors being added. I used Watermelon Red, Black and Blue and White for most of my testing in this review.
It’s a dynamite bait fished shallow in the spring. I spent a week on some small lakes in Arkansas catching some bruiser bass with my brother-in-law on the J-Bugs. We figure several of the bass were bedding or up close cruising thinking about bedding along rock and grass lines as well as laydown trees on the lakes we fished. We caught dozens of bass on the J-Bugs fished on light Texas rigs. We were able to land my brothers best bass at 10 pounds, 2 ounces. And I landed a bass weighing 9 1/4 pounds. We also had a couple of 8-pounders, a few 7-pounders and several 5 and 6 pounders on the J-Bugs.
The bait fishes like a craw but also like a creature bait and even a beaver-style bait. I pitched it around laydown trees. I drug it down rip rap banks, I even skipped under some bridges and walkways around the lake. But most of the time we were dragging it around on shallow spawning flats with lots of scattered and bank grass on them.
Check out the J-Bug in action here:
The J-Bug is a great addition to a bass angler’s tackle box. It can serve a lot of purposes while keeping the amount of baits you need to a minimum. They held up well and we were able to catch several of those big bass on a single bug before having to change. We even played around with rigging them backwards and caught several bass doing that as well.
They are available at retailers now and you can find them online at tacklewarehouse.com by clicking here. They retail for $4.99 for an 8-pack.
Here's a little a proof in the pudding on what the J-Bug did for me this spring.