This ultra-realistic crawfish imitator caught our eye the second it was released. The market is currently flooded with craw-style baits, but we’ve seen very few that look as lifelike as the Savage Gear 3D Craw. Looking good and actually catching fish, however, are two entirely different things.
We’ve spent a considerable amount of time fishing this bait over the past few months and have learned a great deal about its action, applications and fish-catching ability. Here’s what you should know about it.
Created from 3D scans of actual crayfish
To be quite honest, there’s nothing about the Savage Gear 3D Craw that doesn’t look exactly like a crayfish. From the the legs, to the antennae and even the eyestalk, this bait is probably the most realistic soft plastic I’ve had an opportunity to test.
Because, of course, crayfish are all different sizes, this bait is offered in 3-inch, 4-inch and 5-inch models. I’ve found the 3-inch to be most versatile for most anglers as it pairs beautifully with both a 3/0 and 4/0 hook, which seems to be the most popular all-around choice for most folks.
The 4-inch is much bulkier than the 3-inch, but it remains effective. If you’re looking to catch a kicker fish after a quick limit, it would be an outstanding choice. The 5-inch is a monster but make no mistake about it; I’ll have it rigged up this summer when I go to some of my secret ponds. If I get a bite on it, it’s going to be big.
The underside is anatomically correct, too
Again, the belly of the 3D Craw is further proof that it was created from a real crayfish scan. I actually think the underside of this bait plays a much more important role than you might think.
I have been primarily Texas rigging the 3D Craw and more than half of my bites have come on the initial fall in particularly clear water. As it falls to the bottom, the bass get a fairly good look at its underside and they must see something they like. As I mentioned, it’s not unusual for this bait to get devoured before it even hits the bottom.
Air-filled claws created a perfect defensive posture
If you’ve ever seen a crayfish defending itself, you’ve seen them raise their claws to appear bigger to the predator. The Savage Gear 3D Craw does the exact same thing when it’s at rest on the bottom. Thanks to two air-filled claws, the angler doesn’t have to impart any special action to achieve this natural presentation.
If you need further proof, we shot this excellent underwater video of the 3D Craw on a Neko rig. You’ll be able to see exactly what I’m talking about.
They’ll destroy it
I can confidently say that this bait gets a bunch of bites; more than many I’ve tested over the past year. It has a unique blend of iodine, salt and crayfish scent that seems to make the bass hold on to it a bit longer, facilitating a more solid hookset and a good hookup ratio. I’m glad to report that it’s not just about looks with the 3D Craw.
With all of that being said, however, the durability could be improved. The appendages are actually quite sturdy, but the tail section is rather skinny which leaves it susceptible to rips and tears. If the tail section was just a bite beefier, the durability would improve tremendously.
Flat tail makes for easy Texas rigging
The end of the tail is flat, which allows a tungsten bullet weight to sit snugly against the bait. This keeps the weight in place very nicely, which has been a great feature when pitching and flipping especially thick cover. I have started reaching for this bait a lot when I need to fish heavy cover because it stays together as a single, compact package and reaches the bottom quickly and efficiently.
I don’t think you’re going to find a more realistic crayfish imitator on the market. I don’t know how it could get more lifelike than the Savage Gear 3D Craw. Starting at $8.99 per pack, you’re going to pay more for this bait, but at the rate I’ve been getting bites, I can’t really complain too much about the price.
You’ll get a bunch of bites with this bait. I can guarantee it.