Tackle Reviews

Yo-Zuri Rattl'n Vibe Lipless Crankbait Review

Walker Smith

I love to wind a plug around. Whether it's a flat-sided crankbait, a squarebill or a lipless crankbait, I'm just too impatient to fish slow most of the time. I like to put the trolling motor down and burn through an area quickly.

Because of this, I've tested countless lipless crankbaits. They allow me to fish quickly and cover water efficiently, so I pretty much always have one on my front deck all year long. To be honest, however, there are definitely some duds out there. Some folks think these lipless cranks are all the same, but nothing could be further from the truth. I am very particular about which lipless baits I keep in my boat.

After fishing with it this year, the Yo-Zuri Rattl'n Vibe has, without a doubt, made the cut. If you stick with this lure in the fall and late winter especially, you're going to get a bunch of bites from quality fish.

Here's why I like it so much.

(1 of 4)

It sounds almost identical to a discontinued favorite

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Walker Smith
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I talked a little about the Yo-Zuri Rattl'n Vibe in my feature article yesterday and quickly mentioned its similarities to one of my all-time favorite lipless plugs, the XCalibur XR Series. Unfortunately they aren't made anymore, which is why they're going for $45 or more on eBay and Facebook Yard Sale pages. There was something very special about 'em.

The Rattl'n Vibe, however, sounds identical to the XR Series. It features smaller stainless steel ball bearings that not only help with casting distance (more on that later), but they emit a higher-pitched rattle that you can hear coming through the water when the lure is 10 to 15 yards away from your boat. It's loud and definitely gets the attention of nearby bass.

I've made some buddies pretty dang mad with this deal. We'll be chucking lipless crankbaits around in my boat and this dern Rattl'n Vibe is kicking their butts. I don't know if it's just my lake or something, but I'll have someone switch to one of these and it just catches more fish. I would imagine the unique rattle has a big part in that. 

(2 of 4)

Casts like a rocket

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Walker Smith
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I've tested a bunch of lipless plugs that have disappointed me when it comes to casting distance. They have the weight to make good casts, but something about the aerodynamics of them cause 'em to helicopter and catch too much wind, which significantly hurts your distance. In my opinion, a major part of lipless cranks is to help an angler cover a bunch of water, so I consider casting distance to be a very important part of these lures.

The Rattl'n Vibe rarely twirls or helicopters, even when cast into a stiff headwind. It stays straight as an arrow in the air and those stainless steel bearings we talked about also help transfer the weight on your back cast, allowing your rod to maximize its load and launch the lure a healthy distance.

This has helped me tremendously lately. Our lake is currently in a drawdown and the water is super clear. The fish are in just inches of water in some cases and they'll spook in a heartbeat if you get too close to them. Heck, you can see 'em swirl when they spook, so I know how finicky they're being. But being able to bomb this Rattl'n Vibe before they see or hear my boat is a huge deal. I'm getting a lot of bites on the end of my casts which is showing me the importance of long casts.

(3 of 4)

Solid components

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Walker Smith
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I've written about it many times before, but man, I don't want to spend my money on a lure just to have to change all of its components before I even fish with it. I'm sure some folks think differently, but I like to fish more than I like to change split rings and treble hooks.

I'm impressed by the quality of the Rattl'n Vibe's components. The split rings are tough as nails; they're the kind that hurt your dang fingernails when you try to open them without pliers. This is a good thing and really speaks to their toughness.

The treble hooks are also really sharp and don't require changing; I'd have full confidence to fish with them in a tournament. Lots of lipless plugs have those cheap hooks that are about as flimsy as tinfoil, but these certainly don't have that problem. They're razor sharp when you take 'em from the package and they stay sharp for a long time. 

(4 of 4)

Final impressions

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Walker Smith
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There's no beating around the bush with this one; I truly believe it's a must-have for your lipless crankbait box. The colors are absolutely beautiful, it sounds awesome and you don't have to mess around with the hooks and split rings. And keep in mind, they start at just $8.49.

The Yo-Zuri Rattl'n Vibe is available here.