TPE tricks

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Equally important, says Myers, ElaZtech baits offer anglers several exciting benefits over PVC-based baits. “Anglers tell us ElaZtech is the perfect bait material because it’s incredibly soft and natural to the touch yet unbelievably durable at the same time. An ElaZtech bait will stretch up to twelve times its length without ripping. In many cases, anglers have caught well over a hundred bass on a single Z-Man bait. (The record currently stands at 246 fish caught on a single Z-Man Finesse WormZ.) It’s really wonderful stuff, like, we sometimes wonder if it came here from another planet,” Myers laughs.

Myers also notes, “When ElaZtech finishes the cooling and hardening cycle, it’s as clear as glass, and gives us the flexibility to do anything we want to it from a coloring perspective. This has enabled us to give anglers some really unique color patterns.”

Another element breathing life into ElaZtech: Natural buoyancy gives baits the ability to move with unheard-of underwater action. “When Ned Kehde put some early ElaZtech bait prototypes in my hands, I immediately realized this material would be revolutionary,” said Drew Reese, an exceptional angler and bait designer who finished 7th at the very first Bassmaster Classic.

“ElaZtech baits exhibit the underwater angle all lure companies have been trying to achieve since the early 1900s: to make a bait that doesn’t lie flat on bottom, but that rises up on its own and moves like something truly alive.”

To provide taste, texture and weight for casting, Z-Man also preloads ElaZtech select baits like the Finesse TRD with salt. Others, like the ZinkerZ are infused with so much salt that the material’s buoyancy is completely altered, and the baits exhibit a slow-sink action. “What’s interesting is that as salt dissolves in water, the bait gets sticky, almost slimy, which seems to be tremendously appealing to biting fish,” notes Myers. “Anglers can also stretch the baits to remove salt and restore buoyancy. The salt leaves behind tiny spongelike pockets that are perfect for absorbing and holding oil based scents like Pro-Cure Super Gel for a good long time. And if you want to create a bait combo that never, ever comes off the jig, add a dab of Loctite® Gel Control®. This stuff bonds with the ElaZtech and locks it onto the jig collar, more or less for the rest of your life.”

While ElaZtech offers undeniable angling rewards, Myers points out one caveat regarding bait storage. “Because the plasticizer in ElaZtech reacts with conventional PVC baits, you’ll want to avoid storing them in the same container. Best thing you can do is to simply store your ElaZtech baits in their original packages, and keep them off the hot dashboard in your truck. Other than that, ElaZtech is pretty much a miracle material,” concedes Myers.

“Doesn’t matter if you’re fishing a drop shot, Carolina or a Ned rig,” says Reese. “ElaZtech baits excel in every situation because they self-activate and move by themselves. Compare that to a PVC bait that falls over and lies lifeless on the bottom, and you quickly understand the allure of ElaZtech.”