|Crankbait fishing is the basis of "prospection" fishing. It makes it possible to quickly cover a substantial stretch of water in search of fish on the move. But that’s only one of its many advantages. Fairly small and light, crankbaits are easier to cast and work but displace a lot of water relative to their size, thus catching fish’s attention and getting them to react, often quite aggressively. Being relatively small, crankbaits attract fish of every stripe and every size. Chub, perch, zander, pike, black bass... you name it and it’ll strike. Crankbaits are thus often an excellent way to see what’s biting before deciding what to focus on. Different crankbaits and techniques are also suited to the depth at which this or that fish is swimming. Examples include bottom tapping (bouncing the lure off the floor, one of the most effective techniques) and shallow, medium or deep diving.
|Crankbaits often get a bad press because anglers don’t like how their motion in the water runs up the line into the rod and thus the wrist. Tendinitis is a frequent complaint and deterrent to using this technique. But who are we to swim with the current! To get you into crankbait fishing while keeping your wrists happy, we chose three blanks ranging in price and specifically designed for this type of fishing. Contrary to common carping that crankbaits need a rod that’s all action and no power so why bother, many blanks in fact have a tip flexible enough to absorb vibrations and let the lure do its thing as well as a butt and rear grip with the oomph to play the fish and reel it in. - The Rainshadow CB 70 MH has a standard design with a moderate action well suited to crankbaits and comes at a very affordable price for anglers on a low budget or who only occasionally use such lures. It will cast crankbaits weighing up to 30 g at a depth of 4–5 m. - The Zentron CB 705 is part of NFC’s Delta Series of blanks featuring graphite in the rear grip for a stiffer butt and next-generation fiber glass in the tip for greater flexibility and control at the business end. It handles a bit differently than similar blanks but delivers where it matters. The lure is free to do what it does best while the angler gets to wield a friendly rod that leaves elbow and shoulder unmolested. This blank will cast slightly bigger lures up to 10 cm in length and 35 g in weight at a depth of 6 m. - The NFC CB-704-IM is a wonderful piece of engineering that will (re)introduce you to the joys of crankbaits and help you forget whatever you heard or (thought) you knew. Made of graphite from top to bottom, its original design accentuates its taper from a muscular rear grip to a very slender long tip, giving it a pleasantly lively action and adding some serious stiffness to the butt. It will cast any crankbait of around 20 g up to a length of 6–7 cm at a depth of 4 m.