The Chatterbait™, manufactured by Rad Lures in the US and the culmination of 30 years’ development by Ron Davis, is one of the hottest lures on the US bass market and is fast becoming the same in Australia.
This lure is best described as a swimming jig with the action of a crankbait, profile of a jig and flash of a spinnerbait. Its patent-pending design enables the lure to swim like a crankbait while putting out intense vibration as the blade pulses several times a second. This blade action also allows the Chatterbait™ to track deeper than a conventional jig on retrieval in a fairly random and erratic pattern.
Some of the success is doubtless because fish that have never been conditioned to this action so it can induce that reactive strike.
Since its introduction to Australia by AusSpin Lures, the Chatterbait has shown remarkable success on bass, cod and golden perch in impoundments and rivers. It is available in eight colour patterns in 3/8oz and 1/2oz weights and features a one-piece silicone skirt, Elaztech split-tail trailer and Mustad Ultrapoint hook. Soon to be released is the trout and panfish series in 1/8oz and 3/16oz sizes with a shorter skirt, smaller hook and blade for a smaller profile.
I have been using these lures for the past year and have had some good results on bass but the better catches came only recently with rising water levels when they worked really well fished over flooded vegetation on shallower points. I also increased the hook-up ratio by rigging a No 6 to No 8 red Gamakatsu treble stinger.
Another good option I have used to great success is to remove the skirt and replace with a plastic such as a Gulp Minnow or Bozo Mullet.
Keeping the rod tip high to allow the Chatterbait™ to swim on the top, this combination is excellent for surface bites late and early in the day.
Tackle is virtually the same as for most crankbaits, with rods from 1.8m to 2m and baitcaster reels with 5.7:1 to 6.2:1 ratios and leaders of 4kg to 6kg fluorocarbon.
With the strong vibrations these lures transmit all the way to the reel, baitcasters are a far smoother proposition than threadlines, especially for the larger lures.
These lures are easy to cast accurately even in strong wind and don’t make a lot of disturbance when they hit the water.
The Mumbler is a similar lure, produced by Glen Casey of Bassman Spinnerbaits. It comes in three sizes, 1/4oz, 3/8oz and 1/2oz in 10 colour combinations.
The 1/4oz and 3/8oz are excellent in rivers and impoundment for bass and golden perch, while the 1/2oz version is aimed mainly at the cod fishery, where it is having remarkable success. I also will definitely be giving it a go at the barra this season.
It is very important when rigging these plastics onto the jig to make sure that the stinger hook exits the Bozo right at the body to tail section to give it good action.
The smaller Mumblers can also be rigged with a soft plastic trailer such as a 3” minnow or grub for extra bulk and scent enhancement.
These lures are very exciting to use and are another option to try when things get a little tough. They can be used with a normal crankbait retrieve, a stop-and-go retrieve or even just pitched into cover.
Snag resistance is excellent – as good as a spinnerbait in most situations and possibly even better because there is no wire frame to hang up on obstructions.Reads: 9074