by Matt Luna
If you’ve never built a spinnerbait before you may be feeling overwhelmed, or maybe you’ve built one and it’s not catching fish, and you’re not sure what to change. There are so many different components that go into a spinnerbait build that it can seem overwhelming or difficult to know where you went wrong. There’s hook choices, different diameter wire forms, and clevis’, to choosing the skirt color, blade types, and swivels. Hopefully, I can shed some light on this topic and focus your attention to the two factors I believe are the most important when it comes to building a spinnerbait.
In my opinion, these two most important factors are your wire form diameter and blade type you choose. Think about it! The main 2 things a spinnerbait does is flash and vibrate. The wire form and blade type are the key factors in the amount of vibration and flash your going to get out of your bait.
My personal preference when choosing a wire form, is to go with the thinnest wire diameter I can get away with. This decision doesn’t come without sacrifice, however. Choosing that thinner wire means your spinnerbait will have less durability than if you went with a thicker diameter. The thinner wire form will allow for more vibration to be produced from you blades, and may increase the number of bites you get, but will decrease the number of fish you can catch on one bait.
Blade choice is another important factor and can take us down a rabbit trail if we let it, so let’s try to simplify things a bit. There are many different types of blades to choose from. Hammered blades, gold blades, nickel blades, painted blades, indiana blades, colorado blades, willow blades, and other various blades. Blades can make a spinner bait rise up in the water column while being fished, or allow it to stay deep. Blades can produce a subtle vibration, or a heavier thump depending on what you choose. For example, if you wanted a deeper running spinnerbait you’d generally want to choose smaller sized willow blades, and if you wanted a shallow running spinnerbait you’d want larger willow blades or a large single colorado blade. As a general rule of thumb, colorado blades put off more vibration than a willow blade, and an indiana blade falls somewhere in between.
Obviously, trial and error will be inevitable when it comes to building a spinnerbait. The blade and wire form diameter pairing needs to be considered when building your bait. When they work together, you end up with a great bait and can catch fish, but when they work against each other, you end up with a bait that doesn’t run straight, doesn’t put off enough vibration or flash, and doesn’t catch fish.
The options are endless when you start building spinnerbaits. Don’t let these options keep you from trying! Decide what you want the bait to do and choose your components accordingly!
One thing is for sure, when you get these two factors right, and catch fish on spinnerbaits you have made yourself, the level of reward is hard to beat!
Good luck, make some spinnerbaits, and go out and catch some fish!