Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (2023)

Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (1)

05.09.2013 Por Matt Straw

A silhouette sways and snakes slowly across the lower area. May flash briefly, but no swirls or twists. Its meticulously trimmed tail intermittently pulses a mixture of materials.

Hair jigs are effective in some cases because they don't twist, twist or vibrate. When Pisces sees and feels all that action, they respond with a little less enthusiasm, whereas "something else" can trigger a few more triggers, making it a big, hairy thing.

The idea of ​​floating hair, I'm told, is relatively new. Hair jigs are considered bottom dwellers and dropbaits - in other words, hoppers, flippers, crawlers and draggers. "Most trout pros I work with on the FLW and B.A.S.S. sides want hair combined with silicone rubber wires to cast and flip heavy capes," explains Bert Deener, owner of Bert's Jigs & Things. Deener ties custom hair jigs to almost any jig style. “Smallmouth anglers from California and the Northern North ask for patterns of minnows to swim. Several people have ordered them to swim around the edges of schools of baitfish and they mostly want patterns that mimic the allis shad. But the idea of ​​using flotation devices for small mouths in other situations is new to me."

But swimming worms, grubs, tubes, lures and more for small mouths is a prerequisite... no - an essential technique. Like flippin' to trout mouths, swimming is one of the top five tactics for little ones. Yesterday I was swimming in various 4-inch and 5-inch plastics from just inches 4 feet from the bottom in 1/16 ounce jigs and attaching hooks to small jaws almost constantly - just as I've been doing for decades. But I also swam something else, with equal success: jigs tied by experts like Deener, Paul Jensen, Gabe Hillebrand, Andy Volumbroso and Tim McFarland - jigs I asked them to tie with swimming in mind.

In recent years we have seen success in swimming sparse specimens of black deer hair to pre-spawn smallmouths in cold water. Why not in the summer? Or fall? And why not with other patterns? If swimming is an essential technique for small mouths, as I suggest, why can't we do it with hair? These custom layers often agree: "Anything plastic can do, hair can do better."

Continue after the gallery...

Andys Nature Jig

Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (2)

coyote charcoal

Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (3)

Swim'n Hair Jig

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(Video) Todays Hair Jigs For Monster Smallmouth Bass

Berts Classic Fox Hair Craw

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Bert Deener, Berts Jigs & Things (912) 287-1604

Shad Threadfin

Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (6)

Bert Deener, Berts Jigs & Things (912) 287-1604

yellow perch

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Bert Deener, Berts Jigs & Things (912) 287-1604

Hirschhaar Sculpin

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Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (9)


swamp donkey

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(Video) Hair-Jigs For Smallmouth Bass

black perch

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Smallmouth Bass Hair Jigs - In-Fisherman (12)



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goldfish head

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Tim McFadden, TC Tackle (406)683-5485

Floating Sculpture

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Tim McFadden, TC Tackle (406)683-5485

woolly jig

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Tim McFadden, TC Tackle (406)683-5485

(Video) How to Fish Hair Jigs for Smallmouth Bass

the daily dip

In the Great Lakes and other world-class fisheries such as Mille Lacs and the Mississippi River, zebra and quagga mussels have taken over from the bottom. They gather on every rock, log, wreck and branch below. In many bodies of water, "mung" (various types of filamentous algae) covers the bottom and clings to shells, gravel, rocks, and even weed stalks. Working in the background is not only annoying, but counterproductive.

Zebes nods and shaves leaders and lines. Bait covered in mung is worthless. Swimming is the answer. When done well, a combination of hair jig, jigworm or floating jig grub rarely touches bottom. But the technology is so simple it's complicated. Swimming is actually not complicated at all. It's so simple that no one believes it can be so deadly.

You can swim a jig at any depth that takes you low. Works best over rock structures, gravel hills, sandbars, moguls, along weed lines and over vegetation that does not reach the surface. Works in all types of environments including rivers and streams. Works when the bass is hanging from or near heavy wooden ceilings. Swimming can be done with platforms - such as drop shot and split shot platforms - but the discussion here is about hair jigs.

Speed ​​is key. Successfully swimming a jig requires a determination of speed, which includes mass, line diameter, and weight of the jig. In shallow water, heavier means faster. In deep water, heavier means slower, while lighter means out of zone. When it comes to line diameter, thicker means slower and thinner means faster. (Just a few more things to think about if you're wondering why swimming isn't working.)

Generally I float plastic in 1/16 to 1/8 oz jigs in water less than 10 feet deep and use 1/8 to 3/8 oz jigs in depths of 40 feet or so. But most hair jigs sink slower and rise faster as you speed up the recovery, so a slightly heavier head is needed. Although I sometimes swim plastic in 4lb mono, I usually start at 6lbs, even with lighter hair jigs. The action and power of the rod follow. While I typically use light to medium swivel rods with synthetics, I generally choose medium to medium strength rods with hair.

This may sound more complicated than it is, but the technique is simple: cast, lower the jig to set the depth, point the rod end down, and start reeling. If the jig never touches the ground, slow down. If he pulls down, speed up. If bass does not respond, try to stop polling. Push the end of the rod towards the approaching lure to create slack to allow the jammer to drop vertically. If possible, let him rest briefly on the floor. If that doesn't work, try going a little faster.

In general, hair jigs require more of a "do something" attitude than synthetic ones, likely due to the lack of swirl, twist, or flutter. Hair creates a unique profile, but the way hair is placed on a model and the mix of materials used determine how much life it has. On most days, adding a twitch or snap at the end of the rod every 4 to 10 feet the lure travels will trigger more hits than with plastics. Drag a hair clip along the boat and squirm to see why. Rather than "walking" or twisting from side to side, a hair filter tends to bounce and pulsate. Jig more often when the fish seems active, using more subtle movements for a slow bite.

pulse master

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Andy Volumbroso of Andy's Custom Bass Lures in Connecticut has been stringing hair jigs for bass guitars since 1979. While his creations have always been very effective for bass, he has never stopped improving his designs. "Mike Iaconelli stopped by my booth at a trade show last year and stared," says Volumbroso. "Then he came onstage and said I had the best hair jigs he had ever seen. I was impressed. He ordered a few small hair jigs last year. The one that wins many tournaments, my Silver Fox Jig is unique because it behaves like a marabou in water due to its weave and the very fine and light nature of fox fur compared to other animal fur and now accounts for nearly 70 percent of my sales.”

The way a jig is tied is important. Varying material lengths increases movement. The mix of materials adds complexity to the movement. Fox fur and most freely moving synthetics can be contrasted with deer or bear fur, which are more rigid. Also color contrast and density. And balance is the final key. An unbalanced jig will not fall or move to the right.

Volumbroso's famous Nature Jigs combine rubber and hair in creations bass rarely see. "I use live flat rubber," he reports. "I've been saving it because there's only one source of living gum left. I used it to rework the Nature Jig tied like a Muddler Minnow fly. The ridge looks like a crayfish's chest. The deer hair is hollow and floats, so it slows down the fall and , instead of using a regular contraption, I make my own heads. It's a big, bulky fish jig that combines slow fall and volume to create my best crayfish imitation. Doesn't require a plastic tow. I also reworked the Coyote Ugly, which has been a staple for me for the past decade, and I've released a new grizzly bear jig called the Grizzly. All of these jigs have Rattling Hair Jig versions with a glass rattle surgically cut to an inch. rattle is rarely seen, when fish reach it, they cannot feel it.


While he didn't specifically design the Grizzly or Coyote Ugly for swimming, this is how I use them in rivers and lakes. Most of Volumbroso's jigs move in the current and are tied in the 1/8 to 3/8 oz range, ideal for swimming. "I designed a jig called the Slim Jig for a customer who slides hair jigs into weed breaks for Smallmouth, and it's become a popular pattern," he says.

Paul Jensen of Wisconsin also never lets a standard rest on its laurels. I've been swimming in their Fat Five bunny stripe and fox hair jigs for years. “I started tying in the 1960s, but I never used a vise or bunny strap tie until I spoke to Phil Shafer, who ties world-class jigs,” admits Jensen. "After a decade of tying rabbit strips, I have developed a quality, durable jig with some subtle nuances." He forgot to tell me his real secrets, but these "nuances" make his jigs rippling deadly when he swims, and he can add new UV-reflective fibers to some patterns upon request.

That's one of the great things about Hair Jigs: Levels are often willing to customize an order. Gabe Hillebrand, President of Hill Brand Tackle in Michigan, asked me what I would like to see in a hair jig. I said olive green or military green patterns with a little white and maybe a strand or two of flashabou or something. Everything eats green or cream-blue, because almost all baits have these colors or they catch them in greenish water. The result was Matt's Fox-Z Twitch. I've swum for trout, smallmouth and zander with great success.

(Video) Hair Jigs for Bass | Seth Feider's North Country Tactic

Hillebrand's Scoby, Swamp Donkey and other creations are works of art. "Most of my ideas start with a general shape and style," he says. “My bass jigs are designed to appeal to the bass's facial lines and, secondly, their eyes. The bass is very sensitive and can sense the slightest movement, especially up close, so the jig needs to 'feel' like real food. Scoby has a wide-profile buck head that bluntly pushes the water sideways and creates turbulence. This turbulent water ripples through the Lightning, Marabou, and Rabbit Stripes. The moving parts attract your lateral system and your eyes.

“One thing that makes Hill Brand jigs unique is the articulated patterns with lead eyes like the Sculptor,” he says. “We use binding techniques and materials such as sheep wool, genetically modified rooster feathers, synchronized ribbons and deer yarn. These techniques and materials allow you to create a fuller, more effective hair clipper in warm or cold water.”



In spring and summer, I tend to combine light outfits with light hair jigs. During pre-production, when the weed lines are not fully mature, I tend to use a St. Croix Avid AVS80MLM2 8ft - A low power rod that can cast light, wind resistant thin lines a fair distance. I spool with 4lb Test Maxima Ultragreen which works best with 1/16, 3/32 and 1/8 oz builds with lightweight wire hooks.

Most hair jigs are tied with heavier hairpins, in this case I like the G. Loomis Bronzeback Series SMR822S GLX-SP - Fast, Medium Power, 6ft 10in Pole that starts at 1/8 to 1/4 - he can. 6 pound ultragreen jaguar hair jigs. The St. The 7-foot Croix Avid AVS70MF is another great option.

In late summer and fall, I use heavier jigs and equipment. Vegetation is maximized in lakes, and blackmouths tend to use more wood, especially when moving to winter areas. Swimming 1/4- to 3/8-ounce hair jigs over, through, and around fallen trees and traffic jams requires a 10- to 15-pound line, and I jump in the St. Louis. Croix Avid AVS70MHF or G. Loomis Bronzeback Series SMR753C, designed for 8- to 14-pound line and with fast action.

Fast-acting graphite rods transfer more energy from a move or snap to the jig as I don't use braided line for this technique. Superlines are applicable, but I prefer mono for several reasons. The concept of swimming is based on staying above ground most of the time. The braided lines are thinner, allowing the jigs to fall more quickly, resulting in faster retrieval speeds to prevent the jigs from dragging. I prefer to control speed with head weight or jig mass in most cases as jigs are much easier to change than lines.


Braids don't do well with shells, which is one of the reasons I started swimming jigs. If you don't stay on the bottom, you can fish longer. And floating a hair shaft is usually better than plastic because the fish didn't see it - especially if you designed it. And that makes it a great hair business.

* In-Fisherman field editor Matt Straw, Brainerd, Minnesota, spends a lot of time fine-tuning smallmouth bass performances in waters throughout the Midwest and beyond.

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