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Lure Review

Another Monster Bait : The A.B.T. Lure Company Titan & Strike King-King Kong


Date: 8/13/06
Tackle type: Lures
Manufacturer: ABT Lures / Strike King
Reviewer: Cal


Total Score: 8.08

Introduction: During our coverage of ICAST 2005, we shared with you a new swimbait showed to us by Chris Brown of Strike King: the King Kong, a four sectioned, plastic molded bait offered in two different sizes. Before ICAST, we acquired an early version of a similar bait by A.B.T. Lure company, the Titan. When we returned from the event and compared notes, we realized the similarities in the two baits and wondered about their origins. A short time later, it was revealed to us, that indeed, they were the very same baits. A.B.T. Lure Company actually produces these baits for Strike King. Here then, is our review of the ABT Lure Company's Titan, also known as the Strike King King Kong.


ABT Lures Titan / Strike King King Kong Specifications

Type Swimbait
Depth 0-4 ft
Class Floating
Sizes 6" (tested) & 8"
Weight 1.75 oz (6" size)
Colors/Patterns 15 colors (6 by ABT + 9 by Strike King)
MSRP $23

Impressions: Early on, the color palette offered by A.B.T. Lure Company for this bait was a work in progress - changing every couple of months. In fact, many of the early colors are no longer offered including that of the lure pictured in this review. What is available now are a total of 15 different patterns: six (6) unique to A.B.T. plus nine (9) unique to Strike King. The bait feels solidly constructed and comes with two, large, quality treble hooks. Detailing of these baits while not the most exquisite we've seen is still very good - especially that of the head.


Introducing the A.B.T. Lure Company Titan / Strike King King Kong

The work around the gill plates, forward swim fins and lateral line of the would be fish are most notable. This plastic molded bait is touted as a surface to subsurface bait, so we could not wait to get it out on the water to see what we could scare up from the depths.

Note the very good detailing in and around the head section of this bait

The Field Tests: our Megabass F7-69DG Mephisto paired with our Conquest 201DC and our Daiwa Heartland Z Hamma Spinnerbait Special paired with our Daiwa Bay Casting Special 103L. Our Conquest 201DC was spooled with 20lb Sunline Shooter FC and our Bay Casting Special with 20lb Berkley Fireline.


Complete test rig for Titan / King Kong Field Tests

Rod Megabass F7-69DG Mephisto Daiwa Heartland Z Hamma Spinnerbait Special
Reel Conquest 201DC Daiwa Bay Casting Special 103L
Line 20 lb Sunline Shooter FC 20 lb Berkley Fireline


Among the details that can be seen in this lure include the forward swim fins on either side of the bait and the would be gill plates

A.B.T. & Strike King make use of stout hardware including top notch hooks

Casting: Presentation of these large baits is certainly an adjustment from standard sized lures. Accurate casts, while possible, are not the norm though it is possible to pitch these baits to gain accuracy. Such was our experience with the A.B.T. Titan. Paired with our two stout rods and smooth casting reels, distance was never a problem either through overhead or sidearm casts. We couldn't help but to be mindful of our surroundings when casting this bait and fortunately, we had no mishaps.


A closeup of one of three hinged connections

A.B.T. also takes care to mimic the lateral line of the bait

Presentation: On a standard retrieve, the ABT Titan swims back to you in a fairly natural appearance. The head section holds relatively still while the tail swings back and forth to the side. The bait does have a slight wobble, but not to a point where we think it detracts from the bait's action. Retrieved on a herky-jerky cadence, similar to working a jerkbait, the Titan dives and swims very erratically providing a good imitation of an injured or dying fish. It is this last retrieve we found most effective.

Another look at the well executed detailing around the head

Trolling: What many anglers like to do with these large, billed swimbaits is to troll them around the lake in search of big bass. This is a rather new technique for us while chasing bass and while we experimented with this presentation, we had no success enticing hits. The Titan/King Kong is relatively easy to troll and I'm sure with some persistence, better success than what we experienced can be had.


A closeup look of the rear three sections of the bait. Note the subtle fins at the to and bottom of the lure.


We experienced some discoloring on the finish of our lure, but not enough to be a concern when it came to altering effectiveness of the bait

Durability: The hard plastic body of this bait is extremely durable as is the egg shell-like finish of the lure's paint. The hooks and hook and tie attachments to the bait are as solid as they come and we experienced no issues with the three different joints of the bait. This bait is built to last and we were quite confident throwing it in a variety of situations.


The Titan/King Kong features a clean & sleek shape

Application & Effectiveness: While a fairly versatile bait for its size, and capable of a variety of presentations, we enjoyed fishing this bait most in the herky-jerky ripbait type of retrieve. The lure really seems to come to life in this type of retrieve. Our most memorable encounter was a late spring outing on the California Delta. I cast this bait out along some sparse weed patches adjacent to a rip-rap levee wall. After a significant pause, I made three quick jerks, paused again and WHAM! amidst a huge swirl, my line snapped tight, I swept back and the fight was on with what ended up being a seven pound plus bass - the largest taken on this bait during our tests.

This monster took on the challenge of conquering our Titan/King Kong swimbait


ABT Lures Titan / Strike King King Kong Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Very solid construction 8
Performance Worked best for us when fished like a super-sized jerkbait 8.5
Price As swimbaits go, this bait is very affordable... as standard baits go, it's a bit to swallow 8
Features No nonsense bait with fairly basic features 8
Design Not the most realistic swimbait we've tested 7
Application Good in a variety of situations 9

Total Score


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Very solidly crafted L Not the most realistic in appearance
J No parts to replace regularly - very durable
J Quality, sharp, stout hooks  
J An affordable swimbait  

Conclusion: If you're looking for a bait to sample in this recent swimbait craze, the Strike King King Kong / A.B.T. Lures Titan, is an excellent choice. You can fish it slowly on a steady retrieve over submerged structure or weed lines, erratically jerk it back to the boat, or troll it as you tour a lake in search of that big bite. The more you fish it, the more confidence it inspires. Because it's not a super high priced lure yet surprisingly durable, it's easier to throw it into areas you might not normally throw a swimbait like up against a rip-rap wall, in the midst of some submerged timber, or in the middle of the nastiest weed patches you can find. The more chances you take, the better your odds are of being surprised by the catch of a lifetime. The King Kong/Titan is worthy this chance.











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