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Event Article

2009 Bassmaster Classic Expo Coverage: Part 2 (continued)

Matt Paino of Optimum Baits showed off various sizes of Baby Line Thru swimbaits as well as the new Bone series of Deps Buzzjets. He said that the bone versions make a different noise underwater than the standard plastic ones.




Optimum’s Baby Line Thru (BLT) swimbait has a bulbous head that provides its unique swimming action


Matt Paino claims that the bone Buzzjet has a different pitch than its plastic counterpart


Even spinnerbait manufacturers are getting in on the enthusiast market. Talon Lures of Milam, Texas showed off not only their “Lake Fork-style” spoons, but also their Shibui Spinnerbaits, an American-made lure with Japanese-market sensibilities, including custom-painted heads and intricate skirt patterns.


The Shibui spinnerbait brings spinnerbaits to a new level of detail


More mainstream tackle companies are also expanding their lines with niche products. For example, PRADCO’s Excalibur series of lures now includes a deeper diving jerkbait and three sizes of “one-knock” rattling baits.


PRADCO’s lipless one-knocker now comes in three sizes, all of which are available in this “Foxy Shad” pattern


The Excalibur jerkbait is available in a deep-diving version


On the super-enthusiast front, Bacon’s Tackle of Shreveport offered genuine frog skin topwaters for $55 each, a price that would have seemed ridiculous a decade ago, but now doesn’t seem so extreme.


Bacon’s Tackle of Shreveport offered up frog skin covered topwater plugs


Soft Baits: In soft plastics, there were certainly a few dropshot or shakey-head oriented lures, but even in that category the big stuff prevailed. For example, Kelly Jones of Kicker Fish Bait Co. couldn’t keep certain colors of his seven-inch Holeshot worms in stock. Like its smaller four-inch brother, the larger version keeps a tail up posture under all conditions.


Kelly Jones of Kicker Fish believes that his Holeshot worm has a more buoyant tail section than any of his competitors’ baits


Strike King featured a ten-inch Anaconda worm, the same one Greg Hackney used to win the East-West Fishoff at Falcon last fall. They also had their larger Rage Tail craw (the “Lobster”) and flipping baits like the Rodent and Space Monkey available in clamshell packages to prevent the baits from becoming deformed in the bags -- now even the packaging has advanced to suit the products.


Matt Paino shows off a Texas-sized lizard, by way of California


Optimum Baits, in addition to their soft swimbaits (as well as the TABU series of dropshot minnows), showed off a monster lizard that seemed ideally suited for big Texas or California bass. While not inexpensive, Matt Paino said that local anglers were buying them at a rapid pace.


Lake Fork Tackle’s plastics were created with heavy-duty water displacement in mind


Lake Fork Tackle, owned by FLW Tour pro Mark Pack, prominently displayed their Hyper Freak and Hyper Worm soft plastics, lures dominated by oversized paddletails. Kelly Jordon was reportedly using the company’s Magic Shad during the Classic competition itself.


The Ardent culling system is already quite popular


Line and Accessories: Ardent, a company which seemingly emerged out of nowhere into the reel market a few years back, recently introduced a culling system which was in great demand on the show floor. The floats attached to the cull clips feature rotating dials of numbers. Once a fish is caught and weighed, its weight can be marked on the float, thereby making subsequent culling easier.


Lake Fork Tackle claims that their fluorocarbon-coated monofilament retains the best properties of both types of line


In addition to their line of soft plastics, Lake Fork Tackle showed off their new series of fishing lines, including both a monofilament and a fluorocarbon-coated mono made by a company in France. LFT discovered the line at last year’s EFFTEX show, Europe’s answer to ICAST. Company CEO Ronnie Parker demonstrated that not only was the line of a smaller diameter than the competition’s, but furthermore that when manually kinked and crimped it would later display no memory of such actions. The lines will be available at a competitive price.


Tennessee’s Mike Whitten shows off one of the new Falcon FTO tackle bags


Falcon Rods displayed their newest tackle organization systems, including a new bag meant to hold their specialized tackle trays.



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