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An Easier to Fish Schooling Bait - The PDL Rig
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Lure Review


An Easier to Fish Schooling Bait - The PDL Rig (continued)

Fully rigged the bait weighs almost 1oz. making this lure a whole lot easier to fish than a traditional full sized A-Rig. It is light and compact enough to be cast with normal casting gear and I found that I could easily fish it with any heavy power rod, and pitching rods were actually perfect for this bait. Casting all day with this bait doesn't put much strain on your arms and shoulders and I really liked the ability to fish this bait at varying speeds.


Casting the PDL Rig all day long was a whole lot easier than throwing an A-Rig

There are a number of patterns available and my favorites where the "White Pearl" for use in stained water and the "Alburno Comun" and the even more translucent silver flaked "Alburno Plata" for clear water presentations. Over the last few weeks I have continually been surprised at just how effective the PDL Rig is for targeting largemouth bass. They work well in any bodies of water where baitfish is on the menu, and even in the end of winter the lures were able to draw both followers and strikes when fished it slow enough. There are other times when I was burning the bait back to the boat only to get absolutely hammered in shallow water, the bottom line is that these baits just plain work.


The PDL swimbait tail has a thinner more angular design than most paddletails

Hold it together: Durability on the PDL Rig's swimbaits is just average and I seemed to lose one of the smaller PDL 200 teaser swimabaits every trip where I fished the baits. The good news is that Longas Baits does sell the teaser swimbaits separately for $8.99 per pack of eight. These mini swimbaits can also be fished by themselves on a darter head and I actually found them decent on a drop shot rig too. The main 5" swimbait tail can also be replace and retails for $8.99 for a pack of 3. Alternatively if you want to mix it up the company also sells just the PDL head for $8.99 each. I tried the heads with other swimbaits and the Keitech Easy Shiner was excellent. The Keitech bodies performed just as good as the original and are offered in many more color options to better match the hatch.


It is a good think that Longas baits sells replacement swimbaits because you will lose some

Price & Applications: The PDL Rig is a unique new bait that is effective for catching largemouth bass in a variety of water conditions. Maybe because it is new, but the bass that I put the bait in front were eager to follow the bait, and it proved effective both slow cranking and burned near the surface. The PDL Rig is also a good solution for tournament anglers who want to employ a schooling bait style lure but are restricted by either tournament rules or regional regulations. Overall I was surprised how effective the new bait was. It won't win any beauty contests but as we have learned many times over, sometimes the best looking lures are far from the most effective, and what catches fishermen is not always what catches the most fish.


A look at a PDL 200 swimbait tail, these small 2" swimbaits are used as teasers but can be used by themselves on darter heads and drop shot rigs

While I love the ease of use that entire PDL Rig and system offers when you look at the quality and refinement of the plastic baits themselves and the detailing on the head they do seem somewhat expensive. You are paying for an innovative patent pending design, and the baits work which is more than I can say for many other "prettier" baits so all things considered I doubt that PDL will have any trouble selling out of these baits once the secret gets out. This bait will be a hot commodity during early spring when there is a buffet of baitfish for predators to feast upon.

Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

Longas Baits PDL Rig Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Build quality is "good" and the bait basically consists of the PDL head and the swimbait tails. Both parts are built well but are a little rough in terms of detailing 7
Performance If the predatory fish in your river or lake like chewing on baitfish this lure is an easy to fish schooling bait that is basically a cross between a traditional paddletail swimbait and a A-Rig. I was surprised how good this bait performed right out of the package, especially when I was admittedly unimpressed with the fit and finish of the baits at first 9
Price Though certainly innovative the bait is still expensive when you consider the elements that the bait is constructed out of as well as the overall refinement of the bait. Nonetheless based on the lure's effectiveness I'm loading on a few more before they sell out 6
Features Best feature of all? Ease of use. The PDL Rig comes fully rigged and ready to fish. The PDL head design is very clever and it can be used with the swimbaits of your choice if you want to mix it up. I found that Keitech swimbaits also worked well on the PDL Rig head 8.5
Design (Ergonomics) Easy to fish, this lightweight schooling fish rig does not require a beefy swimbait stick to toss, a heavy powered casting rod with medium fast action will do the trick beautifully 8
Application The PDL Rig proved to be an effective fish catching tool. This bait can be fished at varying speeds and around light to medium structure effectively. It will be a good choice in everything from cold water to the spring when baitfish are plentiful. It also can be a hot ticket for tournament anglers that are prohibited from using traditional A-Rigs 10

Total Score

8.08
Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here

 

Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Innovative new take on a schooling bait - Not the most detailed or refined
+ Ready to fish right out of the pack - Price runs on the high side for each bait
+ Able to be fished at varying speeds and depths  
+ Replacement parts available, and the PDL Rig head can be used with other swimbait bodies of your choice  
+ Enables tournament anglers to fish a bait ball style bait when A-Rigs are prohibited  

Conclusion: The Longas Baits PDL Rigs were first available in Europe and originated from Spain. Some lucky American Anglers were able to import some of these baits, or had friends on the other side of the pond that sent a few them stateside. Anglers here have been keeping the bait relatively quiet but the secret is out, the PDL Rig has landed!

I'll admit when I first got these baits from Europe I didn't even fish them right away, and I wasn't even that impressed when I first inspected them. Maybe I'm jaded but my first thought was "gimmick," but I couldn't have been more wrong.


The PDL Rig proved to me that I should not judge a book by its cover and was a surprisingly effective alternative to the A-Rig, this is a good bait!

The PDL Rig may not be the most refined bait but the concept is a good one, and most importantly fish really like them. The good news is anglers don't even have to import them from the other side of the world anymore, and more e-tailers and retailers are now starting to stock them, including Tackle Warehouse, which has an assortment of the PDL Rigs, PDL Heads, and replacement swimbait bodies. If you are looking for an easy, and fun to fish, alternative to the A-Rig the Longas Baits PDL Rig is absolutely worth tying on, and is a perfect example of not "judging a book by its cover."

Looking for Longasbaits PDL Rig? Try Tackle Warehouse

 




 

 

 

 

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