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Lure Review



Locking Targets on Versatility : The Missile Craw by Missile Baits


Date: 11/22/21
Tackle Type: Lures
Manufacturer: Missile Baits
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 7.83 - GOOD

You'd think after such great success fishing Missile Bait's DBomb trailer bait, we'd have been full bore into the manufacturer's remaining catalog of soft plastic baits. Trouble is, we were having so much fun fishing that bait, we found it difficult to move away from it. We've finally pulled our collective heads out from inside our tackle bags and have slowly been working out way through the other product Missile Baits has to offer. Today, we drill down into the bait that is the namesake of the company. Here now is our look at Missile Baits's Missile Craw.


Missile Baits Missile Craw Specifications

Type Craw/Punch Bait
Material Soft Plastic
Colors/Patterns 10
Sizes 4"
Scent/Plastic Treatment None Advertised
# per package 8
Resealable Bag? Yes
MSRP $3.99

The Missile Baits's Missile Craw is a staple in the arsenal of many tournament anglers

Impressions: Missile Baits's Missile Craw is a really interesting take on the crawdad bait. It has a tapered body almost like a half, elliptical cylinder with a hollowed out underside to facilitate rigging and two very slender, teardrop shaped claws extending out from one end of the bait. Between those claws, the bait's body extends into a point forming a single antennae. This bait definitely leans on the side of not-realistic and prefers to blur the lines between bait types.


The Missile Craw is designed as a flipping/pitching bait but is great as a jig trailer too

Real World Tests: Of course, more often than not, when it comes to craw-style baits, the unrealistic baits are often the best ones! The Missile Craw is designed as a flipping bait - an intent that's easy to see given the bait's compact profile. I rigged it up on a 3/0 Gamakatsu Finesse Heavy Cover hook with a pegged weight and Sunline FX2 braided line to see what this bait was about.

It has a very slender, hydrodynamic shape


Needless to say, really, given the bait's slender profile, it's a really easy bait to pitch in and around tight spaces provided your aim is on target. Even if it's not, thanks to the bait's hydrodynamic shape and small claws, it doesn't get chewed up, or torn apart when you rub it against the inevitable dock piling, rock, or tule stalk.


The Missile Craw holds up really well pitched into, on top of, and through these obstacles. Additionally, as designed, thanks to that pocket on the back side of the bait, there's very little plastic for the hook to work through when you swing to set, so you don't miss many fish with this bait either.


The underside has a nice, wide channel to facilitate hook sets


Given the bait's unique shape, what I was interested in discovering were other uses for this bait. I mean, how convenient would it be to find a bait that you could flip and pitch with, but then turn around, and nose hook it onto a drop shot hook and drop it down on six pound test line to see if you can entice a bite that way too?

Rigged on a 3/0 Gamakatsu Finesse Heavy Cover hook

The size of most flipping baits alone would preclude this experiment, but somehow, the Missile Craw was screaming drop shot bait to me so I tried it. Wouldn't you know? On my very first cast with this experimental rig, I caught a fish and then a second one a few casts later. The missile craw is very versatile indeed.

The tear drop shaped claws hold up well to repeated pitches into, through, and on top of visible structure

Design & Ergonomics: The Missile Craw is available in 10 different colors and comes in a re-sealable bag of eight (8) baits. There's a convenient notch in the bag to rip the bag open, but if you simply go to the very top of the bag, you'll find it's already split at the top and you can open the ziplock from there. Missile Baits does not advertise on their packaging that the product contains any fish attracting scents, but there is some oil in the package that has a scent to it.

But wait, fished as a drop shot bait?

Price & Applications: Each package of 8 Missile Craws retails for $3.99 for a per bait cost of fifty cents ($0.50). A very good price for such a versatile and effective little bait. Once again, the Missile Craw is effective uses in the purpose for which it was designed as a flipping bait, but we had success using it as a jig trailer and drop shot bait in addition to a pitching bait.

Rigged on a #2 Gamakatsu Drop Shot Hook

There are so many ways to fish the Missile Craw that it is no surprise that over the last few seasons it has become a favorite among tournament anglers. The ability to trigger strikes from bass feeding on both worms and crawfish with a single bait makes this such a useful option when fish are in transition, and the ability to fish it both on the bottom or suspended only adds the bait's versatility.


Missile Baits Missile Craw Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality A very interesting little product that's very consistent bait to bait 8
Performance Performs as advertised with easy hooksets 8
Price A nicely priced soft plastic bait at fifty cents per bait 8
Features Unadvertised fish attracting scent 7.5
Design (Ergonomics) Easy to open and reseal packaging 7.5
Application Truly versatile! 8

Total Score


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:


+ Effective in everything from flipping to drop shotting - 10 colors seems like a limiting factor for such a fun little bait to fish
+ Nice per bait pricing  
+ Compact design can be pitched into tight spaces with little difficulty  


Very first cast on the drop shot... Boom!


Conclusion: We play around with a lot of funky rigging while testing baits, just to see how they look in the water, and to test whether or not we can tempt a fish into biting in an unconventional way. Ninety percent of the time or more, our efforts are just wasted time, but every now and then, we discover a new way to fish something that might not be known or at least talked about in broader circles. The Missile Craw is one such product and really, getting a couple bites on the drop shot rig made it all the more fun to fish. Don't be afraid to experiment with the Missile Craw, it really is quite a versatile weapon, and especially right now during Fall.


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