As Versatile as a Pocket Knife?
The Reaction Innovations Machete
Total Score: 7.42 -
Introduction: I find it interesting how the soft plastic worm movement has kind of gone the way of the NBA (National Basketball Association). Most anglers are either working in the paint with their finesse offerings for a high percentage bite or
they're bombing from distance with huge ten inch worms banking on the fact that if they're going to get a bite, it's going to be a good sized fish. Few really bother with the mid-range game anymore of rigging up a six or seven inch curly tailed worm with a pegged bullet weight and pitching it to structure. Instead, this shot has been taken over by jigs, unweighted worms like the Senko, creature baits, etc..
More new goodies from Reaction Innovations.
Well one manufacturer, Reaction Innovations, is looking to revive the mid-range game with their latest offering, the Machete. We acquired a few packs on a recent promotion from TackleWarehouse and took to the water to see if we could brush up on our mid-range game.
Reaction Innovations Machete
|# per package
This time, it's there interpretation of a soft plastic worm.
Impressions: Reaction Innovation's Machete measures out at just over seven inches in length. It features a ribbed main body similar in texture to the company's Beaver trailer bait. The Machete's tail is actually two in one. Out of the package, it performs like a paddletail, but there's a diagonal split through that paddle with two pieces of soft plastic holding it together. Split this apart and you get a curly tail worm!
The Machete rigged and ready for some action.
Real World Tests: I fished the Machete tied to the end of some ten pound (10lb) test Sunline Sniper Green spooled onto a Shimano Aldebaran MGL 31, matched with a Phenix FTX-71MH Feather Series casting rod. I was using a Trokar Light Wire Finesse worm hook with a small, tungsten bullet weight and a red glass bead.
Out of the box, it's a paddletail worm with a little ridge to help get the tail moving when you swim the bait.
What I found most intriguing about this bait is that dual purpose tail. The paddletail, gives the worm an almost swimbait like action flopping (as opposed to flapping) back and forth as you hop or swim the Machete back to you. If you rig it unweighted, you can get the Machete to swim on the surface too creating a subtle little wake behind it.
Pull the tail apart to separate those plastic pieces and...
Split the tail open and you have more of a curly tail worm giving the Machete's back side even more action. Retrieved along the surface unweighted and it's almost like a soft plastic buzzbait - almost. When fished in this manner, there's a lot more action in the tail when the bait is descending so it's even more effective popped up off the bottom, or pitched down through the top of weeds.
essential have a curly tail worm.
Reaction Innovations uses a fairly soft plastic, pretty typical of all their baits. The bait's ribbed body make up for what it lacks in flexibility, but the Machete is still on the softer side of average for a plastic worm. As you can imagine durability varies but each worm seemed to last me through at least three or four fish before needing to be changed.
In typical Reaction Innovations fashion, the Machete's plastic is relatively soft - but not too soft.
Design & Ergonomics: Reaction Innovations packages the Machete in resealable bags of 9 baits each. It is currently only available in five (5) different colors, but knowing RI, this selection will expand in due time. As far as we know, the Machete is not infused with any scent nor does the bag contain any oil or other scent to soak with the worms.
Each bag is resealable.
Price & Applications: Each pack of Machetes retails for $5.99 which comes to a per bait price of $0.67. This worm is probably best fished in some type of weedless rigging (TX, Carolina, punch rig, etc.). It's not really suited for wacky presentations although come to think of it, if you pinch the tail off, the Machete would actually make a very good bait to fish wacky style.
Viewed with the tail turned at this angle, you can imagine pinching the tail
off and fishing the Machete as a soft stick bait too.
Reaction Innovations Machete
: 2 =
poor : 3
: 4 =
: 5 =
: 6 =
fair : 7
= good :
: 10 =
Pluses and Minuses:
| + Two in one tail
|| - Limited colors for now
|+ RI signature ribbed body design
|+ Nice, soft plastic
Reaction Innovations cranks up the versatility of the ubiquitous soft plastic worm with their Machete.
Conclusion: Plastic worms are by definition versatile baits. That's why, along with price, they're so popular. Reaction Innovation's cranks that versatility up a notch with the Machete by giving the worm two tails in one. Then, if you're looking for even more versatility, you can pinch the tail off all together and fish it like a super soft stick bait rigged wacky style or maybe even nose hooked on an up sized bubba-shot rig. I didn't think of that last option until I was actually writing this review, but I've no doubt it will work. For now, if you're looking for a soft plastic worm with even more versatility than the usual, you might want to check out the Machete by Reaction Innovations.
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