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Lure Review


The Terminator T1 is still among the best when it comes to Titanium Spinnerbait Design
 

Date: 7/07/03
Tackle type: Lures
Manufacturer: Terminator
Reviewer: Zander






Total Score: 8.0

Introduction:
Spinnerbaits are among the most flexible lures when it comes to targeting bass at varying depths and structures. In the past spinnerbaits were relegated to only shallow water applications, but today anglers are discovering a much greater range of applications where a spinnerbait is equally as effective. Terminator makes some of the most premium wire baits on the market, and is actually the company credited by many anglers as the pioneer of the titanium revolution.
 

Terminator T1 Titanium Spinnerbaits

Colors/Patterns 15+
Blade Shape Willow, Oklahoma
Blade Colors Gold and Nickel combinations (Painted blade available)
Weight 1/4, 3/8, 1/2oz.
Features Titanium wire, interchangeable skirts, realistic head design, modified willow and Oklahoma blades
MSRP $8.99


Impressions:
Spinnerbaits in design are simple, and yet use of new alloy and silicon materials have created a wide variation in spinner design. The Terminator is truly an execution of all the latest technology into traditional spinner design. While the spinner still uses a main wire, two blades, and a skirt…the similarity to spinners of old stops there. Upon initial inspection the Terminator uses uniquely shaped blades that are very shiny, thanks to use of actual gold plating! The normally steel wire has been upgraded to flexible titanium and all the moving parts are bolstered by high quality bearing based swivels. The head of the spinner is a very detailed fish head, complete with scales and a mirror painted finish. To top it off T1 includes two silicon skirts with each spinnerbait so you can change the color of the lure quickly.

 

With so many spinnerbaits available the T1 was one of the first that attempted to offer truly new spinner design


Casting: Spinnerbaits tend to be well weighted baits, and the Terminator is no exception. This lure sails through the air with ease when rigged with 10 or 12lb line. The best way to fish spinnerbaits is with a nice baitcasting rig, as you will have more control over placement. Because the Terminator is a medium sized spinner with a flexible titanium wire it is an excellent choice for fishing in and around structure. Placing the spinnerbait into open pockets of water is key when initiating retrieves over and around heavy vegetation and submerged trees

 

The T1 (below) has a much more realistic shape and textured head then the lower end T2 (above)

 

Retrieve: The unique shape of the blades on the T1 are meant to augment the range of motion in the water upon retrieves and increase the number of angles on the blade, generating more flash. When the Terminator is burned close to the surface of the water it truly does flash vividly with each turn of the blade, and is an excellent choice for slightly stained to clear water on bright sunny days.

 

The T1 features a quick change skirt system, simply pull of the skirt and change

Another great way to fish this spinner is slow and deep rolling the lure. When you reach a steep drop off simply toss the lure towards your vertical structure and allow the Terminator to helicopter down. At this point you can keep your rod tip down and retrieve and stop, wait, and retrieve again. Its amazing the strikes you can encourage as the spinnerbait flutters to rest between retrieves. Another trick I like to employ is to kneel down and put my rod tip a few feet below the surface of the water, effectively bringing the maximum spinner depth a few feet down on your retrieve. By keeping the Terminator low you can put this spinner in strike zones other anglers may not normally target with wire baits.

The silicon skirts are held on with pure tension

One of the nicest things about the T1 is the ability to change the silicon skirt in seconds. Rather then strap the skirt on it is held on the body simply with pressure behind a molded hump. During our tests I was fishing with a white and pepper skirt with no success. After a quick change to the supplementary blue and black skirt I quickly hooked up on two keeper bass. Sometimes the most subtle changes can make a difference, and it’s nice to have the additional flexibility that the Terminator offers.

The Titanium wire can be bent, twisted, and even completely rotated...and it will always return to it's original shape

  

Durability: The soft Titanium wire on the Terminator serves many purposes aid anglers. First of all the bait is a lot more durable and will always remain in perfect shape after hanging on structure or landing a big fish. Second the titanium actually is adjusted so that the hook is positioned closer to the blades; this ensures that any fish that attacks the blade portion of the spinnerbait will still have a good chance of hooking up.  

 

High quality bearing swivels help the upgraded blades spin with ease

 

Unfortunately the durability of the mirror finish of the Terminator needs improvement. After short periods of use, and just a few strikes we began to notice some flaking on the head. After prolonged use the mirror finish shed off completely, exposing the lead core. This is disappointing considering many more affordable lures have tougher finishes available. Even the lower end Terminator T1 lures have a more durable finish, granted that the detail is no comparison.
 

The one major flaw of the T1 is that the mirror finish is easily damaged, and can completely peel away with extended use


Price: If you like the features that the Terminator T1 has to offer, then you will have to pay for them. Terminator positions these lures in the premium spinnerbait category, and the prices match. Ultimately anglers will have to decide if they prefer the standard design of conventional spinnerbaits or the "race tuner" package that the T1 offers.

  
Ratings:

Terminator T1 Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Good quality all around except for the finish which needs additional protection for increased durability 8
Performance This spinnerbait is among the best we have ever tested. Very many hookups, a very nice sharp hook is very good at riving the hook during sets. 9
Price Yikes. at a price of near 9 dollars this is one expensive spinnerbait. There is a lot of competition out there, many of which are 20-40% cheaper. 6
Features Tons of features, still among the most souped up spinnerbaits available. The interchangeable silicon skirts is a great added value! 9
Design (Ergonomics) Easy to use system, and the titanium wire make this a problem free lure to fish every time 8
Application A good lure to use is almost any situation. Once again a slight deduction here because of the weak mirror finish which doesn't hold up when fishing rocky outcroppings 8

Total Score

8.0


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Tons of features L Price is high
J Very high quality components L Finish not durable enough
J Switchable skirt design  
J Titanium design still a winner  


Conclusion: With options and features a-plenty the Terminator T1 is able to deliver good performance for a variety of applications. Options like the interchangeable skirts are a big plus for anglers seeking more flexibility from their spinners. The only major flaw to lure’s design is the easily damaged mirror finish, which we believe should be anodized, or at least sport a heavy coat of gloss finish. While I continue to have great success with these lures they may not be for everyone, as traditional spinnerbaits can function just as well in many of the same applications, often at half the price of these flashy lures. Like exotic cars, buying a T1 is more expensive at the get go, and it will cost you more to maintain the lure's original striking finish. The Terminator is indeed a premium spinner, and still among the best when it comes to titanium design....but there are many other spinners that will work just as well, with a lower cost of ownership.



 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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