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Lure Review

Topwater Annihilation: the 3:16 Wake Jr.

Date: 7/7/07
Tackle type: Lures
Manufacturer: 3:16 Lure Company
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 9.0


Introduction: Our introduction to 3:16 Lure Company came at this past year's International Sportsman's Exposition in Sacramento where we literally got to meet Mickey Ellis. Right away, Mickey struck us as an intense individual really dedicated to his craft and concerned over the quality, finish, durability and performance of his baits. So impressed were we with is passion, when it came time to sit down and prioritize our review agenda for 2007, we listed, right away, several must have 3:16 Lure Company baits. Today we bring to you the first of our planned series of reviews, the 3:16 Wake Jr.

3:16 Wake Jr. Specifications

Type Swimbait
Depth Surface Bait
Class Floating
Size (Weight) 7.5" ( 3.1 - 3.2 ounces)
Colors/Patterns 11 Color Patterns
MSRP $80

Impressions: The one word that really leaps out and hits you in the head when holding a 3:16 Lure Company Hardbait in your hand is OUCH! No, it's not the hooks that grab you, but really, the attention to detail in these baits. From the solid, all stainless steel split rings, to the stout, heavy gauged wire hooks, to the "I dare you" look in each bait's eyes, to the incredibly executed joint in the body of the lure, we can tell Mickey's true passion with his products lies with the hard bodied lures. They are incredible pieces of craftsmanship.


Introducing 3:16 Lure Company's Wake Jr.

The Field Tests:
All it took was one trip to witness the effectiveness of this particular bait. Destination? The California Delta. After receiving my order of these baits, I knew they deserved an equally insane combination on which to fish them. After all, what dedicated tackle maniac would throw a bait this intense on just any old stick? My weapon of choice? The Megabass F7-76RDti White Python. A one piece, seven foot, six inch stick featuring the slant bridge rear grip, the same D.N.A. graphite blank as the previously reviewed Mephisto, but wrapped in some kind of rare metal composite sheath. Retail on this stick? $504 - insane, I know, but heck, you only live once, right?


Complete test rig for 3:16 Wake Jr. Field Tests

Rod Megabass F7-76 RDti White Python
Reel Shimano Calcutta 201DC
Line 50lb Suffix Performance Braid


Bite me, I dare you...

Just part of the mold, but outstanding nonetheless


Casting: I capped off this crazy, dedicated combo with a Shimano Calcutta 201DC spooled with 50 pound test Suffix Performance Braid. I wanted the floating characteristics of the superline to fish this topwater swimbait. Let me tell you, this combo handled the Wake Jr. perfectly. I was not only able to cast for distance thanks to the 201DC, but thanks to the White Python, I could cast the Wake Jr. with accuracy.

The Wake Jr. is a wide bodied bait

How surreal is it to cast a three-ounce plus bait with accuracy on a stick that's seven feet six inches long? I was placing this bait up against pilings, just past tule points, and amidst patches of submerged weeds. On one long cast, down a stretch of tules, I swam the bait maybe five feet when a bird swooped down from above and paused, mid-air about five feet above my bait. I didn't know what to do! Stop? Jerk it? Keep swimming it? The bait was too far off to yell at the bird and scare it off. I know because I tried! Yet I was too scared to work it for fear of making the bird strike the lure! Fortunately, after a few seconds, the bird realized something might not have been right and took off. Phew!

Check out the luster of this bait's finish...

Retrieving: Shaken, but not quit stirred from that encounter, I continued to work the bait back to the boat. The Wake Jr. does just as advertised by its name and creates quite a commotion when retrieve on a steady cadence back to the boat. But, as with most high end swimbaits, that's not all it does - not by a long shot.

...and the hidden sparkles.

Cast the bait out and let it sit, of course it floats as you'd expect. Give the bait a nice little jerk and it glides off to one side. Jerk it again and whoa, it glides to the other side. The 3:16 Wake Jr. can be fished like a huge, oversized cigar bait! But wait, that's not all. Work it a bit more in this fashion, mix in some good amount of slack in your line with maybe, a harder tug here and there, and you can get the head of the bait under water. What happens when the head of the bait goes under water? The tail goes straight up in the air!

Solid, stout, hardware


Well, what the heck does that matter you ask? Jerk it again while this bait is in this awkward position and the tail comes slapping down on top of the water like a real fish! Work at it enough and you can make the bait stay in this one spot for a little bit of time like a real fish feeding on something right at the surface! It is THAT crazy!


The most concealed execution of a joint we've seen thus far

No see-through joint here!

Next Section: Durability and Effectiveness









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