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Lure Review



Basic Yet Custom at the Same Time : CLU's Live Wire BzB8t


Date: 11/1/18
Tackle Type: Lures
Manufacturer: Custom Lures Unlimited
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 7.67 - GOOD

For all its timeless effectiveness, the buzzbait seems to get little fan fare when it comes the discussion of favorite topwater baits. Its basic design has gone unchanged since inception, yet there are certainly little tweaks and refinements from bait to bait that set each apart. Some of these tweaks you can make yourself, but when I come across a buzzbait I have confidence throwing straight out of the package, I like to share this discovery. Does Custom Lures Unlimited's interpretation, the Live Wire BzB8t inspire that confidence in me? Let's find out!


CLU Live Wire BzB8t Specifications

Type Single Blade Buzzbait
Depth Topwater
Skirt Material Silicone
Weight 3/8oz
Colors/Patterns 5
MSRP $6.49

Introducing Custom Lure Unlimited's Live Wire BzB8t.

Impressions: Custom Lures Unlimited out of Raleigh, North Carolina is boutique manufacturer specializing in hand made skirted baits, soft plastic baits, and the occasional, hand painted hard baits. There's nothing particularly flashy or eye opening about their product other than the quality that is put into everything they make and sell. The Live Wire BzB8t certainly fits that bill. It is a three eighths ounce single bladed buzzbait made with a silicon skirt.


The Live Wire BzB8t is one of the few buzzbaits that comes with a pre-bent wire dropping the head and skirt down in the water just a little bit more helping to increase hook up ratios.

Real World Tests: I've been fishing the Live Wire BzB8t off and on for the last couple of years but most recently, I paired it up with a Megabass of America Destroyer Valvidia paired with a Shimano Metanium MGL. In the California Delta, my primary body of water for buzzbait action, I'll often fish a buzzbait on a flipping stick because I like the extra length of those rods for launching buzzbaits long and far. The Valvidia, at 7'-6" is right in this same vein, but comes with a tip that loads so very nice when casting baits even as light as the Live Wire BzB8t.

A look at the unspecified hook of the Live Wire BzB8t.

Castability : I normally prefer buzzbaits in the half ounce range for ease of casting, but the Live Wire BzB8t was surprisingly easy to cast for distance with my Valvidia and Metanium MGL combo. The bait sails through the air as you'd expect a buzzbait to do and thanks to its lighter weight actually lands in the water a little more softly and is a little easier to get to the surface, because it doesn't sink as quickly as a half ounce bait.


The skirt is left with a few strands hanging beyond the hook giving this bait a fish-like profile in the water.


Ease of Actuation : What's more, if you stop your cast just as the bait hits the water and begin cranking the handle, then there is no time for the bait to sink and that lovely buzzing action begins right away. The BzB8t's aluminum blade churns the water very well and creates a typical squeaking and squawking sound.


The standard, aluminum blade is bookended by metal bearings.


Quality of Movement : The Live Wire BzB8t swims straight and true out of the box and is as affective or non-effective in the weeds as any other buzzbait I've fished. By that I mean that you will have to clean the weeds and algae from the front of the blade on occasion like you would any other buzzbait. There just doesn't seem to be a good solution for this occurrence since the blade acts as a catch for the vegetation winding it around the bait's support wire.


These bearings help keep the blade spinning.

Design & Ergonomics: The Live Wire BzB8t comes with a silicone skirt attached to the bait's lead weighted head via a thick rubber band. the skirt itself is trimmed so there is a ball of material from the back of the head to the back of the hook, but then there are also a few strands left hanging at the back of the hook to give the bait a kind of fish-like profile.

The skirt is attached via a thick rubber band.

What I like most about this bait is that it comes with a pre-bent wire lowering the bait's body just a bit more under the water as you retrieve the bait. It's a subtle tweak but one that offers better hook up ratios on a buzzbait and scores extra points with me because I don't have to make this bend on my own after opening the package.

The head is low and wide helping to plane the bait to the surface when you retrieve.

Price & Applications: The Live Wire BzB8t is available in five different patterns and retails for $6.49 right off the company's retail website: CatchOutdoors.com.

The simple chuck it and wind it character of a buzzbait is what makes it so fun to fish.


CLU Live Wire BzB8t Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality A nice, basic buzzbait 7
Performance Easy to cast and comes up quickly 8.5
Price In this day of +$15 lures, a welcome reprieve 8
Features For me, it's all about that pre-bent wire 7.5
Design (Ergonomics) Only 5 color patterns and a banded skirt instead of tied 7
Application When isn't it a good time to throw a buzzbait? Well, at least on the CA Delta. 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:


+ Wire is pre-bent for the swimming head to sit lower in the water - Non-hand tied skirt
+ Interesting skirt profile - Only available in 3/8oz
+ Sharp, no-name hook  


There are times, post-spawn, where all I want to do on the California Delta is tie on a buzzbait.


Conclusion: There are times, post-spawn, where all I want to do on the California Delta is tie on a buzzbait, and start casting and cranking away. It is perhaps, the easiest topwater bait to fish because it doesn't require any coordination to work - just literally cast and retrieve. You can slow your retrieve down or speed it up, but all the action is built into the lure as long as you keep it moving. Custom Lures Unlimited Live Wire BzB8t won't necessarily stand out from a crowded peg-board of buzzbaits, but if you, like me, like that little bend in the wire of a buzzbait right above the head, then it is one of the few options that comes with this tweak right out of the package.









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