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Favorite cranks for 'eyes?


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As a long-time live bait guy (jiggin' and lindy's primarily), I'm trying to learn more about pullin' cranks at night to broaden my aresenal a bit.

What kinds, sizes, styles, colors of cranks do you guys usually pull at night? I've heard different arguments about some shapes and colors being better than others at night? I'm thinking this time of year that most of night fishing will be pretty shallow - less than 10' or 12' of water. Any input guys?

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Rapala Husky Jerk, Orange Craw (whick they no longer make){ebay}

Produces both during the day & night.

You may want to purchase the book out there about the depths that cranks run. I'm not sure of the name right off the top of my head. Precision Trolling I think?

Good Luck
Tad

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I have used Rapala's Taildancers both during day and night, and I think they are fantastic. I just purchased some glass image husky jerks and shad raps. I am really looking forward to trying them on opener!

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I like to use lighter colors, yellow, white (if ya can find em), sometimes crawdad. I seem to have a little better luck if using something with rattles.

GRIZ

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Griz - thanks for bringing that up - I was wondering how much better (or worse) people have done with rattlin' raps.

So do you guys stick to shad shaped cranks or prefer longer/bigger sizes for night time? Some people say bigger baits cast a better silhouette, especially on full moon nights, thus more action on the water. True or not? How deep do you guys run your cranks early season after dark?

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Blaze, I would say 10 feet or less at night when fishing early season. Minnow baits tend to out fish Shad Raps or any short fat bodied crank. Reef Runners, Husky Jerks, ect... Anything that has a long thin body tends to be better at catching Walleye's for me at least. Oh yeah, lures with rattles do make a difference. But they can scare Walleye's away if they're in a really negative mood.

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In early season I like a #5 shad rap in a fire tiger or perch. I also agree with staying in ten feet or less typically at night early in the year.

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For you guys that like Shad Raps and see the advantage of rattles check out the crank baits that JR's Tackle has to offer.They have the same action as Shad Raps but with the addtion of rattles.In turbid or stained water rattle can make all the difference in the world.I will be using some of JR's cranks come opener.
deepshadsingle.jpg

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Mille Lacs at night #11 or #13 Rapala Floaters in 4 to 6 ft. best colors Firetiger, Clown, Blue/Silver and Black/Gold

Leech Lake at night Tail Dancers 4 to 8 ft. best colors chub and silver.

I've also had great luck trolling cranks during the day....
Lake Pepin...#5 Shad Rap in Firetiger and Crawdad, #7 Shad Rap in Firetiger and Pearl #5 Jointed Shad Rap in Firetiger, Brown Crawdad, Red Crawdad and Blue

Same colors and sizes have produced very well on Big Stone....on both of those lakes it can be a lot of fun to toss out a couple planer boards and cover some water.

I've also had great success trolling #7 shad raps in silver flourescent chartreuse on Lac Seule.

I always use Fireline and a rapala snap on the end of the line. Make sure that you vary your trolling passes....you may want to troll in an S-pattern on top of a large flat to change the speed of the inside and outside cranks....just pay attention to when you get the bites whether they are on the inside or outside lines...this will help you to determine whether you should speed up or slow down...pay attention to how much line you are letting out...this will impact how deep your cranks are running....

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CrawlerKing quick question(s),

When you say you use a "Rapala snap", are you just using a snap swivel? What size? I am assuming you are using these so the floating rapala has the most action, and you can change quickly...correct? Do the snaps added to the crank turn the fish off at all? Thanks for all the great posts and replies. I am going to try cranking a bit this opener, and all this info is wonderful. Thanks again.

[This message has been edited by irishjigs (edited 05-12-2004).]

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Just use a snap without a swivel, otherwise the action is off and you can getline nightmares.

big drift

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For 5-6' water I like small #7 jointed rapalas colors vary but firetiger, blue silver and black gold are good starters

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I have always liked the Shad raps and thundersticksbut I have found that JR'S is making very similiar cranks that have been tested and I have been very happy with then so far. Especialy the price.
47b4db28b3127ccebe6ae30eb5730000001010
47b4db28b3127ccebe6ae3eab5970000000010
47b4db28b3127ccebe6ae3c6b5bb0000000010
47b4db28b3127ccebe6ae3beb5c30000000010

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I'd rather be skunked than follow the crowd!

Brian Rogers

JR's Tackle
Catch-N Tackle and Bio Bait

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Those do look interesting, and I would gladly test some out on the LOTW!!! I love JR's 'crusher' spoons in the winter and as hard as they are to find around here, I'm certain those brand new cranks of theirs will be a tough find up here as well. So BDR, MattJ or anyone else affiliated with JR's....do you know if any of these have been sent up to shops in my area yet?

Thanks....fisky

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I like Salmo Stings in the S9F or S9SP in either yellow dace or bleak. I was always a rapala lover, countdowns and husy jerks, but I am now a Salmo lover for life! The Salmo Roach in floating roach green or blue was a good bait last Fall.

------------------
Matthew J. Breuer
Northcountry Guide Service
[email protected]
-----------------------
Custom Jigs and Spins
Phelps Tackle
Today's Tackle
Stone Legacy
Ice Leaders

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I like Storm's Hot-n-Tots. A blue back with white belly has always been pretty good for me. I came back from Leech one year with my blue Hot-n-Tot almost white because of all the tooth marks from eyes and northerns.

Good Luck!

T-Rex

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Depends on the time of the year and water temps. I like larger profile baits at night with lighter color bottoms (Blue/white, Black/silver and rainbow trout). Rainbow Trout works especially well on Mille Lacs at night.

I will also consider rattled baits often, but not all the time. I will also doctor floating raps and H-jerks with glow paint or tape, near the nose and tail ends of the lure. This works very well.

In the summer months (water temps 70+) I like Hot-n-tots or any lure with a large wobble action. I run these at speeds of 2 to 4mph typically. Speed is often essential here because you are looking for more a reactionary strike, than at other times of the year.

Cranking for walleys izzzzzzz fun!

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Well back home in the mountains of Montana I woud say a 1/4 stick of TNT with a 15-30 sec fuse in about 10 feet of water. best to use this at night when the feds and COs are on vacation. LOL Before I get jumped just a joke. We only did that when someone washed out their cement mixer in the trout stream. Ok i'll quit work is a drag just bored and files giving me a headache. Use a shad during the day 10- 15 feet and at night we use a floating rap from 4-8 feet. colors all depend n water clarity and time of year spring opener shads use perch and firetiger as season goes on switch to darker, at night we use black/ silver or blue / silver, size varies to what the fish want. goodluck

And keep your matches dry.
big drift

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Something I learned on Mille Lacs in the spring while trolling at night is that you can't get shallow enough. If you start trolling at sundown and are catching fish in 8-10 ft. of water and the bite stops, move in to 4-6 ft. You'll be amazed.
In really clear lakes, again I'll use Mille Lacs as an example, after dark you don't need a bait that's banging the bottom. I have good luck with a lure that fish can look up and see because it gives off a good silhouette. I don't feel that a rattling bait has any advantages this time of year in clear water. Some of my favorites are the Original Rapala Floating Minnow(the bigger the better)that will run 5 ft. down over 8 ft of water.
Good Luck to all this weekend and be safe!

------------------
Good Fishin!
Crossin

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I like jointed Shad Raps, #7, and #13 Floating Minnows. Color is whatever you have confidence in, I like Fire Tiger in stained water and something more silver or pearl in clear water. I also use the dive curves in Precision Trolling and experiment with different styles of crankbait that will work the depth I'm marking fish at on my electronics.

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Irishjigs...
I use a small snap, no swivel. I believe this does add to the action of the crank and it does allow me to change quickly. I have had others fishing with me who tied directly to the crank and I've never felt that the cranks with snaps were getting hit less.
One other tip: another way to change your presentation is to add action to your crank by working your rod. This past weekend trolling cranks on Pepin the majority of my bites came after I would pump the rod. This seemed to trigger the fish that may have just been following the cranks.

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Thanks CrawlerKing!

You are on to something when you said something about pumping your rod while trolling. I haven't done it for walleyes, but I always seemed to trigger a pike with that when I'm trolling for them.

One other question for the forum...have any of you ever put split shots ahead of your crank about 2-3 feet to increase the depth you are fishing? I know that won't be a concern for me this weekend, but for when I do fish deeper, I would like to have another option other than lead core or adding that weight directly to the crank bait. Thank you.

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I add a split shot at times. But there are other ways too. If I need to add a little depth I tend to use keel sinkers or three ways if it's reel deep.

Reef Runners and Rapalas

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Don't mean to get away from the original topic, but.....I used to use those crankbait snaps but have since started using the rapala knot which I think works great! I will use a snap during the night once in a while yet since tieing a knot in the dark is a pain in the a**! Anyone else use that knot?

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SPUD BAR

No i just use the snap but there is an easy way to tie the knot in the dark. No I don't mean to use a flashlight either. It would be too difficult to explain, you have to see it done. If you seen it done it's a piece of cake.

GRIZ

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psegriz

I see you are from the paynesville area. I fish the spicer area alot in the summer. We'll have to get together, have a couple cold ones and tie some knots!! LOL

Later, SPUD

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