The Dead Fall Jerk Bait!
Want one? Here is how you can make one.


    I have a fish tank in my home that I have had for quite a while. I have had Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Spotted Bass, Sauger, Walleye, and pretty much any kind of fish you can think in it. I love to watch how my fish react to weather changes, moon phases, and each other. I feed my fish everything from Crawfish to Shad. Iíve spent hours upon hours watching my fish and it amazes me how much they can teach you if you are willing to spend the time watching them. One day after I had fed the fish a few dozen minnows I was sitting in my recliner when I noticed one of the minnows acting strange. The minnow was in the process of dying, either from being attacked by one of the fish or by a number of reasons. The minnow struggled to maintain a heads up attitude and would actually fall tail first towards the bottom of the tank. One of the Largemouth's hiding under a stump spotted this, left his sanctuary beneath the stump and struck the minnow. I thought it was interesting that this Largemouth had just gorged itself 30 minutes before but found it irresistible to pass up the injured and dying minnow. Over the course of about a month revealed that any time a minnow or shad made this motion, a Bass would instantly attack the injured baitfish. I knew I had to mimic this action somehow.

        How I replicated this action turned out to be fairly simple. I took a Rattling Rogue suspending jerkbait and removed all of the hooks. Next you will need to tape up the lip of the bait to keep it clean from the painting processes coming up. Trim up the tape to make it easier to handle. Next you will need to rough sand off the finish of the bait. A 220 grit sandpaper will do the trick perfectly. After you have sanded the bait down you will need to apply the lead tape to make it sink. You can get lead tape at a number of places including a golf pro store. Golfers use lead tape for their clubs, you can also use suspending strips made by Storm. You donít need to apply very much lead tape to make it sink. Place about Ĺ inch of tape behind the middle hook hanger on the bait. Now take some 150 grit sandpaper and sand the edges of the lead tape to make them smooth. After this has been done you will need apply some waterproof epoxy on the lead tape to assure it from coming loose. After this has dried and cured, dip the lure into a white primer and allow the bait to dry. Once the bait has dried, get your 220-grit paint sandpaper and sand the primer on the bait until it is smooth. Once this has been done you are ready to paint the bait. I have a complete airbrush system I use to paint my Crankensteins but you can hand paint it or use spray paints to get the colors you want. After the bait has been painted youíll need to clear coat the bait to assure its protection. I use a clear epoxy that cures within a few days and is guaranteed to not yellow. Make sure to use a non-yellowing, waterproof epoxy. All that is left is to remove the tape on the lip, re-apply the hooks (I upgrade to either Mustad triple grips or nickel kale trebles) and take the bait fishing.

       I duplicated the dying action of the minnows in a swimming pool. I use the following cadence to mimic the baitfish. Make a long cast with the bait, pause it upon it landing. Once the bait has been paused for several seconds you will need to jerk it 3 times fairly quick, now pause the bait for 5 seconds, jerk the bait 3 times, pause it for 5 seconds, and repeat. I cant tell you how many limits of tournament fish I have caught on this bait and can pretty much say that this bait is one that helped me advance to the FLW Outdoors Everstart Series. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to contact me at Tight lines, Ken.

    Ken Nance is sponsored by Triton Boats, Mason Dixon Marine and Polaris, Sliding Weight Company, Kick'n Bassģ Fish Attractants, Silverbuddy, Eat-em-up Bait Company, J.R.s Custom Rods, Caps Tackle, Susky Bugs, Bonzai Bait Company, Cabin Creek Bait Company and Nichols Bait Company.

All articles are re-printed with permission from Ken Nance from his web site