I was reorganizing some of the bassin’ boxes over the weekend, when it kind of dawned on me how many different types of “systems” the various manufacturers of shaky jigheads have incorporated into their respective products. I haven’t run any kind of official test on these to see which ones hold best. I’m guessing there would be some subjectivity involved.
Here’s what I’ve come up with just lookin’, along with some comments. Throw in your own two cents on your faves in the comments section.
A:Â Single Barb -Â Tried and true. Holds decent, swells the plastic head a bit on solid baits, but hard to knock an original.
B:Â Lead Gap – The old Bagley design. Neat, bonus points for originality. Actually works well, especially with smaller plastics.Â Hard to find any more. Think Bagley might have stopped making them.
C: Double Barb -Â Holds strong, better than a single barb, but can be even tougher to get the plastic to seat well over all that lead. Also, sometimes seems too long for the application. A favorite of mine in various motifs on traditional skirted jigs though.
D: Barbed “Keeper” -Â Not the original “keeper” hook in this sense, but certainly a modification of that original concept. Holds well and keeps plastics straight, though I’ve heard stories of sometimes not being as effective with hook-up ratios.
E: Metal Barb -Â My current favorite. Very diminutive, and works great with solid plastic heads, not quite as great with hollow headed plastics like tubes. I’ve gone to this style in other applications now, also.
F: Twist Lock – This one probably holds best of all. Can be a bit of a pain to thread on depending upon plastic shape. Can also be tough if your bait does get ripped off and the only thing left is the plastic stub that has to be unscrewed from the keeper. If you’re aggressively ripping plasticsÂ through veggies, or have a very pesky or perisistent panfish population, this one might be the answer.
G: Skip Gap – No lead or barbs, but instead relies on design. Very clean and compact, but I actually haven’t tried this model yet. Seems like it might be prone to pull downs, but can’t say for certain.
So there you have it.Â Â Lets hear your current favorite versions and why…