What Is Spinner Bait Fishing?


One of the most favorite types of lures for any clever fisherman is the spinnerbait and what makes them so popular is their versatility. They can be used in muddy water, clear water as well as in any type of weather condition. Whether it’s fall, winter, spring, or summer, a spinnerbait will perform.

And that is not all. While the best smallmouth bass lures will work great, spinnerbaits can be used at the surface or as deep as you may like. You can even use them around structures and underwater covers.

But what is a spinnerbait?

Simply put, spinnerbait fishing is using a lure that resembles an open safety pin. It features a wire framework with a lead head, a hook, and spinner blades that provide it with its name. The hook is covered with a soft plastic, silicone, or rubber skirt.

The spinner bait looks like a baitfish with its smooth flowing movement. They are simply excellent at grabbing the attention of bass.

The basic design of the spinnerbait lure

There are three main types of spinnerbait lures. You can use a monofilament fishing line with these.  These are the short arm, the long arm, and the twin spins.

The short arm design is best when you are fishing off ledges as the top wire arm is short.

Then there is the long arm design which can pretty much be used anywhere. However, it works best when fishing in a spot with plenty of grassy covers. It has a long top wire arm.

The third type, the twin spins is designed for bottom fishing,

How to fish with spinnerbaits

Now that you know what is a spinnerbait, the best way to use spinnerbait for fishing is as a contact lure. This is where they are placed next to a structure. As you reel in, ensure that you use a slow pull.

The best type of reel for using the spinnerbait is the baitcasting reel with a medium action rod. Avoid using a heavy rod as this will likely cause you to pull and reel too strong which often causes the lure to come out of the mouth of the fish.

Once you drop the lure into the water, ensure that you provide it with a quick pop. This allows the blade to move. To get the best results, it’s good to ensure that you can see the spinnerbait. This often calls for you fishing on the surface.

You will often need to try out which method of retrieve works for you whether it’s a fast retrieve or a medium to slow retrieve. Once you find it, stick to it. The following are the different types of retrieves that you should experiment with.

1. Contact

With this method, you will need to look for a swampy area, with brush and weeds and cast your bait past these. Then perform a slow retrieve where the bait knocks and brushes against the underwater plant life allowing it to change direction.

This change of direction and movement causes the bass to notice and take interest and often will result in a strike. If you want to use a fluorocarbon fishing line, then this could work as well.

2. The Wake

The idea here is to mimic a fish throwing a wake. It is best used in murky, shallow water. Cast the bait past a cover and reel quickly which causes the tip of the bait to rise. Then reel in at a medium pace to prevent the bait from breaking the surface water.

3. The buzz

This method is also best for shallow, murky water. Hold the rod tip high and reel quickly. Allow the braids of the spinnerbait to breach the surface of the water. This will result in a splashing sound that will attract the bass. Make sure you are using a good quality fishing line.

4. The Helicopter

This one is for steep banks, drop-offs, or ledges. Allow the lure to sink to the bottom. This will allow the spinnerbait to rotate as it goes down. Once it gets to the bottom, start by reeling up and then raise the tip of the rod and then back down.

5. The slow roll

If you have a hunch that the bass is hanging out in covers and drop-offs, cast the bait and then reel it in slowly while pointing the tip of the rod downwards. Ensure that you are reeling in at a pace that allows the blades to spin. This ensures that the bait spins as it sinks, grabbing the attention of the bass and attracting them to the lure. Your best bet for this is a good baitcasting fishing rod.

As you reel in your bait, you should feel a bass grab it and you can then reel it up.

Tips for spinnerbait fishing


While some people will struggle to fish with spinnerbaits, often this is because of using the bait the wrong way. More successful fishermen will even compare it to using the worm in terms of success. Now that you understand what is a spinnerbait and how it works, here is how to increase your chances of catching a large bass with a spinnerbait.

1. Lure colors

Using the right lure color will increase the chances of the bass spotting the bait and making a move. White lures for clear days, blue lures for overcast days, and chartreuse for dirty and murky water will often offer the best results.

2. Size of the spinner blades

The larger the spinner blades the more the vibration. If you were to use a large spinner blade on shallow water, this could spook the fish. On the other hand, using too small spinner blades on deepwater could go unnoticed. The idea is to use the right size spinner blade for the type of water that you are spinnerbait fishing into best grab the attention of bass.

Ensure that you have a good bass fishing rod.

3. The weather

The type of weather condition may determine the type of spinner blade that you use. Overcast days are best for using spinner bait lures.  However, since the bass may hideaway under logs and bush, spinnerbaits will do a great job at pulling them from their hiding spots.

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Spinnerbait fishing might seem complicated when you first start, but with the correct methods, it can be a highly successful way to fish. Some have compared it second only to using a trick worm.

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My name is David Hamburg. I am an avid water sports fan who enjoys paddle boarding, surfing, scuba diving, and kite surfing. Anything with a board or chance I can get in the water I love! I am such a big fan I decided to start this website to review all my favorite products and some others. Hope you enjoy!