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Bladed Jig vs ChatterBait – Is There Any Real Difference?

Bladed Jig vs ChatterBait
Written by Immanuel Baranov

Hello there! Confused about bladed jigs and chatterbait?

Well, bladed jigs are a type of swim jigs or bass jigs that have a metal blade attached with the eyelet of the hook.

Ron Davis Sr. invented bladed jigs in 2004 and named them Chatterbait. Later, in 2006 Z-man fishing introduced them to the mass market.

Since then, chatterbait has turned into a renowned bladed jig series from Z-man.

Recently many companies like Strike king and Booyah Melee have stepped into this business.

Bladed Jig vs ChatterBait

Bladed Jigs

The history of the bass lures changed completely with the invention of bladed jigs.

At the beginning of the bladed jigs era, only Z-man could provide bladed jigs because they had patents over the design. The jigs were a part of the ChatterBait series.

After some time, many competitors came up with modified versions (ex: attached split rings) of ChatterBait with the same concept.

However, the scope for improvisation and modification on bladed jigs is sadly limited. As a result, there wasn’t much to be added or improved.

Chatterbait

The name “Chatterbait” came from an unplanned fishing trip to Saluda River in 2003 when the father son duo (Ron Davis Sr and Ronny Davis jr) were testing the prototype.

According to Ron Davis Sr, “the vibration was enough to make teeth chatter”, and so they started calling it chatterbait.

The Davis clan sold 5000 lures in 2004 and their sales volume reached 25000 next year. By 2006 they had orders for 500,000 baits after winning a few tournaments.

That’s when Z-man entered the scene. In 2006, they bought all rights to chatterbait and their business started booming. Nowadays, Z-man generates $5.34 million by selling fishing products.

Over the years, they have introduced several types of chatterbaits under fancy names.

The ChatterBait Series

1) Freedom 

Freedom

This is a product of the partnership between Z-man and freedom tackle.

This nifty little bait combines the famous bladed swim jig design with the modern interchangeable hook design.

They weigh around ½ – ⅜ ounces and can cut through stubborn weeds and tough to reach places. The interchangeable hook provides more versatility.

2) DieZel

DieZel

These are perfect for inshore saltwater fishing. They feature a heavy-duty custom 4/0 Mustad hook and 8 different colors to choose from. Diezel baits are ideal for catching redfish, snook, trout, flounder, bass, and stripers.

The strong and durable ElaZtech plastics, combined with a stainless trailer, helps them to tolerate multiple strikes.

3) Flashback Mini 

Flashback Mini

These compact baits can be used in both saltwater and freshwater. They mainly attract bass, crappie trout and panfish. The distinctive vibration and side-to-side motion provides outstanding results.

The flashback mini also features holographic foil and translucent lure body to create a highly reflective bait. The weight varies at 1/16 , ⅛, and 3/16 ounces.

4) Micro 

Micro

This is a smaller version of the standard Chatterbait design. These baits are ideal for pond fishing (Ex: crappie hunting), but you can use them in saltwater as well.

Chatterbait micros weigh around ⅛ oz and are colored chartreuse. Each bait is around 3 inches in length.

5) Mini 

Mini

This can also be a great choice for you if you are into pond fishing. However, they work better on clear water. They come in 7 colors and feature a downsized interchangeable, solid hub EZ Skirt.

These baits weight around ¼ oz and are 3 inches long.

6) Project Z 

Project Z

They feature a streamlined head design and chemically-sharpened, heavy-duty black nickel hook (6/0). They also have enlarged jighead collar and sharp, double-keeper jighead barbs.

The usual weight is around ¾ – 1ounce.

7) Elite 

Elite

These premium quality baits come with long shank Gamakatsu 5/0 heavy-duty hook, molded-in trailer keeper, and copper wire hand-tied silicone skirting. They also feature strong head and blade connections.

These handy little baits weigh around ½ and ⅜ oz.

8) Original 

Original

This is the basic design that was originally patented. They are candy crow in color and feature a hex-shape blade. They work exceptionally well in both deep and shallow water.

They come in ¼, ⅜, ½, and ⅝ ounces and a wide range of color schemes.

9) Jackhammer 

Jackhammer

These handy and robust baits combine refined energy, unpredictable action and visual stealth. They feature a stainless hex-shaped blade that is super thin and strong.

ChatterBait JackHammer is perfect for situations that demand a bladed jig, but instinct advises finesse.

10) Project Z weedless 

Project Z weedless

Along with a black nickel mustad 5/0 hook, the Project Z weedless bait also offers heavy fiber weed guard to overcome the obstacles under the water. The powerful  weed guard prevents snagging and fouling around wood, brush, docks, grass, and laydowns.

11) Freedom CFL

Freedom CFL

These little baits aren’t so little when it comes to overcoming rocky bottoms with their football-shaped head and blade connection.

The swinging hook provides maximum trailer and baits performances and the bait always stays under the water surface for maximum bottom contact.

12) Jackhammer Stealthblade 

Jackhammer Stealthblade

With less surface area, the polycarbonate blade used in these types of baits offers a unique vibration and sound. They can be used in any water bodies since the blade’s specialized oval split-ring line tie increases stealth.

13) CrossEyeZ 

CrossEyeZ

The oversized cross eyes catch the attention of other fishes better. With a 5/0 O’Shaughnessy hook and V-shaped wire weed guard, these powerful baits offer excellent resistance to snag and superb longevity.

14) Willow Vibe

Willow Vibe

As the name suggests, these baits come with a willow leaf shaped hardened stainless blade that provides rapid and intense vibration.

The super-sharp 2/0 black nickel hook offer better performance for fishes like largemouth, smallmouth, spotted bass, walleye, striped bass, white bass, and myriad saltwater species

15) Eye Strike 

Eye Strike

You can pair these compact baits with paddle or straight tailbaits and custom made 4/0 and 5/0 heavy duty Mustad hooks. They work exceptionally well with bass, redfish, stripers, and walleyes.

16) Minimax 

Minimax

These tournament quality baits offer heavy-duty 2/0 black nickel hook and are perfect for situation that needs smaller profile and more subtle vibration. They are available in 8 skirt color patterns and 3 different weights (¼, ⅜ and ½ oz).

17) Big blade

Big blade

Last but not the least, we have the Big Blade, featuring an oversized blade and custom heavy duty hook to ensure best quality attack and vibration.

Designed by fishing tournament champion and chatterbait pro Bryan Thrift, these handy baits come in 9 skirt color patterns and 3 weight variations (½, ⅝ and ¾ ounces).

Other Top Bladed Jig Brands You Should Be Familiar With

  1. Rage Blade 

Rage Blade

Rage Blade is another creation of Ron Davis, However, this time they built it for Strike king.

The main purpose of this bait is to be more weedless. They also increase the hook up ratio.

Now, you may be thinking about the main difference between Rage Blade and chatterbait. The answer is, With Rage Blade, the blade will carry out the weight, not the hook.

  1. Melee 

Melee

Booyah bait company has introduced this new design to the market.

Generally, bladed jigs have a tendency to swim upward, but melee is an exception here. They tend to remain buried beneath the water surface.

According to a few anglers, they work great in dirty water.

They will set you back up to $10 whereas premium quality chatterbaits may cost you around $20.

Bladed Jigs and Swim Jigs?

Similarities 

  • Single Wire Hook
  • Synthetic Skirt
  • Weighted Jig Head
  • Imitates the original fishes

Primary Differences Between Bladed Jigs and Swim Jigs

  1. The metal blade. You won’t find them in swim jigs
  2. Bladed jigs cut through the weeds

When To Use Bladed jigs?

  1. Dirty or muddy water, where you can’t see through the water. So, the vibration of blade jigs (Chatterbait or any other brand) helps in there
  2. When they have to travel through submergent grasses like milfoil, coontail and hydrila
  3. When you need to create a good vibration through the underwater grass

When to Use Swim Jigs?

  1. When passing over the emergent grasses like kissimmee grass or lily pad
  2. If the winds are less than 10 miles per hour
  3. When you can see through 4 to 5 feet water (clear waters)

Special Note: Some argue that the swim jigs can move better underneath the water surface than the Bladed swim jig.

Trailers For Jigs

Usually manufacturers choose soft plastic to make trailers. However, a stamp of the pork skin were used in earlier days.

Hair or silicon skirts are included to cover the hook along with the trailer.

They are available in many colors and styles. For instance, you will get trailers that imitate crawfish and baitfish effectively to attract bass.

  1. Craw Trailers 

Craw Trailers

They imitate crayfish or crawfish. You will find many brands who provide some amount of flapping.

You should consider durability before buying a craw trailer.

  1. Grub Trailers 

Grub Trailers

Their structure is based on a ribbon tail worm and twin-tail grub. Grub trailers are a popular choice among the anglers.

  1. Creature Baits 

Creature Baits

These interesting trailers are made upon bugs.

Remember, they won’t provide you much action and cold water means less action. We suggest you choose your jigs carefully.

  1. Swim jig Trailers

Swim jig Trailers

They are mainly swimming jigs and they hunt down the floating fish.

  1. Chunk Trailers 

Chunk Trailers

Chunk trailers are small, usually not more than three inches.  You have to insert the hook through their body.

FAQs

  1. Is a ChatterBait and a bladed jig the same?

Ans. Yes, they are the same. Chatterbait is a brand of bladed jigs. So, you can say chatterbait is a bladed jig but not all bladed jigs are from chatterbait. There are other brands as well.

  1. When should I fish with a chatterbait?

Ans. Use them when the water is muddy and you can’t see below the water surface. Also, if there is underwater grass then this bladed jig is necessary to cut and travel through the grass.

  1. What color chatterbait skirt should I buy?

Ans. You should buy a deep bright color chatterbait skirt if the water is muddy and dark. Go for natural colors if you are fishing in clear water.

About the author

Immanuel Baranov

My life is pretty much defined by my avid outdoor activities. I’m generally obsessed with fishing, skiing and occasional hunting and whitewater paddling. I’ve been active since my early years. I inherited my passion for fishing from my father who made frequent family trips to the banks of Sacramento River. Growing up, I did a lot of fishing in the vicinity. Now that I have two sons, our weekends are full of fishing activities. I would say, you need good spots where you can go out a lot for the thing you love. I had the privilege to grow up near numerous water bodies and I’m proud to say that I made good use of them. It’s also great to do something with kids that helps them learn patience, endurance and preciseness.

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