Many would agree that lipless crankbaits are among the best lures money can buy. They have good reason in saying that because they have been proven to be very effective in catching bass.
For one, the size of the lure allows you to throw them a mile, thus making it very easy to cover a lot of water.
They are also super easy to use, whether you like to work them across the bottom, burn them across the top or use the yo-yo retrieve, you are bound to catch a fish no matter the (or lack of) fishing experience you have.
Lastly, they have that vibration and sound that many have said is like a dinner bell for bass.
With all that being said about lipless crankbaits, in this post, we are going to talk about our favorite options on the market and how you can fish them to catch yourself more fish. Let’s get started….
What Is The Best Lipless Crankbait?
That can be a difficult question to answer. While there are many lures that fall under this category, no two of them are exactly the same. With that in mind here is a preview of my top 9 best lipless crankbaits. For more information on each individual bait, please keep reading.
- Rapala Clackin’ Rap
- LIVETARGET Yearling Baitball
- LIVETARGET Pumpkin Seed Rattlebait
- Matzuo Ikari
- Strike King Red Eye Shad Bait
- Spro Aruku Shad 75
- Berkley Warpig
- XCalibur Rattle Bait
The first on our list and probably one of the most unique lipless crankbaits on the market is the Rapala Clackin’ Rap .
There are two features that really set this crankbait apart from the rest. First, the beautiful finish. One of the biggest challenges of using lipless crankbaits is keeping the paint finish in good condition. Over time, bumping it into timber, dragging it along the bottom or catching many fish can take a toil on your lure. You may even begin to notice that the paint begins to chip. With The Clackin’ Rap the finish is actually behind a hard clear plastic body. No more fears of chipping foil or paint off your favorite crankbait.
The second unique feature you will notice is a metal circle located on either side of the bait. This is actually a metal cylinder that goes completely through the bait with one metal steel ball, giving it that distinctive clackin’ sound that bass can’t resist.
If you are fishing a lake that gets fished with lipless cranks quite often, give the fish something unique to look at by throwing a Rapala Clackin’ Rap .
See the Rapala Clackin’ Rap in action in the video below.
Another great crank on the market today is the LIVETARGET Yearling Baitball . As you can see from the picture above, one of the best features that really sets this lure apart from its competition is the paint job. Not only did LiveTarget do a great job making it look like a fish, but it really looks like a small school of fish. This works great when trying to get those big girls to commit.
We all know that one of the best ways to entice a big bass to come up and strike a lure is to make it appear like it is getting a big meal. Many bass fishermen have done this successfully by increasing the size of their lure. LiveTarget has taken this idea to the next level with the look of this crankbait. It is designed to appear as though the bass isn’t just getting one small baitfish, but perhaps a few. Couple the unique design with the rattle and wobble of a crankbait and you’ve got yourself a good bass lure, if not one of the best bass fishing lures on the market today.
Of course one of the pioneers in the crankbait category is Bill Lewis with his Rat-L-Trap. This lure was one of the first of its kind and has since changed the lipless crankbait as we know it. Created nearly half a century ago it was just as effective in catching fish then as it is today.
What makes it so unique is the flat sided design that gives it a tight wobble as it is being retrieved and that loud rattle that draws bass in. Probably the most amazing fact is that this lure has been around for nearly 50 years and it is still producing results.
Since its initial release this lure has come a long way in the fact that it is now available in a number of different sizes and colors. It has also branched out into other types of crankbaits such as the floating Rat-L_Trap found here.
Without a doubt this is a lure that every bass fishermen should have in his tacklebox.
Did you know that bass can eat up to 40 percent of their annual diet in sunfish? Yes, 40 percent! That is an insane number of fish. What does that mean for us fisherman? It means that we need to throw more lures that imitate a sunfish. If not, we could be losing out on a whole lot of fish.
It is with that reason in mind that we have included the LIVETARGET Pumpkin Seed Rattlebait on this list.
As you can see from the picture above, this lure has a beautiful finish that looks exactly like a Pumpkinseed. Couple the design with its noisy sound chamber, its tight wobble and you have got yourself a great lipless crankbait.
This lure is available in both the Bluegill and Pumpskinseed patterns. Choose between either a metallic/glossy finish or a natural/matte finish.
Check out the action of this lure in the following video:
Brand new to the scene of the many different lipless crankbaits is the Matzuo Ikari . The name Ikari when translated means anger, and there is no doubt about it bass will definitely go angry for this lure.
One of the unique features of this lure is the flared bloody red gills. Unlike other lipless crankbaits which are known to have flat sides, this lure has red gills that appear to be flared. This design not only makes the lure look more realistic, but it is designed to imitate a baitfish in distress. Couple the design with that tight erratic wobble and you have yourself another great presentation to entice bass to commit.
Inside are stainless steel BB’s that give it that lethal vibration that bass simply cannot resist. It is available in two different sizes 1/2 ounce or 3/8 ounce and you can find it in a number of different colors.
Let’s take a closer look at the Matzuo Ikari in the following video:
By far one of the most popular lipless crankbaits on the market is the next lure on our list, it is the Strike King Red Eye Shad Bait. One of the reasons that many bass fishermen like the Strike King Red Eye is because of its fall or its flutter.
An effective way to catch bass using lipless crankbaits is with the yo-yo retrieve. This can be done by pulling up on then dropping your fishing rod as you bring it back to the boat. By doing this you are allowing the lure to flutter or fall, thus imitating a wounded baitfish. Bass love this presentation and many times they will strike on the fall.
However, when fishing this technique you need to choose a lure that has that flutter that will imitate a baitfish on the fall. If not, you are simply wasting your cast. So which crankbait has the best fall? Well, that could lead to a long debate, but I personally like the presentation and the controlled fall of the Strike King Red Eye Shad Bait.
It is also available in a number of different sizes and up to 40 plus different patterns.
Let’s take a closer look at this lure in the following video:
Another crank to add to our list is the Spro Aruku Shad 75 . The first thing you are going to notice about this lure is the irregular shape of the body. Unlike others on this list, it has a peculiar shape and quite honestly that is one of the reasons I like it.
First, you will notice that it has a fat nose and a skinny body design. This was intentionally designed this way to make it swim with its nose to the bottom. This unique swim action with its nose to the bottom helps to give it that wide erratic wobble (which bass love) and it also helps to keep the treble hooks up and protected from weeds or structure.
On top of all that, it is also equipped with a super loud rattle. Without a doubt this lure was designed to get attention. Add this to your collection and you too will come to the conclusion that this just might be the best lipless crankbait on the market.
Another lipless crankbait with a very unique design is the Berkley Warpig. As you can see from above, this lure has a fat head and a skinny tail. Once again, this design helps to give it a crazy tight wobble, but most importantly it helps to keep the lure vertical on the fall making it the perfect lure for a yo-yo retrieve.
The fat head design also helps the lure to swim nose down protecting the treble hooks from debris as well as giving it the ability to bounce off cover much like a square bill crankbait.
Let’s take a closer look at its unique action in the following video:
Lastly, we are going to conclude our list by looking at the XCalibur Rattle Bait. Is the XCalibur Rattle Bait the best lipless crankbait on the market? You be the judge, but we say yes it is.
Equipped with a super loud rattle and a nice vibrating swimming motion, helps to make this lipless crankbait a favorite among many fisherman. If you like the XCalibur Rattle Bait you will love the XCalibur One Knocker. This lure has the same body design as the rattle bait, the biggest difference is the sound. While the Rattle Bait has a super loud rattle, the One knocker is equipped with tungsten/lead weight that gives it a nice rhythmic sound making it great when fishing for finicky fish. Whether you choose the Rattle Bait or the One Knocker you will not be disappointed.
Insider Tip: One of the most frustrating things about fishing with crankbaits is getting the lure caught in the net. Never allow this to happen again with theNew Frabill Tangle Free Mesh Net . This net is specifically designed so that your lure won’t get tangled up in the net. Get your net today and ensure that your crankbait spends more time in the water and less time in the boat
So which is the best lipless crankbait?
As you can see, with so many good lipless crankbaits on the market, that is a very difficult question to answer. Don’t forget to take in consideration such factors as where you like to fish and how you like to fish.
The best part about fishing with lipless crankbaits is that you can fish them all year-long and have success.
So if you want to discover which one is the best for you, my recommendation is to pick out a few of your favorites from the list above. Give them a try over a period of time. Then come back and share with us which one you think is the best.
Do you have a favorite lipless crankbait that wasn’t mentioned above? Feel free to share with us in the comments below which one you think is the best lipless crankbait.
(Now that you found yourself a good lure, it’s time to get yourself a good fishing pole. Head over here to see our post on what fishing rod we think is the best lipless crankbait rod.)