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Lure Review

The ABT Banshee Screams for Attention


Date: 12/14/11
Tackle type: Lure
Manufacturer: ABT
Reviewer: Zander

Total Score: 7.91 - GOOD

Introduction: The “Next Generation” offerings from ABT are designed to make swimbaits more accessible to the complete spectrum of anglers. The Banshee is the latest creation from Allen Borden, of King Shad fame, and is a multi-jointed hard bodied swimbait that features both an extremely aggressive action and a more realistic appearance than many other swimbaits costing twice as much.


ABT Lures Banshee Swimbait Specifications

Type Multi-Jointed Hard Swimbait
Material Plastic
Class Slow Sink
Size 4.5", 6", 8"
Weight 4.5" (1/2oz.), 6" (1.5oz.) , 8" (3oz.) 
Hooks #4
Colors/Patterns 9
MSRP 4.5" - $10.99
6" - $12.99
8" - $17.99 


Impressions: Last ICAST ABT Lures unveiled a new series of lures under their “Next Generation” line and this includes the Banshee which features the company’s “Natural Image Transfer” process that replicates the colors and patterns of actual forage fish. The best way to describe it is if the company basically transferred a photograph of the fish onto a three dimensional bait.


The Banshee is one of the new "Next Generation" swimbaits from ABT Lures

The body of the Banshee is very narrow there are four-sections designed to help the lure “swim” in the water as it is retrieved. There are three sizes available, a 4 ˝-inch long Banshee Swimbait, as well as a 6-inch and 8-inch model, and all are available in a wide range of patterns that mimic popular baitfish including blueback herring, threadfin shad, golden shiner, perch, rainbow trout, and other species that bass prey upon. Additional aesthetics include 3-D eyes and detailed scale patterns within the image transfer.

The Banshee features the company's "Natural Image Transfer" finish

From just a few feet away the baits look extremely lifelike, and only under close inspection can you see the pixels on the actual transfer. The baits look very polished, maybe too polished, as they exhibit a mass produced feel in contrast to a handmade swimbait. This is by design however as they are intended to hit an aggressive price point, unlike many other competing swimbaits that are so expensive that anglers really have to think twice before tying them on, simply out of fear of losing their costly handmade collectible.

The Blue Back Herring looks very realistic all the way down to the gill pattern

Real World Tests:  We ordered a handful of ABT Banshee swimbaits from Tackle Warehouse and have been fishing them for just over four months to get both warm and cold weather fishing in with these new lures. We primarily targeted largemouth bass in the California Delta but I also worked in some Striped Bass fishing as well both at the Delta and the O’Neil Forebay closer to Central California.

A look at the Rainbow Trout pattern

Casting: The first thing that I did was tie the Banshee onto my normal swimbait rods, big mistake. The Banshee may have the length of regular swimbaits but because it is so thin the smaller two sizes actually weighs very little. The 8” model weighs 3oz. and can be cast on traditional swimbait sticks but the 6” weighs in at 1.5oz. and the 4.5” weighs only 1/2oz., and while it is possible to cast these lures with a swimbait rod they are better suited for a traditional casting rod with a decent, but not too heavy, action.

The lures come armed with two treble hooks

Some anglers have reported difficulty casting this bait for this very reason, but by matching up a lighter rod with a respectable baitcaster this lure really is pretty easy to cast, and the smaller baits can also be easily fished with a spinning setup. Anglers may also notice on some casts that the lure flips around a bit in the air, this is because the lure is front heavy and the tail is so light and large enough in profile to be affected by wind resistance when cast.  Some baits have internal cast control systems to shift the weight towards the tail when cast but such an implementation is difficult with a multi-segmented swimbait such as the Banshee. 

The Banshee sometimes flips about when cast as the lure is very lightweight, but on the "flipside" it can be fished with traditional casting setups and doesn't need a dedicated swimbait rig


Next Section: Screaming for attention during retrieve









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