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Lure Review

he CL8 Bluegill & Crappie are More than Just Swimbaits for the Spawn


Date: 10/2/11
Tackle type: Lures
Manufacturer: CL8Bait
Reviewer: Zander

Total Score: 8.41 - GREAT

CL8 released a number of new lures this 2011 season including their first bluegill. The CL8 Bluegill and Crappie makes use of a lot of what we like about the company’s lures including protruding fins and a quality finish, but what makes this bait so interesting is that it is easy to fish in a wide range of conditions.

CL8Bait Bluegill Swimbait Specifications

Type Swimbait
Class Sinking (available in slow and fast sink)
Material Plastic
Colors/Patterns 2
Weight .8oz. (slow sink), .9oz. (fast sink)
Size 4"
MSRP $28.99


Meet the CL8 Bluegill and Crappie swimbaits


Impressions: Earlier this season Clayton Bryant, Owner and Lead Designer of CL8Bait followed up on the success of his original CB-9 swimbait with the new smaller CB-7 and Bluegill swimbaits. The company has built up a following among swimbait anglers and CL8bait is known for their inventive hidden hook designs and quality construction. Originally when the CL-9 swimbaits debuted the lure’s detailed design received high praise from anglers but there were not a whole lot of finishes for anglers to select from. It didn’t take long for CL8 to introduce new patterns and today there are a wide range of choices including Black, two trout variations, and two shad variations.


Though only 4 inches in length this bait has three section


The smaller CB-7 was introduced with even more patterns to satisfy big bait aficionados and enable them to better match the hatch. These new patterns included Smallmouth Bass, Threadfin Shad, and Bone Matte, just to name a few. These patterns displayed the company’s improved capabilities and gave the new baits an even more realistic look and feel both in and out of the water. The new Bluegill and Crappie swimbaits showcase the same level of quality in finish.


The Crappie version has the same profile and a different finish


The 4” CL8 Bluegill features protruding fins just like other CL8 baits and the lure features all stainless steel components and even makes use of a Gamakatsu head hook and Owner split ring. There is no hidden hook design on this bait, instead the Bluegill is armed with a treble hook attached to the bait’s underbelly.


The tail section is designed to collapse and fit in a fish's mouth


Real World Test: To test the CL8 Bluegill we headed straight for the California Delta to throw this small swimbait in front of bass from early Spring to late Summer. We fished the Bluegill with a variety of different lines and rods, including both conventional casting sticks and swimbait rods.  


The heavier sinking version only weighs .9oz. making this bait easy to cast with lighter gear


Casting: I stopped calling swimbaits “big baits” a while ago when manufacturers started adding miniature versions of their lures to their lineup. The CL8 Bluegill weighs less than an ounce and can be cast with flipping sticks or most heavy action casting rods. This is also a good bait to pitch around light structure and I found it equally as easy to stealthily drop the Bluegill alongside shallow cover in an effort to draw strikes from tight holding fish.


The lure displays excellent detailing including a textured body and an exceptional paint finish


Next Section: Easy to cast, easy to strike









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