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Lure Review

Raising the Bar Once Again : Mattlures Hard Bait Bass Series (continued)

Rate of Fall (ROF): As mentioned earlier, the Hard Bass is available in three different rates of fall, a floater, slow sink, and fast sink. The slow sink descends at a rate of roughly one foot for every one and a half to two seconds (1ft @ 1.5 – 2 seconds) while the fast sink descends at a rate of one foot for every second to second and a half (1ft @ 1 – 1.5 seconds). Both baits stand their hooks when resting at the bottom and dart upwards from their stationary stance if jerked up from the bottom.

... "Smallmouth Bass" ...

Rate of Retrieve (ROR): Last but not least, the new Mattlures Hard Bass swims true no matter the cadence of your retrieve. Crawl it back enticingly slow and it slithers back to the boat, but burn it back with a high speed reel and it wiggles quickly in a tight line all the way to your rod tip. It may not be the most acrobatic of baits, but it certainly swims true at all speeds.

... "Striper" ...

Durability: The ultra-realistic finish on Mattlures’ new Hard Bass comes by no mistake. Part of a twenty three (23) layer process, these finishes are not only among the most realistic we’ve ever seen, but they’re also surprisingly durable. Careless tosses into baitboxes, stepped on and bounced around on the deck of the boat, tossed up against wooden pilings, all this intentional and unintentional abuse resulted in little to no signs of wear.

... "Perch" ...

Availability: At the time of this writing Mattlures was just getting ready to announce the availability of their new Hard Bait Bass. It will reportedly be offered at roughly sixty dollars a copy – a veritable BARGAIN when compared to some of the hard bodied trout baits on the market that retail for well over one hundred dollars yet have less than half the realism of this bait. Remember, every one of these baits are molded and painted my Matt Servant himself. They aren’t produced in mass at a large factory overseas. Can you imagine if he offered a hard trout at or close to this price?

... and "Light Largemouth Bass".


Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

Mattlures Hard Bass Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Matt Servant is upping the ante and raising expectations for hand built, hand painted baits 9
Performance Fast or slow, this bait swims true but it's not built to perform 180 degree turns 8.5
Price Considering these are hand made and hand painted, a veritable BARGAIN! 8
Features Our primary concern with the previously released Hard Bluegill was with its hooks... those concerns have been addressed with this bait and the use of Owner ST-41 hooks as stock! 9
Design (Ergonomics) Lucifer would be proud 10
Application From top to bottom, with the right version of this bait you can cover the entire water column. 9

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:



J Unbelievably realistic L Doesn't do the 180 degree turn
J Great retrieved painstakingly slow or burned back to the boat L Erratic retrieves on braided line tend to foul the bait
J Top notch external components and guts  
J $60 for a hand made, hand painted bait of this quality - are you kidding me?  

Rest assured, bass annihilate this bait!

Conclusion: Based on last year’s successful debut of his Hard Bait Bluegill, it came with little doubt the Hard Bait Bass would be a worthy successor. Matt Servant is quietly and effectively raising the bar in what consumers should expect in terms of quality, realism, and price in a hard bodied big bait. We can only imagine what’s next on his agenda, but in this cut-throat market, we’re hoping it’s long and sleek with a “rainbow” of hues to its finish. In the meantime, we’ll just have to settle for the devilishly realistic Hard Bait Bass. Oh and by the way, we almost forgot, this bait catches fish too! It’s getting quite redundant but was there ever a doubt? Mattlures Hard Bait Bass has earned TackleTour’s prestigious Editor’s Choice Award – that’s two in a row! Keep the baits coming Matt, we can’t wait to see what you have in store for the public next!


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