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What's a Buzz with Reaction Innovations : Introducing the Squeaky Dolphin (continued)

Components: Not only does the Reaction Innovations Squeaky Dolphin feature a very purposeful blade design, it comes with a hand tied silicone skirt, a Gamakatsu hook, a single 3D eye on the bottom of the tapered, planing head, and a brass clacker bead. They stuffed just about everything possible into this deceivingly simple little bait.

Buzzbaits are a staple on the California Delta during warmer months. 

Durability: We didn't fish this bait long enough to experience any wear on the rivet's cap, but Reaction Innovations more or less admits this is an eventuality with heavy use of this product. We're uncertain as to whether or not replacement parts are available for sale separately, but this would certainly seem the next most likely step for this product. Even still, they are not terribly expensive, so buying one or two for backup would probably be a good idea.

As if the squeaking wasn't enough, the Squeaky Dolphin also features a brass clacker at the top of its head.

Application & Effectiveness: As with any buzzbait, aside from the noise, the secret is in the rate at which you can retrieve the bait and still keep it above the water. The RI Squeaky Dolphin is about average in this regard. It doesn't take too much to get the bait to the surface, and once there, an angler use a modestly slow retrieve to keep it there. I've fished other baits that are both better and worse than this bait in this regard.

Simply bend the blade down to meet the rivet for more noise, or away for less.


Availability: The Reaction Innovations Squeaky Dolphin is readily available at most any tackle store carrying the Reaction Innovations product and is offered in a handful of basic colors including black and blue, black and red, black and yellow, white and chartreuse, white, and shad. The bait retails for just under $9.00 a piece.



Reaction Innovations Squeaky Dolphin Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality A very well constructed bait 8
Performance Squeaky right out of the package! 8
Price On the pricier side for a buzzbait 6
Features The replaceable blade is a nice option to have 8
Design (Ergonomics) There's not much to a buzzbait really, but the blade and head design on this bait are carefully considered 8
Application Suitable for just about any species that will blast a topwater bait 7

Total Score

Ratings Key: Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
(For a detailed explanation of the ratings go here)

Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J A full featured buzzbait L On the pricier side of the market
J Very well put together L Might be difficult to source until RI resolves their manufacturing dilemma
J One size makes selection easy  
J Squeaky right out of the box!  


Conclusion: Now the bad news. Just as I was finishing up this review, we caught wind that Reaction Innovations is changing up their manufacturing source. This shift in strategy will mean a delay in product availability for everything but their soft plastics. The good news of course, is that these products will eventually be available again soon, it's just going to take some time.


There was a time I'd hit the delta with nothing other than a buzzbait tied to the end of my line. Thanks for the reminder Reaction Innovations.


Not knowing how long the gap will be until that new supply arrives and while current supplies lasts, I'm thankful I've had the chance to rediscover the fun and simplicity of this tried and true staple. There was a time when I'd hit the California Delta armed with nothing other than a buzzbait at the end of my line. These baits will always hold a special place in my tackle box, and Reaction Innovation's interpretation of this bait has a space in that buzzbait section firmly reserved. When you get the chance, tie one of these Squeaky Dolphins on, toss it out, and get ready for some buzzbait fun!


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