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Lure Review

Cute and Deadly, the BBZ-1 Baby Shad Imitates Baitfish


Date: 1/14/12
Tackle type: Lure
Manufacturer: SPRO
Reviewer: Zander

Total Score: 7.91 - GOOD

So often the word “swimbait” is used interchangeably with “bigbait” and while the BBZ-1 was originally designed to be a large hard-bodied swimbait over time smaller and smaller versions were introduced to address a wider range of applications and conditions. The Baby Shad is the company’s smallest BBZ-1 swimbait to date and features a lot of what makes the originals so popular, just in a tiny 2.5” form factor.


SPRO BBZ-1 Baby Shad Swimbait Specifications

Type Swimbait
Material Plastic
Depth Any (sinking class)
Size 2 1/2"
Weight 1/4 oz.  
Hooks #8 Gamakatsu
Colors/Patterns 9
MSRP $13.49


The BBZ-1 get miniaturized with the Baby Shad versions


Impressions: The BBZ-1 Series of swimbaits are among the most popular baits from the SPRO lineup and are the creation of Pro Bass Angler Bill Siemantel, who not only has had a successful career on the water catching over 400 bass over 10lbs, but also off the water where he is dedicated to creating and refining lures for SPRO.


The Baby Shad retail packaging


We meet up with Bill at just about every fishing show and it is always exciting to see just what prototype he will pull out of his briefcase. It was one such event when Bill reached in opened up his fish to reveal a handful of Baby Shad prototypes. At the time the baits construction was pretty much ironed out but the company was still working out the finishes and still encountering some challenges with applying the reflective elements on these tiny swimbaits.


Each bait is only 2.5" long and weighs 1/4oz.


Fast forward a few months, and many finishes later, and the Baby Shad was finally ready for primetime. Each Baby Shad is 2.5” in length and weighs only 1/4oz. each. The baits all have three hinges and four individual segments connected with metal hardware and each bait is armed with a single #8 Gamakatsu treble hook positioned on the head segment close to the middle of the bait.  


There are patterns like the Citrus Shad that make use of foil to add extra flash


Real World Tests: To test the BBZ-1 Baby Shad we headed to both the California Delta and Clear Lake to target fish in search of schooling baitfish. We fished the lure on a variety of rigs including baitcasting and spinning setups using both mono and braided lines.


Talk about attention to detail, even the metal hardware holding the segments together is painted


Casting: Weighing only 1/4oz. the Baby Shad casts best on lighter monofilament lines or braid. I was able to cast these baits with standard casting rods and this is one swimbait that is excellent to fish using spinning gear. With a spinning setup it is easy to cast the Baby Shad pretty far or make simple sidearm or lob casts to target specific zones like docks or alongside submerged timber. Once in the water simply count down and the bait will sink roughly 1 foot pet second.


The Silver Fish version was excellent at Clear Lake when there were lots of Silversides in the water

Next Section: A big retrieve from a little lure











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