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Lure Review


Zerek’s Sabre Dance Jerkbait Cuts through the Water and Price Barriers (continued)

The Sabre Dance can be retrieved extremely quickly and each of our test baits exhibited a consistent side to side action. On straight retrieves the lure doesn’t display all that much action but in our tests it was enough for fish to give chase when we cranked the bait over vegetation. In the Delta the Sabre Dance cut up schoolie stripers and there were times when the fish would come in packs and compete for the flashy bait.


Each lure is marked underneath with the model number and a "F" denotes the floating class

Usually when something is so aggressively priced something has to be sacrificed and the Sabre Dance is no exception. While the bodies and lips of these baits held up well during testing the hooks did not. A strong largemouth or simply the wrong angle could apply enough torque to bend the treble hooks on these baits. Stripers loved the flash that these lures put out as they were ripped back to the boat but unfortunately the hooks once again proved to be a liability as we lost every striper over 6lbs. to hooks getting straightened out or even breaking off. Its infuriating to hook into quality fish and lose them to hook failures so the first thing I would do before even fishing these baits is to swap out the hooks.


While the bait drew plenty of strikes we lost big fish to the hooks straightening out

Price and Applications: Both sizes of the Zerek Sabre Dance retail for the very low price of only $4.99 per bait which is a great price. The only reason it isn’t an absolute killer deal is that anglers that are targeting big fish will definitely want to change out the stock hooks. Even with the cost of a pair of Owner or Gamakatsu hooks tacked on the Sabre Dance is still more affordable than many competing offerings from more established manufacturers. Once the hooks are changed out the Sabre Dance can be used effectively for targeting both Largemouth and Stripers.


At rest the baits float up to the surface

Though I quite like some of patterns the Sabre Dance is available in the fact is they all look quite similar. Each features a layer of coloration on top of a foil finished body and there are no transparent or matte patterns currently available, so if the fish want something with plenty of flash you are in good shape with this lineup, if not you are pretty much out of luck.


The company's logo is printed on the head

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):

Zerek Sabre Dance Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The Zerek Sabre Dance body has a quality construction that is durable but the hooks need to be swapped out 7
Performance The Sabre Dance delivers quality action and is able to get both largemouth bass and stripers to commit. The bait itself holds up well over time but the hooks are awful, we lost big fish and even smaller bass could straighten them out. With better hooks this bait would have ranked as "great" in the performance category 5
Price A very aggressive price for a bait of this quality, even with the price of switching out the hooks factored in 8.5
Features Simple overall design that is easy to cast and fish thanks to the internal balancing system. The finishes deliver plenty of flash in the water 7
Design (Ergonomics) The Zerek Sabre Dance is easy to fish and can be retrieved with pauses or ripped 8
Application This is a great bait when fish are aggressive and want to chase baitfish. The series would be able to address a wider spectrum of applications if there were transparent or matte finishes available 6

Total Score

6.91
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:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Delivers a quality action - Weak hooks need to be changed
+ Good for both Largemouth Bass and Stripers (just swap those hooks out!) - All patterns are flashy, no subtle options
+ Durable finish holds up well  
+ Exceptional price  

Conclusion: There are not that many places that you can find Zerek baits today but Tackle Warehouse was one of the first major e-tailers to pick up the brand and with good reason, these baits are attractive based on price alone but offerings like the Sabre Dance prove that these lures can catch fish in a variety of conditions.


Once you swap out the hooks the Sabre Dance is a quality bait that is effective for both Largemouth Bass and Stripers

The actual body of the lure gets a big thumbs up but the hooks get a thumbs down as they are not strong enough to stand up to big fish, but hooks are easy enough to swap out and overall the Sabre Dance still represents a great overall value. I hope over time the company will broaden the number of finishes the Sabre Dance is available in and more understated patterns could help broaden the bait’s useful applications. The question no longer is where did Zerek come from, but rather where is the company going to go from here? With the same commitment to value and a little refinement the company is going to be cutting through more than just price barriers, they will be cutting into the competition. 

Looking for the Zerek Sabre Dance? Try Tackle Warehouse


 

 

 

 

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