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Already the undeniable trailblazer in bladed bass jigs, Z-Man is set to unveil its newest entrant in the ChatterBait category, a collaborative effort with Freedom Tackle Inc. The last time Z-Man teamed with another top tackle brand—Japan’s Ever Green International—the ChatterBait JackHammer was born. The sensation created by that influential bladed jig stands alone.
Hailed for its high-performance on deeper structure, the ChatterBait Freedom CFL melds Freedom Tackle’s patented free-swinging football shaped head and hook with Z-Man’s own patented hex-shaped ChatterBait blade.
Freedom Tackle owner and designer Michael Tamburro says the new bladed swing jig exhibits a unique set of component parts. “We used a lead-free zinc football head and exclusive hook attachment that allows the back end of the lure to pivot and swing freely as you retrieve the lure,” says Tamburro. “The patented Freedom hook release even allows the angler to make quick hook changes, if they want.
Tamburro also calls attention to the direct, free-swinging joint between the football head and stainless ChatterBlade, as well as a super-strong quick clip line tie. “The blade-connecting eyelet is actually molded into the jighead for a completely bulletproof linkage. As the blade oscillates, its continuously colliding with the football head, echoing with a high-resonating clack.
“You’ve got two pivot or swing points in one lure, producing more articulation and more organic action. Depending on retrieve speed and trailer selection, the hook swings side-to-side or undulates up and down. Moreover, the lure’s spider-cut silicone skirt gives off a flared profile. This is unquestionably the most dynamic swing jig on the market.”
Built to traverse almost any terrain, the ChatterBait Freedom CFL glues itself to structure while retrieved fast or slow, yet glides effortlessly over snags.
“Reel this bait as fast as you want,” says rising FLW Tour star, Miles “Sonar” Burghoff. “The ChatterBait Freedom CFL is built to stay on bottom and won’t plane toward the surface like similar baits, even when you burn it. The lure also shines when you slowly drag it across the rocks or yo-yo it down a ledge. Each time the head contacts a rock or change in the terrain, the pivoting hook undulates with action.
“The blade hits the football head the whole time, giving off a sharp ticking sound; less of the dull thud you get with a lead jighead.
“Honestly, I’ve been throwing this bait in a lot of places I used to fish a crankbait. It really excels in that 10-foot zone and deeper. In current, over shell beds and gravel bars, as well as on deeper grass—this ChatterBait is a player, and it comes clean through vegetation like other Z-Man bladed jigs. Definitely gives bass a different look and sound than a traditional swing head.”
For trailers, Burghoff adds a Z-Man Turbo CrawZ when imitating a crawfish, or a RaZor ShadZ when mimicking a shad. Each lock tightly into place over Z-Man’s specialized trailer keeper. “The heavy-duty VMC flipping hook and trailer act like a keel when you retrieve the lure, keeping it tracking nice and straight,” adds Burghoff. “An ElaZtech trailer adds buoyancy, assuring the hook slowly rises off bottom on the pause—it’s a super lifelike look that keeps you out of hang-ups, too.”
Beyond its radical action, sound and vibration, the ChatterBait Freedom CFL, says Tamburro, hooks bass and stays put at a high rate. “When a bass attempts to inhale the bait, the free-swinging hook pivots into its jaw without resistance,” he explains. “The hook design also means bass cannot gain leverage against the weighted lure, nor easily expel it.”
A cutting-edge bladed jig design, the ChatterBait Freedom CFL is the result of a comprehensive project between Z-Man Fishing and Freedom Tackle Inc. Available in 3/8-, ½- and ¾-ounce sizes, the ChatterBait Freedom CFL features six color-matched patterns, compatible with a variety of ElaZtech softbaits. MSRP is $9.99. Look for the radical bladed jig at retailers in mid-July. For more information, visit www.zmanfishing.com.