August 17, 2020
By Ned Kehde
In the late 1950s and early 1960s, a skirted jig played a significant role in the repertoire of the forefathers of Midwest finesse anglers. Back in those days, the skirt was made of bear hair, deer hair, or marabou. Since then, there have been periodic renaissances of skirted jigs, which exhibited different characteristics than the ones that the old-timers wielded. Some observers say that we are currently in the midst of a minor rebirth of the skirted jig.
During the first four months of 2020, we corresponded frequently with Mike Czaplinski of Branchville, New Jersey, who is the proprietor of KeitechUSA. And he enlightened us about Keitech’s 1/16-ounce Tungsten Mono Spin Jig.
Here is what we discovered about this finesse-sized skirted jug:
The folks at Keitech say that the skirt possesses a “compact round design.” It consists of 35 strands that are manufactured from SR40 silicone, which is heralded as being an ultra-soft and ultra-fine material, and it is made exclusively for Keitech. This skirt is hand tied with thread to the jig’s collar, which amplifies the spread and flare of the strands. From Midwest finesse anglers’ experiences with skirted jigs, hand tying the skirt with about eight wraps of Kevlar-style thread to the jig’s collar creates a better skirt than using a wire or a rubber band.
In the eyes of Midwest finesse anglers, Keitech has created a spider-cut skirt. That means it has a short-flared skirt that surrounds the back of the jig’s ball-shaped head, and these flares or strands of silicone are about nine-sixteenths of an inch long. There are also two lengths of silicone strands that radiate from the back of the jig’s ball-shaped head; one is fifteen-sixteenths of an inch long, and the other ones are 1 7/16 inches long. These strands surround the shank, bend, and point of the hook.
All of the strands exhibit what Czaplinski describes as a pulsating action.
(Across the years, Midwest finesse anglers have found that most jig skirts contain too many strands, and the strands are too thick. We prefer the subtle approach of using a skirt with 25 or fewer thin strands. Even though Keitech’s skirts are ultra-fine and exhibit a tantalizing action, we would opt to carefully remove 10 of them.)
The jig’s collar, which is affixed to the shank of the hook and attached to the back of the ball-shaped head, is about five-sixteenths of an inch long and one-sixteenth of an inch thick or wide. It is tipped with a small cone-shaped bait keeper that is one-sixteenth of an inch long and slightly more than one-sixteenth of an inch wide at its widest spot. The distance from the back of the skirt to the tip of the cone-shaped bait keeper is about three-sixteenths of an inch. The shank of the hook and jig’s collar extends from the center or middle of the back of the head.
The head and collar are built around a customed-designed number-three Katsuichi jig hook, and the distance from the apex of the hook’s bend to the tip of the jig’s ball-shaped head is one inch.
The ball-shaped head has a diameter of a quarter of an inch.
The eye of the hook extends one-eighth of an inch above the top of its ball-shaped head. The hook’s eye is also situated one-eighth of an inch from the front of the ball-shaped head and one-sixteenth of an inch from the back of the head.
The gap of the hook, which is the distance between the hook's point and shank, is three-eighths of an inch, and the distance from the eye of the hook to the apex of the bend of the hook is seven-eighths of an inch.
The head is festooned with a weed guard that is hand glued into a porthole in the head. This porthole is situated between the eye of the hook and the jig’s collar. The weed guard is a black and sturdy piece of monofilament that is 1 ¼ inches long.
It is available in three hues; Bluegill Tiger, Dark Green Pumpkin, and Green Pumpkin.
For a trailer, it is recommended that anglers affix it to either Keitech’s 2.5-inch Swing Impact or 2.5-inch Live Impact. But a variety of other finesse-size soft-plastic baits will be appropriate trailers.
It costs $3.79. They also make 3/32-ounce Tungsten Mono Spin Jig, which costs $3.79.
- Here is a link to KeitechUSA’s website: https://www.keitechusa.com/catalog/mono-spin-tungsten-jigs.html.
- Here is a link to a Midwest finesse column that will explain how Midwest finesse anglers will retrieve the 1/16-ounce Keitech Tungsten Mono Spin Jig: https://www.in-fisherman.com/editorial/six-midwest-finesse-retrieves/153946.
- Here is a link to our Midwest Finesse gear guide about Keitech’s Tungsten Super Round Jig: https://www.in-fisherman.com/editorial/keitech-tungsten-super-round-jig-head/375587.