Reins Fishing's Craw Tube was unveiled to the angling world at the 2014 International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades show in Orlando, Florida. And straightaway it caught the attention of one Midwest finesse angler who spends many of his days afloat in pursuit of smallmouth bass.
Matt Paino at Reins Fishing's office in Temecula, California, describes it as a four-inch hollow-body tube that exhibits some characteristics of a crayfish.
Its head is smooth, exhibiting a blunt-bullet shape. The first three-eighths of an inch of the Craw Tube, which encompasses its head and a tad of its torso, is not hollow, and that short segment of solid soft-plastic heightens its durability.
The back and sides of its torso are embellished with 17 pronounced ribs. Its belly is flat and devoid of the rib motif, and Reins' lure designers note that this flat feature accentuates it ability to glide. Along the lower portions of its torso, between rib number 14 and rib number 15, a claw radiates from each side of the torso. These ribs are said to heighten the Craw Tube's underwater movements and vibrations.
The claws are round rather than the flat and flappy style of crayfish claws that adorn ordinary soft-plastic crayfish-type baits. Each claw is encircled with 10 rings. The design of these claws keeps the bait from spinning during the retrieve, which also helps to eliminate twisted lines and air knots.
What's more, the claws are quite durable, but they are designed so that an angler can easily remove them by using a pair of scissors without damaging the torso of the tube when his quarry exhibits a preference for a clawless presentation.
Besides its flat belly, the Craw Tube's unique pinchers also enhance the tube's ability to glide. (It is interesting to note that Midwest finesse anglers have discovered across the years that the glide element in their swim-glide-and-shake retrieve is often the most alluring part of that retrieve â€“ especially when largemouth bass or smallmouth bass are exhibiting a tentative or wary behavior. This is the first time that the Midwest finesse anglers have encountered a bait company that realizes and articulates the importance of the glide factor during the retrieve of a soft-plastic bait.)
When Midwest finesse anglers implement their swim-glide-and-shake retrieve with a Craw Tube, they will rig it on a small mushroom-style jig with an exposed hook, which is not the way it was designed to be used. Paino and the folks at Reins Fishing call it a state-of-the-art pitching and flipping bait that can be attached to a 5/0 hook and weighted with a tungsten slip sinker.
The tail end of the Craw Tube consists of 10 tentacles, and the gyrations of the tentacles and claws are said to create a matchless and alluring pulsating and floundering action.
It is impregnated with salt and enhanced with a shrimp scent.
It is available in eight colors: Black Blue Flake, Black Blue Laminate Silver, Green Pumpkin, Green Pumpkin Blue, Green Pumpkin Blue Laminate Silver, Green Pumpkin Silver, Green Pumpkin Red, and Junebug.
A package of six can be purchased at one online retailer for $6.29 and for $6.79 at another online venue .
A substantial number of Midwest finesse anglers prefer using three-inch or shorter tubes or tube-style baits. But since the advent of baits such as the Z-Man Fishing Products' Hula StickZ, more and more Midwest finesse anglers -- especially the smallmouth bass contingent -- are wielding four-inch and even slightly longer soft-plastic baits.
Therefore, we are eager to receive reports from finesse anglers all across the nation about how, when, and where they used Reins Fishing's Craw Tube. Please post those observations in the comment section below or send them to the Finesse News Network.