X Zone Lures' Slim Slammer recently caught the eye of a veteran Midwest finesse angler and contributor to the Finesse News Network. In an email, he wondered why we had failed to publish a gear guide about it. We wondered too, and ultimately, we contacted the folks at X Zone Lures in Grimsby, Ontario, Canada, and exchanged emails with Jim Van Ryn of Smithville, Ontario, who is the proprietor of VRX Fishing Products, which is the parent company of X Zone Lures.
Here are some of the Slim Slammer's characteristics:
It is a four-inch soft-plastic bait that replicates a vast range of species that black bass forage upon -- such as gobies, shiners, chubs, daces, sculpin, and leeches. And since it was created in 2010, this particular motif has become popular with drop-shot anglers at many waterways in Canada and the United States. It has also been copied by other tackle manufacturers.
Van Ryn says it is manufactured with X Zone's specialized hand-pouring and open-mold method, which creates a unique, soft-textured, and salt-impregnated soft-plastic bait that exhibits an array of unusual and attractive hues.
According to Van Ryn, X Zone Lures has been manufacturing it since 2010. He described it as a spinoff of X Zone's original four-inch Slammer. In essence, it is a petite or trimmer version of the original Slammer, but it possesses the same alluring gyrations and undulations as it older and chunkier sibling.
Its head and torso possesses the shape of a semi-circle. Some folks describe it as a convex shape. Therefore, its belly is flat, as is the bottom of its head. The sides and top of its head possesses a curved or convex shape. The back and sides of its torso have a convex shape, too.
The torso is segmented and endowed with four pronounced ribs or vertebrae. It is tapered and becomes gradually thinner and narrower as it approaches the junction with its tail.
Its head is seven-eighths of an inch long. The ribbed torso section is 1 1/4 inches long. The widest section of its head and torso is three-eighths of an inch wide, and that section has a circumference of about 1 1/8 inches.
Its tail is its longest segment, measuring two inches. It is thin and relatively flat, and from its junction with the torso, it possesses a tapered shape until it reaches the tip. Then it increases in size. In some anglers' eyes, the shape of the tail is somewhat similar to a canoe paddle, and the tip of the tail is akin to the blade segment of a canoe paddle.
The skin on its head, torso, ribs, and tail is smooth.
Van Ryn says it can be employed on a drop-shot rig, split-shot rig, Carolina rig, football-head jig, darter-head jig, and shaky-head jig. He recommends affixing it to those rigs with the belly or flat side down.
Of course, Midwest finesse anglers will affix it to a 1/32-, 1/16-, or 3/32-ounce mushroom-style jig with an exposed hook, and they will present it to their black bass quarries by employing the six standard Midwest finesse retrieves or variations of those retrieves. And when the Slim Slammer is affixed to a small mushroom-head jig with its flat belly down, it should glide marvelously when Midwest finesse anglers execute their swim-glide-and-shake presentation.
It is available in the following colors: Black; Black-Red; Cisco; Goby Crush; Gold Belly; Green Pumpkin-Copper-Black; Green Pumpkin-Copper-Purple-Blue Iridescent Belly; Hog Wild; Road Kill Perch; Smoke-Purple-Gold-Violet Belly; Smoke-Purple-Silver Holographic-Blue Iridescent Belly; Smoke Shiner-White Tail; Simcoe Craw; Sprayed-Grass-Blue-Iridescent Belly; and Watermelon-Purple-White Tail.
Anglers can purchase a package of 10 for $5.99.
(1) Here is a link to the X Zone Lures' website: http://www.xzonelures.com/site/shop/detail/slim-slammers.
(2) Here is a link to a Midwest finesse column that describes how to execute the six Midwest finesse retrieves with an X Zone Slim Slammer affixed to a small mushroom-style jig with an exposed hook: https://www.in-fisherman.com/midwest-finesse/six-midwest-finesse-retrieves/.
(3) X Zone Lures' 2 3/4-inch X-Tube will catch the fancy of a goodly number of Midwest finesse anglers. It is available in 12 colors. Here is a link to a description of their tube: http://www.xzonelures.com/site/shop/detail/two-three-quarter-inch-x-tube-9-pack.
(4) Since Shin Fukae of Osaka, Japan, and Palestine, Texas, introduced Midwest finesse anglers to the virtues of a shad-shaped worm on April 1, 2006, at Beaver Lake, Arkansas, it has played a significant role in our repertoire. And X Zone Lures has one. It is six inches long, which Midwest finesse anglers can customize and make it into a four-incher. Here is a link to their Whiplash Shad: http://www.xzonelures.com/site/shop/detail/pro-series-whiplash-shad-fishing-lures.