Jig heads & Jig hooks Test 2020
If you fish for predators with softbait baits, the jig head is certainly a household name. However, there are now countless shapes, some of which only differ in nuances. So it is often not clear which is the best shape and size for the respective purpose. In the following article we would like to explain in detail what types of jigs there are, what characteristics they have and how to use them correctly.
Jig head shapes
Round head jig headThe round head jig head is certainly the classic among jig heads. Due to its round shape it has very little resistance, which is why it sinks to the bottom quickly. At the same time, it offers little surface area for vertical fishing, which is especially advantageous in drifting or with a little more current, as the jig head drifts less quickly in comparison and is therefore easier to control.the only disadvantage: due to its round shape, the jig head does not lie flat on the bottom and therefore tips over with the lure to the side. If you want to leave your lure in the lure guide for shorter phases at the bottom, you should rather use an Erie jig head.
Erie jigging headWith its flat underside the Erie jig has the advantage of not tipping over at the bottom. The rubber bait also stands at a slight angle from the bottom, so that a feeding prey fish is ideally imitated. The flattened shape also gives the jig head increased water resistance and it sinks more slowly than a round head, for example.
Football jigging headThe football jigging head is a hybrid of a round head and an erie jig head and attempts to combine the best features of both heads. The biggest advantage is that the lure does not tip over on the bottom during short phases, so the lure always lies straight with the hook up, but due to its wider shape the Football jig head offers a little more contact surface for the water and the current, which makes it less suitable for trolling as well as in waters with strong currents. Here the classic round head is the better alternative.
Dart jigging headWith its arrow-like shape, the dart jigging head can sink very quickly. This is particularly advantageous when you want to fish deep waters quickly. The dart jig can be jigged in the classic way or lazy, and because the jig head does not have a flat underside, it tilts to one side when the bottom phases are longer, similar to the round head. Therefore the breaks between the individual crank phases should be as short as possible.
Stand-Up JigheadYou can already recognize it by its name: The Stand-Up Jighead stands vertically in the water, so does the lure. This has the advantage that you can imitate a fish dabbling on the bottom so perfectly. As an alternative to the rubber fish, rubber crabs are also very suitable for making good bait at the stand-up jig head. They often stand vertically on the bottom, so the lure can be guided accordingly.
Fireball jig headThe fireball jig head is used almost exclusively for vertical fishing and less for active jigging. This is because it is mainly used for bait fish that are hooked far forward in the head area of the fish. A small eyelet can be used to attach an extra twist to get even sharp biting fish on the hook. The mostly yellow or red jig heads are often printed with an eyelet to increase the visibility of the lure under water and make the fish even more inclined to bite.
Twitch jig headIn the twitch jig head the eyelet for attaching the snap is slightly offset backwards. Together with the tapered shape of the jig head this ensures that the lure does not always run straight when jigging but breaks out to the sides from time to time. This arouses the desire of aggressive predators and can help you to outwit some zander or perch.
Offset jigging headThe offset jigging head has the advantage that the hook hardly ever looks out of the lure. On the one hand this is of course good for the fish as they cannot see the hook. But above all, it also makes it easier to fish in more difficult spots, as the lure is not so susceptible to hooks and weeds. The special feature of the hook is that it is basically only triggered by the bite of the fish. When the fish bites into the bait, it pushes the hook out at the top so that it is exposed and we can set the hook accordingly.
Rubber jigging headThe rubber jigging head is fished a lot, especially in the USA, but is also becoming increasingly popular in Germany. Many fringes made of plastic are attached to a small tungsten bead, which move completely free in the water. The jigging head is mounted on a rubber fish in the normal way, so the lure causes even more action in the water, which is especially appealing for perch. Rubber jigs are often also available with weed guards so that they collect less weed when they are pulled in and remain attractive to potential fish for longer.
Fish head jig As the name suggests, the fish head jig imitates a fish head. This is especially useful when using a rubber lure without a head, because its pointed shape is very similar to the dart jig head and it sinks faster.
Integrated jig headMany lures, such as this goby imitation, already contain a lead weight. No further lead heads can be attached here either.
Popular jig heads
Fixing the lure to the jig head
To fix the rubber lure to the hook, there are differences between the systems depending on the manufacturer. Of course, jigs without barbs can also be bought, but experience has shown that these do not give the lure a good grip, so that readjustment is necessary.
Experience shows that this works quite well, but it is more common for the rubber fish to slit open at the front. Often here the thin end of the jig head is still too thick.
In my opinion the worst system, because there is no no reasonable grip for the rubber lure and it slips off the hook quite often and has to be put back in position.
Jigs with thin barbs are my personal favourite. The bait fish can be hoisted up here without any problems, does not slit open at the front and does not slip off the hook.
Fastening an extra triplet to the jigging head
Fastening an extra triplet to the jigging head is very easy. If you use a fairly wide snap, you can simply place the loop of the fear triplet line over the eyelet of the jig head. The snap will hold it in position.
If you are using a very narrow snap you can alternatively just put the loop of the triplet of fear into it.
Additional Triplet, Fear Hook & Stinger Fear Hook, also called Stinger, is an additional triplet which is attached to the lure with a short line. This makes sense especially when fishing for predatory fish with rubber bait to hook sharp biting fish that would otherwise not get caught. This can increase the yield many times over, especially if the fish bite very sharply.
Jig head sizes & weights
How do I choose the right jig head hook size?
In general: As short as possible and as long as necessary. While you can vary the weight very well, for most lures there is exactly one hook size that fits the lure perfectly. Many manufacturers now give the recommended hook size, so you can find your way around very well.
- Too long hook: If the hook is too long, the lure stiffens, can no longer move ideally and therefore does not look so attractive to other fish.
- Too short hook: If the hook is too short, fish that grab the bait in the middle may not be hooked correctly.
- Too big hook: If the hook is too big, it looks too far out of the lure and may not be sucked in by the fish. A large hook is also unnecessarily conspicuous and can scare off fish.
- Too small hook: If the hook is too small, it can happen that the fish is not hooked properly at the first try.
Table with hook & lure sizes
How do I choose the right jig head weight?
There is no general answer to this question. The recommended weight depends on lure size, current and fishing style.
Lures: The more resistance the lure offers in the water, the bigger the jig head must be. For example, if you fish with a shovel tail instead of a V-tail, the jig head must be heavier.
Current: If you are fishing in a place with strong currents and have difficulty keeping your jig head on the bottom, this is a sign that your lead head is too light. As soon as you notice that the lure is difficult to reach the bottom or drifts very much into the horizontal, you should put on a bigger jig.
The most common material used to make jigs is lead. Hence the name lead head. Lead is cheap, readily available and has very good properties for fishing due to its high density.
However, lead also has one major disadvantage, and that is its effect on the environment. Lead is very poisonous to both humans and animals and can cause serious damage to the body. Considering all the bait breaks and the lead heads that end up at the bottom of various rivers and lakes, this is absolutely not sustainable for nature. In theory the fish absorb the lead particles and when consumed they can also enter the human body.
So if you want to do something good for the environment, you should avoid lead heads and instead use jigs made of tungsten or zinc. Since the density of tungsten is even higher, the jigging heads are smaller for the same weight. With zinc it is the other way around, here the jig heads are bigger because of the lower density.