Bandit Crankbait Review- Walleyes, Bass, & Crappies

The Bandit Lure

The Bandit Crankbait comes in 3 different series (100, 200, 300) and covers depths of 2-5 feet, 4-8 feet, and 8-12 feet. By using a lighter weight line or longer distances by trolling you can get these lures to dive even deeper. The best action comes when pausing the retrieval once your Bandit has reached its maximum depth, then starting your retrieval again. These lures also work great in heavy cover areas such as wood, stumps, and rocks, you just need to slow down your retrieval and work the lure through it.

There are many other crankbaits that will also catch fish, however, the shape of the Bandit seems to produce more fish caught when it comes to the strike to catch ratio. On many of my crankbaits too often the fish does not get hooked once it strikes, however, I have found with the Bandit’s shape it seems to hook the fish at a much higher percentage.

Bandit vs the Countdown

Another successful lure I use for Walleyes are Countdowns, however, there are advantages to using the Bandits. The disadvantage of the Count-down is that you have to wait for the lure to sink to the desired depth and due to its light weight you can not toss it as far. The Bandit 100 & 200 series weights in at 1/4 oz where the 300 series weights 3/8 oz allowing a much further cast, they are approximately 2″ long. You will increase your strikes by pausing the lure for a few seconds once it reached its maximum depth, allowing the lure to slowly rise, then dive again once you restart your retrieval.

Bandit’s Only Disadvantage

At 1/4 and 3/8 ounces the Bandits are still very light compared to much heavier Crankbaits or Top water baits, so they will not toss as far. You can improve you distance by lighter weight line and a better rod & reel.

Bandit Series To Use

These lures are good for Spring, Summer, and Fall, but you will need to change between the 100, 200, and 300 series depending on the water temperature and season.

The 100 series is great for Spring Bass and Summer Crappies working in shallow water during the early morning and evening hours.

The 200 series comes into play in the early Summer through Fall, when the bass are just off the weed-line and the Walleyes are suspended 8-11 feet down. Use this lure early in the morning before the sun is too high and in the evening when the sun starts to set.

The 300 series works great during the Summer daylight hours when the water temperatures have warmed up and the fish have moved to deep water. Focus on the steeper drop-offs for both the Bass and Walleyes. In this video I was fishing at noon on a 17 ft drop-off and catching Bass. The lure weights 3/8 oz and dives 8 -12 feet.

If I were to choose one series that works best for all seasons and depths, it would be the 200 series. This seems to be the most consistent at catching bass and suspended walleyes.

What Colors To Use

Colors will vary depending on the live bait in the lake and its water clarity. Study the lake habitat, type of minnows, and the color of the crabs in the lake. This will give you a good idea of what colors lures to focus on. For example, on my lake the crabs are blue with bright orange and I found the Bandit 200 series Humble Bee to work the best for both Bass and Walleyes.

The Differences Between A Largemouth And Smallmouth Bass

Largemouth vs Smallmouth Bass

When fishing for Largemouth or Smallmouth Bass the techniques and baits are the same, however the area to focus on in the lake will vary.

The Differences Between The Largemouth & Smallmouth

The most distinctive characteristic is the mouth/jaw. With the mouth of the Bass closed the largemouth’s jaw will extend beyond the eyes where the Smallmouth’s jaw stops approximately at the eye midpoint. Then there is the coloration; the black-bass or largemouth will have a dark greenish back, lighter greenish sides with a black bar running from gill to tail and then transitioning from a yellowish to white bottom. The Smallmouth has a brown head with some light blue and green, the back is brown, the sides are yellowish and brown with bars running down from the dorsal fin to the belly and transitioning to a white/Ivory or silver bottom. As the Smallmouth gets to the size of 6 lbs or more the belly will be vary scared from working the rocks for crabs and have a silver color.

Bass Habitat

Largemouth will prefer the weed-lines and lily pads with their main source of food being fish prey and then crabs. Where the Smallmouth will be in your rocky bottom areas and chasing crabs.

The Smallmouth Bass

The color of this fish will vary and in some cases you will not notice the vertical bars. Fish colors depend on the water clarity, temperatures, and food sources.

The Largemouth Bass

The color of this fish remains very consistent throughout the US.

Side By Side Comparisons

Here I have the two fish side by side so you can see the jaw and color differences. The second picture also has a Walleye as the top fish. The video will be much easier to see.

Summer Bass Fishing – Surface & Deep Water

Catching Bass Anytime Of The Day

Bass are light sensitive, but that does not mean they will not bite at high noon, you just need to know where to look and what to use. I have found great success in catching Bass early, noon, and in the evening, So if someone tells you the best time is early morning or evening, it’s most likely they have not found those drop-offs and tried going deep. Since I like to see the action of the fish striking I do prefer top water baits, thus I spend more time fishing shallow water.

Which Bass Baits To Use

When fishing in Shallow water try shallow water crank-baits (3 – 5 ft divers), top water baits such as Bass Poppers, Jitterbugs, Buzz-baits, or plastics (crawlers and lizards). The best times are early morning and dust to midnight. When fishing in the noon hours try using crank-baits that dive 12 feet or deeper or weighted down plastics and focus on the drop-offs.

The 3 Baits In This Video

Here we show catching bass in shallow and deep water using only 3 different baits; Bass Popper, Buzz-bait, and the 300 Series Bandit Crank-bait (Humblebee).

Fishing With A Woman – Outdoorsmen and Women

Fishing With A Women

Okay men say to yourself 3 times; I will not be out fished by her, I will not be out fished by her, I will not be out fished by her, trust me it does not work! Now to reality, Women enjoy and love the outdoors just as much as men and if you take a moment to look it’s easy to see. So the next time you’re fishing or hunting with your Wife, Fiance, Girlfriend, or Best Friend notice the smile on their face or that glimmer in their eye, and what better feeling then to be sharing that incredible movement/adventure with them.

Providing An Unforgettable Experience

Now you guys know when teaching your wife, daughter or any young lady to fish we are going to do everything we can to make their trip unforgettable. Yes, we will give them our best rod & reel, fishing bait, or lure. Then we will introduce them to our most productive fishing spot just to improve their odds in hope they can catch a glimpse of what we experience when that fish hits.

I know when trying to help a young lady to fish things do not always go as planned, so have patience and remember those not so proud moments you had when first learning, such as hooking a fellow fisherman, tossing your bait into the trees, or even knocking your $300 rod & reel overboard. Oh, wait I did not tell my wife about that one, as what happens in the boat needs to be left in the boat or of course the truth stretch just a little.

In the last few years I have taught my best friend, yes my wife, how to fly fish, bass fish and walleye fish, and yes she does out fish me on many occasions and the comradely is great! And who else would I rather have by my side experiencing the things I enjoy so much.

Turn Challenges and Frustrations Into Positives

Each one of us are unique along with those that we want to share the outdoors with, so when those challenges and frustrations arise take a breath and look that young lady in the eye and let her know it’s good. For example, the first time my wife caught me in the side with a crank-bait I simply ask her to NOT set the hook as she just caught the biggest sucker in the lake. Now it did take her a few minutes before she could gather her composure and was ready to fish again, since she was laughing so hard. A few other frustrations we worked though were teaching her how to fly fish and being able to cast more than 10ft, or catching those tress on the shoreline, and of course having that big one get off, what great moments these are!

Women In Action

Here are a few of the Women I know that have an incredible passion and love for the Outdoors. If you look closely you can see the Glimmer in their eyes!

The following young ladies are; those who work for me in the Quality Organizations, their children, Special Needs young ladies (2), a good friend, and my wife. What a pleasure it is to experience the outdoors right beside them, learning and experiencing new adventures.

Two Special Ladies (Casandra & Chas)

Co-Worker (Janice) And Daughters

Co-Workers Fiance (Cheech)

Co-Worker (Gabriela)

One Of My Sons Friends (Sam)

Wife (Wendy) 37 Incredible Years

Summer Bass Fishing – 4 Simple Baits To USE

Catching Summer Bass

When fishing for Bass I like to use top water baits, as the excitement of seeing a bass roll on the surface as it strikes far out-ways the blind underwater strike. I have found in the middle of summer that the water level helps determine if you will get the bass to strike top baits or diving baits.

When the water level is down and the weeds are upon the surface you will get more strikes using crank baits just of the weed or rock edges. Try a Bandit series 200 or a strike King tip with a plastic minnow. When the water level is up and you have a few inches between the weeds and surface go to a top bait, like buzz baits or Bass poppers.

Bass Baits That Work

Here are the bass baits that work well for my lake, which is a dark lake with only 3 feet visibility. Note, each lake is different so you may need to try different colors.

Bass Baits By Priority;
1. Top water Bass Poppers

2. Top Water Buzz Baits, Yellow body with a white & yellow skirt.

3. Strike King tip with a Reaction Innovation Shiner (round tail).

4. Bandit Crank bait (Humble Bee), series 200 for 4-8ft depth.

Baits in ACTION

This is one of my videos using these baits.