We’ve all seen a fish make Mike Iaconelli freak, but soon the tables will be turned. Ike is outfitting his favorite baits with the new VMC® Bladed Hybrid Treble, the tweak that makes fish freak.
“We’re in a day and age where making your bait stand out from the norm is so important,” says Iaconelli, a VMC and Rapala® Pro.
The Bladed Hybrid Treble does just that, making your favorite baits extra-fishy by being extra-flashy. It comprises a small silver willow blade attached by a resin-sealed split ring to the back of a 1X-strong, wide-gap, short-shank, high-carbon steel VMC Hybrid Treble. On the split-ring, the willow-leaf trailer can rotate 360 degrees, so a bait’s built-in action can make it kick out in any direction. Each time it does so, it will catch any light penetrating the water column and flash.
“That little extra flash in that bait is a triggering mechanism,” Iaconelli says. “Every type of baitfish I know of, if it’s a forager swimming in the water, guess what? It flashes.”
A small modification like adding a Bladed Hybrid Treble to your favorite bait can be “such a big thing to catch fish and get extra bites,” Iaconelli says. Adding one to crankbaits like Rapala DT’s and BX Brats “combines the appeal of a spinnerbait or a bladed jig with that flash,” he explains. “As that thing’s rooting along, that blade is flashing and rotating. It’ll stop, and that blade will kick, taking a bait that’s already good and making it better.”
Jerkbaits like Rapala Shadow Raps and Shadow Rap Shads will also get the Bladed Hybrid Treble treatment from Iaconelli. “Those fish will trigger when they see that bait doing the regular side-to-side, they see it stop and suspend, and then that blade kicks,” he says. “The ability to add more flash – without changing the action – becomes so key.”
Topwater baits – from walkers to poppers to prop baits – are also good candidates for modification with Bladed Hybrid Trebles. They work well with hard and soft swimbaits, lipless crankbaits, blade baits and spoons, too.
“There are no rules – you can modify or change any bait that uses a treble,” Iaconelli says.
And Bladed Hybrid Trebles are “not just for bass,” Iaconelli says. You’ll enjoy success with them targeting multiple species in both freshwater and saltwater.
“The bottom line is that extra flash, that little bit extra vibration, is going to get you more bites and put more fish in the boat,” Iaconelli says.
Pro tip: On large hard-baits with three treble hooks, switch out the middle hook rather than the tail hook with a Bladed Hybrid Treble. This will improve your hook-up ratio by minimizing short strikes. Fish will instinctively attack the flash in the center of the bait.
VMC Hybrid Treble hooks are available in four sizes: 2, 4, 6 and 8.