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First let me say that bagley makes some great baits. My buddy Joe Frye will swear by them. He has an office FULL of tackle... imagine a dozen or so walmarts tackle sections all in one room... and within that glorious room he has a huge box full of nothing but bagley balsa baits. I've used them but Ive never had quite the same confidence that Joe does in them.

Now as far as red hooks... I think the red hook thing is over rated. I think more often than not the red hook thing is a mental aspect for the angler and couldn't mean less to the fish. Not all that long ago (but years before the red hooks hit the market) I did a lot of experimenting with red in my baits that I was pouring. I would pour one bait that was black with silver fleck and I would also pour the same style bait (a soft jerkbait) black and silver fleck but Id pour a bit of red near the head of the bait on the bottom side.

Some days the bass would hit the bait no matter if the bait had red in it or not. There were also days when the bass wouldn't go near the baits with red in it but tear up the plain ones. Very rarely did I encounter fish who preferred the bait with the red in it, I mean it happened, but it was rare compared to how often the fish either didn't want red or didn't care one way or the other.

So my personal opinion is to go with nickel hooks all the way, as I feel it will suit more fishing situations than the bait with the red hook on it. Of course if you have enough baits, there is no harm in setting up some with red hooks just for those special times.

A cheaper way to achieve pretty much the same affect is to carry a bunch of small round red stickers (like the kind you'd find in an office supply company) and if you feel red may be needed... just slap on a piece of sticker near the gills of  the bait. ;)

I think its more or less just personal preference of the angler as to whether or not red matters THAT much THAT often.
 

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actually the red I poured in my baits... was shiney and did relfect, especially when I greased it up good with oil.. and quite often I did add red gltter to the red plastic I was pouring. At times I even would dip the head of my oiled bait into a baggie with red glitter in it so t he glitter would disperse in the water slow... my results were still the same as mentioned above...

but if we really wanna be technical about it... blood doesn't shine nor reflect in water... it disperses and is sort of flat colored... which neither the hooks, nor the glitter imitate.

Also... if we really wanna get even more technical... you cant really compare how fish react to a slow moving bait colored a certain way to how they react to a fast moving bait colored a certain way because the slow moving bait will get studied a LOT more a majority of the time.

I dunno tho... I still tend to think the red hooks are just a trend that will fade away.. just as fire tails on plastics were once a hot trend that rarely you ever see anyone using anymore.

Maybe I will have to experiment more with red hooks on crankbaits. I cant say I have done that much as I have never been much a crankbait user until spring of 2005.
 
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