Monday, June 25, 2012

Yum Money Frog Review

Money Frog:    Colors: 6     Size: 3.75"    Weight: N/A   Pack Count: 4

Leg Style: Buzz            Scent: N/A


The YUM money frog was one of the later editions to the fairly success "money" line of baits. This includes baits like the YUM Money Hound, and of course the YUM Money Craw. I was blown away by the craw and it is still an important part of my arsenal.. the YUM money hound and frog on the other hand, just did not hit the mark in my eyes. Both are hard to work properly and have relatively low hook-up rations compared to other baits in this category

Overall Rating: 5.6/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality: 3.5/5

Since this is one area of the review that will actually be positive, I will start off by saying, YUM makes a good product. The quality of this bait is not in question, the plastic is very durable, the legs will hold up well for multiple strikes and wont be easily ripped off by an aggressive fish. The color selections are few, but interesting to say the least. I like the light colors bellies applied to most frogs and the red nose and dots give off a great target

Castability: 3.0/5

Im up in the air on this one. The Money frog has some decent weight and casts pretty well. Controlled landings are not as easy with this frog, and it often twists and turns in the air which means on occasion it will land upside down.

Presentation: 2.5/5

Where to start.. lets do a good, bad and ugly scenario..

The good, this product is well built and the legs kick and thump and churn some serious water

the bad, I have a hard time finding the proper rate of retrieve on this bait, to slow and the thick legs dont  do what they are built to do, and two fast the frog actually dives a bit. 

The ugly, this frog does not fish straight at all, it rolls and spins more then any soft plastic frog I have ever used. Im constantly fixing the hook and re-rigging trying to get it to swim properly and often I just give up and rip in off my line. 

The body thickness is also an issue when it comes to hook choices, they recommend a 5/0 but I found it to be a bit long, and when down sizing I find the thick body gets in the way of the gap that should be present when using a EWG hook

Hook-Up Ratio: 2.5/5

The Money frog is built with some serious plastic, the body and legs and very thick and although durable, the excess plastic can and will effect your hook-up ratio. Unlike softer bodied frogs this bait will not ball up, and will make it harder for you to slam the hook home. 

I also have issues burying the hook point when fishing heavy cover. Often I have to bury it deep with will effect the hook-up ratio, but if only skin hooked it comes loose easily and gets caught up effecting your retrieve.

Availability: 3.0/5

The Yum line of products is pretty readily available in the market place.. the Money series of baits took off a few years back and could be found in most major retailers large or small. But more recently with the launch of F2 Line the focus has shifted from the Money series and the baits are harder to find. (other then the money craw that has moved into the main line of Yum products.. thankfully) 

Options & Price: 2.5/5

The Yum money frog strikes out when it comes to both of the above categories, limited color selection and a hefty price tag just add to the growing list of "cons" when it comes to this Frog. On average you can expect to pay $7 for a 4 count bag, that works out to $1.75 a frog.. ouch

As you can see below Lurenet has the Money frog listed at a drastically reduced price, this leaves me to believe they have discontinued it, so if you want to get in a test drive one, then Lurenet is the place to start

Where to Find:
In case you are having a hard time finding these locally, here are some reliable options for you.

Bass Pro Shop ($7.49)

LureNet ($2.99)

It is interesting to note that Im having a hard time finding this product on YUM's page let alone any other retailers. Most the of the usual suspects dont carry the "money frog" even if they carry other products in the Yum or money lines. 


I tested this frog out on both my Dobyns 735c and 736c, it can be fished with either, if I was going to choose one and only one, I would use the 735c as it has the backbone needed but a bit softer of a tip to control your casts.

I will be honest here.. I dont think this frog will make it back out on the boat with me. Too many issues for my liking, and overall a disappointment after how much I loved the Money Craw. I think YUM needs to head back to the drawing board with this one.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Koppers Live Target Hollow Body Frog Review

FGH45T:   Colors: 8     Length: 1 3/4"    Weight: 1/4oz   Pack Count: 1
FGH55T:   Colors: 8     Length: 2 1/4"    Weight: 5/8oz   Pack Count: 1
FGH65T:   Colors: 8     Length: 2 5/8"    Weight: 3/4oz   Pack Count: 1


Might as well get this one over with. The Live Target walking frog has been sitting in the #1 overall highest rated frog spot for long enough. Now it is about to lose it's spot to a sister product, the Live Target hollow body frog, One of the softest, most lifelike frogs on the market today. And with 3 size options available you are sure to find a favorite to add to your arsenal

Overall Rating: 9.2/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality: 4.5/5

Live Target has made their name on the quality of the products they produce. Not only the finishes but the overall quality of the parts used. In their fairly short time in the market, Live Target has taken home more then their fair share of ICAST awards, and has seen many a top notch angler make the switch to their product line from other already well established companies (that says allot)

If you read my review of the Live Target Walking frog you may have noticed that it received a 5/5 score when it comes to quality. The reason I did not score the Hollow body quite as high, is that the body of this frog is so soft that the hooks and everyday wear caused by battle, can and will alter the life span of the product. I completely wore threw my first frog in under 2 months.. I dont think of that as a quality issue, but more of a testament to how often i used it, and how well it produced 

(Pic shows some early damage after one day on the water)

Castability: 4.5/5

For a lightweight frog, the Live Target Hollow body frog casts extremely well. It also has incredible "sit" with the ass end hanging down slightly below the water column, ensuring the fish get nothing but hook. 

Both the 55T and 65T can be fished on your standard frog rod/reel set-up, but if you are fishing the 45T, you should look at a rod with more tip, and maybe some added length. I did have a hard time getting the hang of casting this frog when I first started fishing with it, it is small and at times hard to place accuratly

Presentation: 5.0/5
With three size options Live Target really has designed a hollow body frog for all seasons and conditions. You may get sick of hearing my say it, but the 55T is the best all around frog in the line-up, it casts and walks like a dream, but the smaller size (I feel) improves your hook-up ratio. I will use the larger frog when looking for big bites or when the small and medium sizes dont appear to be making enough noise on the cover (pads and such). By going up in size, you can get some added knock and profile on days in which the fish are kinda sluggish.

(all Three sizes on display)

The smallest frog, (45T) is a great early season frog, and the fish really just inhale it. Due to it's smaller size it is not ideal for casting long distances in any kind of wind. It is a great pitching frog, and works wonders when spot placed in open areas around pads. I dont fish this frog in heavy cover, unless Im pitching it to pockets or working the edge of pockets

Hook-Up Ratio: 4.5/5

Boasting what one can only call one of if not the softest skins on the market today, the Live Target hollow body frog collapses when a fish simply breathes on it on top of that the hooks are super sharp and crazy strong. As you can see from the below pic, they give great penetration and almost stand right-up when the body is collapsed.

If you are looking for the perfect bite sized frog, I find the 55T to be the optimum size. It fits easily into the fishes mouth and still gives off a decent profile that can be lost when you jump down to the smallest size frog

Availability: 5.0/5

I dont think I need to type more then one or two sentences here. Live Target frogs are available almost everywhere, I can easily find what i need in 9 out of every 10 stores I shop in, and if I cant.. all major on-line retailers carry them as well. The only availability problem you will have is buying what you need before they sell out.

Options & Price: 4.0/5

I know a few of you will jump all over me for this portion of the review. I get it, the Live Target Hollow body frog does sit pretty high in the price range, and some could argue that when launched it set a new pricing standard that other companies are following.. but.. When it comes to quality you really cant beat it, and the price is validated by the quality of the overall product.

Options are also a key factor in the scoring of this section. With three size options and 8 colors currently available, there are not many other companies that can boost such a stellar line-up. By the way if you keep an eye on the Live Target site you will also note that the 8 colors will soon jump up to 12 as there are 4 new colors coming for the 2013 season.. can you say ICAST

Where to Find:
In case you are having a hard time finding these locally, here are some reliable options for you.

Tackle Warehouse ($10.49)

E tackle ($10.47) *Canadian

Land Big Fish ($9.99)

Bass Tackle Depot ($9.99)

The Hook Up ($10.99)

As you can see there are many options for ordering, and most if not all carry the full line of products. If you are a price driven American, LBF is probably your best bet, on the Canadian side of the border be sure to check out E Tackle, very competitive price, and you will avoid higher shipping charges and duties.


Live Target Promo Video

American Legacy Fishing (approximately 3mins in, you will see the first blow-up)


For those who read this on a regular basis you know that I usually recommend running hollow body frogs on a Dobyns 736c, but my LIve Target frog of choice is the FGH55T (mid sized) and with the smaller frame and less weight I prefer the casting distance I get when using a Dobyns 735c. If you are fishing the larger model you can sneak up to the 736c, and if you like to fish the froglet version, try downsizing to a 744, or even into a 3 power

Sunline FX2 will be on my reel to start the season, and so will the Live Target Hollow body frog

Monday, June 11, 2012

Zoom Horny Toad Hook Review

   Colors: 2    Sizes: 3/0,4/0, 5/0, 6/0    Pack Count: 2 or 5   Feature: Nose Screw


This is the first non frog review on the site, so bare with me as I get a grasp on how I want to have these reviews read. Im starting this off with the Zoom Horny Toad hook, in my opinion this is the best swim frog hook on the market toady and should be a staple in every frog fisherman's arsenal                    
Overall Rating: 8.6/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality,  Presentation,  Available Options,  Product Availability & Price

Quality/Durability: 4.5/5

I have been using these hooks for a couple years now and I have no issues with the overall quality. The hooks are very strong with a good point, simply put.. fish stay hooked.

The 60 degree angle places these hooks nicely along the back of most soft plastic frogs and keeps the bait weedless without altering its presentation in any way. 

The Screw/insert holds up well for multiple fish and multiple baits. Like with all "nose screws" these will eat up your baits so be prepared. 

The Horny toad hook is one of the few single point hooks designed specifically for frog fishing. It's biggest competition comes from Stanley, Gambler and Gamakatsu, all of which have double hooks. 


Availability & Price 4.5/5

Like all Zoom products these hooks are pretty widely available. I find them in most of my local haunts as well as my favorite on-line retailers. Watch you pricing as with many products you will pay a premium locally and can get a better deal when you buy on-line.

When we talk pricing Im only going to compare these hooks to other "frog specific hooks" fair is fair..
Priced on average at $2.39 for a 2 Pack (in 5/0 and 6/0 sizes) the math works out to about $1.20 a hook. Befor you start running for the hills, compair this to Gambler Cane toad hook at $2.45 a hook and Stanley's Ribbit hook comes in at $2.30 a hook, so overall $1.20 is not that bad.

Options : 4.0/5

For options, you have a few. The Horny Toad hook is available in two colors, red and nickel. I do carry both and to be honest I dont have a huge preference between the two. When it comes to sizes I do..

the Horny toad is available in 3/0, 4/0, 5/0 and 6/0 sizes, personally I will usually stick with the 4/0 and 5/0 sizes and rarely do I use a 6/0 and never have I purchased the 3/0 version. Over 90% of my frog arsenal will fish perfectly on a 4/0 or 5/0 hook.

The only possible option I could see missing from this line of hooks is a weighted model. Many of the competitors carry one and although I prefer not to use them, it does not mean Im in the majority

Where to Find:
In case you are having a hard time finding these locally, here are some reliable options for you.

Land Big Fish ($2.19 - $3.19)

Bass Pro Shop ($2.49 - $4.99)

With 3 sizes of hook available and two color options, these hooks will vary in price depending on the reatiler. Like with most things, if you choose the smaller size (3/0) you will get more hooks in the pack.

Tackle Warehouse and BTD only carry one size (5/0) so if you are looking for more options check out Land Big fish for the full collection.

Personal Experience:

I have had great success with these hooks and find that they excel when used with swim frogs. They have just the right strength and weight, and you can throw them with smaller, lighter swim frogs without altering the presentation. 

If you prefer the heavier buzz frogs like a Stanley Ribbit, they work will there two, but there is something to be said for the double hook approach when using heavier frogs. These are a finesse hook for finesse frogs (swim frogs)

Monday, June 4, 2012

Stanley Ribbit Review

Baby Ribbit 3.25"Ribbit 3.5", Bull Ribbit 4.5
 Colors: 20+    Size: 3.5"    Pack Count: 6,5,3  Leg Style: Buzz     Scent: Garlic

Probably regarded as thee Buzz frog available on the market today  the Stanley Ribbit blows away the competition in almost all categories. If you are looking for a loud, bad ass thumping frog that will hold up all day long.. look no further                

Overall Rating: 8.5/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality: 5.0/5

The stanley Ribbit frog is one tuff momma, the body and legs of the frog are built thick and will last extremely well for multiple fish. 

the nose of the frog was build for use with a "screw on" hook, and will allow you to adjust or replace the as your day goes on.

Castability: 4.0/5

The castability of these frogs does change with the available sizes. Obviously I find that the best easiest to cast frog is the standard sized Ribbit. It seems to have the perfect weight and size ratio to cast and land very well. The worst of the bunch is the Bull Ribbit. Sure it has some nice weight to it and you can cast it a mile, but landing is not so easy. this frog really is a brute and may take some getting use to

Presentation: 4.5/5

As mentioned in the opening paragraph the Stanley Ribbit is known for its ability to tear up the water. Those thick legs and size 13 ft work harder then an Olympic athlete in a triathlon. Dont be afraid to burn these frogs over open water and over any nasty piece of cover you can find. they are build to withstand abuse and still perform to expectation

The only reason I was not able to give the Ribbit a 5/5 is that Im not super happy with the size options. I do find that the Bull Frog is slightly to heavy and requires you to fish it faster then you would like in order to keep it afloat. The Standard and the baby Ribbit are just a tad on the small size profile wise (personal preference). I would love to see an addition to the line-up that would see a 4" frog added, that may be heavier then the standard model but not so much of a tank as the Bull Ribbit.

Hook-Up Ratio: 3.5/5

These babies hook-up fairly well. They are designed for use with the Stanley Ribbit double take Hook, a double pointed hook similar to hollow body hooks. This hook screws on to the nose of the bait and you insert a point in each leg (just below the main body) Using this hook is a big help for sure. If you use a standard EWG hook or any single point frog hook, you will have to place it in the body of the frog where the plastic is the thickest. Like mentioned many times previous, I firmly believe that the heavier plastic does get in the way of your hook set as it is harder to bunch up when the fish strikes.

Availability: 4.0/5

In the USA, this is a fairly common bait and you should have no issues getting you hands on one.. Canada is a different storey. I have seen Stanley Ribbits in limited shops and have been relying on on-line stores for the bulk of my purchases.

As you can see below most of the big guns carry Stanley baits, so pick your favorite and place an order

Options & Price: 4.5/5

it does not get much better then this, the Stanley Ribbit not only has 3 size options but they are also available in 20+ colors. They offer an excellent mix of natural and high contrast color options. I like to run with the black. Lilly pad and various hot foot colors.

The price is right Bob, Ribbits are seldom found above $4 a pack, so for a standard version you are looking at about $0.79 a frog. As you go up to the Bull Ribbit you are looking at $1.33 a frog due to a smaller pack size (3)

Again the only reason they did not get a 5/5 here, is that although they have 3 size options, I just feel one size.. the perfect size.. is still missing (a 4inch)

Just some fun videos of the Ribbit in action

Where to Find:
In case you are having a hard time finding these locally, here are some reliable options for you.

Stanley  (??)

Tackle Warehouse ($3.99) * $3.79 for the Bull

Land Big Fish ($3.99)

Bass Pro Shop ($4.29)

For a frog that is available almost everywhere, there sure are some crazy variances in price and options. Even just looking at the 4 here, only LBF carries the "Baby" size, each place carries a different amount of colors and  I cant click on anything but a kit on the Stanley page, and the price of the kit does not look all that special. 


This frog has some pretty insane buzz/churn action, and it eats up some serious water, so it needs a serious rod. If you are throwing the standard or baby sized Ribbit you can get away with using a Dobyns 735c, but if you are throwing the Bull frog, you really need to beef up the rod and go with the 736c (a rod I usually hold back for a hollow body frog).

Hook choices here are important. If you want to maximize your hook-up percentage I recommend giving Stanley hooks a shot. They are designed for use with this frog and seem to work well.