Monday, October 29, 2012

SunLine FX2 Frog Line

Colors: 2  Sizes: 90yrd - 300yrd  Strength: 50-80lb 


Ok, as the season here in Ontario comes to a close I thought I should get in at least one Frog line review for the 2012 season. So here it is, a quick review of SunLine's FX2 for flipping and Froggin. I have been super impressed with that SunLine has to offer in both braids and fluorocarbon, and by the start of next season I believe that 80-90% of my reels will be running SunLine.. the other 10-20% will be testing out whatever new line hits the market.

Overall Rating: 8.0/10

Quality/Durability: 4.5/5

As an angler who uses frogs on each and every outing all season long, I can safely say I gave this line a good and thorough workout. I tired both the 50lb and the 60lb versions (in green only) and I was extremely happy with the results.

FX2 is a very smooth braided line, and it's tight round shape gives you great casting distance even when throwing lighter weight hollow bodied frogs. As you can see below FX2 has a very "rope" like look to it. The 8 strand braid makes for a very strong line with a very high breaking point. It is highly resistant to abrasion and can be fished all day long around rocks and timber with little after effects.

Unlike many other braids on the market FX2 holds it's color very well. Yes it will fade with use but not as quickly as other brands. No more dreaded green fingers after a day on the water.

I really like that this line has been designed strong for an application like Frog fishing, many other braids on the market work well for froggin, but SunLine spent the time to design a line that takes into consideration all the features a frog fisherman would look for in a line, strength, durability, abrasion resistance and casting ability.. not to mention it cuts through pads like a knife 

Availability & Price:  4.0/5

If you had asked me about this product at the beginning of the 2012 season I would have said " I never heard it" and that would have been the truth. Sun Line is not a brand commonly found in Ontario.. or should I say it was not commonly found, because at last check at least 4 of my go to tackle shops now carry  Sun Line. On top of that there is no shortage of on-line shops that offer FX2 some with more options then other (see below).

The price point is about standard what you pay for many high quality braids, am I happy about it?. no, but I cant fault them for falling in line with the competition.. considering FX2 is better then a lot of the competition.

Options : 3.5/5

 I don't know how many options you need when it comes to line, but I will say that Sun Line offers you two separate colours (Green and Blue) as well as weight ratings from 50-80lbs. At times I like to throw my soft plastic toads on 40lb line so I would like to see a thinner diameter line added, but in my opinion there is no need to go any higher then 80lbs when bass fishing
Where to Find:
In case you are having a hard time finding these locally, here are some reliable options for you.

Bass Tackle Depot ($16.99 - $38.99)

Tackle Warehouse ($38.99) * 300yrd only

Land Big Fish ($17.99)*125yrd only

The Hook-UP ($18.99 - $34.99)

SunLine FX2 is the current leader in frog fishing lines, I will contiue to run it on both of my frog rods until another competitor steps up to knock them off the podium.. Any challengers?

Monday, October 22, 2012

Rebel Frog R Review

Frog-R:   Colors: 4        Size: 2"        Weight: 3/8oz      Pack Count:  1


Rebel lures hold a place near and dear to my heart, the company name and logo are synonymous with classic old school fishing. They make me think of all the times I would route through my grandfathers tackle box borrowing lures that I had no idea how to use or what to do with. Over the years I have continued to be a proud supporter of Rebel products, and to this day you will find a bunch of Rebel baits in my arsenal including: the Bumble bug, Crickhopper, Pop-R and now the all new Frog-R.

Overall Rating:  7.6/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality: 4.0/5

For a bait that is priced on the lower end of the spectrum you have to admit that Rebel puts out a quality product. The Frog-R is well designed, well built and looks great. The only real concern I have its with the hooks. I find them to be a bit on the budget side, but again I think this is one of the ways Rebel helps keep the prices down for the average every day shopper. Tournament guys will want to switch these hooks out, and even with that added cost the Frog-R is still comes in at a reasonable price point 

Castability: 3.0/5

The Frog-R is fairly light weight and that can and will effect your overall casting distance especially in windy conditions.  It will take a bit of adjustment on your baitcaster to find the perfect setting if you want to launch this baby to the moon. 

Presentation: 4.0/5

The Rebel Frog-R is a top-water/wake bait. It cruises just along (or slightly under) the waters surface, and leaves a nice wake. The soft erratic action is similar to walking the dog and really seems to entice fish to bite. Like all Rebel baits it is designed for ease of use, so pro's and novices alike should have no issue making this bait twitch, walk and wake to perfection 

Hook-Up Ratio: 3.5/5

There has been a saying in the fishing industry for years now, that sayin is "Big baits catch big fish" and although technically thats true, you can over look the importance of smaller bite sized baits that fish can gobble up with ease. The Rebel Frog-R is the perfect 1-bite brownie to a bass and this means better hook-up ratios

Again, if the stocked hooks were improved this Frog would easily get a 4+ rating in this category

Availability: 4.0/5

Rebel products are in line with Rapala and Berkley and Live Target, they are readily available and no matter how large or small your local bait shop is, I would be surprised if they don't carry some if not all Rebel products. The Frog-R has been a instant success, and is widely available in my area

Options & Price: 4.5/5

You cant complain about the price point on the Rebel Frog-R, coming in on average under the $4 mark you would be hard pressed to find any other hard frog bait priced anywhere near it.  As for the options, you currently have 4 life like color choices, as you can see from the top image, I own three of the 4, and think they each have a use in my arsenal

Where to Find:

In case you are having a hard time finding these, here are some reliable options for you.

Tackle Warehouse ($4.29)

Bass Pro Shop  ($3.99)

Lurenet ($3.99)

Cabela's ($3.99)


When fishing with a Frog-R I have been going back and  forth between two different rods in my arsenal. I started off using the 705CB glass rod, it is my standard crank bait rod for squarbills and other shallow running cranks. As I used it more I moved over to a SS704c witch is a micro-guide rod. I love this rod for most top water applications and the Frog-R is no exception.  Top water fishing is one presentation in which I have moved over from braid to fluorocarbon, more specifically SunLine FC Sniper

Monday, October 15, 2012

Gambler Double Trouble Toad Hook Review

 Colors: 1 Sizes: 4/0  Pack Count: 2  Features: Nose Screw, Twin Points, 


I will be the first to admit I was a bit late in coming to the Gambler Cane toad. It was not an avoidance thing but more of a lack of knowledge. When I finally started to use it, I quickly came across some pro's and con's. One of the con's was my ability to find the perfect way to hook this frog so that it ran true, and still achieved a decent hook-up ratio. Well thank god for the Gamble Double Trouble Toad hook, as they are a match made in heaven 

Overall Rating: 7.3/10

Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Presentation, Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality/Durability: 4.0/5

This hook came pretty damn close to getting a perfect score in it's overall quality, but I cant in good conscience give this hook anything over a 4, with that gawd awful soldering job that attaches the corkscrew bait keeper to the hook shank. It looks bad, and since it is not a smooth finish it can cause you grief on your retrieve when it catches on vegetation. 

The hook itself is top quality, it is a 4/0 gammy and is sticky sharp

I did have concerns with rigging the DTT, but after watching the below video I realized it was a me issue and not an issue with the hook. I had been attempting to rig the hook through the body or thinner part of the frogs legs, but I hated the result. In the below promo video Chris Lane shows you that the Double Trouble was designed to be skin hooked on the side of the frog and not pushed through the body.. this makes way more sense and I was a little disappointed that I did not figure it our myself

Availability & Price 3.5/5

The on-line availability of this hook is pretty solid, you can get it from most of the big boys. Locally is a different storey, I have yet to see this hook on my travels and ended up buying it sight unseen from LBF.

As for pricing, the Double Trouble hook averages out at about $5.26 a pack or $2.63 a hook.. ouch, that makes it the most expensive of the three frog hooks I have reviewed so far

Options : 3.0/5

How do I say this.. there are no options, you get one size, and one colour choice. Is that a bad thing? technically no, and I don't think it should be a sticking point when making a hook buying decision. It may actually make it easier for you.. no decision, just a yes or no

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

Gambler ($5.29)

Land Big Fish ($4.89)

Bass Pro Shop ($5.99)

Monday, October 8, 2012

Mann's Hard Nose FrankenToad Review

Frankentoad:      Colours: 9   Size: 4"     Pack Count:  5     
                            Leg Style: Swim            Scent: None


As a big fan of the "hard nose" series of Mann's baits, I was excited when I saw the FrankenToad added to their line-up back in 2011. It has a unique look and feel that I thought would add a slightly different (and beefier) presentation not seen on the classic hard nose swim toad. Boy was I wrong, now just 1 year later the FrankenToad is nearly extinct (clearance on most websites) and I know why.. It just cant compete

Overall Rating: 6.3/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality: 3.5/5

The FrankenToad is part of Mann's "hard nose" series, but could just as easily be classed as a hard nose, soft tail bait. Yes the FrankenToad is built with a hard durable nose that Mann's baits are known for, they hold on tight and last for multiple fish. But on the flip side the tail and legs of the FrankenToad don't hold up their end of the bargain, the lighter material rips easily and does not move as well as the legs on the Mann's swim toad

Castability: 3.5/5

No real issue here, the FrankenToad casts well, and it's broader body makes for a great skipping frog

Presentation: 3.0/5

I was not happy with the swim on this frog, the legs are slightly lipped and try to bridge that gap between a swim and buzz frog, but what your left with is a frog that only performs as a half ass swim frog or a half ass buzz frog (depending on how you look at it). Im not sure what the extra little tail was meant to do, but in my mind it accomplishes nothing (and even less when it gets ripped off)

Hook-Up Ratio: 3.5/5

Again, no real concerns with the hook-up ratio on the FrankenToad. I would prefer that it provide me with a place to bury or hide my hook point, but this is an issue on the classic Mann's swim toad as well (so nothing new here). You are forced to skin hook into the back of the frog and the material rips/tears easily damaging the bait

Availability: 2.0/5

Good luck with this one. Last year I saw this frog all over the place as it was the "hot" new product on the market. 1 year later it has been tossed aside and discontinued by most major retailers that stock Mann's line of products 

Options & Price: 3.0/5

When it was available you could not complain about 9 colour choices and an average pack price of $3.99 or $0.79 per frog. That being said, you will have a hard time finding all 9 colours currently but on the other hand the price has dropped as companies clear them out

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

Cabela's ($3.99)

Land Big Fish ($3.27)

Yes the list is short. LBF is clearing these out, they still have good colour selection and the best pricing options. Cabelas is still selling at full pop, but is down to  3 colours or so


I threw the FrankenToad on both my Dobyns 735c as well as my 805CBRM. Both rods can handle this frog with ease.  Although it can be used as both I treat the FrankenToad as a swim frog and not a buzz frog. what this means to me, is that on average I retrieve it at a higher rate so a reel with a decent gear ratio is needed to keep this weird ass frog moving.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Deps Slither K review

Slither K:   Colors: 6   Length: 2.4"  Weight: 3/8oz   Pack Count: 1


The Deps Slither K was a reluctant add to my arsenal, not because I had and issue and concerns with the quality of previous Deps products but more because of it's size. The Slither K is a small profile light weight frog, and personally I prefer my frogs with a bit more meat on them. That being said the Slither K is doing everything it can to change me mind about small profile frogs

Overall Rating: 8.3/10
Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality: 4.5/5

What can I say, you get what you pay for and believe me the Deps slither K is worth the price of admission. Yes it is a highly expensive frog, but it is a quality bait from top to bottom. 

The body of the Slither K is ultra soft yet very durable, it is equipped with a fur tail instead of the standard silicone/rubber strands. The Fur not only stands up better to use, but it also imparts a better action (in my opinion) 

Castability: 4.0/5

This is the area that I was most surprised by. This little compact light weight frog casts very well. It can be long bombed or flipped up under cover with ease.

I broke some of my own rules and actually started testing this frog during a tournament. I had originally put it on because the lake we were fishing has sparse cover and I wanted to use a frog that moved well. As it turns out the only time I was able to use a frog was in one back bay, but the entrance was blocked by timber. I almost retied in an attempt to get a heavier frog on that I knew would make the distance easily, but instead I gave the Slither K a shot and it did not disappoint. Long casts with ease and I cant complaint about landing a fish on my first cast either

Presentation: 5.0/5

 Damn, does this frog every move. If you are looking for a frog that walks, hops, and even imparts action on the pause, the the Slither K has you covered. It's boat haul design and short frame give it an erratic walk that can be altered with slow or fast retrieves. The slithering fur tail gives this frog some additional action when in motion as well as on the pause. I learned the value of fur while fishing the Furbit, and I think this short tail piece is even an improvement on the furbits longer legs (longer is not always better)

Hook-Up Ratio: 5.0/5

I knew I would be giving this frog a perfect score when it came to the hook-up ration about midway through my second trip with it. At that time I was 8 for 8.. yep you heard that right I landed all 8 of the first 8 fish that blew up on the Slither K, so add the fish from my tournament and the Slither K was 9 for 9 right out of the gate. The first fish I missed was actually my fault and not the frogs, it was a short strike jsut feet from the boat that caught me by surprise and i pulled the frog away way to soon.

What makes the Slither K a great frog from your hook up percentage is three things really... first off the small body is like a 2-bite brownie, it fits easily in the fishes mouth and is really hard to miss. Secondly the body is super soft, it compresses with ease and you wont have a hard time putting that hook home. Last but not least the use of fur over silicone/rubber means there is less junk to get in the way of those hooks .

Availability: 3.5/5

The availability of the Slither K to the Canadian market is slim to none, It is nearly impossible to find locally and when you do the price is over the $20 mark. That being said they are readily available on-line from most of the big guns you count on for quality products.

Options & Price: 3.0/5

Ok, ok, I know, the price point on this bad boy hurts. Coming in at $19.99 there is not really many frogs worth or asking that price point. I think the score reflects the high price point, but still takes into consideration that overall the quality of the frog puts it into an elite category.

When it comes to options the only ones available are color changes. The Deps Slither K comes in 6 color options all of which are fishing catching choices. I opt to carry this frog in the Swampster and Albino colours

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

Tackle Warehouse ($19.99)

The Hook-Up Tackle ($19.99) 

Land Big Fish ($19.99)

Optimum Baits ($19.99)

All of thee above on-line stores have all 6 color options and are available for the same price point. I have been buying mine direct from Optimum as they are quick and have decent shipping into Canada


I have been throwing the Deps Slither K on my Dobyns 736C, you may think that rod may be a bit much for this small frog, but you will be presently surprised by how easily it casts. The reel of choice has been the Daiwa Advantage but at time I have gone down slightly to the T3 Ballistic, both reels can handle the pressure of frog fishing and after that it comes down to personal preference.

This is my fav frog of 2012 so far, it has not left my rod in weeks and I can safely say it wont be going anywhere any time soon