Jerkbait vs Crankbait: The Similarities and Differences You Should Know

Jerkbait vs Crankbait: The Similarities and Differences You Should Know

When talking about fishing lures, there has been a long-standing discussion over jerkbait vs crankbait

I would have to agree that these two are known to be the most common fishing lures used by most fishermen and anglers When I was still a novice in the field of fishing, I had very little knowledge about lures and which one to use

In this guide, I will discuss the similarities and differences between jerkbait vs crankbait. This will give you a deeper knowledge of which type works best for which fishing scenario

What is a Jerkbait?


A jerkbait is a type of fishing bait that is known for its slender body. It typically has three hooks and a tiny bill. Like me, most fishermen and anglers prefer to use it while fishing in shallow waters. I find it also to work best in clear water and is ideal for fishing in the winter

Watch this short clip to have a better idea about jerkbaits

What is a Crankbait?

A crankbait, on the other hand, has a round and short body type. It has two hooks and can dive deeper than jerkbaits. They have wide and long bills and I personally prefer to use them when fishing in dark and muddy waters.

To know more about crankbaits, watch this video

Jerkbait vs Crankbait: The Similarities and Differences

Jerkbait vs Crankbait: Their Bills (Lips)

The bills on both jerkbait and crankbait can be referred to as lips. This can determine the wiggle and the diving depth of the lure. A jerkbait has a very small bill which usually measures less than an inch. Meanwhile, a crankbait has a wide and long bill compared to a jerkbait

Jerkbait vs Crankbait: Their Body Type

As for the body type, both the jerkbaits and crankbaits are made from hard plastic and are both lightweight.

This is basically why they are widely used. However, there are also differences when you examine them closely. Jerkbait lures have a slender and long body type, while the crankbait is rounder and shorter

Jerkbaits also have three hooks attached to their body, while crankbaits usually have two

Jerkbait vs Crankbait: Their Diving Depth

In terms of diving depth, a jerkbait can go as deep as 1 to 6 feet. This is the reason why it is best to be used in shallow water such as ponds and creeks. On the other hand, crankbaits can go further up to 4 to 25 feet deep. Because of this, they can be used for fishing in deeper waters and big lakes

Jerkbait vs Crankbait

​Jerkbait vs Crankbait: Fishing Scenario

​Regarding fishing different fishing scenario, I will go through each of them and explain which type of lure best suits it

  • Fishing in shallow waters (ponds and​ creeks)

A great source of largemouth and smallmouth bass, creeks and ponds can be a bit tricky to fish in using lures. I remember trying to fish too deep using lures and ended up just snagging a handful of vegetation

When I tried using a crankbait lure to fish in this kind of scenario, I find it too difficult to snag a fish. However, using a crankbait that has no bills seem to work 

Another trick I tried doing is that when my crankbait floats, I retrieve it after one spool turn. On the other hand, if it sinks, I slowly retrieve it back to the bank

  • Fishing in deep waters (big lakes)

For this kind of scenario, I usually opt for a crankbait with a large bill. Once I found a good drop off, I cast as far as I can pass the drop-off. As I have observed in doing this, it allows the crankbait to achieve a good depth

  • ​Fishing in muddy and dirty waters

During some of my fishing trips, I have also tried using these two types of lures in clear waters. I personally find the jerkbait a more suitable option under this circumstance. The reason for this is that jerkbaits can be seen more compared to crankbaits. This can easily attract bass with very little effort

  • ​Fishing in clear waters

Believe it or not, I have also tried fishing using lures in muddy and dirty waters. As I have noticed, a crankbait is the ideal choice for this type of scenario A crankbait can easily trick a bass in dirty and foggy waters. A plump crankbait tends to bump and rattles the water that can trigger and lure in a catch

Jerkbait vs Crankbait

Concluding Thoughts

In conclusion, the debate between jerkbait vs crankbait will definitely go on. However, determining which is best for you to use will greatly depend on what kind of scenario you are in when fishing 

The best way is always to get to know the gears that you will be using including the type of lures that best fit the fishing scenario. Now that you have in-depth knowledge about the similarities and differences of a jerkbait vs crankbait, you can easily predict which to pick when the situation asks for it


Are you now able to know the differences between jerkbait vs crankbait? Were you able to learn new information while going through this article? Do you know of other related topics about this article? I would like to know your views and opinion on this topic. Send your feedback and suggestions by leaving a comment below.

Leave a Comment