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Strategic Angler Custom Lures – Top Water Class

Ebb Tide Tackle have been associated with Strategic Angler since soon after our inception as a premium top water tackle supplier – we thought it was time to create a resource for users of the lures where their application could be clearly understood and appreciated! Strategic Angler have been around since about 2010 and lure builder Merv Rubiano moved from hand carved timber blanks to high impact solid core injection molded plastic resin and
will hold up to the toothy bites the worlds toughest fish.  The beauty of working with a uniform blank is that Merv can concentrate on his now world famous hand painted customization of each and every lure.

 The Strategic Angler models – going from smallest to largest 

only 127mm, the Mikros series is the perfect lure to represent
small/juvenile scad, poddy mullet, tommy ruff and mackerel.  The Mikros has
already proven itself to be extremely versatile in all fishing
situations fresh and saltwater and is available in both sinking and
floating configurations.

Do not let the small size fool you, the Mikros series lures are wired
and constructed the same as their larger brethren giving you peace of
mind when the big guys come around.  Elephants eat peanuts after all!

Mikros S (sinking) 

  • Orientation:  Horizontal suspending/sinking (hook dependent)
  • Action:  Alternating side to side swimming action with retrieve; subsurface walk
  • Length:  5 inches  (127 mm)
  • Average weight:  2 ounces (55-58 grams)
  • Retrieve speed:  Medium to fast
  • Skill level:  None to moderate

 Mikros F (floating)

  • Orientation:  Horizontal floating with rattle
  • Action:  Walk the dog; alternating side to side swimming action with retrieve
  • Length:  5 inches  (127 mm)
  • Average weight:  1.25 ounces (35-38 grams)
  • Retrieve speed:  very slow to fast
  • Skill level:  None to moderate

The Mikros-F and Mikros-S can be fished
with similar techniques.  The differences lie in their buoyancy, with
the Mikros-F creating a visual and audible disturbance on the surface
with its internal rattle chamber and the Mikros-S which sinks for a more
subtle but “in your face” presentation to deeper dwelling species. Both lures can be walked by twitching
the rod tip imparting a side to side zig zag action, keeping the lure in
the feeding zone where it is most effective.  The occasional long jerk
will make the lure kick wildly, making the lure swim like a fleeing

Mikros lure can be retrieved with various speeds depending on the hook
setup.  Lighter hooks allow for a slower retrieve while larger, heavier
hooks allow for a more spirited retrieve.  For heavy tackle and big game
fishing, an extra large treble or single hook located on the belly is
all you need.  This configuration will still allow the lure to swim at
its best (note that the Mikros-F will sink slightly due to the heavier
belly hook) 

Hook guide – heavy tackle casting

  • Belly only (trolling):  5/0 trebles, 4/0 trebles, 3/0 trebles
  • Belly only: 8/0 single
  • Belly/rear: 3/0 or 2/0 treble with a single tail hook

 Hook guide – light/medium tackle casting

  • Belly/rear:  2/0 trebles with 2/0 to 3/0 single
  • Belly/rear: 1/0 treble with 5/0 single
  • Belly/rear: single 5/0

Oman emperor and bream
Rooster – yes!
Redfish on Mikros

The Frantic series was inspired through the body shapes of sardines
and ballyhoo (garfish).  The term “frantic” was appropriately chosen because it
mimics the crazed action of a bait fish when chased by a predator.  From a slow to medium retrieve, this lure will consistently wobble
side to side or dart away.  Enticing fish to bite with an action like no
other is what makes this the perfect lure for every fishing situation.

  • Orientation:  Horizontal slow sinking or suspending (hook dependent)
  • Action:  Alternating wobbling/swimming action with retrieve
  • Length:  8.25 inches  (210 mm)
  • Weight:  85-95 grams
  • Retrieve speed:  Medium to fast
  • Skill level: Low

The Frantic Series Lures can be fished in many versatile ways.
Swimming – A medium
retrieve will create a natural swimming action.  It is important to keep
the rod tip down to maximize the subsurface swim.   No extra angler
input needed.  That’s it!
A fast retrieve will make this lure vibrate frantically sub surface. 
The best action is achieved just before the lure starts to roll due to
imbalance, so it is advisable to swim the lures prior to use.   The
faster you retrieve, the faster it vibrates in a frantic state.  Pause
in between fast cranks, you never know what just might hit it. 
Dive and Roll:  Cast
the lure.  Give it a few seconds so that it orients itself in the
water.  With the rod tip down, pull the rod with one smooth sweep to the
right (or left).  Pause for a few seconds.  Slowly point the rod to the
direction of the lure while retrieving the line with a few cranks of
the reel.  Repeat.  This action will entice a wary fish to strike
because it mimics a stunned or dying fish.  The sweeping motion will
cause the lure to dive down and roll.   The pause allows the lure to
right itself with a horizontal buoyancy.  This is its deadliest move.
Twitch and pause
Retrieving the lure with small rod twitches with an occasional pause
will make it flutter like an injured or disoriented bait fish.  The
slight twitches of the rod during the retrieve gives the fish an erratic
swimming action while the pause allows the lure to rest; a perfect
opportunity to hook that trophy fish!

Hook guide

  • Belly/rear:  3/0 trebles front and back
  • Belly/rear:  3/0 treble and 5/0 single
  • we have also used the Frantic with an assist off the tow point and a single on the rear
A great medium tackle GT lure

Terrific trout

Runfurly Banks YTK on Frantic

The WALKING series lure floats head up and tail down at rest.   The lure
responds with input from the angler to control its side to side surface
action.  It is a fantastic lure to cast at trophy tuna and GT’s and other large predators – at Ebb Tide Tackle we stock Walker in base patterns or as custom works of art

  • Orientation:  Floating with tail down
  • Action:  Top water zig zag with rod work (walk the dog).  Diving bubble trail with rod sweep.
  • Length: 10 inches (255 mm)
  • Average weight:  5 to 6 ounces (140-145 grams)
  • Retrieve speed:  Very slow to fast
  • Skill level:  Moderate

Walking the Lure – 
The Walking Series lure is the perfect weapon of choice during a mid or
topwater feed.  Twitch and work the rod tip with a downward motion.  The
lure will respond with a zig zag surface skim while the tail sits in
the water.  The splashes generated by the lure triggers a frenzied
feeding response resulting in spectacular blowups.
Sweep and Pause –  
Sweep the rod tip all the way from right to left and then pause. 
Retrieve the line with a few cranks of the reel while returning to the
original position and then repeat.  The sweeping motion makes the lure
dive with a trail of bubbles and surfaces head first at rest.  During
the dive, the lure will roll under water, exposing its flashy sides and
pearl belly.  This visual display triggers the feeding response of the
predator so hang on during the pause, this is when strikes happen.
Swim and skim – 
Keep the rod tip down to swim the lure just under the surface with an
erratic left/right/up/down motion.  Varying the retrieve speed will
enhance its erratic swimming nature while keeping the rod tip down.
Retrieving the lure with the rod tip up will create a surface
skimming action, just like flying fish or ballyhoo breaking the
surface.  Pausing the retrieve after skimming will mimic an injured
ballyhoo or flying fish that has just landed.

Hook guide

  • Belly/rear:  7/0, to 4/0 trebles
  • Belly/rear: 8/0 to 9/0 singles
  • Belly/rear: belly treble with a single tail hook
Large bluefin on Walker

Walker munching GT
Amberjack on Walker Ballyhoo

The CRUISING series lures sink and swim with an enticing side to side wobble and tail kick, just like a cruising mackerel.  The perfect strategic when the bite is subsurface or if the current or wind make using surface lures too difficult.  Like the Walker series, the Cruiser is available in base patterns or custom colors.

  • Orientation:  Horizontal slow/fast sinking (hook dependent)
  • Action:  Alternating side to side swimming action with retrieve
  • Length:  10 inches  (255 mm)
  • Average weight:  6.5 to 7 ounces  (185-190 grams)
  • Retrieve speed:  Medium to fast
  • Skill level:  Low to moderate

Swimming the Lure – 
The Cruising Series does best with a moderate to fast retrieve with an
occasional pause.  The pause enables the lure to sink to the feeding
zone while the retrieve creates a side to side motion.  The cruiser’s
strike appeal comes from its quick erratic action mimicking a
disoriented bait fish, drawing them in for a strike.
A faster retrieve will enhance the action of the lure, making it swim
and erratically kick its tail.  I prefer to use this lure when the
surface action is slow as the fish may be feeding deep. Cast it out,
pause and let it sink, retrieve the lure and hold on!

Hook guide

  • Belly/rear:  7/0 trebles to 4/0 trebles
  • Belly/rear: 8/0 to 9/0 singles
  • Belly/rear: combination belly treble with a single tail hook

What a pair – Cruiser strikes

Imparting your desired action on the Kratos is easy since the lure
has been tuned to accept a wide variety of hook configurations,
including a front assist-hook.  The Kratos’ amazingly stable design
enables it to be retrieved at both slow and very fast speeds while
keeping a consistent action.  This lure stability is shown when the lure
is retrieved at a high speed -OR- trolled!  Kratos can be trolled at a
modest 6-8 knots and can handle speeds up to 14 (see hook
recommendations).  Imagine trolling a weedline or temperature break
while looking for signs of life.  Seeing a frenzy in the distance, you
grab your spinning rod, retrieve the lure and cast to the feed of a
KRATOS has been designed for maximum presentation while offering an
impressive silhouette in the water, attracting all the apex predators in
a food chain.


  • Length: 12 inches (305 mm)
  • Average weight:  8.25 ounces (230-235 grams)
  • 0.093 inch (2.4 mm) thick x-heavy wiring
  • Orientation: Horizontal floating
  • Action:
    • – Walk the dog; side to side cadence
    • – Wobbling side to side swimming action with retrieve
    • – “S” Dive with rod sweep, floats at rest
  • Retrieve speed: medium to fast
  • Skill level: Low to moderate


  • Trolling depth:  Dives down up to 2 to 4 feet (trolling speed dependent); floats at rest
  • Trolling speed:  5-10 knots, up to 14 knots with appropriate sized hooks
  • Trolling distance: 60 feet or more (trolling speed dependent)
  • Action: Aggressive subsurface swimming action
  • Skill level:Low

the lure and twitching the rod tip during the retrieve will impart a
side to side cadence, keeping the lure in the feeding zone where it is
most effective.  Sweeping the rod tip in a downward motion will allow
the lure to dive down with a swift tail kick.  A pause between rod
sweeps will make the lure float horizontally for maximum presentation
for the target species to notice.  The broad silhouette of the lure will
attract predators from below, while the impressive side profile will
catch the keen eye of any hungry species from a distance.

achieved by strategically placing the lure past the prop wash while the
boat is at IDLE.  While a spinning reel may be used while high speed
trolling, keep in mind that the drag and line will vibrate exponentially
as speed increases.

Hook guide casting 

  • Belly/rear: 8/0 trebles (or smaller)
  • Belly/rear: 5/0 with 10/0 single
  • Belly/rear: 12/0 singles
  • Nose/rear:  Front assist-hook (9/0 or larger) with 5/0 treble (or 9/0 single)

 Hook guide trolling

  • Belly/rear: 5/0 trebles (or larger)
  • Belly/rear: 5/0 treble with 4/0 treble
  • Belly/rear: 5/0 treble with 10/0 single
  • Belly/rear: 10/0 singles (or larger)
Massive bluefin tuna taken on a cast Kratos

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