HOW TO USE TTF PRODUCTS
If you're new to fishing with artificial baits, or just new to inshore fishing in general - you've come to the right place! Below you'll find some helpful videos, images and tips that will put you on the fast track to fishing (and catching) confidently with TTF soft-plastics as well as other artificial lures like topwaters, hard-plastic jerkbaits, sinking plugs and more.
The whole theme of all the content on this page is SIMPLICITY. There are dozens of baits on the market in all shapes, sizes and colors, and the folks at TTF know it can be an overwhelming and confusing chore trying to learn how to properly select, rig and fish with artificial lures. Don't worry, we're here to help.
One this page you'll find detailed information about the three basic elements of catching fish with artificial lures:
1. COLOR SELECTION
2. PROPER RIGGING
1. COLOR SELECTION
Before we start, it's important to understand that when it comes to fishing, there are ALWAYS exceptions to every rule. The charts below are meant to illustrate basic guidelines or "rules of thumb", but you will encounter situations on the water where these guidelines simply won't apply. It's important as an angler to always keep an open mind and experiment with lure color and presentation while on the water. If one thing doesn't produce results, switch it up. Eventually, the fish will tell you what they want through bites.
Below you'll find a listing of TTF colors divided by category. Our advice is to stock your tackle box with one or two colors from each section. With one bait from each of these five categories, you'll be prepared for ANY condition. To see recommendations for which colors to use in different conditions, take a look at the chart below.
NATURAL: Liquid Shrimp, SA Mullet, Dirty Oil, Kiwi Flash, Laguna Pearl, Seedy Melon, Smokey Joe, Madre Noche
NATURAL-PLUS: Mumpy Glo, Boneyard Shrimp, Backwater Surprise, Matagorda Magic, Sabine Shiner, Bone Catcher
ALL-PURPOSE: Pumpkinseed/White/Chartreuse, Pumpkinseed/Chartreuse, Texas Shrimp, East Beast, Salt & Pepper/Chartreuse, Chili Melon
BRIGHT: Limetreuse, Key Lime Pie, White/Chartreuse, Glo/Chartreuse, Liquid Lime, Limetreuse Flash/Orange, Texas Chicken
DARK: Bug Juice, Blackened Chicken, Texas Morning Glory, Plum/Chartreuse, Strawberry/White, Red Shad, Burnt Oil
This chart is governed by three basic guidelines...
1. Use the most NATURAL color that conditions will allow. In other words, there's no need to throw a hot-pink bait in clear water under sunny skies. Fish will have no problem picking up on subtle, naturally colored lures. Furthermore, un-naturally colored baits may spook fish in clear conditions. You wouldn't eat a lime-green steak, would you?
2. BRIGHT colors are more visible in BRIGHT conditions. The only reason any given color is "bright" is because of it's light-refraction properties. As less light is available, bright tones become muted, thus making them harder to see.
3. DARK colors cast a stronger silhouette in LOW-LIGHT conditions. This may go against what seems logical, but it's actually better to use darker colors in low-light or nighttime situations. The silhouette created by these dark baits makes it easier for fish to locate them in low-light conditions. So, in low-light conditions, remember two things: DARK and SOLID. To test this theory, go out in the dark and hold up a sheet of plain white copy paper next to a sheet of thick, black construction paper on the night of a full moon. Now imagine those pieces of paper darting around like nervous baitfish over your head. You can see how the darker object would be easier to hone-in on from a hungry fish's perspective.
Here's a bonus tip for catching fish in low-light conditions: use a paddle-tail bait like a Killer Flats Minnow, Red Killer or BIG MINO. The vibration of the tail helps fish to find the bait - even if they can't see very well. You can also add rattles for an even stronger presence.
2. PROPER RIGGING
Check out the videos below that feature a variety of different rigging options for our baits. You can apply these rigging techniques to all of the baits in the TTF lineup.
The video below shows some of the basic retrieves that tend to work well when fishing our baits. However, it should be noted that the techniques shared in the video are merely guidelines. There is technically no correct or incorrect way to fish an artificial lure. Make sure you constantly vary your retrieves until you find what the fish want at that particular time.