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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

• V&M Baits Baby V Chunk

In the world of jig trailers, there are very few options for finesse anglers. Most trailers simply do not do a finesse jig justice because they are often too bulky. Others are not very durable. A local bait company has a great solution for finesse jig enthusiasts. V&M Baits out of Louisiana makes a variety of lures, but for small finesse jigs, the V&M Baby V Chunk is a perfect fit.

(Note: V&M has discontinued this product.)

The Baby V Chunk is the little sibling of the larger V Chunk. It has a very small profile with a length of about 2 3/4 inches. Each chunk has two very thin, craw-shaped, flapping arms with raised dots on both sides. The thicker body has a short, yet oblong contour. The superior surface is completely smooth and features a midline hump to give the body extra hook hugging surface area. The inferior surface is covered with the same small round dots found on the claws. There must be something important about those dots that they aren't telling us. I could take a few guesses, but they'd only be guesses. Some trailers are speckled with flakes of glitter and others are solid in color. Only six come in a pack, but a pack only costs a little more than $2. Sounds simple enough, doesn't it? There's more about this little trailer that might leave you astonished.


What makes this trailer special is that V&M incorporates pork fat into each V Chunk. That's right. All of you pork trailer enthusiasts suddenly perked up, didn't you? V&M wanted to recreate that special pork chunk character in this product. No better way to do that than to actually use pork fat.

At the top left corner of the package, the words "Super Scented" are boldly displayed in yellow text. I'm still not sure what that means exactly, but it does catch your attention. So go ahead and open up the package and tell me what you think. I got a headache after my first whiff of this "super" scent. The smell kind of reminds me of an art supply shop or a hardware store. It stinks. The odor has a somewhat bitter quality. A freshly opened pack always gives me a headache. Perhaps it is a little too porky for me. Each chunk is very slippery when fresh, so they've been soaked or spritzed with something extra. Along the same lines, something on the package actually made me laugh. The barcode label has text that reads "NOT FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION." I don't know. Is that warning really necessary? The smell alone would keep me from even taste testing these lures, let alone eat them as a snack.

Because of its porky composition, the Baby V Chunk floats really well. The claws stand out and wave with the motion of the water around them. Perhaps the small dots play a role here and add to the buoyancy. Over time, the buoyancy seems to dwindle and in turn, the trailer loses some action. The legs lose some buoyancy too and might awkwardly cross each other after becoming stale. I guess I can't expect a soft plastic infused with pork fat to stay fresh forever.

One trailer exhibited a very interesting behavior I have been unable to replicate since. I accidentally dropped it over the side of the boat one afternoon as I was changing out a damaged trailer for a new one. Instead of floating, it fluttered down, both legs kicking as it slowly glided at an angle as if it were swimming on its own.

Like I said earlier, these chunks work great on small finesse jigs. The two brands of finesse jigs I use are the Strike Works finesse jig and the Eakins jig. Both weigh 1/4oz. I position the trailer with the hump facing up, not down. I thread the trailer on so that the hook runs through the back of the body and out the top through the hump. When rigged this way, I can slide the trailer up along the hook bend so that the claws dangle out in a more defensive posture or down towards the hook shank so it sits flat in a more natural fashion. When loosely rigged straight up through the center, it comes off too easily. When packs only contain six trailers, I do anything I can to keep from losing one, so I do not thread the trailer on that way.

The V&M Baby V Chunk is certainly not perfect. The body is fairly durable and if damaged, can be patched easily with melted plastic, adding new life to a tattered chunk. The legs are easily lost, especially when the bluegill come up shallow and linger around cypress trees, I'll go through two or three chunks in no time at all because sunfish and small bass bite the claws clean off. Luckily they only bite off one at a time. After two trailers get hit, I slice one claw off and patch it onto the other. Works just the same as a brand new one. The legs can also become impaled by the hook point during a cast. Other than those few issues, my complaints are few and far between. Makes me want to try the big V Chunk on my Revenge Jigs, but I'd have to buy those online because nobody seems to carry them.

I can only find Baby V Chunks locally in black or chartreuse pepper, but since V&M is based in this general area, I could probably get my hands on other colors if I really applied myself and took the time to shop around. I only know one retailer in this town that sells them, so I'm left wondering why they haven't made deals with other local stores. Short of ordering online, the Northwood shop is where I have to go to get my V&M fix.

Pros:
Great finesse trailer. Made with pork fat. Inexpensive. Effective.

Cons:
Only 6 per pack. Issues with durability. Difficult to find in stores.

Bayou Outdoors Web Site
Baby V Chunk Details

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