How To Prevent Jigheads From Damaging Artificial Lures

Here are a few quick ways to prevent jigheads from damaging lures!!

The intrusive barbs of some jighead styles interfere with the head of soft plastic lures and often force them to split-open and tear apart.

But there is a solution!!

Prevent Jigheads From Damaging Lures [VIDEO]

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The keeper section of jigheads crafted using lead is going to be much thicker than others.

Our Slam Shady 2.0 paddletail is a 3.5-inch swimbait that, like many other lures on the market, is a thin profile lure.

You may run into issues with some jigheads splitting the narrow nose of these soft plastic lures.

Hack #1

The easiest way to combat this is to cut off a small section of the lure.

Use a pair of scissors to cut the parts off that slope down to a point on the head of the lure.

Make sure the area that remains is nice and flat – trim off any excess plastic.

You’ll notice that other lures specifically designed to be used on jigheads have a flat-head design for ease of rigging.

Now, rig the soft plastic lure up as you normally would.

Make sure the bait is centered on the hook and push it up and over the barbs.

The hook keeper is now nice and secure in the lure without you having to worry about it splitting.

Hack #2

If you’ve already been fishing with the nose attached but the lure is starting to split at the top, then you can slowly cut back plastic to extend the life of that lure.

The barbs keep your bait in place on the hook.

If your lure can slide back and forth, you won’t catch fish.

Cut down the plastic to eliminate the damaged section and continue to get the most out of that lure.

Hack #3

If your jighead has lead barbs on it, you can actually cut them down yourself.

Lead is a soft metal that can be cut down with scissors or pliers.

I wouldn’t recommend using nice, new, sharp scissors to do this or you risk damaging them.

I would suggest you cut just one side of the barbs off and leave the other.

This is a last-resort fix as I’d go with the first two hacks before cutting into the jighead barbs.

Rig up any soft plastic as you normally would, just keep in mind there is only one barb on the jighead now.

Jigheads Without Lead Barbs

Another way around lead barbs is to fish without them!!

Z-Man Pro or Mag ShroomZ jigheads are equipped with small, metal keepers.

A trick with these jigheads is to use what we call the 90-Degree Load Technique.

Push the bait onto the hook as normal but stop once you punch the hook out of the bait before the barbs.

Spin the lure about 90 degrees and then push it over the barb.

Now twist the lure back 90 degrees to its original position.

That prevents the barb from completely tearing up the section of plastic between the barb and the jighead which secures your lure.


Often, a slight adjustment here or there is all you need to find a solution and catch more fish.

Your soft plastic lures are critical to your success and anything you can do to extend their use works in your favor.

Stop throwing those torn soft plastics away and stop this from happening to begin with using these hacks mentioned above!!

Do you know of any hacks or rigging techniques that you use to prevent this problem?

Please go ahead and share in the comments!

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Gary Rankel
1 year ago

Hey Tony……a drop or 2 of Krazy Glue on the hook shank usually does the job.

A Rollins
1 year ago

File down the lead barb/s of the jighead, do not cut them.

Nigel Evans
1 year ago

Awesome advice. And detailing the advice in such an easy way to follow too. Thank you again

Michael Kucich
1 year ago

Thanks Tony. I have cut the ripped top area off the bombers before and re tapped the jig head to last longer. That is good for the 2.0 that you showed us. I like the 90 twist over the head as well. Thanks for trying to save us all some money.

Andrew Nichols
1 year ago

Good stuff. I find it easier to get a smooth flat cut on the nose with a knife or even box cutters than with scissors

William Hobson
1 year ago

If you fish in freshwater too, save those tail sections (assuming the Pinfish and puffers didn’t bite them off)! Use them on jigs and Roadrunners. They make great trailers.

if the plastics aren’t too damaged, use the glues that Matt did a tip on to repair them. I have used my fly tying UV glues to repair some of the ones I brought back from fishing trips.

David Bankston
1 year ago

I keep a small bottle of Loctite Super Glue Ultra Gel in my tackle bag. Whenever my soft plastics begin to get ragged, or they slide when casting, I put a drop of glue on the split, slide the lure up against the jig head, and pinch it together for a few seconds. Problem solved. It really helps extend the useful life of the soft plastic. Once beyond further use just pull it off and properly dispose of the lure.

Steven Brookbank
1 year ago

Thanks Tony good trick to know.

Pat Ogletree
1 year ago

Good stuff Tony! I like the idea of trimming the head down. You can get multiple uses out of the same lure.

Bill Saunders
1 year ago

Thanks, Tony. As always, very clear and well-presented video with good information.


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