Why Drop Shot Rigs Work Like Magic for Bass

What's a Drop Shot Rig

This article contains a break down of several things about why the drop shot rig works like magic for bass fishing. The drop shot rig consistently outperforms other soft plastic rigs for a few key reasons. Knowing these reasons of the why behind this rig will help you know when and where to deploy this set up effectively to catch bass. Enjoy the post! Use the information here to save you more time and have more fun out fishing.



What is Drop Shot Fishing

Drop shot fishing is a killer technique to help keep your bait or lure up off the bottom. It works great for getting your bait down deep fast too. The drop shot rig originated in japan for fishing highly pressured waters. It has quickly become adopted as one of the best techniques for fishing softplastic lures especially for largemouth and smallmouth bass. There are a lot of different ways to rig it up and use it. The name “Drop Shot” comes from this rigs ability to drop fast like a shot to the depth you desire.

Drop Shot Setup

Basically a good drop shot set up starts with a good hook, a weight designed to drop fast down to the bottom, and an adequate rod and reel to get the job done. For bass fishing a spinning rod and reel is the best choice. Traditionally you use lighter weights and smaller baits, so the spinning rod and reel performs better for casting lighter stuff.

The drop shot technique requires a sensitive delicate approach. To achieve this use a light braided line 10 – 20 lbs to provide sensitivity to feel what is going on when fishing. Then add a long leader of 100% flourocarbon of 6 – 8 lbs strength to provide the finesse touch to get more bites. You will absolutely catch more fish with 100% flourcarbon and lighter pound test. This makes your bait seem incredibly natural. Plus, the bass can’t detect your line as well the thinner and lighter it is.

drop shot rig
Illustration of what a Drop Shot Rig looks like.


Why the Drop Shot Rig Works

There are a three main reasons why the drop shot rig works for bass fishing. The first, is your ability to present your bait or lure perfectly at eye level for the fish. Second, you can use small profile baits and make them look more natural on a drop shot. Lastly, the drop shot rig allows you to get quickly down to the bottom in deep fishing holes. These are some of the many reasons why a drop shot always seems to work for bass fishing.


The key to getting a good presentation from your lure or bait on a drop shot is the length of the leader between the hook and weight. Sometimes bass are sitting right on the bottom, so you only need your hook a few inches above the weight to keep the bait right at eye level for fish to eat. Other times fish might be sitting on top of 4 foot deep grass. In this case use a longer leader from the weight to the hook. This will keep your bait up out of the grass at the perfect spot for the bass to bite it. All it takes is a subtle shake of the rod to create a killer presentation on drop shot rig.


The drop shot allows you to fish ultra finesse profile baits super effectively. Baits anywhere to an inch or larger can be effective on a drop shot. Use a hook to match the size of your bait to make a natural profile. How you set your soft plastic onto your hook will create a variety of movements for your lure. Wacky Style, Nose, and Texas rig hook set ups are some of the best ways to great a nice natural profile for your lure.

Depth & Speed

You can get down deep really fast with a drop shot rig. Anywhere from 15 – 60 feet deep. It’s extremely hard to get a crankbait down deeper than 20 feet, so usually that is when a drop shot can really shine. You can increase the speed of your lure to the bottom by going with heavier weights. Also, the size of the bait can impact how quickly or softly your drop shot gets to where you want it to go. Thinner slim baits fall faster, and bulkier baits have a slower descent. You can absolutely fish a drop shot from the shore, or cast it around with great results to cover a lot of water.


Drop Shot Bass Fishing
This guy had the best day of bass fishing ever after learning these key concepts about the drop shot rig.


When to Drop Shot for Bass

The drop shot rig will always catch bass, but there are certain times when it will absolutely dominate all other techniques. Here’s a list of the things you need to be on the look out for to know when to effectively use a drop shot rig.

  • Fishing Deep
  • Clear Water
  • Tough Conditions & Nothing Else Works
  • Need to Keep your Bait just up off the bottom
  • Calm Water


Drop Shot Rig Additional Tips

Here are a few other key tips to help you catch fish on a drop shot rig. The best baits, weights, and hooks all can impact your success with a drop shot. Also, how you work your bait can impact the amount of strikes you get. Don’t over look these items so you can get your drop shot working like magic.

Best Baits

There are a myriad of drop shot baits for bass fishing. The best ones are those that get the most bites. There are two types of drop shot baits that seem to work best for getting bites. The 4″ – 6″ finesse worms. Plus, the 3″ shad imitation baits. Other baits will work well too, but these two styles of baits have incredible action and get the job done. Examples of good finesse worms include the jackall flick shake, roboworm’s, and zoom finesse worms. Solid 3″ shad imitation baits for a drop shot include the yamamoto shade shape worm, jackall cross tail shad, and the Strike King Dream Shot.

Best Weights

An important part of a good drop shot rig is selecting the right weight for your circumstances. Typically, the cylinder drop shot weights tend to hang up the least especially in rock. You can also use the ball shape weights for grass or flat sand bottoms. Purchasing weights in a variety of sizes will help you get dialed in on your drop shot. The 3 main sizes you need are 1/8 oz, 3/16 oz, 1/4 oz weights. Start heavy, and go lighter if it isn’t working out.

Best Hooks

Drop shot rig hooks come in a lot of shapes and sizes. Go with two different types. The traditional finesse drop shot hooks. Plus, small offset hooks for when you want to make your bait weedless. Size 1 finesse drop shot hooks work well for a variety of baits. For small finesse weedless rigging’s go with a 1/0 offset hook. The bigger your bait, the bigger the hook you will need to make sure you have enough exposure to hook those bass when they bite.

Drop Shot Rig Video

This video contains some key components on how to fish a drop shot. Including the best way to present the lure, and factors you need to look for to get those magical fishing days on the rig. The video also illustrates why the drop shot can be such a killer tactic to get large numbers of fish catches.



Additional Thoughts

The drop shot is a key fundamental set up every bass fisherman needs to utilize. It wins bass fishing tournaments all year long. Especially on smallmouth bass, or during the spawning season. It is so effective because the drop shot allows you to keep your bait in the optimum spot without moving the bait away from the fish. Don’t be stubborn. Use a drop shot and see how much more fun fishing can be when you start getting your friends and family slaying the bass with you.

Finally, The links above and below in this post are affiliate links were you can pick up baits, rod’s, reels, line, and anything else mentioned here to “Krak” some bass with a drop shot rig. Krakenbass receives a small percentage of the sales through these links. I only use links to baits, and gear I personally trust and know work. These links are here to be helpful for you, and not for the small amount I make for the sale of the products. I hope these products can help you “krak” some bass like they have for me. Thank you for your support!

As Always,

Stay Stoked!

4 Responses

  1. I have been meaning to try a drop shot rig myself. I keep seeing people say they are great when nothing is working. I unfortunately fish from the shore most of the time. Do you believe this is stil a good option?

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