Over the past few weeks I’ve been putting the DUO Press Bait 85 through its paces. My initial thought when opening the packaging was how amazing the Press Bait looks. 3D detailing over the body, quality finish of the paintwork and excellent terminal tackle fittings show the craftsmanship of this lure is second to none. What is the Press Bait 85? Well in very simple terms you could call it a metal jig or a slug but in essence it’s much more than that. With most metal slugs you either get very little action at all or a twisting type action as you crank the lure through the water column. The Press Bait 85 offers much more with a great tail wobble action. This allows you to not only crank the lure through a feeding pelagic school at high speed but you can also work the lure slowly through the water column whilst retaining its action.
This lure really comes in to its own when cranking it back at high speeds as it creates a tight and aggressive wobble, which is tempting to many pelagic species. The Press Bait weighs 28 grams which allows the angler to fish the lure with a variety of rods and its cast ability is fantastic. You can get some serious distance with this lure, and when targeting feeding mackerel or tuna, this is very handy as the extra few metres you get casting this lure may be the difference in getting too close and spooking this fish. The construction of this lure is extremely solid. Multiple mackerel captures with this lure has shown it to hold up very well; sharp teeth usually will dramatically scratch any lure and although the Press Bait has its battle scars, it did hold up a lot better than other painted lead lures. The paint didn’t chip or flake even when solid cuts were evident on the lure.
The Press Bait 85 comes standard with Owner ST46#6 hooks and despite being fairly fine gauge hooks, they are also very strong. Having caught 10kg Spaniards and hooked 15kg plus tuna on these lures, the hooks have stood up very well. In saying that, if you were wanting to fight large fish around structure using high drag pressures in excess of 5kg, I would suggest upgrading the trebbles as I don’t believe it would affect the lure’s action.
The big question when considering a purchase of this lure is its price. You will be paying around $20 to $25 to basically get a fancy slug which may deter some anglers when you can buy time-proven alternatives for less than half this price; so why would you? I believe that with a lure like this you have many more options. When schools sound below the surface and shut down from the feed, the slow tight wobble action (when lightly jigged or retrieved) will entice a fish more than a speeding slug will. This action will also be more desirable to reef species and other species that sit under pelagic schools picking off the scraps of a bait ball. So I believe while it’s not the most economical choice to go throwing into a school of feeding mackerel with a good chance of being bitten off, it offers you a very versatile alternative that could see you out fishing your mates that are armed with a standard slug, which was the case upon the few days of testing! In summary, the Press Bait is a great looking, durable and well-constructed lure that will not only catch the attention of many anglers around the country, but will also perform extremely well in the water and catch fish!