The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe.

The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe:

Sings like a Shad, Stings Like a Bee …

Genius Z-Man® ChatterBait® WillowVibe™ re-thinks bladed jig design on super-subtle levels …

Step inside the lureshop of bladed jig inventor Ron Davis Sr. and your perceptions of what constitutes a ChatterBait will likely leave you at the door. Of course, you probably won’t be dropping by his shop anytime soon, so you won’t discover most of the other secret projects underway inside Davis’ laboratory. But if you’re reading this, you’re among the fortunate-first to glimpse Davis’ newest masterwork, an intriguing new bladed jig design known evocatively as the ChatterBait WillowVibe™.

The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe.

“Who says all bladed jigs have a hex-shaped blade?” asks Davis, whose original ChatterBait touched off an undeniable fishing phenomenon over two decades back.

Fifteen years in development, a collaborative effort between Davis and Z-Man Fishing has resulted in a veritable marvel of angling engineering. At first glance, like most strokes of simple, elegant genius, the WillowVibe’s sleek, minimalist physique misleads you. But be forewarned: this little willowleaf-bladed jig is full of surprises.

The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe.

Like all finely-crafted lures, the WillowVibe began as a solution to a vexing fishing dilemma. “The idea for this lure came to me while fishing for big stripers focus-feeding on little bitty shad,” recalls Davis, who along with son Ron Davis Jr. crafted the Original ChatterBait Bladed Jig in 1998.

“These can be some of the most selective, tough-to-fool fish in the lake,” explains Davis, an astute angler and aquatic observer from Rock Hill, South Carolina. “These fish are so laser focused on specific, subtle baitfish cues that we as anglers easily overlook them. In these scenarios, a lot of folks throw underspins. But I wanted a lure I could cast a mile and that allowed for easy, precise depth control.

“You’ve seen shad the flip through the surface when they’re fleeing predators? An underspin can’t do that, but the WillowVibe’s blade mimics this exact surface-flip, and does it so realistically that bass swim right over and eat it.”

The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe.

Davis continues: “This lure’s got a little secret, though. It starts humming with the first crank of the handle, and buzzes smoothly through the water; we refer to it lovingly as ‘the bee.’ But twitch the lure with your rodtip and watch what happens next. The WillowVibe jumps, darts and hunts in totally random fashion. Ever watched what a frantic shad does with a bass in chase? Zip!, zip!, zip!— back and forth. Now throw the WillowVibe and compare the two. Pretty convincing copy of the real thing.”

As Davis and other great anglers will tell you, there’s no better trigger for selective bass and other fish than these evasive, fast-slashing maneuvers, especially in areas of openwater. So, while traditional bladed jigs excel near heavy cover, the ChatterBait WillowVibe enters a totally different stratosphere—pulsing through the pelagic zone where baitfish and big bass collide. Where stripers crash shad parties. Where walleyes waylay windrows of ciscoes. Where smallmouths and crappies munch minnows in bulk.

“We’re just starting to realize where this bait excels,” says Z-Man pro Joey Nania. “So far, the answer is that it works more places than not, though certainly in non-traditional ChatterBait spots, such as rock, low-visibility zones, river current, and deeper ledges with largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass. When you first throw this bait, you’ll fall in love with its sweet subtle vibrations. Feels totally different on your rodtip than a hexagonal ChatterBlade. It’s a faster frequency vibration that pulses even when you’re barely moving it. You’ll feel it, too, down in 15 to 20 feet of water.”

The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe.

Nania immediately suspected the WillowVibe would be a spotted bass destroyer at lakes like Lanier, Hartwell and Logan Martin. His instincts with the lure proved right on the money. “Late this past winter, throwing a 3/8-ounce WillowVibe on Lake Guntersville, where we’d already gone through with a JackHammer, I caught twenty more largemouths in pretty short order. The smaller hook skyrocketed my hookup percentages, too.

“On Logan Martin Lake, I caught 60 spotted bass with the lure in three hours,” Nania divulges, visibly buzzing with enthusiasm. “That lake has a lot of river current and dirty water. Really didn’t think the lure would produce here. Whoa, was I wrong.”

The Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe.

Such misconceptions no longer surprise Davis. “I think anglers might mistakenly look at the WillowVibe and pigeonhole it as a small fish bait, or something that’s only effective around shad schools,” says Davis, who spent years convincing skeptical anglers about the merits of his early ChatterBaits. History, it would appear, has more than vindicated his hard work.

“Actually, there’s nothing ‘finesse’ about the WilllowVibe,” he notes. “We selected a willowleaf blade because it leaves more room to oscillate from side to side, giving off a really tight, high-frequency vibration—more of a buzz than a solid thump. Of course, it’s essential to precisely determine the right pull-point, or line attachment location, which dictates oscillation, stability and vibration. Put it in the wrong spot, and we’re not even having this conversation.

“Truthfully, I’ve always wanted a bait that could do different things—pull off two or more totally different actions—within the same retrieve. The lure swims and hums along or slashes erratically, depending on retrieve speed alone. The reason it’s so compelling to fish, I believe, is that it emits a totally different sound and underwater signature than any other bait fish have seen before.”

“A slow, steady retrieve produces a nice rhythmic vibration,” adds Nania. “You can throw it in 6-inches of water, starting the retrieve immediately, occasionally flicking the blade through the surface or waking it on top. Or, for suspended fish, count it down and keep it at any depth to about 15 feet with a nice steady retrieve. Give the WillowVibe little twitches to make it jump and dart, randomly. It’s also a ledge-killer at places like Guntersville. Let it hit bottom, tightline it and give it a couple little snaps. You’ll also appreciate how well it comes through and out of rock crevices. A quick pop usually frees it right up.”

Nania propels the compact WillowVibe up to 70 yards per cast, preferring spinning tackle with 10 or 15 pound test braid. He concedes that other anglers will throw the bait on casting tackle and 14-pound fluorocarbon with equal comfort and ease. For trailers, Nania hypes the subtle swimming vibes of a Z-Man StreakZ 3.75, 3-inch MinnowZ or Slim SwimZ.

A totally original design from ChatterBait creator Ron Davis Sr., the Z-Man ChatterBait WillowVibe features a hardened stainless steel blade that delivers an all-new rapid-fire vibration. The lure’s unique sound is also made possible via direct-connection to a ¼- or 3/8-ounce ball-shaped jighead. Highlighted with lifelike 3D eyes, the WillowVibe jighead sports a functional wire keeper that pins 3- to 4-inch soft plastic trailers securely in place, creating the illusion of a frantic baitfish. The ChatterBait WillowVibe is available in ¼- and 3/8-ounce sizes and four colours.

See here for other Z-Man products we inventory.

Contact Us for current inventory and ordering details.

Related Products
A Largemouth Bass with a Megabass Crankbait.
Guelph Lake Largemouth Bass Ultra Tungsten 12 ounce Spinnerbait AAA
A Largemouth Bass with a Megabass Crankbait.
Snap On Boat Salmon Spoon and Plug Lure Storage Bag Pouch A B

WOO! Tungsten

Daiwa SC Shad

It's Durable PVC and stitched Heavy Duty Velcro construction protects you from

Googan Baits

MEEGS Jigs

MEEGS Jigs

Set The Hook The Drifter ...
Guelph Lake Largemouth Bass Ultra Tungsten 12 ounce Spinnerbait AAA
Largemouth Bass Rapala Topwater Bait AA.jpg Largemouth Bass Rapala Topwater Bait AAA.jpg
Lucky Craft Pointer
LIVETARGET Golden Shiner Rattlebait series
Z-Man TRD SpinZ Tail Spinners
The Savage 3D Snake
2"Lyman Lure.
Cotton Cordell Gay Blade Bait
The BOOYAH ToadRunner Junior.
The BOOYAH Melee Blade Jig.

BOOYAH Melee

The Molix Sculpo DR “USA Special Edition”.
The Molix Supernato.
The Lucky Craft Virtual Kingyo Gold Fish Lure.
The Missile Baits Bomb Shot Worm.
The Molix Venator Spinnerbait.
The Molix Lover Spinnerbait
Z-Man Neko ShroomZ Wacky Rig Nose Weights
Magz Mfg.

Magz Mfg.

Booyah Bait Co.
Molix Lover Titanium Spinnerbait
The Molix Lover Jig
Teckel Lures

Teckel Lures

Rapala Super Shad Rap
Lucky Craft 5” Opti Grub
Berkley Choppo Topwater Propbait
Terminator Fishing Lures Logo
Terminator Shuddering Bait Bladed Jig
The Molix Sneaky Frog.
Duo Realis Duo International Spy Baiting Spinbait 80 90 C
The Lushazer Vertical Jigging Lure.
Z-Man SlingBladz Spinnerbait
River2Sea Bubble Popper 65 & 88
Keitech Easy Shiner
Lucky Craft Teckel USA Brand The Honker Frog
LIVETARGET Hollow Body Shiner
Lunkerhunt® Prop Turtle Soft Bait
Duo Realis v-tailshad_hooks
Ish Monroe River2Sea Bling Spinnerbait
LIVETARGET Hollow Body Craw
Keitech Swing Impact Swimbait
Livetarget Commotion Shad
LIVETARGET Yellow Perch Rattlebait
Lunkerhunt Weedless Cupped Faced Yappa Rat
Keitech Fishing
SteelShad Fishing Lure
The Live Target Skip Shad.
Whopper Plopper River2Sea-logo-white
Jackall Deracoup Tail Spinner
The Megabass Vision 110+2 Jerkbait.
Ned Rig Finesse Fishing.
Lucky Craft Teckel Brand The Sprinker Frog TKL-Sprinker
Molix Trago Vib Blade Bait
Tightlines UV Lures and Soft Plastics
Jackall Riser Bait 009SP
Jackall Chop Cut Topwater Lure
E.G.B. Fishing Lures - The Original Swiss Lure
Lyman Lures
Megabass Hazedong Shad Swimbait
X Zone Pro Series Lures 3" Ned Zone

Bam Baits

Z-Man QuadZilla Collapsible Four-Arm Spinnerbait
LIVETARGET BaitBall Spinner Rig
Westin Danny The Duck Duckling
Anglers Choice Sniper Shad Swimbait
LIVETARGET Hollow Body Popper Frog
Lunkerhunt Dragonfly Finesse Topwater Lure
Jackall Rhythm Wave Swimbait
Jackall Grinch Frog and Paddle Tail Worm
Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits 4” Zako Swimbait
VMC Inline Single X-Strong Large Ring Hooks - Model#7237CB
Walleye Crawler Worm Harness
Ever Green Lures Logo

Lunkerhunt Fetch

Lunkerhunt Prop Turtle
Megabass Candian Edition Top Secret
Duo Realis Vibration Lipless Crankbait Image

Acme Hyper-Glide

Acme Little Cleo Assortment.

Acme Little Cleo

Slipin Style Snag Free Tube Insert Weight AA
Yo-Zuri 3DB Series Knuckle Bait
Jackall Kaera Weedless Frog
Rapala RipStop

Rapala RipStop

Jackall Rerange Lure Assortment.
Megabass Dark Sleeper Swimbait
The Z-Man Jack Hammer.

Z-Man Jack Hammer

JIGAJO.png
Panfish Micro Tubes and Grubs
Weedless Topwater Frogs
Duo Realis images
Nories Fishing Logo
SV Concept by Daiwa Neko Fat Logo
Savage Gear 3D Line Thru Pike A
The Jackall Yammy Fish.
LunkerHunt Prop Series.
Arbogast Lures Logo A
Lunkerhunt Link - Topwater Surface Bait
Gary Yamamoto Senko or Yamasenko
Cotton Cordell Lures
Cotton Cordell Ripplin' Red Fin
Storm Spinbait Arashi Lure B
Ecogear Fishing Lures Logo
Jackall Pompadour
Wacky Rigging Tool
Hook Bonnets

Hook Bonnets

Megabass Funky Flipper B
Trapper Tckle Trapper Hook Assortment

Trapper Tackle

westin-fishing-logo
Jackall Binksy Image
Normark Rapala Slab Rap Logo
Duo Realis Cambio Spin Assortment.
Lick Em Lures Sledgetails
Duo Realis - 2017 Great Lakes Colours
2017 Megabass Vision Oneten - Northern Secret
VISION ONETEN - SB OB SHAD
guru-tackle-blk-logo

Guru Tackle

Innovative Safety Tools logo
Fuji EZ Keeper & Lindy Hook-A-Loop Hook Keeper Addition.
Custom Poured Gamakatsu Jig Heads Ball Bullet Tear Drop Mushroom Tube Darter Chicklet BB
Assorted Custom Jig Head Selection AA
stringease-tackle-logo

Stringease Tackle

mepps-fishing-logo

Mepps Lures

Savage Gear 3D Suicide Duck B