Case Officer: Steve Wilson
Name: Nano Minnow
Manufacturer: Fishin’ Addict
Lure Type: Softbait Shad
Size: 3.5cm (1.3inch)
Price: £3.99 for a pack of 10
Steve Wilson has been one of the most successful canal lure match anglers in the country for a few years now and proved that he can catch canal predators on lures when others struggle. He is particularly adept at catching large numbers using small lures and recognising when to change his presentation style and choice of lure to maximise his catch rate. In this review, Steve looks at Fishin’ Addicts Nano Minnow, which at just 3.5cm long is diminutive in size. Steve has fished with many small lures, trying to find out which will catch him more fish, most consistently, so there are few UK anglers better equipped to carry out a LureTour review of these cute looking little soft plastics.
One of the first things to point out is that several company’s sell “Nano Minnows”. I’m not sure which company is the originator and they seem to come in different sizes from different companies, but the ones being reviewed here are the lures created by Fishin’ Addicts. Their colour range is different to others, the softness of the plastic is different and they include glued on eyes that I feel are important. The Nano Minnows are very precise with basic colours determined by the base material and painted detail over the top. They have glued on eyes and come in a strong re-sealable pack than can be used for other lures after the original batch has finished. They can sometimes be a little crooked out of the packet (this happens to quite a lot of soft plastics) but this can be corrected by putting them in a bowl and pouring recently boiled water over them. Leave them to cool and they will be straight again and as soft as you could ever want. (This trick can be used with a lot of lures to improve suppleness). It’s unusual for lures this small to have glued on eyes and I think these are very important particularly when the water visibility goes above about 4 inches and the target fish have more time to see the lure. I often glue eyes to my jig heads for just this reason, it gives predators a target to hit.
The majority of my fishing is on Midlands canals using drop shot or UL jigging. I use a lot of small lures as the fish in the areas I fish are either naturally small or highly pressured. I have a small set style/type/brands of lures that I trust and it takes a long time for me to replace them or add to the set. This has very much been a long-term review as I came across Nano Minnows (NM) some time ago. They were pointed out by a friend and slowly I have come to rely on them in certain circumstances. Finding lures and techniques that give me an edge is one of the things I love about fishing, and Nano Minnows have proved their worth to me in practice sessions many times. I have confidence in using them and they have won me a few matches when other lures have not caught as well. When jigging they work best on a very light wire hook with a weight around the 1g mark. My ‘go anywhere’ recommendation would be an Ecogear Shirasu light size 8 in 0.9g weight. The Shirasu heads are designed to look like the head of a fish, so I generally cut the lure back to accommodate this and then glue the eye from the lure on to the jighead. While these lures work well on a jighead set-up, it’s drop shot where they really come into their own. When the fish are feeding hesitantly I find it best to hook them as in the upper example in the photo below in the same way as you would hook a jig-head, with the hook fed down the body. When the fish are feeding more confidently then a classic drop shot nose hooking style as illustrated in the bottom example in the photo is best. This gives the lure a little more articulation and when the fish are “on it” they will inhale the whole thing, no problem. Hook wise I tend to favour a Sasame Wormer 875 hooks in size 8 or 9 and most commonly use a 1.8-3.5g tungsten DS weight.
Many different speeds and styles of retrieve will work when drop shot fishing with these lures, but often “less is more” and a series of short pulls with plenty of pauses will work on most days. When the water gets colder and the fish want less action; cutting off the paddle and slitting the lure at the rear (as in the photo) improves the number of bites. You are basically turning the lure into a miniature split tail.
Nano Minnows are particularly good at attracting smaller fish but I’ve caught a fair few more specimen sized fish on them as well. 35cm + perch, and 50cm + zander have fallen for them; even the odd pike.
Nano Minnows come in a wide and expanding range of colours but only one size. My favourite colours are Roach Fry, Chartreuse glow & Glitter SnP
Daiwa Gekkabijin 7ft 8in 1-7g or Evergreen PSSS-70S 7ft 0.1-6g..
When the visibility is low in canals I think any small, bright shad with an easily mobile tail works as well as any other, but once the visibility starts to improve I’ve found the Nano Minnow to repeatedly out score other shads. I’ve proved this again and again in clearer water to the point where they are my ‘go to’ lures in these circumstances.
Build Quality: As mentioned some occasionally need hot water treatment but are generally very well made.
Value For Money: 40p per lure is great value considering the detail.
Performance: Very good and versatile
Overall: A great lure that has made it in to my “trusted” box !
The Nano Minnowhas been awarded the Luretour Gold award.
We bought our lures from HERE