Orka lures got my attention a few years ago when I walked into a friend’s fishing store and there was a shelf full of these lures waiting for me. Looking at the shelf, the first model that I picked up was the Shad Tail.
Its particular body shape quickly made me imagine its underwater action. And let’s just say, my first impressions were very close to the actual thing.
Orka lures are produced in Serbia, and have expanded rapidly in the lure boxes of many predator fishermen all across Europe. They manufacture over 10 models of soft baits, each coming in different sizes with a substantial color range.
|Orka Shad Tail – Lure Specifications|
|Lure type||soft shad body, grub tail|
|Sizes||10cm, 13cm, 15 cm, 17cm, 21cm|
|Weights||4gr, 5gr, 8gr, 13gr, 21gr|
|Colors/Patterns||12 colors available for each size|
|Price||3$-5$ per pack|
Orka Shad Tail is a lure that easily stands out. This is mainly because of its shad body and a grub tail. It comes in 4 sizes, from 10cm to 21cm, each size having a 12 color range. Even though you can cover pretty much every situation with these 4 sizes available, I would have loved to fish also with a smaller Shad Tail, let’s say around 6-7cm. I think this size could have been interesting for light tackle and finesse fishing.
Softness and Material
The first thing you notice when you put your hands on a Shad Tail is the quality of the material. The good composition allows this lure to be both pretty soft and resistant. It’s not the softest material out there, but it does the trick. As you will see in the short movie below, this material has also a big influence on the lure’s amazing action.
Another plus of this resistant material is that the lure doesn’t get off the jig easily. This means you don’t have to use glue or other substances to fix the lure on the jig. For me this is pretty important because I really don’t like adjusting the soft lure on the jig every few casts. It’s pretty resistant to predator’s teeth also.
A downsize would be the fact that the material can get pretty sticky sometimes, and when you’re fishing the smallest model (10 cm), this can make the tail stick to the lure’s body during casts.
Again, judging by the material and having just a little experience, the first time you put your hands on a lure and feel its composition, you will also have a good clue about its resistance. And Shad Tail felt like it had durability written all over it.
With soft baits two things may happen. They usually get messed up when you try to arm them on a jig (or offset) and fail few times, or when they end up between the predators teeth. For me the second one is not that important, as long as they bring fish to the boat, but just so you know this softie handles excellent even the sharpest teeth.
The first one though can be inconvenient, but it’s not the case for the Shad Tail. It has a very resistant and dense shad body that will not allow several jig changes or arming attempts to mess up the lure.
Engineering / Design
You really can’t talk about this lure without giving some credit for its design. Sure, it’s not the only or the first shad body/grub tail lure on the market, but you must admit it has a significant amount of originality in it. This unique small shad body with a long and wide tail is responsible for an aggressive action and powerful vibrations.
The tail length increases significantly in bigger sizes (15cm, 17cm and 21cm) so you have to be careful what hook size you use. A small hook may loose you fish, while a too large one will affect the lures action. You can start with a hook size of 2/0 for the 10cm model and end up with 6/0 or 7/0 for the 17, 21cm sizes.
Regarding lure details, the only things that stand out on the lures body are the extruded eyes (not painted), a small back fin, and the Orka logo on the tail. Not that I would expect high quality finish from a soft bait.
Action and Applications
Shad Tail’s amazing action is a result of great design and good soft material. This lure puts out strong vibrations, making it impossible to get by unnoticed.
What I like most is that it works flawlessly at extremely slow speeds using light jigs. This tells a lot about how versatile this lure really is. The tail works hard at slow speeds, which kind of says it all when it comes to this type of soft baits.
In the movie below we made the test using jigs of only 7gr on 4/0 hooks and the 13cm Shad Tail worked like a charm. For an even more aggressive action you can use heavier jigs.
The versatility remains also when it comes to different fish species. This lure seems to have caught them all: walleye (zander), pike, catfish, perch and even bass. I personally caught four of the above, and I’m sure there are more to come.
I think the perfect technique for this lure to work wonders is the classical jigging. If you fish in heavy cover areas try a weedless jig head, maybe even equipped with a skirt, for more vibrations. The Shad Tail can also be fished on an offset hook, but from my experience, in this manner you don’t really get access to all of its potential.
|Orka Shad Tail – Ratings (8.32/10)|
|Design||Original design, the shad body and grub tail make this lure easily stand out. Design has also a strong influence on the lures deadly action, which sends out powerful vibrations. The shape allows for offset mount, but the recommended arming method is using a classical jig.||7.3|
|Features||Good material composition, making the lure work perfect at extremely slow speeds, using light jigs. The lure has a pretty resistant and dense body, which puts up with a lot of strikes and sharp teeth. A consistent color and size range, but I still wish for a smaller version.||8|
|Application / Performance||Shad Tail is a really versatile lure, having caught different species, from pike, walleye to trout and bass. It’s excellent for classical jigging, and
you can also fish extremely efficient using a weedless jig head. Its strong vibrations make it hard to get by unnoticed.
|Price||An affordable lure, which offers good value for the money. I strongly suggest making this small investment.||9|
Conclusion: Orka Shad Tail is a powerful soft lure. It has a great body shape that will put out pretty much the strongest vibrations you can get from a soft tail lure. The material is considerably soft and highly resistant, playing a key role in the underwater action. Besides, Orka Shad Tail offers great quality for the price. Don’t be skeptical, check these lures out, you might be surprised.