Topwater Cicada Lure Reviews: Megabass Grand Siglett, wLure T4, Jet Tackle Crazy Bug

 


So, what is a cicada? Chances are, you have heard them singing in the trees during the summer, yet not seen them up close. They are basically a large, buzzing insect with prominent wings. Upon falling in the water, they put up a tremendous disturbance, making them easy prey for largemouth bass and oversized bluegill. An obvious example of this may been here, in a YouTube clip depicting the cicada's action in the water and subsequent demise.


Jet Tackle's Crazy Bug
Cicada lures for bass are nothing new, but few topwaters on the market today really imitate a true cicada very well, in my opinion. Today I'll cover three topwater cicada lures I have; two affordable models (Jet Tackle Crazy Bug and wLure T4) with one well-known and very expensive lure, the Megabass Grand Siglett. For a comparison of the action of each of these bass lures in the water, check out the above YouTube video, shot at tiny Ford Park, in Redlands, California.

MegaBass Grand Siglett
MegaBass Grand Siglett
Design
All three lures look great out the outside, with nice finishes and a variety of colors available. However, the Megabass Siglett really takes the cake when it comes to amazing design. The internal rattles create a sound supposedly tuned to match the cicada's buzzing sound, seen in this YouTube clip. The semi-translucent finish of the Siglett scores high marks with me as well, it's incredibly realistic and almost too good looking to use as a lure. It feels more at home in an insect collection! It's certainly the most photogenic of the three lures, as you can see in many of the photos. That being said, the other two from wLure and Jet Tackle both look great as well. Unless you are fishing for the most extreme, picky eaters, the different in external appearance probably won't matter much and will do more to catch anglers than fish.Interestingly, the Crazy Bug and Grand Siglett use a similar, soft, flexible plastic for the wings. The wLure T4 uses a hard plastic, different from the other two.
MegaBass Grand Siglett
wLure's T4 with Siglett in background
Action
On retrieve, these lures aim to imitate the struggling, floundering and often crazy buzzing action of a cicada landing in the water. As you can see from the above video I put together, they do a very good job of this (note: first lure shown in video is Megabass, second wLure, third Jet Tackle Crazy Bug). You can twitch the lures, pop 'em, or just do a nice, slow, steady retrieve, resulting in a crazy wobble, tantalizing wobble.
The Megabass Grand Siglett is certainly the loudest in the water. The internal rattles work together to really create a cacophony on the surface. The wLure lure and Jet Tackle cicada's are considerably more quiet, but still create a ruckus with their wings.
One important note. To get the best performance from the Crazy Bug from Jet Tackle, you'll need to do some modifications, namely, remove the center hook and screen, and also switch the wing positions so they are facing forwards. Sounds confusing? It's really quite simple, you'll just need a small screwdriver to do this. Flipping the wings around forwards, to resemble the wLure T4 and the Megabass wings position will create the right wobble in the water; the out of box position really doesn't do enough.
Do they catch fish? Sure, just wander over to YouTube and find the myriad of videos of people catching fish on the Megabass or the Tiemco Soft Shell (Australian version of the Crazy Bug/wLure T4). Unfortunately, the cooler weather over here hasn't resulted in a quality topwater bite yet, but I have had several missed strikes on these lures already.
Here's the bottom line: All three lures have basically the same action. The Megabass Grand Siglett and wLure T4 are virtually identical on retrieve in the water. The Jet Tackle Crazy Bug is very closely similar, you'll just need to tweak it a little more to get the best retrieve (definitely doable).
Jet Tackle's Crazy Bug
Shown with wing swapped for proper forward-facing, be sure to also unscrew the first hook eye and remove it
Price
Here's where the three lures really differ. The Megabass Grand Siglett Cicada lure is incredibly expensive, selling online for roughly $20. It's also rather difficult to locate, as few US retailors carry it, even in their online inventory. eBay has been one of the best places to find the Megabass Grand Siglett.
Both the wLure and the Jet Tackle cicadas are far more affordable. The wLure T4 cicada sells for $2.99 ($1.99 if you buy in bulk), with free shipping. The Jet Tackle Online Crazy Bug cicada is the best priced lure of the bunch, at only $1.59, not including shipping. You can also find Jet Tackle's lure through their eBay page.
Jet Tackle's Crazy Bug
wLure's T4
Jet Tackle's Crazy Bug
Jet Tackle's Crazy Bug
Company Info
Both Jet Tackle Online and wLure have been very professional in all my inquiries and responded promptly to emails. I've been very impressed with the lure selection offered by both these fishing lure websites. They both offer incredibly good prices, great customer service and a huge selection of lures to choose from. I've received a lot of interest from anglers inquiring as to my opinion on both wLure and Jet Tackle Online's lures and hopefully, if all goes well, I'll be doing more reviews on my favorite lures from them in the near future. The key difference between these websites is product location: Jet Tackle's lures are shipped from a US location to the buyer, while wLure ships directly from China. I really like wLure's free shipping, but keep in mind that you will wait at least 3 weeks, sometimes more, to receive these lures, so order well in advance. On the other hand, Jet Tackle has a small shipping fee, but their lures arrive very quickly, roughly one week or so, standard USA shipping times, which is always appreciated.
wLure's T4 with Siglett in background
Summary
While some anglers will undoubtedly only buy the most expensive Japanese lures and only settle for the Megabass Grand Siglett, I would encourage those of us who are looking for a more budget-friendly option to try out the other options for topwater cicada lures. All three of these lures will certainly catch fish, just at considerably different prices. For me, I feel much more comfortable casting a $1-$2 lure than holding my breath every time I cast a $20 lure near thick cover. If you want a lure quickly, and aren't afraid to do a little tweaking of it, go with the Jet Tackle Online cicada. If you don't mind waiting and want to save on shipping, check out the wLure T4 cicada. Finally, if you just simply must have the photogenic (and arguably still impressive in the water as well) Megabass Grand Siglett, load up eBay and start hunting!



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5 comments

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March 13, 2012 at 4:43 AM delete

That's so cool how they imitate the bug so similarly!

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March 13, 2012 at 4:13 PM delete

Those are neat! I use cicada imitations for trout, have not had a chance or need for carp (yet.) They are some of the largest dry flies I tie and use, as large as the lures you brought to us so well. Cool!

Gregg

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March 13, 2012 at 10:53 PM delete

Hey Gregg,
I don't have any dry fly cicada patterns yet, do you mind recommending a few to me? I do fly fish on occasion and I would like to see a few of these. Topwater fly fishing is amazing!

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March 14, 2012 at 6:35 PM delete

Gosh,

I just spent a half an hour looking for the pattern I found in Fly Fisherman Magazine, I believe it was called "The Monga Backing Cicada", I'll keep looking, trust me I won't let you down. It was some time ago. I tie all my own flies and don't trust many store bought ties anyway. This is a great fly, bear with me.

Best, Gregg

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March 16, 2012 at 10:21 AM delete

I found it! The article was in the July 2004 Fly Fisherman Magazine and I have it scanned so I could send the directions to you. It is the best cicada imitation I've come across and used. If you do not tie I will check some major outlets and see if it is available. If you like I could gladly send it with your email address.

Best, Gregg

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Be nice.