Think of plunger-style lures as the American Express card of marlin fishing: Don’t leave the dock without them. With a tapered head design, this family of lures swims well in the spread from a variety of positions, making them among the most versatile lures on the water. Larger versions also make excellent teasers.
Black Bart Super Plunger
The Super Plunger from Black Bart was created in Kona, Hawaii, at the same time as Joe Yee’s version was made. Versatility is one of its biggest features, as it can be used in any position in the trolling spread although it’s most common from the short flat line. An aggressive swimming behavior and slightly heavier weight also lends itself to the long rigger position or even as a teaser. It’s suggested to use this classic with 80- to 130-pound tackle, rigged with 11/0 to 12/0 hooksets.
This angle-faced plunger was the first one Bonze Lures produced back in 1995. Made in New Zealand, it’s a favorite among offshore enthusiasts. With a Kahawai skirt pattern, this lure is a top producer in New Zealand’s striped marlin fishery. It’s also effective for blue marlin anywhere in the world. It’s just under 16 inches in length and is best rigged with 10/0 or 11/0 hooksets.
Coggin Maui Plunger
A great choice for the short corner, long corner and short rigger positions, the Maui Plunger from Steve Coggin is 16 inches in length with an angled face shape and hard resin construction. Rig this lure with a 12/0 hookset and 50- to 130-pound tackle, and then watch the fish come at it.
Joe Yee Super Plunger
Joe Yee Super Plunger
Bart Miller and Gene Vanderhoek get much of the credit for the first plunger lures, but Joe Yee brought popularity to the shape. Arguably the most famous and widely used of this style, the Super Plunger has been a hot offshore item since 1994. Melton Tackle’s product listing for the lure stated that it is responsible for more 1,000-pound marlin than any other in sport-fishing history, and we have no reason to doubt that claim. The originals are rare and tough to find — like all of Joe Yee’s creations.
Koya Super Plunger
Koya Lures makes the list with an old-school shape for this 15.5-inch lure. But it’s the versatility that sets this one apart. It can be fished from any spread position and is best rigged with 50- to 130-pound tackle and a 12/0 hookset.
Legend Lures Basilisk
The smaller face and angle of the Basilisk, compared to other plungers, allows the lure to be used in rougher conditions, and it’s slicing splash and long bubble trail is favorite for captains ranging from the Atlantic and Caribbean to the marlin-rich waters off of Australia and New Zealand. Use this Legend Lures creation off the riggers, or from the long or short corners, with 20- to 130-pound tackle and up to 11 knots of trolling speed.
Marlin Magic Medium Plunger
A lure designed by Kona’s legendary Capt. Marlin Parker, put this on on the short or long rigger in any sea condition and watch it go to work. Around 10 inches in length, and best with a single 10/0 hook, this popular lure can work well with 30- to 130-pound tackle. Find your favorite among the 11 color options and hit the water.
Mold Craft Bobby Brown Special
Capt. Bobby Brown’s namesake lure from Mold Craft can be trolled from the short or long rigger positions with ease and creates a massive smoke trail in its wake. A weighted head with super sparkle soft eyes, the Bobby Brown Special comes in four sizes and 50 different color schemes.
Moyes Medium Plunger
The keel and weight placement in the head makes for a dependable lure that performs well in nearly all sea conditions. A constant working surface action and long smoke trails, Andy Moyes’ Maui Plunger works best with 50- to 130-pound tackle. He prefers to use this popular lure in the long rigger position.
Polu Kai Large Shaka Plunger
On the smaller side of the top plunger lures, Polu Kai’s creation is only 10.5 inches long and works best with 50- to 130-pound tackle. Best yet, it works from any spread position with a 10/0 hookset. The Large Shaka Plunger lives up to its name, catching the attention of large billfish.