Eric is busy building a tug boat and keeping us up-to-date along the way with pics. I thought I would take you along on a mini build. Many of us have owned at some time that one special lure that no matter what it outfished everything.
Beat up, paint gone and looking like something the cat drug in, it puts fish in the boat when all else struggles. I have had two "cedar" plugs like that, poseidon currently has possesion of both of them.
I use the word "cedar" loosely as I dont use cedar for any of my plugs
To start with you need to melt some lead and pour some heads. The bowl is no longer full so you know I have been busy.
The tail of this mold has a taper which isnt condusive to epoxying in wood well, so I lathe the tail round and install some grooves for the epoxy to get a bite on
Then it is off to the wood pile to find a piece of fire wood with some character. Below is some alder that is spalted on the bandsaw, I have been using a mixture of wood this year, some purple heart, old growth fir, splated alder, etc....
First I rough out some piece of wood for the bodies
Then I square an end and cut them to rough length
I stumbled into some old growth fir (put about 4 cord in the shed
) this fall that has about 40 growth rings per inch, it makes some real pretty looking lures
Then it is off to drill a hole thru the piece of wood to begin the process of trying to keep things on center so the hole is in the middle of the lure when I am done.
Once I get a small hole drilled I enlarge the hole in one end so the lead head fits into the wood, and I epoxy the lead to the wood
Then they are rough cut to size and put on the lathe, using the small hole on the non lead end for my center
Once I am done being creative
with working on different shapes of the lead head and the body I mark each lure as mine. I use to sign the tail before the finish, but have gone to stamping the lead. After making a few hundred of these "cedar" plugs I know what has fished better for me than not. Looking at the physics of the lure, the weight is all on one end of the lure, followed by a tapered body. When towed the larger head creates a disturbance in the water and the smaller lighter tail follows in its wake and has "action". Some of the lame ideas I have had in the past was attaching rabbit fur to the outside of a lure, it created much drag and must not have wiggled much as it didnt fish well. I wont go further into some of my other failures.
I like to keep the very tail end streamline and make sure the brass band is flush with the body so it doesnt create drag that take some of the action out of the lure. I have shapes of lure that look like they are pregnant
and some with super taper, I dont know what makes the perfect lure, but when it all comes right, you will know it.
After enlarging the hole in the body, I then cut a brass band for the tail which is epoxied on the tail.
Then a little finish is applied and the finished product looks something like this.
I have made these over the last couple weeks and I hope I have at least one fisher in the batch.
Those yellow plugs are from a stickery bush I cut down by the side of the house. I didnt like it and cut it, the wood was bright yellow, so I saved the trunk of the bush and dried it in the shop over the last year. I was quite pleased to see it stayed yellow, and I hope the tuna likes them.
Now I need to go make a couple dozen painted ones.