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Author Topic: [Crankbait Crafting] A Collection of 100 Lure Making Tips  (Read 1484 times)

Offline guppycatcher

[Crankbait Crafting] A Collection of 100 Lure Making Tips
« on: July 15, 2014, 03:04:54 PM »
This is also by bustinbassbaits.com.
If you are thinking of making your own lures this is a must read.

A Collection of 100 Lure Making Tips

(Disclaimer: We're not responsible for the accuracy of the information contained here. The tips are YOUR tips. I hope that they are of some use to you.)


Just made my first Cobb's 6" shallow runner crankbait from beech wood. Didn't even need lead and it wobbles nicer than the original!

I guess cedar is kind of extra light pine I haven't used it for anything for years.

I generally use any kind of pine scraps when I make a buoyant lure. The poorer the quality of the wood often the more buoyant it is.

It all depends on the purpose of the lure. If it's a jerkbait or glider: probably a hardwood like maple or beech. If it's a crankbait, I like cedar.It all depends on what you want the lure to do.

I use a lot of maple and any kind of pine if I want a buoyant lure.

I use beech and meranti for jerkbaits (beech for the suspenders and sinkers). For crankbaits I use beech and for surface lures I use cedar and pine (though pine is not a good kind of wood for finish).

I use mostly hard balsa or jelutong. Both are good woods but the jelutong doesn't take water if punctured.

I use mostly white pine, cedar, and poplar for my plugs. It all depends on what type of plug I want to make.

Most of my lures are made from balsa or foam board (also called gator board and balsa foam). I like the buoyancy found in these materials. Pine, cedar and other softwoods that are easy to carve and sand work fine but I like lures that pop right back up to the surface. Balsa needs to be sealed with epoxy so air bubbles don't form in the paint after time. I haven't had that problem with foam board. I just seal it with a sandable sealer from Wal-Mart found in the craft paint area. I just dip the lures before painting.

Red cedar is great to work with just a bit harder to carve than say balsa.

I use poplar for cutting my crankbaits. Go to Lowe's and get their select hobby wood. It is precut to 2x2x1/2 and square. A 2 ft. piece will make about 8 to 10 crankbaits about the size of a Poe's RC3.

When my friends and I make "Believers" we usually use cedar. In fact we usually use cedar for most of our diving crankbaits.

I just finished a darter-like lure from a piece of 22mm thick beech wood.


Drill small holes of 6mm diameter in the belly in front and to the back of the belly lure-eye. Add lead for weighting, or use foil lead. Normally you should only have to change the weight ratio front/back and not the place when you make the same lure over and over again.

I have added weight towards the front of crankbaits, jointed and single bodied so that the head points down a bit and causes it to run deeper. Also it can have a stabilizing effect if the size of the diving vane and buoyancy are mis-matched. I made some big "Believer" copies recently out of pine that didn't work at all until I added weight to stabilize them.

I usually don't need to add lead to my crankbaits. I do advise you to get the lead exactly in the centerline of the belly or it will turn to one side. If you make twitchbaits, this may be worth considering though = more flash.

I always drill the lead hole a bit too deep so I can remove lead by drilling it out or using a chisel. It is always better to drill the holes too deep than too shallow. Then you'll have to drill it all out and drill the wood-hole deeper. If you add lead near the head, the crankbaits are more stabilized and run deeper. If you need a twitchbait, add weight to the tail end. It reduces the wobble of the lure when cranked but increases the flash and erratic movement of the lure when jerked and twitched.

If you're not sure how much lead your lure needs, drill a hole with a drill bit the same size as some dowel. Fill the hole with molten lead. If there is too much lead, drill some of it out with the drill bit and plug the space above the lead with the dowel. It's easy to sand flat and quicker than using filler.

I like the tip about adding the lead to the hooks first. I think that could give a reasonable estimate of the amount needed.

I always drill my holes a tad too deep. So, every time I have to remove some lead with a chisel. This creates an open hole that I fill with some epoxy. After it has hardened, I use a file to flatten the epoxy until it is at the same level as the lure's body.If you have added just enough lead, use a pin and smear some epoxy over the lead hole. This will fill any cavities and use a file afterwards to smooth the surface.

A suggestion for proper weighting would be along the bottom of the belly just behind the eye. At the base of the curve if that makes sense.

It is in fact a slow sinking glider. I place the lead holes like this: 4cm from the nose (of course at the belly side) and 3cm from the tail. I use 10mm diameter drill bits. Lead it so that it sinks horizontally. That one is to be fished slow. But of course for a fast fishable glider, add more lead to the front lead hole. For a surface bait that sinks, add more lead to the tail. Another way to lead them is to add only one lead hole about 6cm from the nose. A little experimenting and you'll find the right amount of lead and the perfect position.

Either you are not using a ballast weight in the belly of the lure or you are not using enough weight.

Get some finesse weights. Get the 1/8 oz. size. They have a hole predrilled in them. This makes it perfect for running wire though to make your front hook hanger. I use .031 piano wire for this. Bend it around a nail to make the loop and shove the two ends through the hole. Bend the ends at the top and cut off the excess. These weights fit perfect in a

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