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For Those of You Who Make Your Own Lures


KSanford33
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Do you do it to save money or for more cathartic reasons? I'm considering getting into soft plastics, but if it's not cheaper in the long run I might not.

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That depends on how long you consider the long run to be.  You have to have plastisol, containers, a way to heat it, colorant, glitter, heat stabilizer, good gloves, maybe softener and hardener, and at least one mold.  
 

If you go on the cheap maybe you can start for less than $200.  Figure the retail cost of your bait and see how many you need to make just to break even.  When I added tube making I had $300 in the first one.  With what I paid for them I think I broke even at 1,000.
 

I don’t know if I have ever saved any money but I keep making baits because I love it.

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I doubt I'll ever save money making soft plastics.  I love making them, and I only pour baits that are expensive to buy, or that I can't find (really soft tubes are hard to get)

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I've done it long enough now that I'm saving money do it (plus I get the lead for free which saves a ton). At first I did it because I thought I was going to make lures for a living. I was young and dumb, didn't do my research on how much work that really is, so that idea got scrapped a long time ago. I still make a decent number of baits for sell, but I'd never do it for a living, too much work for too little money without the right equipment. 

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Soft plastics are constantly changing with new shapes and colors available making it difficult deciding what molds to buy, so I never made my own.

Jigs is another story, find a jig head you like to use and buy that mold. Premium hooks Gamakatsu or Owner are not inexpensive, Mustad Ultra points are 1/2 price if saving money is important.

Making jig skirts can be a black hole, avoid making too many colors. Learn to tie hair jigs!

Tom

 

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I personally started making my own lures because of “gaps” in available lures for sale. Such as a style of plastic that doesn’t come in a color I want, or a spinnerbait that doesn’t come with the size of hook or blade etc. It’s also incredibly satisfying when one of your creations turn out to work very well. 

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1 hour ago, WRB said:

Soft plastics are constantly changing with new shapes and colors available making it difficult deciding what molds to buy, so I never made my own.

Jigs is another story, find a jig head you like to use and buy that mold. Premium hooks Gamakatsu or Owner are not inexpensive, Mustad Ultra points are 1/2 price if saving money is important.

Making jig skirts can be a black hole, avoid making too many colors. Learn to tie hair jigs!

Tom

 

Lots of bait makers have gone away from Mustad since they outsourced to China.  Eagle Claw has drastically improved in the last few years and have lots of quality hooks.

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I got started making spinnerbaits because there was a good model that you could burn without it rolling over. In 1995 most manufacturers used the same size blades and wire for a 1/2oz bait. So if I wanted different I'd have to do it myself. I started out of necessity but it developed into a passion. If you are disciplined and stick to a couple different baits and just a few colors you can save money. It may take a year or 2 to break even but eventually you will save and you will catch more fish. The problem is the real possibility you'll enjoy doing it and actually have fun. If that happens you won't save a dime because your perspective will change. Instead of looking at baits in the Bass Pro Shops catalog, you'll be looking at lure making supplies in the Do-it molds catalog. 

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Tying flies and jigs from  hair/feather/fur is a relatively inexpensive hobby, but every hobby is expensive.

Thankfully I get to fish them and I can be fearless in the rocks and laydows.

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On 11/18/2022 at 8:16 AM, smalljaw67 said:

I got started making spinnerbaits because there was a good model that you could burn without it rolling over. In 1995 most manufacturers used the same size blades and wire for a 1/2oz bait. So if I wanted different I'd have to do it myself. I started out of necessity but it developed into a passion. If you are disciplined and stick to a couple different baits and just a few colors you can save money. It may take a year or 2 to break even but eventually you will save and you will catch more fish. The problem is the real possibility you'll enjoy doing it and actually have fun. If that happens you won't save a dime because your perspective will change. Instead of looking at baits in the Bass Pro Shops catalog, you'll be looking at lure making supplies in the Do-it molds catalog. 

 

Don't forget Lurepartsonline, Barlow's Tackle, JannsNetcraft,  Hagensfish,  Worth, Lakeland, Shorty's Hooks catalogs. 

 

Allen 

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I have a couple small 2-4 cavity molds that I like and just do it for the fun really. I usually make/re-melt some baits every couple of seasons, a majority of it is from used soft plastics. Sometimes I share with friends or kids at the local lakes some recycled baits that I made.

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