Cloning Old Faithful

A good bass lure is hard to find... and duplicate.

What is it about certain lures that makes them better bass-catchers than others, even plugs that seem to be identical?

Most lures are made of plastic nowadays, and you’d think their manufacture would be so precise that each would have the same weight and balance. That’s generally true, but there are other variables that affect the way each lure behaves in the water.

The Sum of its Parts
Consider the crankbait. Each has a certain wiggle controlled by the shape of the body, placement of the two treble hooks, insertion of stabilizing weight or rattles and location of the line tie.

Even with today’s high-tech machinery, it’s impossible to blend the components exactly. For example, if the tie-eye is aligned perfectly with the lure’s body, the lure will run on dead center. If the eye is bent up or down or turned in one direction or another, it will make the lure run in that direction or affect its wobble.

Heavy Paint
A lure’s finish can affect its action, too. Each lure receives a primer coat of paint, plus finish coats. If a lure’s paint is blemished along the way, it is sent back through the painting process. Subsequent coats change the lure’s weight and action from the norm.

If you’ve done much bass fishing, at some point you’ve bought a lure that consistently caught bass. And then you lost it on a bottom snag. You bought a couple more just like it, but they didn’t produce like the one you lost.

The time to buy another lure like the one that catches bass is now, before you lose Old Faithful on a snag. Take it to the tackle shop and buy several more exactly like it. After making sure the line ties are aligned properly, take the plugs to a pool and check their actions against the wonder lure to see how they compare.

**Weight and Balance **
You can match the weight, balance and, to some extent, the action of Old Faithful by strategic placement of Storm SuspenDots on the new lures. Finally, check the new plugs at the same rate of retrieve to see which one is a duplicate of your fish-catcher.

When you’re satisfied you’ve got a close match, tuck the lure away until that inevitable day when you lose your original “go-to bait.”