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Tarheelfishing88

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  1. Mark, were you able to get the wide "lazy" 'S' movement with the lower ballast? I think that's the big thing to gain from this first step. That ballast change alone may not give you a hunting action like you'd be used to since you're not adding all of the instability you would get by raising it. From my understanding, it'd be when used in conjunction with the lip method that you should really be able to see some results. I'm right there with you on water clarity. That's one of the reasons why I'm starting with a 1-3' diver to start and with polarized glasses I normally can get a decent look at lure action at those depths. Is it bad that I want a pool just to be able to test my crankbaits? Anyway, I'm hoping to have the time to start a few prototypes over the weekend.
  2. Dave, I'll give it a shot, and I'll keep you updated with any useful progress made. Mark, I think you're on the right track by first figuring out how to make the optimal adjusting ballast, and that is the direction I'm starting as well. One thing that may help is going back and looking at the versions you've made that already have the action. By comparing weight used, amount of movement the adjustable ballast has, and proportion of ballast that you made adjustable you may be able to unlock its secrets. It may take a bit of time to determine how much movement along the axis is necessary to create the desired effect and also the desired speed of that movement. The other part of the ballast I'm trying to figure out is whether I want a portion or all of the ballast to be variable because that is going to partially determine the needed speed and movement as well.
  3. Great write up, and I do think you're onto something. Also, I think that is a very good plan on your prototyping. By focusing on only 2 points to start it should be easier to fully understand the dynamics behind the respective behaviors. By honing in the resonant frequencies you should be able to keep the respective behaviors isolated. The end goal of the triple point will be very difficult as without perfect alignment of the frequencies, the inevitable overlap between various points will likely cause too much instability. If there was an easy way to measure these frequencies it'd speed up the process significantly as then it could be done more mathematically. The only question I have is wouldn't the hunting behavior cause an alteration of the resonant frequencies of the lures at different points of the retrieve?
  4. Vodkaman, I've used your lip method successfully a number of times, and so far it's the most consistent way I've used to create a hunting action that is both controllable and reproducible. Mark, I'd be interested in seeing the results of your technique in conjunction with Vodkaman's. It may result in a more erratic hunting action where the frequency and periods of the hunting action would be even less consistent. Currently I vary my retrieve speeds around the ideal speed that a specific crankbait hunts to achieve the most erratic action, but by combining these two methods you may no longer need to. The question is, will this additional variable to increase instability cause times where the bait blows out due to reaching the hunting transition too quickly? I definitely think it'd be a worthwhile experiment.
  5. I will say that the FB sites I've used have helped me improve the finish on my wood baits for airbrushing, clear coating, and foiling dramatically, but they haven't helped as much with actual crankbait building and design. Personally, I try not to ask questions unless I have first researched something and attempted to figure out my own solution. If someone gives you an answer to something it is much less likely that you'll even try to come up with a way to do it yourself and no creative thought is put towards that process. If we aren't thinking outside of the box then innovation occurs much more slowly. I'm willing to put in the time and work, and in many instances that has helped me. The other side of this is there have also been times when I've been stuck on various things that caused me to waste a ton of time figuring something out when there was a simple solution that many builders before me have taken advantage of. It's taken me this long to finally get confident that I can produce the few wood models that I make consistently to achieve desired action, and also understand the adjustments that I can make to them to fulfill multiple niches with each body style. This is for 1 piece balsa and basswood builds that are not inherently complex. I've got several more complex ideas that I had difficulty working with when I first started building, because I quickly realized that I didn't fully understand all of the variables and forces at play. Most of these ideas are going to require me to use 2 piece builds. The biggest problem I'm having at this point is finding ways to speed up the production of my baits so that I can make more efficient use of my time. Right now I use a band saw for basic shape, disk/belt sander for refining edges, and then carve and hand sand to reach my desired blank shape. That works well, but the hand carving/sanding is incredibly inefficient. In a perfect world new builders would be paired with an experienced one, and there would be a knowledge share that would take place. It's obvious what the experienced builder provides, but less so with a new builder. A new builder's lack of experience can actually be an advantage when it comes to creativity and ability to provide a fresh perspective. A new builder doesn't have preconceived notions about how things should work or be done. This can help provide new inspiration for crankbait design or production techniques that could be used by both builders. Think of it similar to how many large companies are moving towards a combination of young and more experienced employees within their executive teams. Since we don't often have this scenario for crankbait builders this site is about as close as many of us can get to this type of knowledge share.
  6. I've started using them recently and have been very impressed. They seem to atomize at much lower pressure with less reducing required than the normal createx transparents and are much better for detail work. For subtle transparent effects you can reduce as much as desired without problems. One thing that I've tried recently is not reducing them and using it for a fairly heavy coverage midcoat, and I find I have really good control and coverage. I'm still only a few months into building cranks and airbrushing, but the candy colors have allowed me to do a lot more than what my normal Createx transparents have. Last advantage for me is that it allows me to try new things with high success rate, because it seems to do well with any mixture/reductions that I've tried.
  7. Vodkaman, As a new builder I really struggled with understanding vortices and the forces behind crankbaits hunting. Your discussion on the subject provided me with the basis of my understanding, and it is the only reason I've been able to successfully create a hunting crankbait (on purpose that is...amazing some of the action you can get from things you did wrong). It even led me to doing additional research on hydrodynamics. Thanks for sharing your information. I've read many of the articles available on these forums, and they have helped me to develop skills that would have taken me years. Hopefully, soon I'll be able to contribute with insights of my own.
  8. Are the bubbles happening after the D2T has been on the bait for a bit, or are they there when right when you brush the D2T on? If they are coming to the surface later then it may be a seal or paint problem. If they are there immediately it may be related to mixing or application. Bubbles brushed on: -If you mix the epoxy too quickly you will have more bubbles, and they may be transferred onto the bait. -If the D2T starts to thicken the bubbles seem to transfer onto the blank a little more easily. I haven't had this issue since I started adding a few drops of denatured alcohol to make it a bit thinner and started mixing smaller batches to reduce the time the D2T sits before application. -I normally try to use long smooth strokes on the bait for cleaner results, and try to avoid over brushing. Bubbles showing up later: If they are coming up after the D2T has been on the bait then that normally means that the wooden body wasn't properly sealed or you have moisture popping up from your paint like woodieb8 mentioned. -If you did seal the wooden body and still had that happen then one option for a better seal is to heat the blanks up in the oven to around 125 degrees to open the pores in the bait and allow what you're sealing the wood with to penetrate better. -As far as the paint goes I normally paint the next day myself, but haven't had any trouble painting a few hours later if I have properly heat set between paint layers. Tip: If I still have a couple bubbles I will hit them very briefly with a heat gun while they are on the lure turner, and they'll normally pop. I try not too have to hit the baits with a heat gun when I don't have too though, because I think this would cause the exothermic epoxy reaction to speed up more which could cause D2T to be even more brittle.
  9. I'm new to the board and to bait making (4 months). At this point I don't consider myself a true custom bait maker, but figured I'd comment because I certainly qualify in the addicted category. Also, as a younger guy (30), for the hobby anyway, I wanted to at least demonstrate there are some younger guys still wanting to master and pass on the craft. I have put in a lot of hours to learn the craft the right way, but the more I realize how much I have to learn. Before I started even making baits I spent a couple hundred hours reading books, articles, and forum threads on crankbait building, airbrushing crankbaits, and hydrodynamics. I've literally changed my sleep and work schedule to allow me to dedicate the time I need to become a master of the craft, and spent a lot of time and money transforming my garage into a bait making workshop. I've gone through about 20 blanks in 6 different designs so far, and I have many that work decently but only have 1 design at this point that I'm preparing to be able to reproduce. A couple of the other designs are close, but still not quite getting the action that I want.
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