Durability of Poplar/birch
24 replies to this topic
Posted 15 August 2008 - 01:38 PM
Has anyone had any problems with poplar lure bodies? So far I have used mostly oak and maple for musky lures, but I have a lot of poplar, aspen and birch saved up to use. But a friend of mine told me that poplar isn't very durable. He has never made baits from it, though. I wouldn't have thought that it would matter too much once you seal it and coat it with a few coats of your favorite topcoat. I've seen a lot of lures in the gallery that have been made out of poplar, has anyone had any durability issues with those lures?
Posted 15 August 2008 - 03:09 PM
I´ve made lures in both aspen &birch both holds screweyes well and as you say its up to the sealer/basecoat to do the job .
Posted 15 August 2008 - 07:40 PM
I don't think anyone has ever stated here on TU, that a particular wood was just not suitable for lure building. Balsa needs special attention, but its buoyancy attributes make it worth the effort. Some woods have particularly hard grain, making shaping a little more difficult, but strength wise, after balsa, they are all good.
I did a search on poplar, it came up with 84 posts, so it is obviously a fairly popular choice.
If this statement is not true, I'd like to hear about it too.
Posted 15 August 2008 - 08:04 PM
I have built hundreds of gliders from poplar without a single problem of any kind. Poplar is tough! Keep mind that many top gliders and cranks are built from western red cedar (hughes river for one) which has 1/4 the strength of poplar.
Posted 15 August 2008 - 08:09 PM
I'm experimenting with some Brazilian Cherry. It has a very tight grain is extremely hard and very heavy. It does not required any weight to make it sink. No need to epoxy the screw eyes with this wood if you use .092 screw eyes with 3/32'' bit.
Posted 15 August 2008 - 10:44 PM
I like to add lots of ballast, to control the results. So only lighter woods for me.
Posted 16 August 2008 - 09:59 AM
Since I haven't got the years of experience that other guys on this site have, I was trying to get at the longevity of poplar lures. Is there any difference in longevity between woods once they are properly sealed and topcoated?
Posted 16 August 2008 - 11:07 AM
I have not made many lures from poplar up to now, but I like this wood. It is light and tough. As said above, I cannot imagine a single reason why this particular wood would have durability problems. Just check that the wood is healthy and very dry before starting to shape it.
Edited by rofish, 16 August 2008 - 11:09 AM.
Posted 16 August 2008 - 08:39 PM
Poplar can be used for certain lures but must be really sealed well.
The wood itself is not really tolerant of water. I like working with it because it turns nice and I can get it at big box stores.
Posted 16 August 2008 - 11:08 PM
I seal it with mineral spirits / Boiled Linseed (60/40) till the bubbles stop > dry for 1 week in the nevada sun > light coat of epoxy > scuff epoxy with 120 grit sp > prime BINZ > paint > epoxy > fish
Posted 17 August 2008 - 10:33 PM
As far as durability in crankbaits, no wood will last long after the clearcoat fails and most woods will last fine if it doesn't
Posted 19 August 2008 - 06:47 PM
Poplar is way more boyant than oak or other dense hardwoods. You will need more weight to get it down and you will get more wobble out of the lure than as if made in oak. This can be good and bad. If you are using a lure design that is already rather lively in oak then the poplar may make it so lively it spooks the fish. However, it is my experience that it is great for neatral (suspending) or floating models. .............Just food for thought...............
Posted 27 August 2008 - 02:14 PM
I have bade a boatload of Muskie lures out of poplar and if the right clearcoat is used (I like Envirotex) they will last forever. The sealer I used is incidental, and it doesnt really matter since Muskies have sharp teeth and can dig into a lure a half inch or more. The puncture can quickly begin expansion which leads to rot and the demise of the lure, so always be on the lookout for punctures in any type of wood. On another note I have found the biggest cause for trouble on a hard bait is the treble hooks wearing small trenches in the sides and bottom when they hit the water. These spots need attention since it happens over a longer period of time and can go unnoticed.
Posted 27 August 2008 - 05:49 PM
I have heard about doing this but am unfamiliar and unsuccessful in finding anyone who can explain what T'ing your hooks is all about. Could you enlighten me?
Posted 27 August 2008 - 06:34 PM
Juggernaut I t some of my hooks when musky fishing. If you take the belly hook on a wider profile musky bait you will notice if you lay the hooks flat against the belly two of the hooks on the trebel ethier digs the side of the bait or lays flat against the bait.So if you take pliers and bend the two hooks that are rubbing the bait and bend them out, the hooks should look like a t shape when you look at them. I do this more for better hook ups on wider baits that the hooks dont stick out past the sides of the bait. When you t them the hooks arent laying against your bait but sticking out a little more and a better chance to sink them in.
Posted 27 August 2008 - 06:56 PM
Thanks I will give that a try with some chronic problem glide baits I made a few years ago. This should save me some post season winter time doctoring. I appreciate the tip.
Posted 28 August 2008 - 12:33 AM
Maybe this picture can help you more than words:
Tackleunderground Home - Luremakers Photo Gallery - saved lure success