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Help with spiraling and lip shape

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I have read a few posts including the recent one about canted lip angles and hunting, but I have a couple of questions about lip shape, placement...

I made two minnow shaped baits that should have had very much the same action. On one the lip is just a pinch further toward the nose so I think that is why it has less action but it also wants to spiral if it is retrieved very fast. I have tried tuning it but regardless of how I tune it to run straight it will spiral if cranked to fast even if it runs straight to me when cranked slower. Is this simply due to the lip being too close to the nose? Or could lip shape and size be the deciding factor?

The second bait the lip is back about 1/16-1/18 of an inch but same lip angle and should be pretty close in length and size. It may have slightly less lip due to being inserted slightly more. But I can burn it back if desired.

Both baits are pulled from the nose of the bait. What SHOULD happen if I drilled and added the pull from the middle of the lip on the one that wants to spiral? Or could I alter the lip shape to help it not spiral when burned back?

this one runs great;


this one spirals if cranked too fast;


Edited by 76gator
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@ 76gator

As far , as I can see by your pics , the silver , well performing lure has a different shape of lip , looking like somehow its corners are 45° cut off ?

The other troubling lure has a fully rounded lip , as far as I can recognize .

Also it seems to me , that the lip points slighly more forward(angle more pointed) and is also a tad longer .

Very pointing forward lips and nose attachement do'nt match , it seems , that the lip sits at less than 45° to the center length axis !

With a lip like this I would have placed the linetie further downward the chin to reduce the leverage around the towpoint .

Also a lip placed further towards the nose of a lure produces a higher frequency of wiggle as a same shaped and angled lip placed more to the rear , whereas the action pattern does not have to be neccessarely the same .

At least this is stated in my literature !

The easiest way to cure your problem is to reduce the plane at the tip of the lip , thus shave it a bit and try for action again , it can't be that much material to be removed !

Maybe just grind the halfround shape to a triangle at first by making two equal straight edges on either side without even already shortening the overall length of lip ?

You could also try to wrap some solder wire around the belly hook shank , if the lure is still buoyant enough and the looks won't disturb you !

I know by own experience , that it might just be possible , that two or more almost equal looking lures perform different or some not well at all , there are certain designs like that , only functioning within limited boundaries !

Whereas there are other "good-natured" designs , that forgive any possible mistake or altering without losing their fish-attracting appeal !

good luck:yay:, diemai

Edited by diemai
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Diemai has pretty well covered all the options. The only one remaining is to move the ballast forward. This is only practical on a new build.

Did you mount your ballast as low as possible.


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I had a POS lure that I bought at a fishing show back in January & it would spin. I tried tuning it to no end & it still wouldn't run straight. I then decided to modify it by shaving/filing off some of the sides of the lip near the nose of the lure. It straightened up the lure & gave it more action.

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I bought some Rick Clunn med. running crank baits from Bass Pro that all ran to the right, and spiraled if I burned them.

I tried tuning the line tie, but it didn't work.

Finally, I noticed that the bills weren't symetrical. All of them had more lip on the left of the line tie, which is in their bill.

So I filed off some of the lip to make them symetrical, and they run true now.

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No, I didn't.

I fished them just as they were for several years.

I didn't realize there was anything wrong with the lip until I started making my own lures, and found this site.

After reading what some of you buys posted about lip shapes and their affects on lures, the light finally went on.

I never thought about telling BPS.

Since I've fixed them, I fish them more often, so I'll probably lose the now. :lol:

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If the lure spirals when burned, there are 2 usual culprits for this phenomenon:

1) The lip is not symetrical, as in Mark's example, and you have to proceed as he did

2) The lip looks symetrical, but has a slight angle to a side. Sometimes this cannot even be seen if you look at the lure, but the testing of the lure will tell you if the angle is good or not. In this case you have to shave the lip at one side. The action of the lure will improve, the lure will have perhaps an erratic action, but there is no guarantee that it will not spiral if burned.

There are 2 variables which affect the solving of this problem:

a) the surface of the lip compared to the lure. With a smaller lip, you will be able to easier solve the problem. What matters here is the ratio between the surface of the lip and the volume and length of the lure.

B) the angle of the lip towards one side. If the angle is barely visible or not visible at all, your chances to make the lure run straight are better. If the angle to one side is very big, you simply have to change the lip, because you will not be able to solve the problem by shaving the lip.

Also put the lure in a bucket of water or something similar and look at it when the water is still. Does the lure have an angle to one side? Because if it has, this may be the 3rd culprit for an anwanted action (the lure has a problem with weight placement).

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the distance of the line pull to the lip end is to far. lower the pull wire or cut the lip. thats on nu.2. ive seen that episode a few times.

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Thanks for the feedback everyone. I think the biggest issue was the lip sitting at a slight angle and perhaps the relative size. I first started by shaping the lip to be more like the original bait but that yielded little results. Next I replaced the lip entirely and then added a new line tie in the lip itself. Adding the tie to the lip yielded a much softer action which surprised me a little.

In shaping more of a coffin lip I am amazed at the differences in action between a rounded lip with very much the same surface area. Makes a huge difference in how much wiggle there is.

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