Mountain Man 26

WEC Hook Hanger

14 posts in this topic

I was prowling around some looking at old baits, lip angles, design, etc. I came across this statement as to how Zoom WEC builds a rear hook hanger. It was on a sellers website.

"Rear hook hanger is screwed into a hardwood dowel which has been inserted in the tail."

I cut all my balsa baits and build a single tree harness out of .31 Soft SS. I know that micro thru wire is the majority way around this site among Balsa/Bass lure makers.

Here is the question...why would one insert a hardwood dowel in the tail of bait and then screw in a SS closed eye screw vs. micro thru wire construction?

These are very popular baits and I am in NO way putting them down. I have grown to love making cranks and swimbaits. I really learn when I get to understand why someone has chosen to build a certain way over another. Is there a benifit to their method?

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It's easier and way faster (therefore cheaper) to glue in a dowel and screw a standard screw eye into it than do thru-wire construction, especially if you are producing a variety of bait designs. I've seen commercial balsa baits that didn't go even that far, just gluing the hardware into holes drilled in the balsa. I don't feel there's a better method than thru-wire on balsa baits but as long as a different method results in a durable bait, there's no reason for complaint.

Edited by BobP

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why would one insert a hardwood dowel in the tail of bait and then screw in a SS closed eye screw vs. micro thru wire construction?

It is accepted that a screw eye in a harder wood like dowel, has good pull strength. Also a screw eye in light balsa is just not strong enough.

The pull strength (shear strength) is directly proportional to the surface area of the glue attachment. By safely screw/gluing the eye into a 1/4" diameter dowel and then gluing the dowel into the balsa, the surface area of contact in the balsa body increases probably by a factor of two or maybe more. So the pull strength is 2 times better than screwing directly into the balsa.

Dave

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A dumb question probably, but couldn't you predrill the balsa for the screweye, run it in and back out again, and then put a drop of runny super glue into the hole, to strengthen the wood around the threads?

The runny super glue soaks right into raw wood. I use it as a quick sealer for small wood lures when I'm in a hurry, and only painting one, and it works great.

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The more the seal coat soaks into the wood, the better. This is why I am looking forward to trying out the prop with a vacuum.

I did a pull test on light balsa (sg 0.11) not so long ago. I used twisted (loose barrel twist) SS wire, set in a 1/8" hole 1" deep, fixed in with polyester resin. This pulled out at 8Lbs. This figure is just not good enough. Also keep in mind that D2T is thicker than resin and will not soak in as much, so will essentially not be as strong.

My choice of wood (albesia) has more density (sg 0.25). I performed the exact same test and it held 47Lbs for at least 4 weeks.

My expectations are that two dips of prop under vacuum should at least double the result with the light balsa. I will report back when I get around to the test.

If using light balsa, I think a combination of a very thin seal coat, plus the dowel method, should give very successful results. The worst thing that can happen in this industry, is for a customer to spread the word that a large fish was lost because your hook pulled out. Reputation is everything, so over kill is good.

Having written all the above, you cannot beat thro' wire, it comes with a guarantee.

Dave

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Coley is right. Bagley did start the wooden dowel thing. If you use an oak dowel rod then the screw eye will really hold.

Skeeter

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Dave,

Have you tried a wood hardener instead of prop? They are specifically designed to penetrate, and to strengthen wood.

That way, you don't have to use a vacuum system.

I don't make balsa baits, but this would seem like a natural to me.

I use it on pine and poplar lures, and it works great.

Minwax makes one, and Snax has another he's even happier with.

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Minwax would have been my choice too, as it is designed for the job. Unfortunately, I have not yet managed to source minwax or anything similar in Indonesia as yet. Still looking though. I don't want to get involved with ordering overseas, as the postal system is dire in Indo'. I want all my materials to be sourced locally.

Dave

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Zoom didn't start this. I believe Bagley did this a long time ago.

Correct answer Coley!! :yay:

Bagley did start this , searching for a construction method that would be both strong and cost effective, and used it for several years, up until the demise of the old company.

It did however change some lures, particularly the Bango-Lure, making it significantly larger than the original soldered brass thru-wire construction. And yes, the Bango-lure was a true through-wire in the beginning!

Dean

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I prefer thru-wire also when using balsa...what could be better than a well-done thru-wire harness? As long as a lure is stays in good condition, I realize that you will not pull correctly epoxied-in hook hangers from it without destroying the lure itself--totally reliable...unless however, should even a small breach of the bait's paint/clearcoat/sealing happen, and a bit of unnoticed wood-rot sets in, the thru-wire harness will never break your heart, whereas those glued-in hangers are only as good as the wood surrounding them...and don't think that it couldn't happen with a well used favorite bait.

Dean

Edited by Dean McClain

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