Man that is a looong bait, nicely carved.
My thoughts are that the tail is going to totally kill the action (like Bob already said), because of its resistance. Try moving a dinner plate through water, flat on, it takes a lot of force. This force will cancel out the forces generated at the lip.
But even without the tail, you will need a BIG lip to move that body from side to side. But, until you try it, we'll never know for sure.
I really hope it works for you, but if it fails, you could cut it in half and make a two piece jointed bait.
Go ahead and try it without ballast, but I think it will require some. If you do add ballast, it will need to be concentrated around the CoG or maybe a tad forward, say around thr 9" in the photo, would be a reasonable starting point. But be prepared to experiment with this. If you spread the weight out, you are adding inertia, which will also kill the action.
The belly is very flat, this does not give much room for ballast, so the ballast will have to be fitted as low as possible. Maybe horizontal strips, inset. This relatively high ballast is likely to be the cause of excessive roll.
Another option, is to loose the lip and make a jerk bait or glider. This will require a different ballast distribution, but I know very little about this option. You could probably keep the tail with this option too.
Reading what I have put down, it comes across as negative. This is not my intention, I just like to anticipate problems. I do this with all my projects. If I thought your project was a non-starter, I would not have taken the time to post. I hope you post your progress.
Edited by Vodkaman, 14 March 2009 - 09:36 PM.