Them Muskie Lures

Question about Epoxy Top Coats

11 posts in this topic

I am running into a problem and wanted to see if anyone else has or has had this problem. I have made my shad baits and have been trying to find an alternative to epoxy topcoats, so I have been trying SC9000 by Target Coatings. I have put 3 coats on and it's a nice finish, but I don't think it's going to be strong enough for musky/pike fishing. My lures run great with the polyurethane. When I used the epoxy topcoat, the action is not nearly as tight and doesn't run as true. The weights are .8 oz for the poly and about .84 for the epoxy coat. I know that the epoxy is thicker, weighs a little bit more and increases the volume, but is this normal? I have used Parks Super Glaze, Envirotex Lite, EX-74, EX-88 and Devcon 2TON.

I really would like to find an alternative that is tough enough to withstand muskie fishing. Does anyone have an suggestions for a marine clear or automotive clear that I can dip? I have heard about the issues with Dick Nites, so I am thinking I want to pass on that. Any other suggestions? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Greg

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Greg this the topic that could start a war...:lol I also make musky lure and never had a problem with etex. I was wondering did you have any problems with etex and if so what was your problem.

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.04 oz difference. That's not a big change on a .8 oz bait, but it is a change. My gut feeling is .04 shouldn't change the action to the extent you describe. The change in bait volume would be negligible. Before looking at the clearcoat, I'd reduce the the ballast to make up for the added weight of the epoxy to see how that works. At least one builder here on TU uses automotive clearcoat, a catalyzed 2 part "high solids" finish that has to be mixed before spraying. I think almost all of the tough automotive clears are 2 part finishes.

Edited by BobP

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Jamie,

Etex Lite seems to be too thin and requires multiple coats. The EX-74 (or 88 I can't remember) was thicker and I only needed one coat and I didn't have to put it on a turner. I can just flip them. Etex lite was not as tolerant with the mix ration. The EX74 always gives me a solid topcoat everytime, but Etex lite just doesn't seem to be as forgiving. That being said, I will try my next batch of lures with Etex Lite again and see what results I get. Do you mix it and leave it in a cup for a while before brushing it on?

Thanks for the help.

Greg

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0.04ozs does not seem like much when reading this thread, but when converted to grams it is 1.14gm in a 23gm lure. I just weighed some eagle claw size 4 and some split rings hook = 1.01gm, ring = 0.19gm so you have effectively added more than the weight of one hook assembly. So not so surprising that the action has changed.

Of course it does not work as pure ballast, as epoxy has a density of about 1.2, so the change to the ballast is a lot smaller, but consider this: a couple of years ago, I designed a lure (the same size as yours), I got it swimming perfect, just how I wanted. Pleased with myself, I painted it and applied one coat of D2T. I went back down to the communal test tank (swimming pool) to see how it looked in the water. The action was gone.

Often a lures action is a fine balance. So the balance has to be established with the top coat in place. This is the case with mine and I suspect yours too.

As for the solution, try taping a small lead to the belly, try different amounts and note any changes. My thoughts are that the slight increase in ballast, distributed all over the lure, has lessened the effect of the hook ballast, causing it to roll more. Adding a little weight to the belly should restore the balance.

I could be way off here, so as Bob suggested, try reducing ballast also, by removing a hook or down sizing. If nothing else, you will learn about the effects that such subtle changes can make.

Dave

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In my personal example above, I just remembered that I also added the hooks, not just the top coat. But the same principle applies.

Dave

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if you are having problems with weight from topcoats on musky lures. i would look into weighting design flaws. . in my humble opinion ,, if you look ahead trolling, or casting, you will have problems. its not the clear coats , its a weighting, or total balance isue. we do many musky lures yearly.. you have failed to mention which woods, lip angles. we use enviro or new lustre for topcoats and multiple coats. never a balance or weighting issue, as our size of baits range from 5 inch up to 12 inch in production runs.in closing its not topcoat issue here.

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Woodieb8,

Thanks for the info, but in this case, the question is directly related to the top coat because I have 4 identical lures, 2 with 3 coats of polyurethane that run like a dream and 2 that have 1 coat of super glaze epoxy and the action has changed completely. It doesn't run nearly as tight and has a tendency to roll a little, not completely out of the water. I mentioned earlier that it's 5/8" western red cedar. The lip angle is 45 degrees and I have not put any ballast in the lure, only the hardware.

I am going to give Etex Lite another try. Maybe the other epoxies are too thick...I will try them this weekend and post results.

Maybe I need to play with the weights as Dave suggested. For my gliders, the epoxy works great, it just seems with the crankbaits, especially smaller ones, it can affect the action. I appreciate the feedback and I will give Etex Lite another shot.

Thanks,

Greg

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Jamie,

Etex Lite seems to be too thin and requires multiple coats. The EX-74 (or 88 I can't remember) was thicker and I only needed one coat and I didn't have to put it on a turner. I can just flip them. Etex lite was not as tolerant with the mix ration. The EX74 always gives me a solid topcoat everytime, but Etex lite just doesn't seem to be as forgiving. That being said, I will try my next batch of lures with Etex Lite again and see what results I get. Do you mix it and leave it in a cup for a while before brushing it on?

Thanks for the help.

Greg

Yes I do let it set for 15 minutes or so. Another thing is I dont try and mix a large amount at one time you can get into problems with not mixing it well ( follow the directions and mix for the time recommended )I mix enough to do a due a few musky baits at a time and dont try to brush on real heavy, just clear the bait. I always have a test strip with etex on the turner as well ( a small stip of wood with some etex on it). What I do with this is test the etex for tackiness. I dont let mine cure all the way( close but not all the way) before adding the second coat , that way the two layers will bond to each other a little better.Ive never used the other clear that you talked about but if it goes on thicker than etex maybe you are not useing enough layers to match the EX74. This is the way I do my baits and things seem to work out fine for me, but a six inch bait is about as small as I make and that might be the difference.I know that turning lures on a wheel sucks, but you gotta do what you gotta do to get the job done. for muskies etex is the one clear that I always go back to. On the other hand I learned old school and I will be honest Ive not tried any of the clears that has came out in the last year or so. I hope this helped.......Jamie

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Have you taken it out in clear water and tried the action?

I am more into custom colors and redoing Saltwater baits down in the Texas Gulf Coast but I have found that it helps esp with the sinking and suspending baits to go out and try them in the water then I wonder how much different pool vs salt water chances suspend and sink rate.

Funny how the action on stock baits like spook jr,r catch 5, Catch 2000 change from bait to bait. But I do look funny down at the store shaking baits to see how they rattle too.

Occasionally I have to customize the hooks to get the action to where I want it. I have gone to a lot of single hooks which has not really changed the hook up rate if the fish wants the bait sure makes it a lot easier wading and catching a big trout or red fish. I use a boga grip or hand grab fish a lot of the time and single hooks make it easier.

On a lot of baits and you can really chance the action by changing the hooks out to customize each bait.

Edited by JimD

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