Kribman

Walk-the-dog Musky Bait Weighting

8 posts in this topic

Hi all. Hope you had a great thanksgivin'! Its been over a year since I have last posted, and you can probably guess that I have taken a break from lure making. But after a year of relying on Bass Pro for lures that I loose and care not for, it is time to get cracking. And this time I want to try and master a larger scope of lure making... see my last go was me mostly attempting large crankbaits and gliders, but it's time to take care of the lures that really put a dent in the wallet... Topwaters, small jerk/crankbaits and I might even give bucktails a whirl.

So, my first question following my hiatus is what is the best placement for weights in a large musky style walk-the-dog baits. I imagine you want them to be towards the bottom of the lure, but are they mostly front weighted or center weighted... See, I am not the most efficient lure maker yet and I can quite crank out a bunch of lures to test out the best placement. it might come to that, but if anyone has experience with topwaters any info will be incorporated and credit given next musky season! take care!

Edited by Kribman

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Hi all. Hope you had a great thanksgivin'! Its been over a year since I have last posted, and you can probably guess that I have taken a break from lure making. But after a year of relying on Bass Pro for lures that I loose and care not for, it is time to get cracking. And this time I want to try and master a larger scope of lure making... see my last go was me mostly attempting large crankbaits and gliders, but it's time to take care of the lures that really put a dent in the wallet... Topwaters, small jerk/crankbaits and I might even give bucktails a whirl.

So, my first question following my hiatus is what is the best placement for weights in a large musky style walk-the-dog baits. I imagine you want them to be towards the bottom of the lure, but are they mostly front weighted or center weighted... See, I am not the most efficient lure maker yet and I can quite crank out a bunch of lures to test out the best placement. it might come to that, but if anyone has experience with topwaters any info will be incorporated and credit given next musky season! take care!

weight in the back section of the bait. The bait needs to be rear heavy. You are talking about a top water walk the dog and not a sub surface?

Edited by jamie

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A few years ago, Blackjack posted a design diagram for a 5" Japanese Balsa Pro walking bait for bass (it had a typical banana shape). Its single ballast weight was located about 2/3 of the length of the bait towards the tail. I made some baits from the plan and they worked very well, so I'd recommend a similar system. The position and the amount of ballast on a walking bait determines how the bait sits in the water at rest and how easy it is to walk. How much ballast can only be determined by float testing the bait before you install the ballast, because it's dependent on the material you use and the size of the bait.

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@ Kribman

I have made a few cigar-shaped topwater "walk-the-dog"baits before(body shape like "Heddon's Zara Spook") .

The belly weight has to be located in the rear belly portion , at about the transition of the cylindrical center part to the tail taper of the blank , so at about 1/4 of body length(or a tad more) from the tip of its tail .

I have made versions as well with the weight sitting right centered at the tip of the tail , held in place by the tail screw eye passing through(also epoxied in , off course) .

I had found , that the more to the rear the weight is placed , the sharper the sideward darting movement would be , but the distance of the glide would be shorter , ............with a weight placed at about 1/4 body length from the tail end the glide would get a little more pronounced and it would not break out sideward that sharp , ........I much prefer the latter swimming pattern !

The tow eye should be located a bit behind the fore end of the blank , virtually at about the "chin" of the lure , .......this way it surely remains on the surface , when constantly twitched , .........if the tow eye would sit straight at the tip of the nose , the lure might often submerge to 2" to 4" when jerked back in , it would certainly not remain topwater during the entire retrieve .

You should use a possibly light wood for these lures , you have better weight options this way and it also remains afloat and glides better , when working the lure back in .

good luck , diemai :yay:

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You can weight them just as some here have suggested or just like you would a glider. I haven't built a topwater in some time but the one I did build worked great when weighted just like a glider............some weight in front and some in back.

RM

Edited by RiverMan

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Thanks for the detailed reply diemai. I am pumped to get one going. I definitely plan on doing a through wire system with some weight in the front, but the majority of the weight in the back of the bait. I want as much splash as possible, is there anyway I can make a fin like protrusions at the floating line of the lure? Or making metal flaps on the side to add sound? Good stuff, oh yeah is spruce a light enough wood?

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@ Kribman

If you want a pure "Walk-The-Dog" topwater bait , any fins or flaps would surely hinder a nice glide action , ......only thing , that enhances noise and commotion a bit on such baits is to make a scooped out plane under the chin and furnish a moderate cupping onto it .

The tow eye would be located at the tip of the nose , but the chin's cupping would most likely let the lure skim , thus remain on surface when working the lure .

To add noise and commotion to such a topwater glider I have once attempted not to taper its tail , but leave it straight and carve a deep cupping into it , ...just like a poppers face !

My goal of design was to create a kinda vaccum at the tail of the lure to generate a gurgling sound and a bubble trace behind the lure !

But heck ,........ that thing did not glide sideward a single bit , that tail untapered just did not allow for such action , ..........though the gurgle and bubbling did work out a bit .

Made such cupped tails to lipped diving lures , too ,..... they do work well letting the floating lure dive down with a pop and bubble explosion and still wiggle nicely ,........ but I guess , that "Walk-The-Dog" lures just ought to be "streamlined" in every way to provide proper function .

good luck , diemai :yay:

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Ive also made topwater musky baits like this with the weight outside of the bait. The weight (a round ball from a black powder rifle) drilled through and the rear screw eye ran through. You need a long screw eye for this. Just made a few years ago, but never really fished with it was much more of a prototype that never went anywhere.It had great action with very little effort to use. :twocents:

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