Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Lucky Joe

Repairing Balsa Baits?

7 posts in this topic

I've got some old Bagley's and various custom balsa baits in need of repair. What kind of wood filler would I need to use to fix these baits? Also, is there a sealer I need to apply once they are patched up? Any help would be appreciated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Joe, my experience is that making big repairs in balsa is tough to get right. The problem is the balsa is much softer than the finish. If you are fixing wood, it's hard to sand it when the finish around it is hard. But it's also hard to strip all the finish off a balsa bait without tearing up the soft wood too, so I avoid that at all cost. My rule is that I never want to sand a balsa lure's finish down to the raw wood. That pretty much limits me to "spot repair" of chipped or cracked finish. I fill any voids with Elmer's water based wood filler, sand it smooth, prime the wood filled areas with lacquer, propionate or super glue, then repaint and re-topcoat the whole bait. If it's anything worse than that, I usually consider the bait "kaput".

Edited by BobP

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Joe, my experience is that making big repairs in balsa is tough to get right. The problem is the balsa is much softer than the finish. If you are fixing wood, it's hard to sand it when the finish around it is hard. But it's also hard to strip all the finish off a balsa bait without tearing up the soft wood too, so I avoid that at all cost. My rule is that I never want to sand a balsa lure's finish down to the raw wood. That pretty much limits me to "spot repair" of chipped or cracked finish. I fill any voids with Elmer's water based wood filler, sand it smooth, prime the wood filled areas with lacquer, propionate or super glue, then repaint and re-topcoat the whole bait. If it's anything worse than that, I usually consider the bait "kaput".

+1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have never tried to repair old wood baits, but has anyone tried using a chmical paint remover like Citristrip to remove the old finish?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have stripped some older balsa baits, first scuff sanding the old finish, and then using an acid brush to "paint" the lure with acetone over a drip jar, until all the old finish was gone.

Then I sealed the balsa with crazy glue, two coats, repaired any nicks with bondo auto filler, and repainted them.

They've held up so far, and it's been three years, and lots of fish.

My experience with Citristrip is only to remove sealer from concrete, so I don't know how it would work for stripping paint from balsa baits.

Edited by mark poulson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for the help! Most of these baits are just cracked "a little", so I wanted to address this problem before I let it go too far. Two are old Mike Bowers square bills and the others are some of the lexan billed Zoom "Wobblers" I've had for several years. It'll be sad singing and slow walking when these are kaput!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If they are just cracked a bit, strip off hardware, lightly sand cracked areas with 600 grit, removing loose topcoat material if any, then mix up some Devcon 2 Ton and brush on a nice even coat on the baits and put them on a drying wheel for a couple hours.

They will be ready to fish next day...

Edited by CatchingConcepts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0