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bassamasta

Help Identify Old Balsa Crankbaits?

11 posts in this topic

I have many old handmades I have collected over the years. Can anyone identify any of these.

I was told the bottom one is a Gulp crankbait. Who is the original maker of the "Gulp baits? I have a few of the older shallow diving baits and they look a bit different than the ones circulating these days.

DSCN2197.jpg

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The bottom one looks like a bagley to me. I say this because of eye style and glue used on bill. They say bagley. The middle bait looks the oldest and I have no idea w but the eyeye are a bit bagley. The top one has a poes look to it. The best place to get answers is to contact someone in the national fishing lure collector club. Nflcl. These guys know their baits. Gulp builder passed away earlier this year. His work can be found on ebay. The name escapes at the momment. Good luck.

Vic

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None of those are Gulps. Well from what I know a Gulp to be. Search ebay for Gulp and you can see what they look like. The top one looks closer to a Gulp than any of the others.

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The GULP plugs were made in the mid to late 1970's by Dickie Ridgeway and Jim Harder in Greenville, S.C. I heard that Jim died recently. I have no information on Dickie. I was fortunate to have the opportunity along with a good friend of mine to learn from them how to make flat bodied balsa baits. I spent many evenings with them in their basement workshop. They named it the GULP because gulp is "plug" spelled backwards. The middle plug in the photo is probably a GULP. though the paint job is not one I remember them doing. The other two are definitely not original gulps, though they may be later balsa baits made by the same guys. The GULPS were fantastic crankbaits that won many tournaments in the Carolinas for many years.Jim and Dickie could not keep up with the demand at $5.00 apiece.Quite a few copy cat flat plugs followed the GULP. Most were made in the Carolinas and a few in Tennessee with names like Suddeth, F&R and Carolina KIller, Some are still being made today by a few old retirees who love the hobby.

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The GULP plugs were made in the mid to late 1970's by Dickie Ridgeway and Jim Harder in Greenville, S.C. I heard that Jim died recently. I have no information on Dickie. I was fortunate to have the opportunity along with a good friend of mine to learn from them how to make flat bodied balsa baits. I spent many evenings with them in their basement workshop. They named it the GULP because gulp is "plug" spelled backwards. The middle plug in the photo is probably a GULP. though the paint job is not one I remember them doing. The other two are definitely not original gulps, though they may be later balsa baits made by the same guys. The GULPS were fantastic crankbaits that won many tournaments in the Carolinas for many years.Jim and Dickie could not keep up with the demand at $5.00 apiece.Quite a few copy cat flat plugs followed the GULP. Most were made in the Carolinas and a few in Tennessee with names like Suddeth, F&R and Carolina KIller, Some are still being made today by a few old retirees who love the hobby.

That's some good info right there, it would be a dream come true to learn from them, how to make plugs!

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Mark! Those baits are thru wired. They used a thin wire. I use 19 guage stainless when I build and theirs is prob half the diameter of that. The Gulp Jim Harter sold was different than anything in the photo above. I have some and have disected some as well.

Lee

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I posted a picture of the GULP I have in the Gallery. I explain there why I feel it is a reliable example. It does look similar to the second bait but not exactly. Mine is so thin it will not even set up on it's side like the one photoed does. Yet it has enough similar touches that one has to wonder. If the building materials are the same there is a strong case they are from the same builder. I am not going to say it is or is not one though because after building a few of my own baits; I quickly learned that we change things along the way. It is a learning process and we're always striving to make the bait better.

Littleriver

here is the picture

GULP

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I posted a picture of the GULP I have in the Gallery. I explain there why I feel it is a reliable example. It does look similar to the second bait but not exactly. Mine is so thin it will not even set up on it's side like the one photoed does. Yet it has enough similar touches that one has to wonder. If the building materials are the same there is a strong case they are from the same builder. I am not going to say it is or is not one though because after building a few of my own baits; I quickly learned that we change things along the way. It is a learning process and we're always striving to make the bait better.

Littleriver

here is the picture

Thats the same bait style I have(diff color). Yes #1 and #2 have similarities to the GULP. Ive built a few to see if I could mimic his bait and how they run. Those are unique baits and guess thats why he had such a good following. Tournament guys around here love em. Thanks for posting the pic Littleriver and sharing your thoughts.

Lee

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Your welcome Lee

It was the work of TN custom builders ( Boots Anderson and Jim Lovingood ) that first got me interested in making my own baits. They built lures from the ground up like Jim Harter. I have much respect for the work of these early modern lure pioneers. Many are inspired by the work of these custom builders. Their work is highly sought after and will live on.

Littleriver

Edited by littleriver

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