Snowman I can see how a feather trailer would slow the action enough to bring a border line bait back under control. Some use curly tail grubs to do this as well. Like the tail streamer on a kite. Something to keep in mind and try first next time. Thanks.
The first one of these blowout baits I made i kept trimming the bib till nothing was left before I realized the bib itself was not the problem but its placement in relation to the center gravity was. Even with a very very short bib this bait would lay on it's side after a couple of wobbles
This bait was in bad shape. I put all the ballast just below bib on this one for reasons unknown to me now. Turns out a really bad idea.
I really think a lot depends on how buoyant your building material is, and how you shape your crank.
I learned to build swimbaits and walking baits from scratch, but I started to build cranks by copying my favorite commercial baits, so I had a much shorter learning curve, and avoided a lot of beginner's mistakes.
I like to keep the ballast between the bill and the belly hook hanger if possible. I think it helps the action of the bait, and also gives it a more head down position at rest, which initiates the diving action more quickly.
I used a Rapala DT16 as a model when I started making deeper diving cranks. It's ballast is right behind, and under, the bill.
Because it is a balsa bait, it is very buoyant, so the rest of the crank's body has enough lift to keep the bait from wanting to roll, or blow out.
I use PVC trimboard for my diving cranks. Even though it is very buoyant, it isn't balsa, so I leave the tail section on my cranks a little thicker on purpose, to keep the crank more buoyant.
That seems to have allowed me to put the ballast in front, and it also helps the cranks to back out of snaggs better.
I find that paying attention to centerline symetry, and float testing my cranks until they sit in the water the same way each time as a similar, successful lure, like a DT16, works for me.
One of the tricks I use in making swimbaits that don't roll I carried over into my flat sided cranks. I taper my cranks, so they are thicker along the back than on the belly. This makes them "naturally" more bottom heavy, since there is less buoyant material toward the belly, so they don't tend to roll, even on a fast retrieve.
When I figured out how to do that with jointed swimbaits, it really made a huge difference in being able to burn a bait back to the boat without it rolling over, and it works for cranks, too.
I've been lucky so far, and have only had to tweak my line ties a little to make my cranks run straight, instead of playing around with shaving the bills or changing the ballast.
I'd suggest you find a similar bait to the one you want to make, and really examine what makes it perform the way it does, and then imitate that.
Edited by mark poulson, 27 May 2012 - 11:04 AM.