fishnart

What Do You Do?

15 posts in this topic

We've discussed this in another topic but I thought I'd give it it's own topic. I'm seeing more and more people not liking knockoff baits? I'm curious what baits you guys buy? Who still buys knock offs and if you don't, what baits do you paint. This of course doesn't apply to those of you that make your own...'m not that good. Its kind of expensive to buy brand name baits and repaint them unless they're for your own use. If you're buying them to sell, it's not cost effective in my opinion. So what do you guys do?

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Keep a lookout for those "bargain bin" sales you see occasionally at the big box stores. Sometimes you can pick up name brand baits cheap in colors that don't sell well and have been setting on the shelf for a long period of time. You might even be able to make a deal with some tackle shops if they have baits that aren't selling. They'd rather sell them at a reduced price than having them set around gathering dust. You can also check out garage sales and flea markets. You might also find the occasional "antique" lures at flea markets and garage sales so it doesn't hurt to have some knowledge of these types of lures. If you can find the right lure some of them are worth big bucks. There are times when people who don't fish are selling off grandpa's "old fishing stuff" and don't realize what they have. They just want to get rid of it.

And not all knockoffs are junk. Are they as good as the lure they're supposedly copying? No. Will they catch fish? Some of them are decent baits in their own right. If your painting lures for yourself and maybe a few friends I don't see a thing wrong with using knockoffs if you find some that work for you. Should you put a pretty paint job on one and try to pass it off as a "custom" lure? Not to my way of thinking. I wouldn't want that done to me and in turn I wouldn't do it to anyone else. If your trying to paint and sell them and you make the buyer aware of what he's buying then that's his decision. But that's just my :twocents:

Ben

Edited by RayburnGuy

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Hey Ben, yeah I agree. I am honest and make sure I tell everyone that they're knock offs or repaints. I do look for deals and wear ebay out haha. So I do both, but bottem line if I'm selling a knockoff, the client knows its a knockoff.

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Nothing wrong with that. Some folks aren't as up front about it as you are though. If you can sell your baits, make a few bucks and your customers are happy then that's great. I don't even try to sell baits as my painting skills don't come close to what a lot of folks are doing for one thing and as long as I only make build/paint baits for myself and a couple friends then it remains a hobby. Much more enjoyable for me that way. And I like to experiment with different body styles and play around with the different aspects of creating lures. If I was trying to sell baits it would become a job, there would be a lot less time to experiment with things and I would be looking for something else to take my mind off of all the stuff that comes with running a business. Did that for 30 years and there's just too many headaches I don't want to deal with anymore.

Ben

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I still buy a few "known good" knockoffs and occasionally try a new one just for the heck of it. I'm disappointed more often than not but this is only a hobby for me. If I were painting baits for resale, I'd go with popular name brands only. I think experienced fishermen are the real customer base for custom baits and they like new and unique paint schemes - maybe even yours! But they want them done on baits they have used and which they know catch fish. If you are selling baits that perform less well than a guy can get by dropping by Walmart, I don't think you are going to get much word of mouth advertising or repeat customers, either. JMHO

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In my opinion a lot of people get turned off to knock offs because they buy them thinking they are going to be able to slap a coat of paint on a bait that probably cost less than 50 cents to build and they are going to have a lure that acts and catches fish like a $15 bait. It's just not going to happen. But that doesn't mean some of these baits won't catch fish. I've only bought knock offs on 2 occasions. One set of baits worked well and caught fish while the other batch wouldn't stay tuned and were at their best lining a trash can. The sole purpose of a lure is to catch fish. It doesn't matter if that bait cost 75 cents or 75 dollars. If it will catch fish I will throw it.

Ben

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First this is not meant to be a knock off argument.

If you are repainting baits for your own use wouldnt you want to start with the better bait? After all you do plan on fishing it right?

If your just practicing your painting then use the cheapest ones you can find.

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Well I expected different opinions and I appreciate everyone taking the time to offer thiers. Like I said, so far I haven't heard of any of the baits I sell not performing. While I expect it will happen from time to time, heck, I've had new namebrand baits not perform. So it happens. As well as knockoffs I do repaints and offer to put my paint jobs on thier baits that they provide to me. And I do have a lot of repeat clients so, so far-so good for me. Thanks again

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Understanding how and where to fish baits kind of informs my knockoff buying.

I like to fish shallow cranks in flooded brush, and the 2.5 knockoffs work just fine for that.

I also throw a lot of jerkbaits, and find the knockoffs, with some modifications, work well, too.

I haven't had as much success with deeper diving cranks, but the knockoff jury is still out on them. There is so much more involved with getting a deep diver to perform and catch fish than with either a shallow crank or a jerkbait. Plus it's really hard to tell exactly how they're running, unless you fish gin clear water, or have a swimming pool. I have neither, so catching fish is my test.

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I feel I must chime in on this topic. I started painting baits just for fun for myself and it turned into an addiction fast. I started by buying blanks from Janns and a couple other websites that sell unpainted lures for up to a couple dollars a piece.

Once I started painting more and more I finally looked into cutting out the middleman and looked into getting them overseas.

With the birth of our first son 9 months ago, I do not have nearly as much time to paint as I would like. I decided to convert my website to selling lure bodies and hardware and helping others get into the hobby of painting their own lures.

I got burned the first couple of times ordering overseas, (BAD quality, long waits, quantities not right, and so on.) Now I have found a good dealer and am very happy with blanks I am getting. These baits run good and the quality is amazing.

Some people just aren't as talented as Tater Hog, or some of the other amazing builders on this site. So buying a blank bait and putting their own touch on it is good enough for them.

Jake

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Quality of a lure is really hard to judge until you have a chance to fish it. I assume when we talk of "knock off lures" we are talking about unpainted lures sold to look like name brand lures. But how is that any different than the recent influx of lures that are showing up painted at every tackle shop around. Wally world has them as does BPS. Most of the better known fishermen are pushing some lure with their name on it and some of them don't look any better than the Wally world or BPS new lines. I buy a lot of stuff from Wally world and BPS but the difference between name brand and "new line of lures" is getting mighty fuzzy. Musky Glenn

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I find the main difference with originals and knockoffs is weighting, and weight transfer systems. Knockoffs don't always have the proper ballasting, so I add BBs, and most don't have weight transfer systems, to help with casting, so I try and figure out how to add BBs to do that, too.

There is no doubt that the weight on a cable system used by Zip Baits, and other high end Japanese bait makers, is by far the best.

But I don't want to lose a $20 lure in snaggy brush, when I can by one for $1.75, do a little work, add hooks and split rings, and fish without sweating whether or not I get hung up.

As it is, I keep a lure reliever on my deck whenever I fish, but windy days make saving cranks a risky proposition at best.

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You can find name brands for cheap, as Ben suggested. It takes time but if you search out a lucky craft dealer or pradco dealer often times you can get them a little above cost in bulk. The biggest secret is you MUST buy during the off season. Don't expect many deals Dec-April.

If ya think about it I wouldn't exactly call a rebel weeR or a Norman a quality tool. I'm sure the copy cats are every bit as good.

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If your a fan of Lucky Craft RC's, Sammy's, and Pointer"s as I am, Iv'e found that the Academy H2O house bait is just as close as you can get. Their lure molds are supposed to be the same as Lucky craft. At the price ($15 and up vs $4 or so) I can repaint them and get just the right patterns and know that I'll a true running and action bait without breaking the bank. They will also clearance colors that aren't selling at even better savings.

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Predator Bass and Bustin Bass have good knockoffs. Some just require a little ballast tweaking.

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