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Dink Mendez

I wish my crankbaits would hunt

28 posts in this topic

Hi Fellow Members,

In the past three months I striped and painted 14 bagley coffin bill style baits and about sixteen 300 and 400 series poe's crankbaits . I have them suspending just right, thanks to Skeeter and other members help. However'; bass go wild over crankbaits that hunt. Bouncing off a log and then running straight. This action drives fish wild. However; my success is very poor! I have just a hand-full of all the crankbaits that hunt. What I'm I doing wrong.

Does the style of the crankbait determine if the bait will hunt?

Or does the tuning of the bait accieve the hunting qualities of the crankbaits?

Finally; this is for me to accieve my hobby, NOT FOR COMMERCIAL USE!

Thanks to all members. without Tackle Underground I would have not been able to accieve what I have learned so far.

Any help would be great!

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Hi Terry,

That is a good one Terry! I referring to wood crankbaits. I believe from what I understand is, crankbaits that bounce of log and cover that still dive straight after bouncing of cover. Rick Clunn, if correct I believe started the talk about ' CRANKBAIT THAT HUNT" . The day I see a crankbait with a scatter gun I let you know Terry!

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Hunting crankbaits is the million dollar question. some baits do hunt and some baits will never hunt. you could buy 100 of the same cranks that have been know to hunt and you might get 7-10 out of the 100 that hunt. So does anybody know, I seriously doubt it with those kinds of numbers. If they knew what made them hunt, they would make all of them that way.

Now that I have told you that nobody knows, I think there are at least two guys on TU that either have it figured out or they are damn close. I have had the opportunity to talk to two of them about it and even though they have given me an idea on what to look for or do they still are keeping the exact information to themselves. Can't say as I blame them either.

Tally

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Hunting crankbaits are somewhat rare. I have seen a pair of BIIs on ebay going for $97.00. The buyer was hoping that the older Bagley baits would hunt. I promise you that those two baits did not. Some poor dude just got parted from his money. Very, very, and I mean very, few baitmakers really know what makes a crankbait hunt. I promise you that they are not going to tell you how it is done. Even baitmakers that produce some hunting crankbaits don't underestand what they did to make the lure hunt. A known true hunting crankbait is worth alot of money. As far as how a hunting action should be..... do a search on the site. It is explained in detail. Good luck.

Skeeter

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Hi Skeeter and Tally,

Thanks for your input. What are the best signs to look for, IF by chance I have a crankbait that hunts, How would I identify it from a average bait. What action to look for? What wood is it more common in, Cedar or Balsa wood?

ANY IDEAS WOULD BE GREAT!

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Hunting is erratic behavior but its controlled. Its basically right on the verge of not running correctly. It can veer wildly from one side to the other, but never lose its track. A true thing of beauty in a fish's eyes. Don't ask me how to get one to do it, i have accidentally made about 3 in my life that hunted, but i have no idea how.

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Hi CUllin,

Thanks for your info. I just would like to thank you for all your help. Yourself, Skeeter, Tally and Black Jack post and info really helped me out.

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I can vouch for the fact that the best and most effective commercially available musky diving crankbaits are also the most sensitive when it comes to tuning, meaning that they are difficult to tune. All have very erratic almost unpredictable action.

I've been experimenting lately with the size of the wire used for the line tie on the lips of deep-diving cranks that I'm now building. The lighter finer wire allows for a smaller less obtrusive line tie and a more streamlined lip profile. It also seems to create that sort of over-sensitive effect when it comes to tuning the bait; they will tune, when they do tune, they run well and erratically with that side-to-side, almost out of control thing...but they are not easy to tune.

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Dink, my advice is do a "skeeter" search and read all his posts; I went back through hardbaits forum, and its amazing how much work he's done AND how much of this he's passed on. I don't have a chance to fish much, or work on lures (wife, 3 kids, job) so probably won't get to use much of the advice or even ideas I have. But its great to read from the guys that do! Oh and you probably need to build a swimming/testing pool in your backyard.... :lol:

Kevin

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In my opinion..(that and .75 will get you a cup of coffee)..a bait that hunts is a bait that is nearly out of control.It's fighting too stay on a correct plain,but looses,and quickly recovers.With commercially avaible baits,you might find one were the wood density is causing this..A very rare find.

Too increase your odds on a hunting crank,your going to have too build it your self too up your odds.Play around with bill length and particulary width....you want the bait pushed too its limits.Another option is shifting weight system on the inside of the bait..or a combination of the two.

Some believe that brass line ties my play a role in a bait hunting,I disagree...I don't think the material of the line tie plays ANY role in it...just where the tie is placed would (increased pressure on the bill..etc)

Now you can take your 75 cents and go buy a cup of coffee..Nathan

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This is from LaPala.....

Posted: Wed Jul 13, 2005 11:38 pm Post subject:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

YES & NO Nathan. In my quest to make my Seeker lure a better fish catching machine, I studied the older versions where some are what u call imperfections, those struggling ones that seem a little more erratic, hard to tune & "natural' swimming action.

I started to tweak & change things a bit here and there. And the end result is my Arrow Seeker. It's got a new lip, new weighting configuration & slight tweaks to the overall balancing of the lure & I have a struggleing erratic lure. I learnt a few lessons in weighting along the way, & here's a hint: weighting as we always extol to be at the bottom 1/3 is not necessary the ultimate truth. Weight a lure to the verge of tipping over, design a lip to match & voila an erratic (hunting??) lure.

SO this is a designed imperfect lure. Perfect every time. LOL if I'm making sense here.

Here are links to the lures mentioned:

Original Seeker,

New erratic Arrow Seeker,

Arrow Seeker with it's first catch (btw this pic shows the more conventional one without details carvings, painted but without top coat cause I was to eager to try it out )

_________________

Regards,

LaPala

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a bait that hunts?!!! that terms still eludes me. I mean, I've made baits that seem erractic when fished but are they "hunting" baits?

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Hunting is when a crank changes direction slightly from straight ahead and then corrects itself a moment later to "on course" again. I's not bouncing off cover. It's a little like bouncing off cover without the cover being there, though :P Lots of things have been cited as promoting hunting but I think it is a combination of design factors. Hunting cranks operate on the ragged edge of tuning. One build feature that tends to promote hunting is a brass line tie that flexes while the bait is retrieved. The thinner the wire, the better. I use .031" soft brass wire on some baits, which is the wimpiest you can use (for bass lures) and not have it deform easily. With that wire and tweaking the bill shape and size to be almost out of control, you can get some cranks to hunt. But not all. And some will be uncontrollable/useless. About a third of the cranks hunting would be excellent yield. Obviously, trying to build hunting crankbaits doesn't have much future for a commercial crankbait maker - the yield of good to poorly performing cranks is just too low. If you're building for yourself, go for it. IMO, There's not much you can do to most commercial plastic cranks to get them to hunt. Alternatively, fish non-hunting crankbaits so they bang into and off of as much cover as possible. The result is the same as far as Mr. Bass is concerned.

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I am trying to wrap my mind around this. I built 4 thick bodied cranks, large bass cranks with fairly flat sides and weighted them as well as I could being these were my first of this type and I think they hunt right out the gate. They track straight forward but there is a different rhythm in the retrieve. It's like they are trying to find center but keep dancing left and right a bit but are still coming in with a nice wobble with out tracking off of center. I was pleased that they didn't spin in circles, even when ripped, but it wasn't what I was expecting but now I am going to keep these under guard since it seems I stumbled blindly on to the secret weapon. Don't ask for specifics because I don't know myself how I did it.

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Hi Tally and all TU members,

Thanks for all the people that particpated in the subject. Now, If I figure out how to make a crankbait hunt. ALL TU MEMBERS WILL BE NOTIFED ON THE SUBJECT ON HOW I DID IT. However; I don't know how long it will take me to figure it out.

I remember who helped me out to get to this point. If it wasn't for TU I would still be buying junk crankbaits. Now I make them. Thanks to everyone!!!!

GOD BLESS THE USA!

GOD BLESS GOD FOR MAKING BASS!!!!

GOD BLESS TACKEL UNDERGROUND MEMBERS!!!!!!!!!!!!

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This is an idea that has been going around in my head for a couple of years now. What if you drilled a hole horizontally thru the lure body, high on the back. You put a weight in there that could roll back and forth. Maybe the hole would have to be drilled downward, on a shallow angle, from each side, so the weight ( a marble perhaps ) could return to center. This could double as a rattle too. If anyone knows a Believer, it has two tow eyes, one shallow and one deep. Nobody has ever had any luck using the shallow one. I hung a weight on that shallow eye, and it bounced around as we trolled that lure. Wife had a couple of strikes from muskies but they eluded the hooks. I did not watch it next to the boat, but you can believe I am going to try it again this fall. What does anyone think of this shifting of a weight inside a lure? As long as it will return to the middle and not get stuck at one side or the other....?

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...or, maybe you would want a weight to hang up for a second at one side to send it off before the action of the lip would bring it back to center and it's original track??? A flat area at the edge so the weight would hang there? Could this be done w/o cutting the lure in half? There was a bass lure introduced in the last couple of years thru Bass Pro that had some rattles/weights inside. It was a plastic lure. An older fella's picture was there too. Said something like it took 5 years to perfect this action. Anyone know of it? What it did?

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Bombadier and all,

I didn't want to say anything because I thought maybe I was crazy but like you Bomb the first couple of cranks I've made do exactly what you describe. They track straight but have a sort of a weird rhythm to them in that they might as described earlier go to one side for about 7 wiggles or so and then track back in line. They tend to do this to both sides in a type of rhythm. I didn't want to say anything because I didn't want everyone to say Oh yeah right or think I was crazy just because I was new. Maybe I stumbled upon this also, because they do seem to catch bass well. Some one mentioned using a thin soft wire. I've been using a soft bendable wire to make my baits this could play a part.

Bombadier glad I'm not the only one.

Camel1918

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Finlander:

I have toyed with the shifting weight as u describe, embeded in a V ahaped chamber across the lure but it doesn't seem to help much & caused more problems as the shifting cannot be that controlled in various retrieve rates. It's worse when the lure is bouncing of rocks & stuff as then the deflection willl cause the shifting weight to temperoriry be lodged to one side & blow out the lure. If u restrict the shifting weight movement too much then it might as well be fixed.

Play with fixed weighting, lip config, lure shape & line tie position instead. From my experiements, getting a bait to hunt is like what everyone is saying: "It's a lure on the verge of being unbalanced" and everything has to be constructed very accurately. The line tie position especially has to be dead centre.

I think why hunting lure is so hard to make is because experienced lure makers are so good at making their lures perform well & very stable. We have designed it to not hunt. B):P

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LaPala-the more I thought of it, the way a lure wiggles, it WOULD be difficult to control. Then I thought of a thick LIQUID inside, that wouldn't get stuck at on side. Ever thought of a shaped lip, the top side. Convex/concave I'm not sure which term is corrrect. Have the lip higher in the middle, with sloping to the edges. Ever try that?

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Dink,

I make through wire construction Pikies for musky fishing. There are many styles of crankbaits out there but the Pikies are one of the few that are cabable of hunting that I know of. I can get the Pikies to hunt (walk) 99 percent of the time. Just by bending the eye up or down in combination with the stainless steel lip will do the trick. Hope this helps you out some. Jim

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This is what I did with the lips on my Arrow Seeker, anywhere close to what u're thinking finlander?

medium.jpg

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Actually it is the opposite, higher at the line tie in the middle. What kind of action do you get with your bait? How did u bend it? Thanks.

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