Building big baits

Can't find what you're looking for in a catalog or in the store shelves? Ever think about just making it yourself? Come share your inspirations and creations with fellow tinkerers in TackleTour's Garage Baits forum!
Elite Angler
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Building big baits

Postby lifeofRiley » Thu Jul 09, 2015 11:17 pm

Was just wondering what type of wood most of the large swimbaits and topwaters are made of. Also on the clear bills what materials are most commonly used? I might be out in the woodshed this fall giving a try at homemades.

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Re: Building big baits

Postby Mattman » Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:24 am

I turned some bodies for a buddy of mine that makes Muskie baits. He gave me Cedar to use.

I know that some guys use Lexan (polycarbonate) for bills on big baits.

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Re: Building big baits

Postby adyy » Wed Jul 27, 2016 10:14 pm


Although I do not make big baits, this is what I can tell you about the materials that I have tried:
- PET - the softest and easier to cut. It has (a bit) lower density than water and it tends to float. Lips made from it tend to break on impact. Can be modeled in hot water and cut with a normal scissor. If you use high thickness and/or if it will not encounter vegetation/rocks,probably will not break. It is the easiest to use.
- ABS - stiffer than PET, still easy to cut. Also more impact resistant. Can be modeled in hot water, but hotter than for PET and you need a bit better scissor to cut it. It has almost neutral density (similar to water). On impact tends to flex a bit and "jump" the lure out if it's path. As long as I used it, it did not braked very easily, but on a few occasions it did. Also most of the plastic lures are injected out of this material.
- LEXAN - much stiffer than ABS and hard to cut because of it's high density. Also tends to behave like sheet-metal: on impact tends to bend at the point of impact and remain like that. Cannot be modeled in water since it's working temperature is up to 250 degrees Celsius. Thinner sheets can be cut easily with a cheap metal scissor. Ticker ones probably only via CNC. I use this material for almost all my lures.
Keep in mind that Lexan it's a variation of policarbonate. There are a lot of brands and the quality is different from one to another.

Here also a bit more background about these materials:

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Re: Building big baits

Postby frankdi » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:56 pm

Cedar for wooden baits. Try to find close grain if possible. Makes for a smoother finish.

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