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It's in the details, that fish bite or at least give the nod.

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SenkoSam

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As many of us that have been fishing for over a few years know, fishing success involves endless possibilities where one angler's theory is another angler's skepticism. So it goes and shall not end until one person wins every tournament he set out to win or catches two limits on every outing.

Having played with lures for over 15 years and based on the many lure designs that have caught fish for me and others, I have made a few observations regarding lure-design elements that seem to be standard regarding how a fish locates a bait, becomes intrigued by it and is provoked to striking it.  Here are a few that most lures seem to incorporate:

1. symmetry - Regardless of the prey, there is always symmetry - one side looking like the other, mirroring it's opposite side. A fish has smooth, curved surfaces from any angle; a craw or frog has an equal number of appendages on both sides; a leech is round on all sides. That is not to say that a one-legged frog won't be eaten, but that a one legged rubber frog may be ignored. The bodies of potential prey have curves, as so do most lures.
Symmetry allows balance on the surface or underwater and allows a smooth or fluid motion[/i]. 

2. Texture - I truly believe that a fish can feel the difference between a smooth worm and a heavily ringed worm (ie. Hoo Daddy) The first crankbait of it's kind was a Rebel plastic crank that had layered plastic on the outside and a piece of foil on the inside. Freaky looking, but it caught fish, possibly for the reason of a unique texture that made it sound and feel different underwater. Does anyone remember the Caterpillar baits that Bass Pro use to carry? Highly textured worms, fries, craws and grubs that all caught fish and still do. The Sweet Beaver is a good example:

3. Color - Many prey species are not camouflaged to the extent that they are invisible. Some even stand out (yellow perch). I like to use Spike-It to add contrasting tones.
Black to white, fire orange to chartreuse, etc. It seems to add to the lures action effect.

4. Head/ body - The direction of a preys movement may universally indicate the head-end of a food source. But lately, I've used the Cut Tail worm and a grub of my own design:
What they have in common, is a fat front that tapers to a much thinner back half and have a different action then a lesser taper (ie Power Worm). Thick is sometimes good - Senkos for instance - more meat for the effort and chewy to boot!

4. Finesse movement - the tip rotation of the Senko, drive bass nuts, the same as a small curl tail on a fatter bodied grub:

The center three grubs have finesse action tails.
 I think these motions tickle the lateral line and generate immediate interest like a cat's ears perking up when it hears the soft foot steps of a mouse. Hair or fiber jigs are the ultimate finesses
The fibers flutter with the least amount of movement.

5.Gross movements - just the opposite of finesse. A wider Kalin-type tail creates a much different action and visual effect and may be the best lure for the post spawn and summer (I use it in areas I might use a spinnerbait).:

The Gator Tail worm (2nd from left) pushes a lot of water:


When I play with design ideas for new lures, I keep these ideas in mind and usually come up with baits that almost always catch fish. I'm depending on my superstition that the lateral line can see far more than a fish's eyes and that the signals it generates to the brain are always reflex related to some extent.
Last Edit: June 15, 2005, 07:53:20 AM by SenkoSam


Fishaholic

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good stuff Maynard, but where's number 5? did you leave before you finished?

SenkoSam

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Got to finish it tomorrow - some decent show came on.

Fishaholic

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OK cool beans...we'll wait for the next installment to arrive tomorrow...something to look forward too ~c~ ~c~

OHbassaholic

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I love it.  Good stuff, SenkoSam!!!


SenkoSam

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For some reason, I got off track and wrote stuff I had not intended to include in the idea of lateral line sensitivity. Pics are now included to illustrate my points. See above post.
Last Edit: June 15, 2005, 07:55:51 AM by SenkoSam