Saturday, 24 November 2012

A long cast into the soup

Image Above: The Prototype, magnetic weight shift balsa minnow lure

I knew I should I have stayed at home before I set off. It had been raining hard for almost a day and a half before the weather broke and a weak sun managed to hollow a disc in the clouds. The lake water had turned the colour of strong milky tea, the kind of tea you would accept only in politeness while looking for a plant pot to tip it in. Normally when the lake colours some visibility remains even if it is reduced to a few feet but today I could have been dropping my lures into molten lead.

I had come to test a new lure which in fairness is not the same thing as fishing although catching a fish while not pursuing them is always a bonus. The lure was a Phox Minnow with a new magnetic weight shifting system. I wasn’t looking for distance particularly but to reduce or even eliminate the tumbling that normally plagues lightweight lures on the cast.

                I don’t have a great record with prototype lures I have a tendency to test them to their limits and then a little beyond so there is always a little trepidation when tying on a new crash test dummy. Rigged and ready I found a nice open area of bank and swung the rod, there was a sharp click as the internal weights shifted and then the lure sailed out over the lake. There was no tumbled or spin just a long arcing flight with the line pealing out like a vapour trail, I half expected a thud and then the rumble of a distant explosion as the lure touched down.

I am not used to early success so I casted again and again, and then some more, and then a bit more and again and then after I had decide to leave I stayed and casted some more. The lure worked again and again and despite the water being a slightly wetter variety of mud and the chances of catching a fish being slim to nothing I was enjoying myself.

I eventually left the lake and made the short walk up the embankment to the canal. By comparison the water looked almost pristine but in reality visibility was only a little over eighteen inches. There was another problem to contend with; the wind had stripped the last of the autumn leaves from the bankside trees and they hung in the slow moving water suspend like mines. I wasted too long collecting flora.

Later I clipped on a spinner bait in the hopes of avoiding the leaves and maybe luring out a pike by vibration rather than sight. Instead I moved from flora to collecting the kind things that canals are more famous for holding. A brief but not exhaustive list of my haul follows: A complete open golf umbrella, a hood from a jacket, a pair of trousers, part of a pair of jeans, an Asda plastic bag, a Tesco plastic bag, a cloth draw string P.E. bag (haven’t seen one for years), part of a rod case, a long piece of what looked like video tape. Eventually a pike made a feeble strike as the spinner passed  but it missed and rolled at the surface before returning into the murk.


  1. A prototype success? Wonder what that feels like.

    Is there a weight difference between this one and the original?

    1. 1g lighter despite my efforts to weigh everything i think this is partly because the hollow space in the tube is lighter than the balsa. But shit it flies just got to find some fish and a break in the weather.

      cheers Brian

  2. Very Nice!
    The weight transfer in wood lure is a real challenge.
    The main problem I concerned is the strength of lure, especially the tail part.
    Also, the internal weight is steel( I assume), which is lot lighter than lead. To my experience, this will make the transfer system less effective.

    I've touched the weight transfer once, and turned out not very successful, probably I will try it again.
    Thanks for your videos, I learned a lot of tricks

    1. i bound the wire to an aluminium tube which was then coated with glue when the two parts of the lure were brought together this should increase the strength of the lure as the wood is no longer playing any part in the wire strength. The tail section of wire no longer has any unsupported bends in it between the point of forces so it too should be stronger. I went for all stainless steel balls for this lure which is lighter than the brass i was using. Lead being denser than both would give a stronger weight shift effect but this lure seems to work great. The next step is to do away with the magnet and use a tungsten ball which is denser than lead or a couple of them and have a mechanical fixing position for when the lure is being retrieved and let gravity shift them when casting, that's next week's job.

      I am glad you like the videos, I learned some tricks making them as well.