Thursday, June 15, 2006
History of The LMM
Today the LMM is over 350 quality pages, with over 100 World-class, name brand sponsors. That's a lot of 14-7(s). I do not regret having to work that long and hard. I only regret not having everything done (puplished) by the time I thought it would be.
As for The LMDFG e-Books of lure making instruction; They really do exhist. They are the end result of another 5 years of (14-7) writing, illustrating, and editing. Problem is: The LMDFG e-Books were originally created in COREL Draw; a graphic program that is not Internet friendly. Most of the original LMDFG e-Books art and text has been converterd to an Internet presentation VIA: Hyper Publish. LMM Readers can see a sample of this at The LMDFG.com as Book #1, Chapter I.
If you are one of the 4,000+ visitors to the LMM since March 15; all I can say is: "Thanks for making the effort to find us, and read over 100,000 pages. Please return to see how all things we promise will come to be". My hat is way off to the 14.9% of LMM visitors with the foresight to put The LMM on their "FAVORITES" List.
Another discission I am loosing some sleep over is deciding to create The LMDFG.com & The Lure Makers Magazine backwards. That means having the entire body of the web site in place before releasing the contents of our instructional e-Books. Call me "stupid" again. To be burtally honest about it; I figured the instructional contents of my lure making books are extreamly valuable, and the entire contents of the LMDFG will pe published at the LMM free, for the vewing; so why not deliver some commercial messages. Commercial messages are a way of making people pay for free stuff. If you have difficulty with that statement; take a look at the last 50 years of Network TV. Commercials are a fact of life.
Regardless of my guilty conscience over using the Internet live to get educated, develop and live test the contents of the Lure Makers Magazine; I do understand that Internet readers expect all websites to be found complete, squared away, and ready to have, or not have.
The down side of my approach to getting a crash-course education in web Mastering and web site developing led to some confusion, and lost attention. I plan on making up for that by providing a quality web site dedicated to the Art, Sport and Business of Lure Making.
If you are considering publishing a web site of your own, and can't afford a geek to do it for you; check out: Hyper Publish
Show Me A Fisherman
For lack of a better way to say it: "I think their are two kinds of fishing lure makers".
The first, and largest group of lure makers are what I consider to be “Recreational, for fun fishermen, Recreational Semi-Pros, and True Pros”. They are very active Sport Fisherman, or Competition Fishermen (Semi Pro, & True Pro's) who want to take their fishing expertise to the next level. Enclusive: "Rec/Pros".
By customizing commercially available fishing lure products and making what is, beter, the "Rec/Pro" can suit his tackle box to his geographic fishing environment. By making “what is” better; the "Rec/Pro" lure maker does effectively increase his catch, and gain the edge over his competition, and fishing counterparts, or, at least increasses his fishing successes.
Making “what is” better is done in many different ways. It can be as simple as repainting a successful fishing lure to more closely resemble the local hatch. “Hatch”: Meaning the desired game fish food source. Matching the hatch is the reason commercial lure makers offer a single design, size and weight in many different color combinations. Unfortunately; commercial lure makers don’t have a clue as to the exact color of the game fish food sources in the lake, stream or ocean waters you fish most.
Making “what is” better also includes enhancing the behavior (action) of a successful fishing lure. Changing the brand, style or size of the hook-sets is one easy way to improve, or alter the action. Changing the ballast (balance, nose up, or down) can make a lure run deeper, dive at a steeper angel, or not dive at all. This alteration can go as far as causing the lure to have true zero buoyancy. "Zero Buoyance": Means causing the lure to dive to the depth you want during forward motion, but not sink, or float when forward motion is stopped. The lure can hover in mid-water when sitting still. Does this sound like something a live food source might do?
The next step in making “what is” better may require a somewhat serious cash investment (from $50 to $500. bucks) in lure making tools, materials and equipment: Making “what is” better by altering it’s size or shape. Even if you do not intend to produce your improved version of an existing design commercially, size and shape changes will require the minimum micro-factory environment.
This leads us to the second, and most advanced group of lure makers: Those who have created their own successful fishing lure designs, and wish to make more than one exact copy. Making more than one exact copy may mean a hand full of private “secret weapons” for fun or competition fishing. The extreme end of this notion may also mean that you have developed a fishing lure product that is marketable on a grand scale and wish to be in total control of it’s manufacturing. You may wish to start a lure making business, based on your lure design, with profit and income in mind.
My favorate encounter with a fellow fishing lure imagineer led the two of us to cooperate on an idea he came up with. I did the physics, and part engineering on his project for a fee. I cannot say anything about his invention specifically. The invention is his.
However; this fellow was, at the time, a computer programing wizard working for the company he originally created. He is also the most enthusiastic, and active fisherman I have ever met. He lives in Florida, and does some very serious in-shore and offshore fishing.
His idea for a better deep water lure did not have anything to do with creating a new shape, color, or behavior of a deep water lure, but, how to make it run very deep, and, at the same time, be able to return to the surface on command. “The double whammy”. A successful fish catching lure design, plus one that could take commands from the fisherman, on the surface, no radios, servos, or electronics involved. Boy; did that ever take some do'n!!!!
After about six months of our collective efforts, a totally functional, and successful prototype of his idea was working in the deep water off Florida. My task was completed. I do knot know where this fellow took his special fishing lure project from there.
What ever group or level of fishing lure maker you may consider yourself to be; the instructions, knowledge, and collective information within the pages of The Lure Makers Magazine will provide the where-with-all to begin, or advance your lure making efforts at the lowest possible cost while producing the highest quality, and most effective fishing lures; be it for fun, competition or profit. I cannot tell you how to invent something. However; I do leave many clues behand for imagineers to consider. Find them all in: The Lure Makers Magazine
Why Make Your Own...?
If you took all the fishing lure designs being manufactured, and sold; then multiplied that times there different colors, sizes and weights; you would have thousands of fishing lures to choose from.....So; Why make one of your own?
We have all heard the term: “Match the hatch”. What does that mean? “match the hatch.” To me; it means don’t use a frog as bait if there aren’t any frogs in the pond. To me; it means do your home work. Find out what the game fish are feeding on, and make your bait presentation match what-ever-it-is as close as possible. That makes sense...?
I once saw a truly amazing example of "match the hatch" unfold right before my eyes...........
After walking, and fishing two miles of shallow grassy shore line from daybreak to noon, for LMB's; I didn’t get so mach as a sneeze at my bait. I couldn’t figure out why; so I quit, put my gear away, and figured it was time to do some home work.
I had started the day using a top water popper, switched to shallow running cranks, and so-on. All the bait I tossed at ‘em usually worked at this time of the year, in this water. I set out looking for clues by walking the shore line again. It wasn’t long before I came across a shallow Blue Gill nest about two feet deep with a steep drop-off about five feet away. What caught my attention; was a mother Blue Gill frantically fighting off a swarm of small minnows from her egg nest. I stood motionless, and watched for a few minutes. Just at the moment I decided to walk away; two log sized images rose up slowly, out of the darkened water, at the edge of the drop-of. One came up at the right side, and one three feet to the left. Both were at least ten pounders. Suddenly, the bass on the left charged the nest, but did not hit the mother blue gill. It turned and chased the school of minnows directly towards the other bass who stayed still, and snapped up a half dozen of the passing minnows. I could not believe my eyes. The two bass were hunting in unisen together, like a pair of African Lyons, and using the blue gill nest as a trap in a well planned feeding strategy. No wonder the bucket mouths wouldn’t bother to chase a crank bait. A noisy popper only scared off the schools of small minnows.
Sometimes feeding conditions like this only last for a few days, and we know that a ten pound Large Mouth Bass wouldn’t hesitate to take a half pound blue gill, given such an easy opportunity. But; on that day the bass were feeding on small schools of very small minnows, and using egg laying Blue Gill as bait.......What do you suppose I did next?
I went straight home and broke out my TF 1.5 mold, and fired up my hand held PVA injector. I shot-up a dozen TF 1.5 bodies, with no ballast lead so they would almost float, and sink ever so slowly. I matched the silver, and pail lime green colors of the minnows as close as memory would allow.
Needless to say; the next morning I had caught and released a limit of hogs before I had to put on my sun glasses. That day was one of the best fishing days of my life.
I guess the point in this fishing story is that because of my ability to create a custom, and one of a kind bait almost instantly; I was able to cash in on a very special, and unique feeding condition that lasted for a very short time. I think being able to "match the hatch" is one very good reason for making your own fishing lures.
Secondly; there is money to be made designing, and manufacturing fishing lures that truly do well at catching fish of all species. Unfortunately; there is where you will run into the stiffest competition; especially where it applies to popular freshwater fishing; Bass, Trout, Walleye, etc. There are already thousands of such fishing lures. Just buy one. Take your chances with the guy willing to sell it to you. The same goes with saltwater fishing lures................
Then; there is specializing.......I have a little saying, I say to myself every time I set out to make a new kind of fishing lure: “First you do it; then you do it better; then you do it faster; then you do it cheaper.”
Specializing can also mean making lures that are specific, in some way, to a certain geographic location. This usually pertains to color variations that work best in a particular lake or stream, ocean etc. due to the natural food source.
My best advice to lure makers is to do your homework. Then specialize. Learn how to fine tune a specific lure, behavior and color for the fishermen in your area. If you do that you will have fun, catch more fish, and make money at it. When you, and your product are whorthy of being a lure making, and marketing company; be prepared to work hard at it. All the resources you need to be a successful Lure Maker are in: The Lure Makers Magazine
John P. Hamon
Imagineer, Author & Illustrator,
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