Do-it-yourself tips and techniques from fishing industry pro's with everything from making your own lures to building a livewell.

BoatUS ANGLER: Fishing How-To's

Do-It-Yourself Fishing Tips

FEATURED DIY VIDEO: Pro angler Scott McGehee talks about Zara Spook modifications

Click Here for more fishing videos

Make Soft Plastic Baits That Look Like the Factory Lures

by Capt. Steve Chaconas, BoatUS ANGLER Pro Staff

Completed soft plastic brush hog lures

If you could affordably and easily make your own Senko and Brush Hog soft plastic baits, would you? What about creating baits in hard-to-find or your own custom color patterns, then would you? What if you could make soft plastic baits and you, your friends and the fish couldn’t tell the difference between them and ones you bought…would you…be interested? Sure you would.

Soft plastic lures come in just about every imaginable size and shape, keeping patent attorneys very busy. In the olden days of bass fishing, soft plastics were flat, at least on one side. They were poured into molds that were laying down and while the bottom of the poured lure was rounded, curved or had a “natural” shape, the top was flat. Fish didn’t seem to mind then, and they don’t seem to mind now.

Flash forward from the 1960s to the 1980s when the soft plastic injection possess opened the mind and imagination of lure makers as legs, antenna, and other appendages were easily accomplished as soft molten plastic was forced into metal tubes where perfection was bagged up and shopped out all over the world.

But the industry took an interesting turn about 15 years ago and it was back to the future with handpours once again retaining their dominance for finesse plastics fishing as shakyhead and drop shot baits demanded laminated colors and were not inhibited by their flat sides. More daring hand pourers took on other shapes as well, meticulously pouring curl tails, antennas and legs. An entire industry was created by hand pours. Lure Craft ( became the do-it-yourself-er's Mecca. This on-line and catalog company provided everything needed to be creative and economical. Their supplies are still available in various quantities, thus making it possible for garage bait companies to be born and even bigger hand pouring ventures to become capitalized. Lure Craft surged when one of their bigger customers made a market breakthrough with their hand-poured Poor Boy’s Baits, which was rapidly becoming the top hand-pour packager in the country. When opportunity knocked the Straley’s, Shawn and Kim, answered by purchasing Lure Craft. Now they have taken do-it-yourself soft plastics to the highest level yet, round, tailed, and imaginative custom baits are now a piece of cake for hand pourers. Read More