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8 Do-It-Yourself Fishing Gear Mods

5. Make Your Plastics Fantastic


Cost: $0

Skill Required: Basic

Simply put, trimming your plastic lures will maximize hookups. Here are three proven methods:

1. The Miniskirt For Men

Trim the skirt of your spinnerbaits even with the bend of the hook. Less target area will encourage bass to be more aggressive where it counts.

2. Shave Your Legs

Trim the legs back about a half-inch on your hollow-body frogs. The shorter legs reduce short strikes and also give the frogs a smoother motion side-to-side.

3. Greater Grubs

If you’re regularly losing the curly tails from your grub lures, try shortening them a bit off the front so the hook is closer to the tail.

6. Other Easy Lure Mods

Cost: $0

Skill Required: Basic

1. Wackier Worms

You can improve the movement of a wacky-rigged worm or Senko by pushing a small finishing nail into the head of the bait.

2. Fallback Plan

By pushing a nail into the back of a plastic shad just in front of the tail, then running a plain hook through the nose, the lure will be weighted to drop back when you pause your retrieval.

3. Catchable Crawfish

You can get a better fish-hooking angle on your soft crawfish lures. Just put a small finishing nail through the tail and then hook the bait through the head.

7. Trout Rig For Small Streams

Cost: $0, unless components are required; $100-$400 if they are

Skill Required: Basic

You can toss light lures further and with more accuracy by putting a spinning reel on a fly rod. The length of the rod allows you to fish tighter eddy areas and seams with no casting. It’s also more maneuverable than a standard rod when trying to work a trout around rocks and limbs. Ultralight reels and ice-fishing reels will fit the seats of most 3-5 weight fly rods. For a longer grip simply tape the reel in place farther up on the handle. Many anglers further customize these rigs by widening the gathering guide but it isn’t necessary for small streams.

8. Switch Bail To Manual

Cost: $0

Skill Required: Moderate

If you pay attention to pro bass fisherman, you will almost never see them trip their bail by turning the handle. The reason being, closing the bail with the handle can often allow a little extra slack to spin onto the reel, causing line twists. The bail can also be the part of a spinning reel most likely to fail or malfunction. A manual bail forces you to close it by hand, which allows you better control of line tension.

To convert the bail to manual, first unscrew and remove the side plate that houses the bail gears, then remove the spring. Some reels need extra work here, such as the removal of small bail-tripping devices. On many models through, removal of the spring will do the trick.

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