While musky enthusiasts are waiting for the winter to be over so they can get on a fishing boat and have fun doing their hobby again, they search for another hobby in the same category to pass the time while at the same time get prepared for their favorite season.
Many anglers started to do their topwater musky wooden lures instead of buying them, mainly because it’s easy to make and proved very effective in catching big muskies. Do you want to give it a shot?
So how do you make wooden musky lures? To make wooden musky lures you need softwoods like balsa, pine, or cedar. You’ll need wood cutting tools, tape measure, sharpies, sandpaper, wood sealant, a vise, eyelets, split rings, treble hooks, paint, and brushes.
Found below is a simple guide for beginners to make customized wooden musky lures that can guarantee you catch a trophy musky once the winter is over.
Table of Contents
What you Need to Make Wooden Musky Lures
In more details, what do you need to make a wooden topwater musky lure from wood?
First off, you need to choose the wood you’ll be using.
I recommend using soft light-weight wood like balsa, pine, cedar, or white cedar, they have fast action and are easy to carve and jig. These kinds of wood float naturally on the surface, so you’ll need no additional expensive materials to make it float.
Then you’ll need cutting tools such as a power drill, drill bits, a coping saw, a roofing knife, and a knife for whittling.
These tools ensure precise cutting and they’re easy to use to shape your wooden lure. You probably already have all these tools around the house, and if you don’t already have them, you can order them from Amazon and get them the next day.
I will only recommend the Dewalt 20V Power Drill because it’s the one I’ve been using and it’s pretty awesome. You can check it here on Amazon. The rest of the tools are easy to pick and don’t need much experience to choose ones that are good for the job.
You’ll need additional tools like a tape measure to determine the size and length of your lure, sharpies in both fine and wide tips and small paintbrushes for the final artistic touch, sandpaper to refine the edges of your wooden lure, a waterproof glue, and a vise to firmly grip your piece while working on it.
Your material should include the polyacrylic wood sealant to varnish your piece of wood and make it waterproof, small eyelets, treble hooks, split rings of a size that fit the hooks, and lastly, paint and googly eyes for the final touches.
By the way, you can also learn how to make your own oversized musky lures here.
11 Steps to Make Wooden Musky Lures
So what are the detailed steps to make a musky topwater lure? Here’s a simple 11-steps-guide for you to make an excellent customized topwater lure:
- Choose a size for your topwater lure depending on what size of muskies you’re going for. Big lures catch big fish. Measure the wood piece using the tape measure, your average lures can be 3-to-4 inch (about 7.5-to-10 cm) long.
- Whittle the ends cone-shaped with a knife. You can pick any other shape and imitate it
- Use the sandpaper to smooth the piece of wood, especially around the edges.
- Put the eyelet on the tip of the wooden piece to make it easier to hold by the vise.
- Install your wooden piece in the vise and make sure it’s secured and firmly-held.
- Drill two small holes on the top to fit the googly eyes. Then glue the eyes with a waterproof superglue. This will bring some life to your topwater and make it more realistic.
- Choose a pattern of your liking and imitate it using paint and sharpies. You can pick any color you want, but brighter colors are more recommended.
- Dip your lure in polyacrylic after stirring it well first. You can tie your wooden piece with a line using the eyelet to be able to dip it more easily.
- Let the first coat dry for 2 minutes then repeat. Three coats will ensure a smooth, sealed, and waterproof wooden topwater lure. Let the wooden piece dry for at least 24 hours before adding the final touches.
- Add another two eyelets, one under its belly, and the other one on the rear.
- Attach a split ring of suitable size between a treble hook and the eyelet.
There, you’re now ready to fish with your customized topwater lure! Make some additional pieces of different patterns and you’re good to go.
After you have your lures ready, you can get your reels from my recommended reels for muskies here. These are the ones I use and have been pretty successful with, so make sure to give them a minute to check out.
5 Pro Tips for Making Homemade Musky Lures
The procedure of making homemade musky lures can be pretty simple, and you can definitely enhance it with some pro tips. Here are some tips that will help you get the best of the experience whether it’s your first time or not.
- Add a rattle to your lure to make it produce noise. It’s true that muskies are sight feeders that chase a fish when they see it, but adding some noise can be intriguing to them.
- Bright colors catch the attention of muskies. Go for red, yellow, orange, and bright green for better results.
- If you are fishing on a rainy day, it’s important to dry your lure on a paper towel before putting it in the box. The air will dry it and it won’t find rust in the box.
- Get a lathe for quicker crafting. A lathe will help you to shape your wood pieces faster and more efficiently. You can get yourself a lathe on Amazon here.
- Add a large nail if the lure seems too light. Drill a hole in the middle that can fit your nail.
What Wood Are Fishing Lures Made of?
Fishing lures are made of different types of wood depending on whether you want it to float or sink for deeper trolling. Softer woods like balsa, pine, cedar, white cedar are light-weighted and have faster action. Harder woods like maple, oak, ash, and walnut are for deeper fishing.
What is the Best Type of Lure for Musky Fishing?
The best type of lure for muskies can be chosen from a variety including bucktails, crankbaits, topwater lures, and live baits. Each type has its advantages that can help you catch muskies during different times of the year. As a general rule, the bigger the lure the better it is to catch a muskie.
How to paint wooden fish lures?
To paint wooden fish lures you can use water paint and sharpies with fine and wide tips. Apply a sealer coat first as it will help to close the grain of the wood and seal out water. It will also prepare the surface of the lure to accept the paint
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