Would it be possible to make your own jigs at home or would it cost more than just buying them?Say 4-7 ounces. Cause buying jigs isnt cheap!
possible yes, practical, somewhat. all depending on how many jigs you run through etc, and how much $ you want to spend.
you can go to a machine/metal shop with a shape/design you want, and they could machine out a mold for ya, no problemo, just a lil $$
then, you need to think about your material being used, regular lead, like poured for sinkers etc, is quite soft, and if you are going to be making a longer, thinner jig, you might want to look into different type of lead, with hardening agents in them.
now, if you are doing shorter, stouter jigs, regular lead should be fine...
hrm...say you do all that, and have your bare piece of metal with eyelet(lets call it the blank), time to put some color on it!
there are some very easy, and somewhat cheap methods of doing this, you can get powder coats to bake in the oven, but easiest would be one of the jig powders that come in a little tub, you simply heat up your jig blank and dip it into the powder...
now, 1-2 colors would prlly be quite simple to do. if you want to do fades etc, you would probably want to do a white base in the powder, and then hit it again with an airbrush...solid color/two tone color patterns are very effective, and easier/faster to make yourself...
ok so NOW, you have your colorful jig, maybe you stuck a couple eyes on it too, now its time to finish it...with a light coat of your favorite epoxy/finish clear coat..devcon...w/e you want that owuld be up to you...
light coat of your clear finish, and then you would need to either take a variable speed drill, or something to spin the jig slowly, maybe 3-4rpms, to keep the epoxy nice and even...
if you want to use a faster, say a 15-30 minute epoxy that sets up faster, that would be good too..
it would be a somewhat larger initial cost, but i suppose over time it would all even out, like i siad, just really depends on how many you go through...
with all that blabbering over, i will say i am not a jig making pro, i do have some experience making my own wooden plugs, dealing with the paint/epoxy etc etc, and have been thinking about jig making my own somewhat...no so much as to save $, but something i think would be nice to do, catching fish on something you make yourself adds a little something imo, another reason i tie some of my own fly patterns/bucktails
dude, just go to any thrift store and get some table knives, the handles on a lot of them already look like baitfish. drill some holes and cut off the blade, they work great, and cost almost nothing.
check this out homemade knife jigs
While you are at the thrify store, buy the spoons as well. If that's not self explanatory enough, the "spoon" end makes great "spoons" for redfish etc.....if anyone on here is by chance willing to catch these smaller, fantastic fish.
I make my own jigs, Have for many years. I also make my own molds. I'll post later in the week about how. My molds are all in the shop right now. I carve some of them out of hardwood,then seal the inside with epoxy. more soon.
My biggest issue is in creating the best thruwire. I have several ideas, but tend to beieve that simple is best....as long as it's strong.
I'll show you what I do, very simple and very strong. I gotta bring some stuff home from work to get some pics.
Getting a custom jig mold machined out of metal is usually rather expensive.
the high temperature tolerant RTV silcones make good molds for low melting point metals like lead & its alloys with decent longevity.
Make your master shape out of wood or 'sculpy' type clay and make your mold out of RTV..........but make sure it is the high temp variety.
Dow Corning - RTV 3120 ;
Smooth-On - mold Max 60
or comparable products from other Brands.
When you eventually do burn out your RTV mold and lose surface detail its not a complete waste............you can chop up that mold and use pieces to fill a lot of the voids in your next mold, simply pouring the new RTV mix around the old pieces............saves a lot of RTY in making subsequent molds.
yes silicone rubber works a treat can do a mould from start to finish in 20 min . i use a silicone rubber that i cure @180'c for 15 min in normal oven , need to clamp it under pressure - normal g-clamps work fine .will post pics later
One of the problems with jig making is finding a holograph material that will stick to the jig and glo paint. The holograph material I have tried peel up at the edges. Glo paint I have found dosn't do a good job either as compaired to jigs I have bought.
I have stopped using the holographic tape and have gone to using a glitter powder paint dip. I also use the powder paint spray gun for adding color to edges.
Works pretty well; much nicer to work with than the epoxy paints.
Good prices on paint and the sprayer: Welcome to TJ's Tackle
the basic issue with holotape is not the adhesive, its the stiffness of the polyester sheet the holo is on.
it will handle a single curved surface modestly, but cannot handle a compound curved surface .
the holotape needs to be heated ( <100C )during application to soften the polyester sheet ( after initial application to the lure) and is then best rolled on using a small hard rubber or EVA roller ( nothing commercial available TMK, so you need to make one yourself with a roller about 20mm long & 12-13MM diameter).
to heat the holotape during rolling, I use a little catalytic converter , hot air attachment on a portasol butane torch ( same implement I use when degassing epoxy on rods & lure coatings.)
am next going to purchase a digital temp control larger electric hot air gun to see if the digital hot air temp control is reliable enough for holotape application
That gets the tape onto the lure reasonably reliably with smoothness, but has poor longevity. to achieve any longevity ( long enough to epoxy coat ) you need to undertake a pressure & heat forming stage by vacuum bagging the lure & placing it in a hot water bath with a mix of hot tap water & boiling water & allow to cool .
- this causes the holotape to take the shape of the curve of the lure surface reasonably reliably .
Note: vacuum bags have a diamond embossed surface that will print into the holotape under heat & pressure , on one side of the lure. Similarly any folds in the other side of the bag will print onto that side. To avoid this & produce a smooth surface I place a piece of nominal 1mm soft PVC sheet on top of the holotape on both sides ( slightly larger than the tape being applied ) before vacuum bagging & hot bath treatment.
holotape application on compound curved surfaces of lures is a PITA that's for sure.
I've tried a bunch of alternative application protocols and shortcuts that just don't work or are unreliable..........so far.
The above is the only reliable method of holotape application I have been able to come up with .
..........if someone else has a better reliable method & would share ........I'd happily adopt something better.
The above application protocol works 98 - 99% of the time.........think the failures are the result of surface contamination, not the application protocol.
Absolutely nothing worse than having the holotape edges start to lift halfway thru the epoxy cure.
when heating holotape it does not tolerate temps somewhere around straight boiling water ( 100 C) ...........at 100c the polyester film starts to go milky & the holo degrades............so be careful when trying .
Commercial application of holotape on curved surfaces of items uses a heated die of exactly the same shape of the item surface (+tape) to pressure form the holotape to the desired shape...........temp control is very precise. The above DIY method mimics the commercial process.
notes on epoxy coating to smooth the surface after holotape application prior to any additional painting:
painting & hanging to drip after degassing takes 3 coats to get the lure surface smooth again as the retained epoxy coat is quite thin.
Lovely glossy coat ............its just thin.
The use of a rotisserie enables a single thicker coat to be applied to re-establish a smooth surface to the lure after holotape application.