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  1. KenK, thanks much for the kind words.I am really grateful to have ,the opportunity to show these here on Stripersonline.com, and even more grateful to have people such as yourself take the time to look through them. These specialty works are a fairly recent journey for me, as building "fishers" was what I basically have always done. And seeing buddies use them successfully over the years the greatest reward imaginable. Lowend has a few of my earliest shown above and to see the beginning sitting next to current day is kind of great. I always built for them and enjoyed every moment doing it. I hope I have the opportunity and ability to continue in the future. Thank you again KenK.
  2. Lowend buddy, going to throw up a reply simply because it is hard not to do so with the personalities mentioned. All of whom are top shelf fishermen and without a doubt, to a man, unique characters in their own right. Tony "Cheech," a long running and reigning Jedi master. The local Yoda of bucktails! Known for his skill in that department from Breezy to Montauk and back again. You know that If you see Cheech throw a plug on his line, best to duck. Because it just might just be a biblical sign of the impending Apocolypse! (laughing) Richie! A burly, high energy, old guy, ( <-- had to do that) newer "regular" kid on the block that I have been fortunate enough to have gotten to know over the past few years. A favorite that can bust chops with the best of them. A genuinely great guy...Cracks me the hell up. Canarsie Jeff and Noto... Some of the fishing history and stories of experiences shared with them, are simply put, surreal, comical, tragic, inspirational and as meaningful, as could ever be stated. Fishermen are known to exaggerate when telling a story about a great day. But the three of us over the years have been blessed to have shared more once in a lifetime, epic days, together on the water. than would ever be believed. Without a hint of exaggeration needing to be added to the story. A most treasured cash of fishing memories that no one could ever even put into words. Well, except for Jeff... No one tells a story, or recalls every detail, like Canarsie Jeff. His name can't even be mentioned without a head shake and a smile. Best of the best that has been known on quite a few occassions, to use his two hundred dollar off the rack rod and reel setups, to point blank embarrass all others that fish around him. Finally, I don't think that there are any worries about the torch being carried at Tilden and Breezy. Along with Ken, who has always been well known for being the showman and the most publicly vocal advocate, expressing his undying passion with relentless tenacity and table pounding, never backing away from a fight, there have always been and continue to be, a few others behind the scenes, devoting a great deal of time, effort, and countless hours of both bureaucratic and at times hard, physical work, in an effort to represent and look out for the the fishermen and their interests, as well as the Park as a whole. A notable one to come onto the scene in the past few years being Ed Rapp, Pres. of Gateway Striper Club. I think that he, his club's membership and others that continue to emerge going forward, will hopefully continue to carry the torch with the same determination as all of those that came before them. Thanks again Lowend. Wishing you and all a great Fall!
  3. Lowend buddy, that is indeed an old one. An old Meade Classic, named after Bill Meade one of the very early LIBBA members and one of the three or four people reasonable for getting Ft. Tilden open to fishing and Breezy Point Jetty to 4 wheel drives. Someone very important and special to me as well as others. The man that I built a very large run of a bunch of styles and sizes of plugs for recently specifically to honor his memory and whom was often represented in my packaging. I used that rubber stamp with my name on a very few plugs in the late 90's and then a very small handful in and prior to 2007 I believe. I stopped putting a name on any of my plugs and stamped only the metal lips with am A from 2007 on. Thanks Lowend. You made my day.
  4. Lowend "thank you" for taking the time to leave a note. Appreciated greatly. To a guy like me that always did this stuff to simply hear about a guy like you catching a few and that a lure I made might have been partially responsible for a smile or two along the way... That's kind of about as good as it gets. You also mentioned a key name of an incredible fisherman and very close friend. Jim Hammer AKA Transit Jim, along with buddies like Canarsie Jeff ,whom I have mentioned a few times along the way... It's fishing brothers like them that made this fishing thing so damn special for me over the years. Thanks again...
  5. Goldy, thanks. What a true class act Mr. Paul Hancock is and someone that I consider a true and genuine friend. As well as the " beloved by all that are fortunate enough to have come across his path," Mr. Ron Muccie... And of course the legend that is Mr. Mike Fixter! Who is probably standing in his shop right now, sharpening up his chisels somewhere on the other side of the beach, as he prepares to freehand up another bunch of beauties... There really are some pretty top shelf, inspirational guys with decades of experience out there doing this stuff. Sitting in their shops and "throwing a little paint on a stick." I feel kind of honored to be around at a time where we are all fortunate enough to be inspired by great people, and builders, such as these..
  6. I turned on the lights in the shop a little over a week ago after almost almost two seasons. I did so in an attempt to focus as best I could through the stuff going on in my head moment and put together this lure. Like Morningwood has done here, the individual I was attempting to build for has shown me great support, encouragement and friendship over the past few years... Fellow plug builder, Paul Hancock also known as "Ace," of Ace Lures. A few years back, Paul's beautiful " spider on spider web" theme plugs, where partially responsible for my transitioning over from just pure "fishers" that I had always built for the locals, into more creative works. The premise behind this lure's faded and worn artwork is derived partially from Paul's 18 years of service in the Army Reserves. Where he served at a rank of Captain. Combined with a personal life-circumstance that is not my place to publicly share. With that said, Paul Hancock, friend and fellow builder, is a top-shelf kind of guy and an individual that has shown more positive supportive to me on a personal level over the past few years, than I can ever put into words.
  7. This plug was posted publicly today for the first time since it was created about a season and a half ago. It was put together for Morningwood --the gentleman who graciously started this thread-- and his family. So I thought it would be appropriate to also place it here. Thank you Kev for your friendship, encouragement and support over these past few years.
  8. This pic is a classic Mike... Love it. Look at all that beauty laid out all across that bench top. This pic should be printed out, matted and framed, signed and sold as a limited edition for hanging in the man caves of every surf rat from the West Coast to the East!
  9. Thank you Tommy... It was all a labor of love over the years and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to share it with so many friends. I should have stopped these postings pages ago. But I find that as I am cleaning things and getting affairs in order as the situation warrants, a few conversations with friends over the past two weeks have brought back memories of what actually goes it to all of this fishing and plug building stuff . The sport of surf fishing and all the great pleasures that it entails has been a way of life, for half of my life. It's crazy. Throw in the fact that along with the closest of friends, I was blessed to have been given the opportunity to enjoy it all during some of the greatest years of fishing in the surf that there has ever been. As far as plug building goes, anyone that has ever done it will agree with me when I say that no one aside from another builder will ever truly appreciate fully all that the guys out there that do "this" kind of thing, put into it all. They do it out of an obsession and above all else a passion. And to anyone that even attempts to drill a hole through a single piece of 7 inch wood and throws a coat of paint on it, be proud as hell of the group of people you have joined as you take on the challenge. For every name that is well known that does this thing, there are a literally a hundred guys out there sitting in garages and basements starting along the journey of trying to figure it all out. And along with them, another hundred dreaming of possibly one day giving it a try. In a world where nobody does much of anything with their own hands anymore, knowing that fact, that through all of this, "ol' school" ways of doing things still lives on? That, is in my opinion, a truly inspiring thing to know! Go into your garages or basements, grab a chunk a wood, a can of paint and a drill... And the next thing you know, you may be sitting there just as I am now, looking back and reflecting on a lifetime of having the opportunity to do something that can only be described as, absolutely freakin awesome... Tight lines!
  10. A smaller grouping of the approximately 25 different shapes, styles and sizes of "fishers" used by the locals. First photo of lure just painted and ready for finish. Others finished and assembled waiting for hooks
  11. I got a request last evening during a phone call with a buddy from his young daughter, to put this up as it is her favorite. A humorous representation of the Jamaica Bay, NY cousin of Locke Ness' " Nessy." It is now owned by a young couple and their son that frequent the waters of the Bay. The Jamaica Bay Creature
  12. Thank you PaulS. Means a great deal to hear someone finds them to be of worth.