JButts

The Glider Miracle Worker: Thanks Jigman

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If you search for glider in the lure building forum you'll see again and again user Jigsaw posting the following advice to folks trying out building gliders: 

 

"..find out how much lead it takes to get the plug to sink like you want.  Then split that into two equal slugs. Place one as far forward as possible, then the second towards the tail. Location of the second one will depend on the glider. You want it to sink flat or slightly tail down. Whatever location does that for the second slug is correct. Shape will also come into play. Flat sides seem to glide easier. Swim better too. At least for me." 

 

This definitely works! Try it! I made two different 4" shapes from 3/4" pine board. See my MSPaint Drawing. I failed to get them to swim at all and read a bit here. Kept seeing Jigman's advice in various threads. As a last resort, tried it and it works like a charm. One of them glides nicely turns about ninety degrees. The other one has a much narrower walk. Both of them position themselves slightly nose up in the water--one sinking, the other barely floats. 

 

I used a gram scale to measure the weight. 

 

A lot of threads I saw, people had weights in their plugs and were asking for advice, which Jigman offered. I did this too. The key to building gliders seems to be following Jigman's advice after you get your shaping done but before you drill any weight holes. 

 

A couple questions come up now: 

 

1) what shape lends itself to casting into the wind? The two shapes I have can't really cast into the wind, they flutter a lot.

 

2) These plugs seem to require extremely exact weighting and I'm thinking epoxy alone could throw things off. What would be the best way to tune a finished plug? Guessing the issue would be overweight rather than underweight, so I was thinking one could just drill out some of the weight as a final tuning step on a finished plug. 

 

 

Thanks Jigman for your sage advice, and repeating it over and over whenever the glider thing comes up!

 

 

 

 

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Glad that my advice helped you out :)

 

As to your questions, my gliders seem to cast pretty well. The better casting ones seem to have less of a dropped belly and less drastic taper. 

 

The larger the glider, the lower the tolerances. Smaller ones are definitely harder to get right and epoxy can throw them off. I don't think it's a case of over weighting them. More along the lines of the balance is thrown off and it is now a little nose heavy. I have drilled out lead during testing to get them to sink right.

 

Note that the find the amount that sinks the plug and split in two is a good starting place. I have found cases where more weight towards the tail and less in the front, as long as it sinks right, can produce some interesting results.

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I made four new gliders--two in the vein of a perch shape and two more of a sardine or anchovy type shape. These ones I experimented with a taper toward nose both in width and profile. Idea was to make the tail area more buoyant/bigger volume hoping to make for better casting lures.

 

Tested them. They do cast a lot better. But the glide action wasn't so hot. More of a narrow walk turning no more than 45 degree off the direction of the retrieve. 

 

With the two perch shapes I ended up attaching the line to the tail screw eye and adding some weight to the nose. This made for a very narrow fast-paced walk which was ok. But when I worked the plug like I would a spook, it got a pretty nice wider walk going and I think these will work well in that way. 

 

Don't know how they cast in a headwind though and that's what counts will try later. 

 

Conclusion: hypothesize that you need at least as much volume on the nose end as on the tail end, and possibly much more volume up there? 

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7 hours ago, DreamsOfHatteras said:

Hmmmm....I wonder where Jiggy heard that about weighting first.... :):):):):)

Jerkbait taught me that one. You taught me several other things on gliders :)

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2 hours ago, JButts said:

 

 

Conclusion: hypothesize that you need at least as much volume on the nose end as on the tail end, and possibly much more volume up there? 

Mine are tapered similar on nose and tail, maybe slightly more on the tail. Just don't want to get too wild on the taper. Flat sides will help the glide. 

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On 8/14/2020 at 5:08 PM, Jig Man said:

Mine are tapered similar on nose and tail, maybe slightly more on the tail. Just don't want to get too wild on the taper. Flat sides will help the glide. 

 

I made two more shapes. 3.5" and 4.25". The nose tapers back about 1/2 inch the tail tapers about 3/4--in profile I mean.

 

4.25": 20.2g with screw eyes and a belly hook; 11.4 grams of lead in tail, 9g in nose. 

Walks a lot better than the other shapes I did earlier. 

 

3.5": 17.1 w/ hook and screw eyes. 6.4g lead in the nose 7.6 in tail. Walks with nose up, waking kind of. Gonna try adding weight on both ends see what happens. 

 

I drilled one of the weight holes deeper than needed so I could add more weight. 

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I did some water testing of the 3.5" shape that tends to wake. What happens is this guy walks ok but also tends to want to porpoise a bit. Not all the time but often enough to be problem. One interesting thing: it doesn't have a pronounced tail down sinking attitude. Sinks sort of level really. I have two weight holes for the nose and two for the tail. I didn't record what size weight is in each hole, just the aggregate nose and tail weights. But it looks like the larger weights are in the holes closest to the nose and closest to the tail. Wondering if that is throwing it off. 

 

I might try drilling out a couple grams from the nose and tail holes and try adding weight to the holes on the belly hook sides. 

 

Interesting stuff! 

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I drilled out the tail-side tail weight (two tailweight holes total) about 1 gram worth of weight in the smaller glider, which had the nose up/porposing problem. That fixed that problem. I then added a little more weight in the nose and that was even better. 

 

While I was at it I took out a needle that I up-sized the belly hook (only use one hook on my plugs) recently and it was casting bad. Foudn out the difference in weights between the old and new hook and drilled out about 2/3 of that weight from the nose weight on the plug. 

 

That fixed the casting problem, and made it swim better too. 

 

These fine-tuning of plug weights are fascinating exercise.   

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I'll often take a drill, extra lead, different hook sizes, and a knife with me when testing new stuff, especially gliders. On the water tweaking can teach you a lot. Different placement of lead, different weights, changing hook size, adjusting shape, etc. I've learned a bunch of stuff that way. 

 

Definitely worth trying different locations for lead or the amount of lead in each place.

 

My gliders sink about level, just slightly tail down. I go as far as adding a snap on the line tie, especially on smaller gliders, to account for that weight. Usually just do one shot of lead towards the nose and another between the belly hook and tail.

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Jigman thanks for your post. That snap on the nose while testing--great idea. I think these gliders would be a great exercise for beginner plugmakers...trying to show them the importance of weight placement. It wouldn't be too difficult for them to make something that would swim but in the process of trying the weights they would see the plug go from a stick of wood that does nothing to something that does something pretty cool. And they could cut pretty much any shape. 

 

I think the great thing about the glider work is the payoff from the precision in measuring and placing weights.

 

Another thing I learned is the need of a precise scale. 

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