I’ve been honored to be a part of Do-It molds for 3 years now, but really my Christmas gift when I was 12 years old was when it all started. That year was when I got the materials and lead pouring supplies to start making my own crappie and white bass jigs. Fifteen years have passed an my mold collection has grown substantially and in my co-angler days on the FLW Tour, I was always the guy known for having the extra shaky heads and drop shot weights.
I have fellow anglers ask me constantly, “I want to get into pouring lead but where do I start and what molds do I need?” Where to start is the question you have to ask yourself. For instance a bass angler will want different products than a walleye angler. Being a bass angler I have gotten into making terminal weight, tying my own jigs, and many other things. I currently have a hair jig box that has 75 custom tied hair jigs in it for when fishing off-shore ledge lakes. Being as how buying them in the tackle shop would cost an angler around $10 a piece, it certainly has paid for itself. But tying bucktail hair jigs is something that requires a little more equipment so I suggest keep it simple when starting out.
By far the items that an angler always seems to out of and heading to tackle shops for are: shaky heads, dropshot weights, and now the popular ned heads. These are finesse fishing supplies, something many bass anglers depend on heavily to get bites. However, using these baits you want a lot of on hand because you’re going to lose a lot of them also; it’s just the nature of the beast. So those are the three Do-It molds I suggest anglers to start with. Each year I pour roughly 250 shaky heads, 500 dropshot weights, and 200 ned heads. If you were to purchase that many baits at the tackle store it would cost you thousands, where if you’re doing it yourself you only out a couple hundred dollars; maybe about 10% of the actual cost. Once you purchase a lead pot and the molds; you’re only out the hooks, lead, components, and Pro-Tec Powder Paint. So the costs go down even more as you want to pour more baits.
The last thing everyone asks me is, “how much time does it take?” Everywhere in the country, no matter where you live, there is always an off season or down time when you stuck with cabin fever. This is a great time to work on building your own tackle for the upcoming tournament season or planning fishing trip. Personally I get a lot of joy out of making my own tackle and then using it in the success of tournaments or sharing with fellow anglers (with the exception of some custom jig skirts, those are top secret). Finally, the last piece of advice I encourage everyone is SAFETY. Make sure you are wearing head resistance protective gloves and eyes wear when pouring hot lead. There is some risk involved so use your best judgement.