Each Woodpecker bait is hand-turned on a lathe or carved from a clear mahogany blank. Mahogany has a specific gravity of .65, heavier than basswood or balsa. This allows for easy adjustment to make the bait float, sink quickly or slowly, or just hang suspended. Mahogany sands and finishes beautifully.
But the most distinctive feature of mahogany is its musical "tink." We can take advantage of this feature by incorporating internal rattles or moving ball bearings. Segmented baits "clack" as the segments wiggle back and forth.
The baits are drilled by hand, weighted according to function, primed and painted. The eyes, diving lips, and hardware are then installed, and the baits are hand-detailed with acrylic paints and other markings. The baits are sealed multiple times in the construction process, and finally clear-coated with a permanent, non-yellowing epoxy.
Most of our baits are "representational." That is, we don't try to make the bait into a detailed photographic copy of a real life baitfish. Instead, we use abstracted details and themes as a starting point toward recreating the feel of the bass baits made by Heddon and others in the mid-20th century. Sometimes, just for fun, we make updated versions of classic bass baits.
Many of our colors and patterns are based on one of three baits found in the Delta: shad, crawdad, and bluegill. We also do frogs, mice, and even a red-winged blackbird we call the "XR-71."
We would love to work with you to create new colors and designs. Just let us know what you have in mind.
Depending on the design, we custom-make our eyes and diving bills. Many of our baits feature Woodpecker's distinctive "bug eyes." Other use retro glass eyes. We rarely use stick-on adhesive eyes on any full-size bait.
We make our own diving lips for all of our jointed swimbaits. In this application, they produce a sinuous "wiggle" that is unlike anything you have seen before.
We use either stainless steel screw eyes and hardware, or we make our own out of 316L stainless steel. All penetrations of the bait body are sealed with epoxy.
We use strong stainless steel split rinks and quality treble hooks.
We offer walking stickbaits, glidebaits, two-, three-, and fourpiece wakebaits, crankbaits, mice, lipless crankbaits, minnow-darters, choppers, and little baits that we call "fireflies." All of our designs have been personally tested and approved by Amber Russo, who has been a professional bass guide in the Delta for many years.
If you slam your wooden bait against a rock, the epoxy top coat will get dinged. No problem. Super glue (cyanoacrylate) seals the top coat on the spot. Or, some five-minute epoxy works wonders. If you are perfectionist, try the epoxy product used by many bait makers: Devcon Two Ton. Devcon is very hard and very transparent. It will look best if you sand the damaged area lightly and brush on a thin coat of epoxy. Keep the bait in motion for 15 minutes or so, to prevent runs and drips. Of course, any penetrations of the body need to be sealed immediately to prevent water intrusion.
If the damage isn't catastrophic, we can probably recondition and restore your bait to collector condition. Just contact us and tell us what you need.