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Thread: Do 3D Printed Fishing Lures Count As Special Projects?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drm50 View Post
    I got some feed back from one of the 3D nuts. He isn't a fisherman but threw another idea out. He is talking about printing the main body as two shells to be glued together. I like the idea because you could form the wire so it would be locked and would stop any tendacy for plug to rotate on wire. Also form dropper for front hook all with one wire. I have some little C clamps he printed and surfaces are smooth. As far as finish all I want is black which he says can be the color of the material. I can put eyes on and be done. Fancy finishes aren't my dept. and my paint guy is in a rest home.
    I can't believe it! You won't believe it. Last night I started drawing up some plans based on that very thing. I spent this morning on the internet looking for the best way to laminate the two halves together once I have them printed up.

    One of the things that brought that idea about for me was the frustration I encountered trying to bend my wire at just the right angles. In bending the wire I had to overlap the wire in certain places so it created a situation where the inletting or slots that I modeled on the undersides of my lure-bodies then became a bit to narrow for the wire to fit into. I did eventually get it to work after putting together a make-shift wiring-bending jig but still, the fact that I had to overlap certain spots of those bends made it difficult to slip my wire forms up into place.

    I took some photos of this and I'll try to post them either tomorrow or next Monday some time. I did also get enough wire bent into the right angles to fit them into the three prototypes I've been working with. I'll post photos of that too.

    Funny how different folks can come up with the same ideas like this. I've decided to break down and order some colored ABS filament for this follow up iteration of my Micro-Plopper lure bodies. I'm thinking of getting something in an orange color so that all I have to do is shoot some cheap spray paint on the upper backs to get them to look a bit more fishy with the undersides a little more flashy.

    Although I seem to be having enough buoyancy with my lure bodies as they originally printed, I think that printing two halves and then gluing them together should give me just a bit more floatability even if I make the walls of the lure just a bit thicker than they are now. The thickness of my existing 3D printed Micro-Plopper lure bodies was also of some concern to me. The thinner the walls, the more prone to breakage.

    HollowPoint

  2. #22
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    I'm at total loss on this 3D stuff, I know nothing. One guy is telling me halves can be "sonically welded" instead of glued. I thought the materials were color coded I didn't realize they came in colors. On the strength of the body, I bought plastic lure bodies years ago from Herters that came in halves. They had reinforcement ribs molded into them and had nub on one that snapped in hole on other. I'm going to bring that up with 3D guys.
    Also for prop have scarfed up a screw prop off a toy boat that looks like it could be the model for the prop.
    The wire form tool I just made will make exact duplicates. I do have to make a index plate and locating pin to finish it. I have several different hand held wire form tools but it's hard to make exact duplicates with them. I'm thinking .041 at the minimum to hold up without deforming when you have fish on.

  3. #23
    Boolit Master
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    It sounds like you're making good headway. Regarding the propellers; the ones I printed up initially were just your basic angled propellers and they seemed to work real well in the water. They spun reliably when I placed them on a thin straight wire and just pulled them along by hand in the water. Then I got to looking closer at the propeller of my store-bought Whopper-Plopper lure.

    I noticed that the propeller of the store-bought lure had more of a cup-shape to it; like the cup of a hand. It was that "Cup" shape that really caused the plopping sound as the propeller spun all the way around and re-entered the water. This was when I re-drew my model of the propeller to look more like the CAD models I posted in one of my previous posts; and ultimately it was the same shape I used to make the 3D printed mold to cast the little urethane propellers.

    I'm finding that there so many different ways to design and make up such lures that if I don't stick to the designs I've started I can easily drift off into so many different ways that I'll never get this project done.

    For example, as I was figuring out the correct angles to bend my wire I started with some thin copper wire for ease of bending. I got it out of some old electrical wiring I had laying around. During the course of that wire-bend testing I discovered that I could use the insulation from that electrical wire as my bead-bearing that fits behind the propeller. It was an ultra simple solution to take the place of having to make those little bead-bearing out of some other materials. I just slip a short length of the insulation off of the copper wire and then cut it into tiny lengths. It already had a hole down the middle that was the prefect diameter.

    Things are looking up. I'm hoping to have these lures assembled by next weekend so I can run my first tests.

    HollowPoint

  4. #24
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    The prop is what I look at as the main problem. The body is just a float for props benifit. If I get it whipped the rest of plug can be made many ways. In other words the prop is the lure. I looked back at past lures for similar props and only fairly recent popular lures using one blade props were Arbogast. The surface lures used Alumilum and sinkers were brass. All in line on wire in front of lure. My concern is how much bother I'm going to put on 3D guys to trail & error the prop.

  5. #25
    Boolit Master
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    There are different ways to go about designing or acquiring the little propeller for your specific lures. I don't want to come off sounding like I know it all because the fact is I know very little about designing fishing lures. I'm working off of the tiny bit that I do know from all of my trial and error methods of learning about designing in general.

    If I were looking for the easiest way to go about designing an appropriately shaped propeller I would do what I always do before putting alot of time and effort into my projects. I do an internet search of "Free CAD models" of whatever component I'm needing. On the Thingyverse website 3Der's will upload their models for fishing lures, hooks, propellers of various kinds, etc.. Just create an account for free and download the sample CAD model. Alot of times the download includes the modeling files or the STL files that can go straight to the 3D printer for printing.

    Back when I was drawing up models for the adjustable rear peep sight for my air guns I was directed to the McMaster Carr website. They sell all kinds of hardware items. Many of their hardware items include the SolidWorks files that can be downloaded for free so you can incorporate the hardware they sell with the models your drawing up. It saved me alot of the time it would have taken me to also draw up nuts and bolts and other small components.

    I mention this because if you can find an already modeled propeller with the SolidWorks or other CAD software files included, you're on your way to being done. Even if the propeller files you come across look like what you're after but they are sized for a something much larger, in theory you can scale it down within the CAD software to suit your needs. Some of the 3D printing "Slicer" software also has the ability to scale down a model to be printed. If it's two or three bladed propeller you can remove all but the one lone propeller to get what you're after.

    I'm starting to ramble on now so I'll stop here.

    HollowPoint

  6. #26
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    All that hi tech is Greek to me. I did all my design work for machinery and such on a drawing board with a pencil scales and a thing called a slide rule. I will pass the info to the 3D guys but they probably know that stuff. I don't want to run them off. I wish I had 3D connections to a died in wool fisherman that had the stuff these guys do.

  7. #27
    Boolit Master
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    There is such a bunch of guys with a website offering a dedicated software for those who want to build their own fishing lures. It's called LureBuilder.

    https://www.wellinglures.com/builder/edit

    Go to the YouTube site and punch that into the search feature. If I'm not mistaken you can use their software to design your own lures and they'll make them for you and in some cases they'll even convert the CAD files to STL files so you can get your 3D printing friends to print out your designs for you. This same software designer may even offer to make the lure you design. I'm not really sure. I just skimmed over their web pages. I usually just work at my project alone. It may take a bit longer to get them done by when I do get them done I can say I did it myself.

    HollowPoint

  8. #28
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    My cousin by marriage had one leg amputated last year. He has gotten into 3D printing so much that he has built two machines already. He is currently building one large enough to print himself a prosthetic leg(he hates the one he got at the VA hospital). He is a Large man and quite the character. He is a Vietnam combat veteran and many of his problems are Agent Orange related. Sorry for the thread drift.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

  9. #29
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Texas by God View Post
    My cousin by marriage had one leg amputated last year. He has gotten into 3D printing so much that he has built two machines already. He is currently building one large enough to print himself a prosthetic leg(he hates the one he got at the VA hospital). He is a Large man and quite the character. He is a Vietnam combat veteran and many of his problems are Agent Orange related. Sorry for the thread drift.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
    No problem for me. I too have a relative who is a Vietnam vet with "Agent Orange" related problems. I hope that 3D printed prosthetic leg works out. I can't see any reason why it wouldn't. I've see some marvelous stuff printed up online, including prosthetics.

    I hope to be back later today to upload those pics of my 3D printed fishing lures. I got a chance to assemble and paint them yesterday so I'm ready to test them now. The paint jobs are laughable but no matter, I've seen some of the stupidest looking lures catch fish. I just want to test to see if they track through the water correctly as the propeller is spinning.

    HollowPoint

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by KMac View Post
    Well I would like to see it. Throw some pictures up and show us what you are creating.
    Same here at least let us drool!!!!!!
    I started out with nothing and I still have most of it left.
    Paralyzed Veterans of America

    Looking for a Hensly &Gibbs #258 any thing from a two cavity to a 10cavity

  11. #31
    Boolit Master
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    Nearing The End Of This Project

    I got a few of the different iterations all assembled. Each has a slightly different size to it. I wanted to see for myself which appeared to be optimum in terms of size and shape. They'll all work but some of the considerations I had was, given that they are so light weight, will I be able to cast them out far enough to do me any good?

    Will they track through the water in an upright position even with the propeller spinning behind them. The mid-sized samples are cast-able but it turns out that the weight of the hooks and the split-rings were not quite enough to keep them from wanting to turn onto their sides as a result of the torque that the small propeller was imparting.

    They all had enough buoyancy to float at the right depth when I crimped a small .177 cal pellet onto the center hook-eye. I tested them with this added weight and they tracked almost perfectly, even with the propeller spinning behind them. What this means now is that my latest iterations will have this added weight added to the inside of the lure before the two halves are glued together. That should solve the only problem that was keeping these 3D printed Micro-Plopper lures from performing as I'd hoped they would.

    Here are a few more pics of my latest CAD models of what I think will be the optimum size for this Mirco-Plopper lure. (1 1/4" long X .66" tall) I also included an incredibly blurry photo of an actual Whopper Plopper, a Chinese knockoff Plopper, and one of my 3D printed Micro-Plopper lures floating in a bucket of water so you could see that compared to the original, my 3D printed lure is darn near at the same float level. Believe it or not, that was by design.

    So now what I have to do with these already assembled Micro-Plopper lures is to drill a small hole near the center-bottom of the bodies and glue that extra little bit of weight to them so they'll track through the water correctly. I hope to be able to take them out this weekend some time to see if they do any good.

    By the way; you have my permission to laugh at my paint jobs of these lures. I wasn't really concerned to much about how they look at this point. I just want them to run through the water in a similar manner to the original full sized Whopper Plopper.

    HollowPoint
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    Last edited by HollowPoint; 08-27-2019 at 03:13 PM.

  12. #32
    Boolit Master Good Cheer's Avatar
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    No split rings yet?
    Reason for my asking is that I'm collecting materials to duplicate the lures my grandfather used back around Eisenhower's presidency. About like a green pencil with props.

  13. #33
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Good Cheer View Post
    No split rings yet?
    Reason for my asking is that I'm collecting materials to duplicate the lures my grandfather used back around Eisenhower's presidency. About like a green pencil with props.
    The split-rings I ordered showed up the day before yesterday. I ordered the smallest size I could get. I think they are #0. I was hoping that tiny amount of added weight to my Micro lures would be enough to help my lures to track upright in the water but as it turns out I needed a bit more weight. That's all be taken care of now.

    I ended up drilling some shallow 1/8" holes at the bottoms of all my prototypes and super-gluing a small cylinder of lead into those holes. That should be good enough to testing purposes. I thought if I cannibalized one of my existing ultra-light lures and took the slightly larger treble hooks of it and used them as replacements for the ultra tiny treble hooks I'd ordered before that might be enough weight to center my lures in the water. It wasn't enough though; I still had to add that 8 grains of lead to the bottom-centers of all my 3D printed Micro-Lures.

    I ordered all of the stuff I needed off of the fleabay website. I wanted to just get what I needed without having to buy hundreds and hundreds of something I only needed a few of. I'm ready for some official river testing now.

    HollowPoint.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master
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    SUCCESS! Kind Of.

    I got a chance to get out to the river this morning to do some official testing of my 3D Printed Micro-Plopper lures. I took a total of six of them with me ranging from the earlier prototypes to a couple of the latest prototypes.

    I found that with the earlier configurations, pulling them on a string through a bucket of water was not quite the same as reeling them in from a ten or fifteen yard cast into the river. With the earlier prototypes, the faster I reeled them in the more they wanted to tilt over on their sides. With the second set of prototypes, the ones with the wider or taller top to bottom profiles I found that they performed really well.

    The third set of prototypes also tended to want to tilt over onto their sides if I reeled them in faster than just a slow retrieve. That was a shame cause those latest prototypes were the ones I felt were optimum in shape and size. They worked fine as long as I reeled them in at a slow pace. If they would have gotten caught up in the river current they most likely would have spun around and round along with the little propellers.

    I was elated when I tried one out of that second set of prototypes. It confirmed my suspicions about a Micro-Plopper being a good idea for those fishermen who like to fish with ultra-light tackle. I was really happy when that little Micro-Plopper lure took the hit from little bass. The little bass wasn't to much bigger than the little lure but, it was a fish; and that little fish put my little 3D Printed Lure on the score board.

    I got one other hit with that same little Micro-Plopper lure but I wasn't able to connect and bring it in so, I guess that one doesn't count. Even though it didn't count it did confirm to me that my little Micro-Plopper lure would work.

    I also tried my luck at trout fishing while I was there. I used a Rooster-Tail spinner for that though. There too, I got about a half dozen good hits but I got nothing to show for it. I wasn't able to set the hook well enough to bring them in.

    I did take my goofy looking SunGlasses-Mounted video camera so I was able to record the fish I caught. I also recorded the fish that hit but got away. I just have to edit that footage down to a small enough size to be able upload to my YouTube account for show and tell.

    I'll be back once I get that video uploaded.

    HollowPoint

  15. #35
    Boolit Master

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    I am following this because I am impressed with your work and would love one of those little spinners, I don't even claim expertise, but you might try a hard plastic jewel bead as a prop stop/bearing to reduce torque. Used to use those little translucent beads from the craft store for inline spinners.
    "In God we trust, in all others, check the manual!"

  16. #36
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcren View Post
    I am following this because I am impressed with your work and would love one of those little spinners, I don't even claim expertise, but you might try a hard plastic jewel bead as a prop stop/bearing to reduce torque. Used to use those little translucent beads from the craft store for inline spinners.
    I did look into those beads you're referring to but the smallest ones they sold were still a bit to large for this size lure. If I'm not mistaken they measured 3mm in diameter. They also had brass beads that were slightly smaller but my reason for not getting those had to do with weight. I was afraid that even though the brass beads were smaller than the smallest plastic bead it still might weigh more than the plastic bead. Now that I've found my cast urethane propellers to be buoyant the weight of those tiny brass beads may be a non-issue. Another type of bead that comes to mind for this application would be those tiny little beads you see in Navajo Indian bead work. Those are really tiny beads. I'll look into it further.

    I know now what issues I need to address to get my 3D Printed Micro-Plopper lures to perform as I think they should. I think all it will take is a bit of scaling up of the height of the main body of the lure. This should improve not only the overall buoyancy but will also counteract the tendency for these tiny lures to want to lean in the direction that the propeller is spinning. On the last iterations of my Micro-Plopper lure I actually installed my lead weight inside the lure so there was no unnecessary drag as it tracked through the water. It helped alot but not enough to allow me to reel the lure in any faster than a slow pace. An interesting side-note is that my store bought Whopper-Plopper also tends to tilt in the direction that the propeller is spinning if I reel it in fast.

    Another tweak to counteract the torque that the propeller is imparting onto the body of my lure will be to incorporate a small chamfer on the front right leading edge of the lure. It only has to be a very slight chamfer. This will steer the resistance of the water as the lure cuts through that water off to the right side of the lure to mitigate some of that torque caused by the propeller.

    I've also revamped the geometry of my little propeller as well. I took a closer look that the propeller of my store bought Whopper-Plopper lure and found that on the factory Whopper-Plopper propeller the actual blade doesn't just stick out from the side of the propeller shank like my home made propellers do. The factory prop-blade actually begins at the front-most end of the shank and sort of flows backward into an ark which curves outward to form what we see as the propeller. As the water that the lure is cutting through flows backward, it's guided along that ark toward the cup in the propeller and forces the propeller to spin true. It's hard to picture in one's mind so I'll try to remember to post a pic of my new CAD rendering of the changes I've made to my propeller. Since my home made propellers just stick nearly straight out from the propeller shank, they do spin nicely but they also create resistance to the water flow at the outer edge of the propeller which imparts a deflection force on the propeller shank bringing it out of alignment with the little wire that it spins on causing additional spin resistance as well.

    The previous mold I made to cast my little propellers was a single cavity mold. The one I'll be 3D printing next will be a four cavity mold. It should speed up my casting efforts for the next testing phase. Although there's always room for more improvement, I'm thinking the next tweaks I make to my Micro-Plopper lure and propeller models should be the last tweaks I have to make for me to have some good reliable lures; and if they fall apart on me, I'll just make another one.

    HollowPoint

  17. #37
    Boolit Master
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    A Bit Of Video Proof That You Aren't Just Being Strung Along

    Here is my short, cobbled together video of the recent field tests I did on the various iterations of the 3D Printed Micro-Plopper fishing lure I've been working on.

    I actually caught a fish. That's more than I can say with my authentic Whopper Plopper lure. I have yet to catch a fish with that store bought lure and it's not cause I haven't tried. I've just had no luck with it yet.

    That's not to say it's not an awesome lure, it's just that I haven't caught anything with it yet; not even a bite.

    Word of warning: I suck at making videos. To record this video I was wearing a pair of those cheap "SunGlass-Video-Camera" units and I wasn't paying attention to the fact that with every small movement of my head the video tended to get kind of jerky.

    You may want to take a dramamine tablet before watching.

    There's a bit more work to be done before I call this project completed. I'm thinking a couple more weeks and I'll have a home made 3D Printed Ultra-Light Micro Plopper lure I can be proud of.

    HollowPoint


  18. #38
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    There was never any doubt in my mind that UL version would catch fish. I have no further progress on prop. On beads if you are still looking, there are hollow brass beads and glass beads still avaible in small sizes. I use glass on all my big Musky spinners. They do make a difference vs plastic.

    The prop on this lure is probably biggest problem I've had in lure making. I've always been able to get around things by stampings or lazer cut blades. In fact I have the worlds smallest delta buzz blades that were Lazer cut.
    I've been thing of subbing one of them for prop. I know it would work and catch fish, but would it be as good.

  19. #39
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drm50 View Post
    There was never any doubt in my mind that UL version would catch fish. I have no further progress on prop. On beads if you are still looking, there are hollow brass beads and glass beads still avaible in small sizes. I use glass on all my big Musky spinners. They do make a difference vs plastic.

    The prop on this lure is probably biggest problem I've had in lure making. I've always been able to get around things by stampings or lazer cut blades. In fact I have the worlds smallest delta buzz blades that were Lazer cut.
    I've been thing of subbing one of them for prop. I know it would work and catch fish, but would it be as good.
    I don't know if I've mentioned this on this thread or one of the other online locations where I'm posting my trials and errors with this lure project but, I've caught bass with just bare hooks before. It was during the spawning season so the bass were easily trigger into striking. I mention this because you seem to be questioning whether bass or fish in general would bite your lure if you used one type of prop over the other. Under the right conditions fish will bite just about anything that even faintly resembles something bite-able.

    The propeller's main reason for being put on these lures is to make noise, I think. The prop off of a buzz-bait does that in spades. Give it a shot and see how it works out. You might be surprised at the outcome. At the very worse you'll then know if it will work or not.

    HollowPoint
    Last edited by HollowPoint; 09-01-2019 at 11:32 AM.

  20. #40
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    I have no doubt about anything will catch bass at certain time. I have a lot of one offs I made with rear buzz blades or fabricated chopper type props like on the obsolete Helin Fish Cake. They all will catch fish sooner or later. If you get a Plug Collectors book you can see not much new hasn't already been tried. The only big advances that have been made is in materials and methods of production. Some newer plugs that had a good rep were ruined by changing processes of manufacture.

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