"The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive but attainable, a perpetual series of occasions for hope." John Buchan

Monday, October 3, 2011

Making Candy!

Well Jason and I have been both thinking similar things for some time and recently we both realized what the other was thinking and got motivated to do some testing.  That being that most of our soft plastic tubes are the Southern Pro Scale Head Lit'l Hustlers 1.5" or 2" tubes.  These tubes have the color on the tube head made up from a layer of glitter that is manufactured onto them, SCALE HEAD LIT'L HUSTLERS.  Based on the help from TubeDude we had started with these great little tubes using the red scale with chartreuse tail with a hand painted jig head TubeDude also makes with a matching red glitter paint job, the famous RC (red-chartreuse) Killer.  TubeDude users other color combos as well but that was the intro jig for Jason, myself and many others. Well like a good student does Jason and I both have acquired a nice selection of other colors of these little tubes.  In our quest to make and paint up our own jig heads we wanted to make jig heads that matched the soft plastics we used.  Right out of the gate we nailed the RC Killer with the 'ruby slipper' powder paint, but for the other tubes that we had we were not where we wanted to be.

Since we got started with making our own jigs this last January we have seen a lot of other options in terms of paint, molds, etc...  One key one, and what this post is about, are the transparent "Candy" colors Pro-Tec offers.  They offer a wide selection of transparent colors, Pro-Tec Powder Paints, and Jason for part of his birthday picked up a number of them to play with.  Blue, Pink, Orange, Green (maybe a bit too minty?), Purple, and Yellow.  He also picked up another set of Silver and Gold glitter overcoats and 600 or so new jig hooks.  So we made plans to get together today and make another batch of jigs.

We started off with the can of nails.  We have been using nails to test out color combos before we waste a jig on it.  The nails work pretty well but since the steel is a bit darker and less shinny then fresh cast lead you have to use your imagination  just a bit to visualize how it will look.  Anyway it helps get us to the end result faster and with less waste.  Might one day results in some really interesting furniture framed up with some pretty nails!  We worked through the colors and only had a couple "difficult" results to improve on before we were ready.  We first got our glitter base figured out.  We chose to use the silver glitter clear coat we have been using all along as a high concentration silver glitter undercoat to put on the jig first and then lay the candy coat over it to give us nearly the same colored glitter effect the scale heads have.  This worked out really really well for Purple, Blue, Yellow, and what we will call 2X Silver Glitter (meaning just a heavy coat of just clear coat with silver glitter).  The Orange, Green (minty?), and Pink needed a different approach.

Here are a few pics of the end results on some larger jig heads to help show off the effects.  Sorry I'm not a lighting or camera guru so the pics leave something to be desired.  Also note that the extra Hot Pink (upper of the 2 pink), Black with Silver (above the pinks), and Light Blue (lower of the 2 blue) were extra tests not tied to new paint.  Well the pink one also used the new candy pink but also other previous paints too.  The blue was using the super glow blue that produced a lighter but still transparent blue good for certain plastics in terms of matching.  The black & silver was an attempt to better support the black with silver scale head tube jig.

Pink really wasn't that hard just that the scale head tubes with pink never use pink glitter, they are simply pink plastics with silver, blue, or black scale glitter heads.  So for our setup here we were trying to match the pink tube that had a silver glitter scale head.  We knew the simple 2X silver glitter head would work but also wanted a Pink with Silver Glitter overcoat option too.  So really instead of putting the glitter under the pink we put it on top.  Pink solved!

Green really looks like mint and not the true green I had hoped for.  The color does match the color tab on the lid so it's not for lack of accurate packaging...  Though that doesn't help online ordering either...  We tried a few things with green like doing a base undercoat of our solid green color then the glitter coat and then the candy green coat.  That helped some but 3 coats is asking for a full on "bloody nose" when the over cure baking takes place.  "Bloody nose" being that when you bake/cure a jig in the oven that has too much paint on it the paint will flow to the tip of the jig that points down and create some really interesting "drip" shapes...  The green in this setup was also still not dead on to what we wanted.  Looking at the color it was leaning a bit toward a blue green so we figured a bit more yellow might help so we changed from doing a silver glitter base coat to doing a gold glitter base coat and then the candy green on top.  That ended up being our "best effort" selection that looks plenty good enough to be happy with.  Not perfect but I don't know that a fish is going to care so we shouldn't either...

Orange was hard because being a lighter color it was more transparent then some of the others, except maybe yellow.  This resulted in more diversity in the quality of the orange color depending on how thick the paint covered the head.  So after some testing with orange to try to get the best combo figured out we simply chose to do the 2X silver base and then carefully apply the candy orange over the top.  Some extra touch up dips might be needed to help flesh out the full orange color.  Again not perfect but pretty darn good if you ask me.

The rest turned out well without much effort at all, Blue, Yellow, Purple, and 2X Silver.

I know it's dark but you can get get a decent feel for how well the blue turned out for it's matching scale head color.  Plus there are other blue scale heads with don't have at this time to give additional value for down the road.

The yellow as you can see has more glitter effect then the lowest soft plastic but not as much as the top one which is the chartreuse glitter on pearl tube.  The light doesn't show this that well but for both the top and bottom tubes the jig head results in a really nice medium to go with both.  The middle tube just shows that you could mix in a silver scale head with this head too if you wanted a bit of contrast.

Purple's pick was the worst for light.  The two tubes in the middle of the pick are both southern pro purple scale heads and the end result on the jig head is a perfect match for them.  The upper "gumdrop" and lower "june bug" plastics also go well with this head, though both of them can also work with the above yellow head too.

2X Silver was the most versatile end result going with the most number of plastics in our boxes.  I know I was surprised at both how well this jig looks as well as silver not being a color we focused more on before.

Here are the other picks of the super glow blue and black & silver setups.  The extra pink was already shown in the pick picture above.

Well that's it for now.  We didn't manage to paint anything more then these sample heads.  Casting 500+ jig heads, taking care of lunch for both families, and all the paint alchemy spent the time we had.  More soon as we get time to come back and paint up the jig heads and to get eyes on them as well.