Ice fishing is a pastime enjoyed by numerous anglers in the northern reaches of North America. Just because winter has put a layer of ice on your favorite lake does not mean you have to stop fishing. Ice fishing season can produce some of the best catches of the year; in fact, New York’s state record walleye was caught by an ice angler last season. Jigs are a favorite lure for many experienced ice anglers. Read on for more information on making your own ice jigs.
Difficulty: Moderately Challenging
Things You’ll Need:
- willow leaf spinner blade light wire hook soldering iron solder pliers wire cutters jig paint toothpicks plastic bead, if desired
- willow leaf spinner blade
- light wire hook
- soldering iron
- wire cutters
- jig paint
- plastic bead, if desired
Start by plugging in the soldering iron to get it up to temperature. A cold iron will not melt the solder properly, causing the hook to come loose on the jig.
Take a single hook and use the wire cutters to cut off the top of the hook near the eye. Next, place the willow leaf spinner blade so the inside, or concave side, is lying toward you on the workbench.
Once the iron is hot, you will solder the hook to the willow leaf blade. Use the pliers to hold the hook at the bend and lay it flat on the blade. Get a bead on solder on the soldering iron and place the hot bead on the hook so it attaches to the blade.
Once the blade has cooled, clean up any excess flux from the solder. Now you can paint the face of the jig where the hook is soldered on. Use a toothpick to add stripes or dots to add some flair to your jig.
Perch anglers like to add a plastic bead to the ice jig for an attractor. Use the pliers to crimp down the barb of the hook, heat the hook up and slide the bead onto the hook. The bead will melt to the hook and stay in place.
Tips & Warnings
- Add a slight bend to the top of the jig; this will give the spoon an erratic action.
- Be sure to use solder in a well-ventilated area and be care not to burn yourself or the work surface with the hot soldering iron.