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Homemade Spinners can be Deadly

By Rodney Hsu, Fishing with Rod | Published in October 2001

Gear anglers who target salmonid species would always agree that spinners are deadly weapons in most conditions. They would also agree that spinners can be pricey. The price range is between $2.00 to $4.00 each, and the better ones such as Blue Fox can be as high as $5.00 each! An alternative that anglers who are just introduced to spinners is by making your own. The ingredients are available in your local tackle stores and they are extremely easy to make. Homemade spinners are fun because it allows you to experiment with a variety of combinations without emptying your wallet. By the end of this article, you will know how to correctly build your own spinner and catch a fish with it.

The spinner that you will be building is known as a Colorado spinner. These spinners can also be bought in tackle stores but you can save a lot of money by making your own. The materials that you need include swivels, blades, metal rings and hooks. The types of blade that are available include copper and silver, both hammered or smooth, and of course in many sizes.

STEP ONE Connect the blade to the ring.
STEP TWO Connect two swivels onto the ring. One of the swivel will be tied to your main line, while the other one is connected to the hook.
STEP THREE Attach the hook on. There are many ways to do this. You can either get the hooks that have an opened eye and clamp the eye shut when attaching, or you can connect the hook to the swivel via another ring. Personally I prefer to use the latter method. I like to use the long shank spoon replacement hooks that you can buy. You can also use a swivel that has a clip instead of a normal swivel and simply clip the hook onto the spinner.

There you have it, the easy three steps. The total cost is less than $10 and you can make ten spinners with your material. The same fishing rule applies to these homemade spinners, match the size of your spinner to the size of your fish and the condition of the water. These spinners can be excellent for coho and cutthroat trout in streams, rainbow trout in lake and even steelhead. Other curious fish such as northern squawfish, mountain whitefish will also peck at it. For coho salmon, I usually use a No. 1 hook with the spinner. For the trout, I use a No. 4 or 6 hook. The size of the blade is also crucial. A small blade for trout or in clear water condition for salmon, whereas a larger blade is used for larger fish or cloudy condition for better visibility. These homemade spinners are not weighted, so you will need to use weight (less than 1 ounce) to get them down to the right depth. When rigging, tie a swivel with a weight attached to the main line, a 2 feet leader is used, followed by the spinner. Do not simply tie the spinner on the line and clamp a few split shots onto the line. This will cause severe line twist and damage your line.

Try to make some spinners yourself next time, I promise the result will be very rewarding when you catch a fish on something that you have made.