DIY Making and Painting Jigs by Marc Marcantonio, Page 2

DIY Making and Painting Jigs by Marc Marcantonio, Page 2


Spring 2023


here are many reasons

why making your own jigs

is rewarding. Saving cost, creating unique patterns, taking pride

in the creation, a fun way to prepare

for fishing trips, and including my

favorite, which is to create the best jig

with the best hook for the job.

There are two ways to make your

own. Buy premade (but unfinished)

or make your own from scratch. This

article and video will give you an idea

of what is involved in making your

own from scratch, and how to paint



Safety equipment and practices are important (wear long sleeves, gloves, eye protection, and work in a well-ventilated area. Lead is hazardous if proper precautions are not taken).


Requires you to have a supply of lead (anything from buying lead scrap metal, tire balancing weights, roofing lead sheets, or purchasing lead ingots). Then you need a lead melting pot or melting ladle (commercially available).

You will need a mold built for the

jigs you wish to produce. Do-it Molds

and Hilts molds are two popular

choices. Some even make their

own molds but that is a subject for

another time.

Before melting lead and pouring

it into your mold, coat the inside of

your mold with a “release agent” to

make it easy to remove the product

from the mold after it hardens.

Release agents can be commercially

bought, or you can use a candle flame

to smoke the mold cavities. To smoke

your mold just open it up and hold the

metal cavities at the tip of a candle

flame and let the smoke from the

candle apply a thin coat of black to

the cavities. Commercial mold release

agents are simply sprayed into the

cavities like paint.

You will need the appropriate hook model for the mold you are using. For instance, when making my football head jigs, I use a Gamakatsu 90-degree bend O’Shaugnessy hook in my Do-it mold.

For jigs with weed guards, like my Do-it Weedless Football Jig mold, I use a 60-dgree bend flat eye Gamakatsu hooks. Weedless models also require aluminum pins to put in the mold along with the hook so that after pouring and removing the pin the lead will have a hole in it for

page 35