More Bombers

1977 Bomber Speed Shad and Model A being sold in American Bass Fisherman magazine.

1977 Bomber Speed Shad and Model A being sold in American Bass Fisherman magazine.

A couple of weeks ago we did the first part of the 1978 Bassmaster season and in that article, we mentioned Hurley Board’s Lake Gaston win. Board attributed his win not just to sticking to his game plan but also to the use of a Bomber Speed Shad.

After that event, the Speed Shad became the predominant bait on both Gaston and Bugg’s (Kerr depending upon what side of the boarder you’re on) reservoirs. In fact, original Speed Shads are still in high demand for the North Carolina/Virginia boarder waters.

That article sent me on a mission to try and find an old Speed Shad ad to share with you – and I found one from 1977. Not only that, but I found three other Bomber ads dating from the same year, two of which feature crankbait legend, Floyd Mabry. [Read more…]

Bagley’s Bait Company – 1977

1977 Bagley's Ad taken from American Angler Magazine.

1977 Bagley’s Ad taken from American Angler Magazine.

We’ve written a couple pieces on the Jim Bagley Bait Company over the course of the last couple years (you can see two of them here and here), but I personally never get tired of looking at their ads from days past. Recently I was scouring all my 1977 magazines for another piece and noticed after a while, how many ads Bagley had placed in the various magazines of the time and decided to scan them all.

The year 1977 was a banner year for the company due to the fact that Rick Clunn had just won back-to-back Bassmaster Classic and caught some of his fish in each event on Bagley’s baits. This seems to have done a couple of things – namely provide a bunch of sales for the company which, in turn, allowed them to step up their ad campaign in order to sell more. [Read more…]

Bagley’s Better Baits 1975

Bagley's Better Baits ad from January 1975.

Bagley’s Better Baits ad from January 1975.

I’ve been a fan of Jim Bagley’s creations (and Lee Sisson’s too) pushing 40 years now. I bought my first Bagley’s bait somewhere in the 1976 timeframe, a baby bass colored Honey B, and it was the bait I caught my first crankbait fish on – a 1 1/2-pound largemouth at Lake Irvine’s Santiago Flats. Since that time I’ve had a sort of fetish with the company, although it’s obvious that I didn’t know all they made.

I recently received a 1975 American Bass Fisherman magazine from a close friend and while thumbing through the pages came across this ad from that era. The ad touts that that six of the top 10 from the American Bass Fisherman World Championship caught their fish on the baits shown. What grabbed me was I’d only seen one of these baits in the flesh, seen another in an old ad during the time and had never seen the other two baits until I got this magazine. [Read more…]

A Swarm of Bs

Balsa BsOkay, maybe I’m becoming a little centered on certain things here but you’ve got to understand my excitement with this recent find. What you see in the picture here are some of the Balsa Bs I found yesterday in a moving box I hadn’t opened in about 20 years. When I moved from California to Idaho back in 1993, I didn’t think Idaho had bass. Fortunately, I found that not to be the case.

There are a couple reasons I think this find is significant. One, at the top left is an original Bagley’s B lure. 4 inches in length and the original chartreuse black back. I remember buying this lure at the Lake Castaic Mobile Mini Mart owned by Claude and Shirley Jones around the 1980 time frame. This lure, two others just like it and the DB3s below it I got for $3 each. The original Bagley’s Bs came in original plastic boxes (I wish they’d survived) while the DB3s were newer and came on card stock. [Read more…]