New Bass Popper Body


I noticed that Hareline is selling a hard foam body that is a little different. The body is either a short pencil popper or a long fat tapered style. Whatever you want to call it, I, of course, had to try them.

I really have enough poppers to last me a lifetime but I confess, I like making them so I continue to do so.

Today I tried a couple versions at a local farm pond and they worked quite well ... other than the fact that they didn't catch any fish. But of course, nothing else was working either -- unless you want to count the Northern Pike Minnow (aka: squaw fish) I caught with a bait fish imitation -- but I don't want to count that one. They pop quite loudly and the legs maintain their shape.

Something has gone seriously wrong at that farm pond. At one time there was a ton of bluegill, a lot of crappie and many, many large bass. Over the last few years I've caught no gills or crappie and only a smattering of LMB.

I'd give up on the place but it is now the only farm pond I have access to and it's just a half hour from my house.

Anyway, back to the poppers. I'm using Fish Hair instead of feathers for the tail/legs because once feathers become wet, they collapse and you lose the "V" shape of the popper on the surface. I have used dyed buck tail but it is hard to work with compared to the Fish Hair. The Fish Hair is also much lighter in weight than natural hair.

You may notice that I'm using red thread. There's a reason for that. I've found that just a touch of red somewhere on the poppers seems to create a "hot spot" and the LMB like it. As a result, I use red thread to tie all my surface poppers.

I have high hopes for these guys if I find a lake or pond that is actually holding bass.

I like the body style.



Dave Whitlock likes a red and white popper but to tell you the truth, I've never caught a single LMB with a red and white popper. I have caught plenty of smallmouth with a medium sized all white popper but I must be red and white challenged when it comes to catching anything with that color combination.


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Gene, can you tell me the hooks that you're using on those poppers? What kind of paint do you use?

I don't know anything about making poppers, but did buy some more traditional popper bodies that I've never done anything with.


The hooks are specialty kinked shaft style and are provided with the bodies... which is very handy. The kits also include a hook chart so you can order matching bodies and hooks separately.

Glue and paint for the bodies is sometimes a challenge. You can use SA (super glue) type of adhesive to attach to body to the hook shank but I've found epoxy works much better so you can fill in the slot at the bottom of the body. Otherwise, you'd need to use a filler material.

Tester's plastic model paint will work for the bodies but I like using vinyl spray paint when I can find it. You want to use a spray paint (or air brush paint) that is designed for adhering to plastic. Some universal paints do not really work well on plastic. Paint for vinyl is the most desirable for the bodies but the colors are limited. I'd recommend you start with Tester's plastic model paint and experiment from there.

I also use an extra thick clear coat over the painted bodies to give them a more professional look -- but it certainly isn't required because the bass don't care.
Hi gene, very nice ties! i almost exclusively use these style popper bodies for my LMB patterns, they just seem to fish better than other shapes for me.They are the same style as a saltwater or tarpon popper, in fact, my #1 most successful bass popper was a chartreuse and white 3/0 tarpon popper my friend brought back from belize,man that thing caught fish. now i tie them myself.
Orvis is selling some kits just like those GAT. not a bad price point, I think I paid $6 for like 8 popper bodies and hooks. I used paint pens and then just clear coated them with some SHHAN. I had to take a small hacksaw blade and make the grove a little deeper to seat the hooks in right though.
i add a layer of tying thread to the hook prior to gluing the popper on with brush-able loctite. after installing the popper body and the glue is dry, i fill in the gap with uv resin. works great!

acrylic craft paints are excellent for painting these popper bodies and come in a wide range of colors (sometimes on sale for 3 for a buck)