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The Birth of a Really Good Musky Bait...

Most folks who know musky fishing know the appeal of musky baits.  You know the old cliche;  Some baits hook anglers, not just the fish."  Suppose that's why my crates and boxes just keep filling up... 

Another crate fillin' up!

I'm a sucker for good baits and turn into a kid when I have a morning like today's.   See, at 9 am sharp I pulled up to the back door of Phantom Baits over in Ramsey, Minnesota.  Jim Hammarstedt and Todd Cleveland offered to show us their very cool operation and check out a few of the new baits. 

  Phantom's production shop

Inside their modest shop, they've got hundreds of specially-weighted baits ready to go to the paint booth.  I call 'em ghosts.  White dummies Just hanging and waiting for a magical paint job to bring them to life. 

Ghosts...More Ghosts!

That white stuff is a special plastic resin which seems to hold up a bit better than wood and seems to catch more fish!  But here's the real magic behind Phantom.     Todd hand-paints every one of the baits that go out the door.  Simply amazing. 


Todd in the paint booth....
I won't tell you how many they sell a year, but I will say Todd paints and epoxies roughly 75 baits a
day.   Pretty cool to see him work on custom colors! 

 A Ghost becomes a Phantom...

Freshly-painted Phantoms
The end result?  The kind of stuff I dream of at night.  Phantom's got piles of completed baits ready to go out to customers all over the the US and Canada. 
The finished product....Beautiful baits!
  I'll be fishing several of them in the coming weeks and at the Frank Schneider Jr. Tournament mid-September.  I'll report back!   Thanks Jim and Todd for a VERY cool tour!  





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Reader Comments (1)

Todd is a fun guy, makes a hell of a lure long time now. Since first came out these have put fish in or near my rigs. I still love my old wood models but the new resien Phantoms rock......No good musky fisher should be without at least a six pack of these babys.
Keep on rocken!

August 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTom Wehler

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