Swim Whizz Is Back
Tuesday, September 27th, 2011
I know most fisherman have a few older baits that they have used in the past with great success and more times than not the companies that manufactured those baits either go out of business or stop producing them all together. It often happens to those top producers that you have faith in day in and day out. Well I just received notice from one such company that they are bringing back one of the more popular baits for both Salmon and Musky fisherman.
According to Big bear products they have released the following:
The S.W. Plug: Resurrection of an all-species fish catcher
Originally developed by legendary guide Homer LeBlanc as a mulit-species casting and trolling lure in 1956, the Swim Whizz caught on in muskie fisheries throughout North America and not only got type-cast as a muskie lure, it was so effective at catching the big toothy critters that it was widely knocked off by other muskie lure manufacturers.
“The fact that the Swim Whizz has been pigeon-holed as a muskie lure is really unfortunate, because the unique action that triggers temperamental muskies into striking works for virtually all gamefish,” says Matt Serbenski, whose Michigan-based Big Bear Products started manufacturing the lure again in 2011. “Homer LeBlanc is a fishing hall-of-fame guide and developed the lure to catch everything. Since he guided on Lake St. Clair, possibly the world’s greatest muskie factory, the lure got the reputation of working for muskies and became a quote-unquote ‘muskie lure.’ What a lot of people don’t realize is that different sizes of this plug work great for bass, walleye, salmon, steelhead—you name it. We’ve even developed a saltwater version that’s catching striped bass and other big predators. Guys on marine radio are already calling it the ‘S.W. Plug’ for ‘secret weapon.’”
Serbenski said today’s Swim Whizz features state-of-the-art construction and premium hooks from Eagle Claw—all made-in-the-USA components, assembled and painted in Michigan. Each lure is hand-painted by Michigan artist Omar Galvan to exacting specifications as part of a four-step finish process completed by a baked-on, automotive-grade clear-coat.
Color patterns are developed with input from anglers who make their living as fishing guides, including Homer LeBlanc’s grandson, Capt. Kevin Backus, who runs Mr. Muskie Charters on Lake St. Clair (www.mrmuskiecharters.com; 586-771-8817).
“Swim Whizz is in good hands,” says grandson Capt. Backus. “My living depends on catching fish for clients, and Swim Whizzes have become a vital part of my trolling spread. The new finish really stands up to teeth well, which is good because the new crop of lures definitely catches fish. Matt Serbenski has put tremendous focus on developing color patterns that work on my home water, and patterns that work in other musky fisheries. I’d put the hand-painted finishes up against any lures out there—I really don’t think anyone does them any better.”
The lure is available in 4-, 6- and 8-inch versions, with new sizes and jointed styles in prototype stages. More than 20 color patterns are available, with new ones developed on an ongoing basis.
“I used the four-inch versions for spring coho salmon and couldn’t keep them off,” says Swim Whizz pro-staffer and former Great Lakes charter captain Al Malsch of Lawton, Michigan. “They caught salmon and lakers consistently throughout the year, too, and for whatever reason, were particularly effective on leadcore and copper lines. Lake Erie walleye like ’em, too.”
Malsch took some bigger lures to fish with his brother Phil Malsch, a saltwater veteran in the waters around Virginia. “I was thrilled with the stripers these things caught first time out trolling them off Virginia Beach,” says Phillip Malsch, who founded G&H Offshore Lures. “On the first trip, we trolled one Swim Whizz and one traditional jig and the S.W. Plug caught seven of the eight fish—stripers up to 37 pounds. Performance like that made me a believer pretty quick.”
To see more of these great baits check out the Swim Wizz website for top rigs.
Category : Gear Reviews