How To Build Your Own High-Speed Wahoo Lure

Build a high speed lure at home!
Shea McIntee
Experienced wahoo fishermen agree that lures must track straight and provide enough flash to be seen at over 10 knots. Starting at what matters most, you'll want to select premium grade stainless steel hooks. High-speed wahoo trolling is not release fishing, so you'll want to select razor sharp 11/0 J-hooks. From here you are going to build an in-line double hook stiff rig with 900 lb. multi-strand cable. Because wahoo strike from behind at incredible speed, in-line hooks provide better hooksets. They also offer better tracking at high speeds, with the trailing hook acting as a keel.
Start by inserting a 12-inch section of cable through the hook eye. Make one wrap around the hook's shank and pass the tag end through the hook eye again--this time go in the opposite direction. Draw tight and crimp with the appropriate copper or nickel-plated sleeve.
From here take a marker and note where you want the lead hook to rest. You don't want to place the hooks too close together or there won't be enough bite. Before you can crimp the lead hook you need to slide a 3-inch section of heat shrink over the trailing hook's crimped connection.
Once you've crimped the sleeve, double the lead hook back so it rests in-line with the trailing hook. Add another section of heat shrink and your stiff rig is complete. Depending on your preferred leader material you can either crimp a section of multi-strand cable or haywire twist traditional single-strand stainless steel wire.
To create a lure with a large, streamlined profile you want to utilize a trolling lure and two rubber skirts. While Iland Lures are proven wahoo producers, any bullet-style head design will do the trick. Since you want the lure to be heavy, it is recommended you use a weighted trolling lure. Ilander's Heavy-Weight features a 4 oz. lead integrated into the lure's head. You'll also need an 8 oz. egg sinker to add even more weight to the lure. Start by inserting the 8 oz. sinker into one of the skirts. When inserting lead into the head of a skirt Pledge or Windex can be used to help lubricate. Once the sinker is inside the skirt take the second skirt and wrap it over the first one.
Place your skirts over the leader and stiff rig.
Trim the skirt so the trailing hook extends just behind the skirting material.
Slide your Ilander down the leader and crimp a loop into the end of the leader. While this homemade lure is heavy enough to fish on its own, you'll still want to run it behind a 36 oz. trolling lead. It's important to note that the goal of high-speed trolling isn't to get your lures deep below the surface, rather the additional weight of the trolling lead should only keep your lure from skipping out of the water at high speed.

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