Powder Coating Made Easy

I remember when the good old days weren't always as good as they were old.

For a lot of us who like to make our own jigs, sinkers and jigging spoons, the painting process could get messy, expensive and even wasteful. After a day in the garage working with primer and lacquer-based paints, my fingers looked like I had a rare tropical disease. It stunk, too, and the fumes from lacquer-based paints were truly the gift that kept on giving. If I left those paints in the garage all winter or the jars didn't seal tightly, they'd dry up and become ruined.

Today's powder paints have changed all that. They're clean, easy to use, efficient, they have shelf life, and the spectrum of colors is extensive and constantly growing.

I still use a little of Do-It's Vinyl Lure and Jig Finish, but the Pro-Tec powder paints rock. And because they store so well and last so long, you can stock an extensive inventory of colors. Where you might have settled for a half-dozen go-to colors before, now you can have those in multiple shades in addition to dragonfly, disco blue or copperhead, which is one of my favorites on the Mississippi River.

The painting process is simple and fast with no primer coat required.

Shake and stir your powder paint until it's light and fluffy. Heat up the item you plan to paint so it's too hot to touch, but not hot enough to melt. Dip it in the paint, rap the side of the paint jar to knock off any excess and hang it on a rack to cool.

A Fluid Bed is the way to go if you are painting sizeable quantities of lures. It keeps the powder suspended, which in turn leads to a uniform coat and less waste.

It's even OK to double-dip. While the jig is still hot from the first coat of paint, give it a quick dip in Pro-Flake Glitter for a little extra kick.

Curing powder-painted jigs is recommended for a long-lasting finish, but optional. Use the kitchen oven if you can get away with it to bake those jigs or spoons. A toaster oven will work, too.

If you can't bake them, you can dip them in a seal coat or a clear polyurethane. Or, if you don't expect a jig to last very long anyway, forget about the curing process. The finish will chip fairly easily, but maybe not before you hang it up in the rocks or stumps, anyway.

Two helpful hints ... First, if you bake your jigs, make sure you knock any paint out of the eyes before cooking. It's a lot easier than it will be later. Second, if you dip jigs manually in powder paint, consider customizing a pair of pliers. Just cut a thin, round groove into the teeth of those pliers with a Dremel tool and you will always get a firm grip on the hook of the jig.

Best of all, you can powder paint on the fly. Keep a few plain leadhead jigs with you and you can paint them up in seconds, even on the water.

Get your powder wet and Good Luck!

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