As anglers, we have used lead for years for adding weight to our baits, but the battle over its usage is rapidly coming to a head. Environmentally friendly products will someday replace it, and products made of tin, steel and brass have all taken their turns as a replacement. Although each may have a place in the angler’s arsenal, tungsten is far and away the best choice. Environmentally friendly, tungsten is a dense material that transmits vibration better than lead or other alloys allowing anglers to feel the bottom and the bites better. The downside to tungsten can be price and availability as it is also used by the military. It can become scarce at times.
Not all tungsten is created equal. Because tungsten is dense and expensive, it is important to eliminate waste in the manufacturing process. Tungsten can be hard to work with due to a high melting point of nearly 3000 degrees, and shaping it takes precision. Some manufactures will work with tungsten as the main ingredient, but their weights are simply alloys. They will mix other metals with the tungsten to decrease cost.
Corners can be cut in materials, shaping, finish and the center hole can be larger in some to save the amount of material used. The larger hole does save material but makes pegging more difficult, if not impossible on some weights. The larger center hole can also cause more abrasion and line wear and fraying can be an issue. Same can be said about weights that use plastic inserts and very narrow holes. Check out our article on line abrasion on fluorocarbon.
Eco Pro Tungsten took the high road in their manufacturing using 97 percent pure tungsten. They also have a highly polished and well machined weight with smooth contours and no worries for line abrasion. Each weight is checked for imperfections and consistency.
They also have stepped it up on sizes as well. They offer more sizes than most other manufacturers including 1/16, 1/8, 3/16, 1/4, 5/16, 3/8, 1/2, 3/4, 1, 1 1/4, 1 1/2, and 2-ounce models. They are lead free and have no insert. They use a special seal coat painting process that resists chipping. Eco Pro Tungsten bullet weights come in red, black, green pumpkin, Junebug, watermelon and unpainted in the standard line-up. In the Dean Rojas signature line-up, there are also brown pumpkin, sapphire pumpkin, black neon and watermelon red.
Eco Pro’s consistency in their entire product line up impresses. They are free of imperfections, smooth and solidly crafted. We’ve been fishing them on everything from 10-pound monofilament, 15- and 20-pound Seaguar fluorocarbon and even 65-pound Sufix 832 and Sunline FX2 braided lines.
We’ve tested the weights for casting lighter Texas rigs and flipping heavy cover. On a long cast with a light Texas Rig, these weights have done really well to transmit changes in bottom composition and, more importantly, bites back to us. The smaller profile of Eco Pro Tungsten makes flipping much more productive than lead or other alternatives using other materials.
We are sold on Eco Pro Tungsten and believe these tungsten weights give you increased sensitivity and one more advantage on the fish. Tungsten isn’t as cheap as lead, but well made tungsten weights can be worth their weight in gold. If you’re suspicious or can’t make the full switch from lead to tungsten, just buy a pack of Eco Pro and make your own comparisons.
One of the best places we’ve found to buy Eco Pro Tungsten is TackleWarehouse.com.