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Development of the KND Sprocket Spinner - Part 1
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Development of the KND Sprocket Spinner - Part 1
The biggest complaint about using weighted bell spinners is the wear and tear they show and how fast they degrade.  There are a lot of successful spinners but they lack the durability that fishermen require and/or demand.  As a beach  and river fisherman fishing for salmon and steelhead in our large flowing waters and our rocky beaches, these lures take quite a beating. We are not talking about little trout. We are talking about salmon of all species often weighing from 5 lb. to 30 lb. or more.

So often the finish on the blades, the deterioration of the hook, the color on the body, and even their shape show wear quickly after fighting Coho and Chinook salmon. The spinning of the blade is often  suffering from poor performance as the simple attachment ( the clevis ) holding the blade gets out of shape during a fight with a large fish. The farther the clevis holds the blade out from the wire the better blade wobble occurs. I have had the spinner's main wire bent out of shape due to long fights with large salmon.  Once bent it's nearly impossible to get it back true to shape.

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Long casting into the wind  will effect the cast performance when the main wire, clevis, or blades have been bent out of shape. I find myself (and I know other fishermen are) buying new spinners every year or trying to paint and retouch last year's lures.  Trying to re-obtain the polish of a brass spinner is nearly impossible. Last year after landing a 10 plus pound Coho on a brand new spinner (and lets be honest it was a Blue Fox) there were large pieces of color removed from the body of the bell by the salmon's teeth.  I soak my lures at the end of the day in fresh water. Then I hang dry them and yet the blades seem to always show that they are diminishing in their finish. Built in deficiency? Often manufactures brag about special features that we fishermen have to believe. Features like rattle, vibration, blade wobble, etc. Not the Sprocket Spinners. We can see and hear the features they brag about.

One factor in bell spinners is the sonic sound vibration that attracts  or angers the salmon or steelhead to strike. We know from research that fish can feel these sonic sound vibrations. Kevin can prove there is a very big difference from his spinners and the competitors.  We all can hear it. By placing a rod tip in a fast flow river with three feet of line and the competition spinner. Place the end of the rod to your ear and you can actually hear / feel the vibration.  Do this with the Sprocket Spinner and there is a major difference.

Another factor is the blade wobble. Different bade spinning, effects the appearance to entice a fish to strike. This is obtained by the size of the clevis and the shape of the blade. The only way to measure success is the results.  There is a huge following for Kevin's KND Sprocket Spinners in the United States. Fishermen after fishermen, are raging about the results and its endurance in the field. Now it Canada's turn.

The Owner of KND Custom Tackle, Kevin Roberts, has created one of the hottest lures - THE SPROCKET SPINNER with extreme durability in the all aspects of the lure's use. I asked Kevin a few questions...

Gil: What led you to create such a lure ?
Kevin: I have always had the mind set to be curious. I want to know why and how things work. What makes fish bite at a spinner? I tore a lot of spinners apart to see what made them tick. The most popular spinner on the market today is the Blue Fox “Vibrax”. Seeing how the bell rotates around the bead and the sound that the combination produces. Was there a way to enhance the sound and vibration? Would it make a difference? Another complaint I had is the weight of the spinner. Spinners most often are too light. I spent countless hours researching available parts. I finally found what I was looking for - the perfect size, weight and sound emitting combination.

Gil: How long has you been since you started and at what point did you feel you had a winner?
Kevin: I started tinkering with this idea in the fall of 2010. After making a few prototypes and fishing them for Coho. I knew I was on to something special. With all the previous research I performed, the only adjustments I needed to make, was getting the blade, and hook size right.

Gil: The response from your followers in the United States is overwhelming. Especially how the lure can maintain its shape and finish. How is it that yours out performs the competitors lure with such ease?
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Kevin: First you start with quality parts. The standard industry wire gage is .028 The “Sprocket Spinners” use .030 gage wire. “Sprocket Spinners” come with a Gamakatsu single Siwash hook. I made it a point to build a spinner that would survive all the abuse an aggressive fish could throw at it. We all know the fish love structure. Structure creates havoc with our gear. If there is a boulder on the bank, odds are we are going to hit it. I don’t use the industry standard paint. I use a heat activated “Powder Coat”. This makes for a super durable and beautiful finish. 
 
Gil: At such time you will have to think of increasing your manufacturing and maybe even going overseas.  So often we see a lure go overseas and the quality diminishes to maintain and or increase profit. Where do you see it going and will you be able to maintain  your quality that right now easily out performs your competitors?
Kevin: You are right. With the overwhelming response there will come a time to make a decision to outsource manufacturing. This is a very tricky process. I have to maintain a quality control at the standard level. Large corporations want to squeeze every penny out of their products. This means using substandard material just to get by. They're in the business of selling spinners. The faster they degrade the more they sell.

Gil: Talk to me about this sonic sound vibration and its development.
Kevin: With the “Sprocket Spinners” as the weight of the blade travels around the wire shaft, it creates a wobble in the shaft. This wobble forces the bead to rotate around the inside of the bell. The bead has abrupt sharp edges. Thus creating a harmonic noise and vibration 3 times more aggressive than any other spinner on the market. The Blue Fox has a cylindrical bead with grooves cut into it. I believe this was done to try and eliminate line twist. They wanted to keep the wire from turning as it passed thru the water. The “Sprocket Spinners” come standard with a barrel swivel to eliminate line twist.

Gil: A lot of manufacturers have set models of lures and colors. Not all perform the same.  As a beach fisherman I find a lure, color, and size can be hot one day and then nothing the next. Often I am carrying many different styles, colors and sizes in spoons, spinners, and jigs. Most often they are limited in their selections. What are the KND sprocket spinner limitations in varying colors and sizes?
Kevin: There is a reason Custom is in our name. What may work on my home waters may not work on yours. I want you to be able to have the tackle you need. Not what I think you need. There are 4 sizes, #3, #4, #5 and #6. And at the present time I have 17 color choices to choose from. Not including Brass and Nickel. I have available on my web site a standard “Sprocket Spinner” section. Here you are able to pick from 17 bell body colors and either a brass or nickel blade. There is also a “Create your own Sprocket Spinner” section. Here you are able to pick out your favorite bell body color and chose your blade color. I even have the ability to blend colors for blades. You can also request lure eyes to be placed on the blade. So the variations are subject to your imagination.

Gil: How do our readers who decide to give the KND sprocket Spinners a try out get hold of these lures?
Kevin: I am working with a Canadian Distributor at the time of this interview. Until we get them on the shelves. They are more than welcome to purchase them from my website - http://www.kndcustomtackle.net/store/

Updated 03/02/2014: Click here for Part 2 of the Review

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