BassWestUSA - July/August, 2009, Page 39

To start with, each bait starts from a hand carved model. The skirts are custom silicone with color patterns designed to ob- sessively match each paint scheme. The spinnerbaits feature an unusual weighting system that goes back behind the head into the skirt, allowing a heavier, deep diving bait with a small, sleek baitfish profile. The paint jobs are multilayered miniature mas- terpieces, many with three to five colors on a head the size of a nickel. The unusual at- tention to these kinds of details keeps them competitive in the marketplace. Harry Simmons from Mustad Hooks has collaborated with Revenge Baits since the beginning. When designing a new bait, Moughalian and Simmons work together

to determine the best hook for the job, and then the bait is designed around that. “Ray is a fanatic for quality,” says Simmons, “And the thing is he is always looking at making something better.” Having worked together for years, the two finally met at an iCAST show in Las Vegas. Since then, Sim- mons has become part of the field testing crew, checking out upcoming baits in his home waters in Arkansas. Simmons recommends the 3/8 - 1/2 oz. spinnerbait. “The attention to detail is fantastic. . . I have never seen anyone use the blades he uses. They will rotate in deeper water”. The flatter and relatively heavy blade is designed to help it move through water where other baits can bog down, and the small wire diameter encour- ages vibrations. When Moughalian gets a chance to fish (and he just took third and big fish in March in a tournament on Clear Lake), he still likes throwing jigs: “Jigs are just a very versatile bait.” He fishes the Delta and Clear Lake a lot, and for those kinds of waters his preferred tackle setup is a fast action medium to heavy rod in the 7” - 7 1/2” range, with

braided line, which makes it easier to pull through cover. “In clearer water you might want to opt for thinner line or monofila- ment, but when I can get away with it I use the braided line.” The baits are tested in a lot of water before it comes to market. Prototypes are made, and then tested, tested some more, and modified until they meet Moughalian’s standards, and then they go out to friends and pro staff for a little field testing. “The first thing I do is go to the pool - we call it the ‘test facility’ - If it looks cool, if it looks good, we go out to the Delta. I call my buddies, I call my pro staff and I say ‘hey, you want to try a new lure?’. . . and these guys are out there testing it for me.” Moughalian says, “I tell them ‘if this works, let me know. If there’s something we need to change, give me some ideas: hey change the hook, hey do this; do that; can you do this; are you capable of doing that?’ so we put together the best thing based on this guy in Alabama, this guy in Texas, two guys in California, you know, all over the place. Everyone has his or her dif- ferent styles. . so if we can put something together that kind of spreads across the spectrum of different techniques for fish- ing, then that’s really cool. “

July/August 2009