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Surfcasting Plugs and their history Vintage plugs -- Legendary Luremakers - Surfcasting legends

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Old 03-26-2007, 11:34 AM
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Roccus Roccus is offline
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Default Bob Pond

I needed a break fom the conventional.. so I went back a few years...

while fishing gooseberry island back in the early 70's I was catching a few schoolies, while this other Gent was catching cows... Later he came over and spoke to me and showed me what he was using, being relatively new to the game, I didnt recognise the signifigance of the plug he showed me....

A month or so ago, I saw one in a post and it jogged my, now, not so young memory....

So I built an old school Atom style swimmer.

What differs is the rigging, weighting and the paint.

Because I didnt want to use any glue or epoxy, I drilled the belly hole and filled with hot lead, I filed off the flash over and drilled and installed a screw to keep the weight in place

The plug is sealed with BLO, dipped in oil based primer, then dipped in white oil based paint, after the paint cured, several coats of clear varnish were applied, glitter was applied before the second to last coat, and the hardware installed via press fit allowing the varnish to make the final adhesion..

1/8 cotter pins provide the swivel hook hangers and tail hook and line pull are made up of cotter pins that are secured via #4X1 brass screws...
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:08 AM
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Default Bob Pond

"Atom Mfg. Co."

Atom Mfg. Co.
Attleboro, Mass.

Bob Pond experimented with his first lure in the fall of 1944 and founded Atom Mfg. Co. in 1945. Bob produced his original wooden swimming lure in three basic color schemes, Herring Blue, Whiting Gold, Blue & Silver, although some lures were painted with slight color variations and patterns. Pond, also started making a smaller two hook version about 1947.
The glass eyed Atom is a rare lure, very few of these baits are known to exist. Whether they were prototype's or production models is not known at this time. These lures are surely the "Holy Grail" for Atom Mfg. Co. collectors.
Bob turned to plastic in 1948 and the new "Atom 40", "Commercial Type" lures were manufactured. Atom Mfg. Co. produced many models of "Striper Atoms" over the years, such as: Atom 40's, Atom 51's, Atom 54's, and Reverse 40's. These lures were manufactured in many colors and patterns.
Atom Mfg. Co., in later years, turned to foam to build their lures. Bob Pond sold his company in 1998, and it is still in business today. Atom Mfg. Co., is truely a great success story, and a New England legend.

Bob Pond and Avis Boyd doing field research
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:08 AM
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Default Bob Pond

Bob Pond made wooden atom swimmers only for a couple of years from 1946 to 48.
Then went to plastic. The "Atom 54" was a proven large producer.
Al Bentsen called the "Beachmaster made by Bobby Glauder on Long Island the "knock-knock plug".
It is similar the Atom Junior (#54). The difference between the two is that the 54 swims on the surface, with the tail sticking out of the water. The beachmaster digs into the water from one foot to three feet on a faster retrieve.

The picture below is an eel-skin swirly

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Old 12-28-2009, 04:17 PM
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Default Re: Obituary for Bob Pond

Obituary for ROBERT A. POND

Robert A. Pond, noted outdoor writer, conservationist and businessman,
died December 26, 2009 at Attleboro, Massachusetts. He was 92 years of age.

Bob Pond is also know within the East Coast saltwater fishing community
as “Mr. Striped Bass” for his selfless efforts to save the Striped Bass from
extinction. The Striped Bass was and remains today the premier recreational
saltwater fishing species along the East Coast. In face of declining numbers of
Striped Bass in the ‘70s Bob mobilized the members of Stripers Unlimited, an organization he had earlier founded to lobby both state and federal agencies,
resulting in the Emergency Striped Bass Act of 1979, sponsored by Senator
John Chaffee of Rhode Island.

In 1945 Bob developed his famous Atom plug, testing it in the Cape Cod Canal
and manufacturing it in Attleboro. In his sales travels up and down the coast he
noted a desire among striper fishermen to fish other states and so he developed
the Tri-State Tournament in 1965 in which local clubs in Massachusetts, Maine
and Rhode Island sponsor a weekend visit to their local hot fishing spots. The
Tri-State exists today as an honor code catch-and-release tournament.

Using his income from the Atom plug, in the early 1970s Bob began a series of
research trips to the Striped Bass spawning rivers of Maryland. He also attracted
fish scientists and state hatchery personnel to join in his work. It was on these trips
that Bob began to see serious deformities in spawning population and put out the
call to get Federal monies to research the problem. His efforts resulted in the Act
of 1979, a subsequent moratorium, and eventual resurgence of the Striped Bass in
the 1990s. In all these efforts he was assisted by Avis Boyd, who he later married.

Bob was born and raised in New Rochelle, New York and graduated from Syracuse University Forestry College, an education he credited for his life-long conservationism. During WW II Bob worked as a munitions inspector for the British, and later, the
American governments.

He is survived by his wife Avis Boyd. Memorial services will be held on Saturday,
January 2, 2010 at 11AM at Bethany Village Fellowship, 516 Newport Ave., South
Attleboro, MA. Donations in memory of Bob may be made to his wife Avis Boyd at
267 Mendon Rd, N. Attleboro, MA 02760.
You were given a name at birth and since then have assumed many others at the end of the day many know who you are by how you speak.
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Old 12-30-2009, 01:03 PM
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Default The ocean loses a dear friend

Tuesday, December 29, 2009 2:17 AM EST Link


Conservationist Robert Pond, founder of Stripers Unlimited, dies at 92
Robert Pond, a retired fishing lure manufacturer who founded Stripers Unlimited and was an early crusader for ocean conservation, died Saturday at the Golden Living Center-Garden Place in Attleboro.

The husband of Avis Elizabeth Boyd, he was 92.
Mr. Pond, a resident of Attleboro and North Attleboro, was an avid fisherman who revolutionized striped bass fishing in the 1940s after discovering a method for catching the fish on the surface. He turned his knowledge into a business manufacturing multi-hooked swimming lures that the game fish found irresistible.
His Attleboro-based Atom Manufacturing cranked out wooden and plastic lures beginning in 1945 and continuing after he sold the business in 1998.
Mr. Pond was also a visionary in conservation, pointing out the threat to the fish from coastal fish traps and diseases.
Founder of the conservation group Stripers Unlimited, Pond's work, alongside that of the late Rhode Island Sen. John Chafee, is widely credited with helping save striped bass from extinction along the East Coast.
Mr. Pond persisted in his efforts despite being scoffed at by many sportsmen and scientists. Today, bass fishing constitutes a $1 billion a year business, said New York writer Frank Pintauro, who noted that Pond's vision helped open America's coastlines to a new, populist sport.
"At the end of World War II, when America's beaches were becoming a playground for everyman, rather than just the wealthy, Bob was a pioneer lure maker for what some have called the golden age of surf-casting," he said. "He was an extraordinary guy."
So influential was Mr. Pond's role in molding the sport, that some of his original lures have fetched up to $750 apiece from collectors.
But Mr. Pond's efforts in awakening the need for conservation is perhaps his most important legacy.
"Bob Pond was way out ahead of all the experts in sounding the alarm in the 1960s about dangers facing the striped bass, and without his tireless efforts on this magnificent fish's behalf, we wouldn't be out there catching them today," said Dick Russell, environmental journalist and author of "Striper Wars: An American Fish Story. "He was a pioneer in ocean conservation, long before the impacts of overfishing and coastal pollution became topics of widespread concern."
Russell's book contains a chapter about Pond's work.
Pond, who became a mighty voice for the environment, as well as a crafty fisherman and fashioner of lures, got into the business of plug-making virtually by accident.
According to the Web site of Atom Lures, Pond had been fishing under the Sagamore Bridge on Cape Cod during the 1940s when he witnessed a nearby fisherman reeling in a big striper.
That surprised Pond, as the big game fish were thought to be mostly uncatchable when feeding on the surface.
Pond salvaged a strange-looking wooden plug he assumed had been discarded by the other fisherman and soon found that he was able to haul in stripers virtually at will.
The North Attleboro resident swiftly duplicated the design out of curtain rods and developed an improved model that had better bouyancy. The "Atom" lure was born.
In 1965, Pond founded Stripers Unlimited originally as a clearinghouse for bass fishing information. But it soon became a sounding board for the need to conserve ocean resources.
Pond even funded research on striped bass out of his own pocket.
Mr. Pond, who lived on Mendon Road, was born on July 4, 1917, in New Rochelle, N.Y. He was raised and educated in New Rochelle and graduated from Syracuse University Forestry College, an education he credited for his lifelong conservationism.
During the World War II era, Mr. Pond was employed as a munitions inspector for the British, and later, the American government.
He resided in North Attleboro for the past 20 years, having moving to the community from Attleboro, where he was a longtime resident.
In addition to his wife, Avis Boyd, he leaves his grandchildren: Glenn Haakmeeser of Georgia and Paul Trost and Christina Trost both of North Attleboro.

A memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday at Bethany Village Fellowship, 516 Newport Avenue in South Attleboro.
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Old 12-30-2009, 01:03 PM
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Default The ocean loses a dear friend

The first fishing lures made by Bob at Atom Manufacturing were introduced in 1945 and were revolutionary in design. In the 1940’s almost every striped bass angler was fishing with bait on the bottom; when bass were feeding on the surface, fishermen figured the stripers couldn’t be caught. On one such day, Pond was fishing the Cape Cod Canal. ” I’m sitting under the Sagamore Bridge,” he remembers, ” and there was a fisherman there, but I couldn’t see him. All of sudden I saw a striped bass rolling on the surface… and then it started coming toward shore. That’s when I realized there must be an angler down there. Well, I was entranced because outdoors writers in Boston were writing about (catching fish on the surface). I waited until he got the fish to shore, and went down to have a look. ” This guy had the fish on the bank, but it was totally covered with a Turkish towel. He had his hands on his hips, and he looked at me and shook his head… I realized I wasn’t going to get any answers from him so I just left.” “Two or three weeks later I was standing on a pile of rocks fishing. I looked down and there was this thing floating around my legs with some color on its back. I picked it up. It was a Creek Chub plug and it must have been (the other fisherman’s), because nobody else had been fishing there, and nobody was fishing plugs. “It was all scarred-up. The hooks were broken, the paint was all off, it was a mess, I put it on and went down to the breakwater, and caught fish one after another.” Pond brought the lure back to his shop and made two similar plugs from curtain rods. His lures were larger and heavier so they would cast farther. “It was the fourteenth of October, and I went down to the Cape Cod Canal… I caught 14 fish with that new plug. The next morning, I caught another pile of fish.” Atom Lures were born. Pond bought a lathe and all the other tools he would need, and that winter, he turned out 400 plugs. They were on the market the following spring and have endured in their effectiveness for striped bass fishermen all along the east coast and through out the country over the last 50 years.
In 1965, Pond founded Stripers Unlimited . The group’s first purpose was to be a clearing house of information about striped bass fishing in New England. Anglers from New Jersey and other Mid-Atlantic states would visit the the Northeast during the summer to go fishing; a membership in Stripers Unlimited would provide them with a yearbook containing information about fishing spots, tackle shops, and other members they could contact. Soon, Pond turned Stripers Unlimited into a combination clearing house for biological information on striped bass and an activist organization for conservation measures to protect the fish. In the 1970 yearbook, he wrote of the need for more research on hatchery-raised stripers. Then he sank his own money into the research and did the work himself, as he would for the next 28 years. Though he maintained close working relationships with scientists in the academic communtiy, Pond often was at odds with biologists employed by government agencies. Government biologists, he said, were more interested in computer modeling than in hands on field work. They could learn more about bass, he said , by examining the reproductive organs of bass in a fish-processing plant than by sitting before a computer screen. (In one of his campaigns, Pond asked anglers to save the gonads of the fish they caught so he could exmaine the organs). In public hearings, Pond sometimes would catch government biologists mis-stating accepted scientific fact. Those catches did not endear him to fishing regulators. Nonetheless, he says, “reluctantly,” the Massachusetts Marine Fisheries Comminission recently awarded him the Dr. David L Belding award for Marine Conservation, a prize given to the person ” who has done the most to promote conservation and sustainable use of the Commonwealth’s marine resources.” Although he’s retiring from the tackle business, Pond says he will continue the work of Stripers Unlimited .” There is so much to do , ” he says, “so much to do” In many ways the now Stripers Forever is a continuation of Stripers Unlimited ; as many as half of the Stripers Forever Board members served at Stripers Unlimited. Dick Russell, author of Striper Wars, was an old friend of Bob’s and consulted him while he wrote that book. Dick sent the following words about Bob Pond to to share with the Stripers Forever membership.
“The passing of Bob Pond at 92 is a great loss, for he was the true pioneer of striped bass conservation. Without Bob’s sounding the alarm about the striper population in the mid-1960s, long before anyone else thought there was a problem, this magnificent fish would likely have disappeared from Atlantic coastal waters. After creating the legendary Atom plug used with success by so many anglers, Bob devoted his life to preserving striped bass for future generations. It is our job now to carry his legacy forward. Thank you, Bob Pond, and may you rest in peace. - Dick Russell.”
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Old 05-03-2010, 10:09 AM
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Default Re: Bob Pond

Written by Frank Pintauro

While fishing the Cape Cod Canal one night and getting skunked with his usual assortment of tins and eel skin rigs, Bob Pond happened to see a worn out Creek Chub Pikie floating by. He retreived it from the water
and in so doing began his journey toward discovering the secret striped bass killer of the "Big Ditch."
His curiosity aroused, Pond tinkered for over a year with a lure design of his own that would create a great surface commotion that big bull bass could not resist. The result of his efforts was the birth of the Striper Atom which in 1946 would take the first three places in the Cape Cod Canal Derby. The Atom came in three colors— Herring Blue, Whiting Gold, and Blue and Silver. The lure was so successful that Pond quickly came out with the Striper Atom, Jr. for light tackle spincasting which was just becoming popular. Pond also was one of the first to produce lures made of ethyl cellulose plastic. The Atom "40" and the Atom "51" were the result of this effort. Pond's earliest Atoms were light, and fishermen often wrapped inner tube around them to add weight. The red inner tube worked especially well when the squid were running.
Pond was the moving force behind Stripers Unlimited and an incredibly generous environmentalist who spent his life and career protecting the nursery grounds of Striped Bass. His innovation made Atom one of the most successful companies in Salt Water History

Reference Salt water classics 10 in the series written by Frank Pintuaro Bob Pond
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