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Lure Review


Old School, Hand Crafted Art with PH Custom Lures's Ploppin' P


Date: 6/10/19
Tackle Type: Lure
Manufacturer: PH Customs
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 7.67 - GOOD

River2Sea's, Larry Dahlberg designed, Whopper Plopper continues to be one of the hottest topwater baits amongst pro-anglers there has ever been. Something about the buzzing, plopping action of that spinning tail together with the buoyant casting plug body catches'em. As with any popular bait, lure designers have been busy with their interpretations of this effective bait. Today we take a look at one such variant. Introducing PH Custom Lures Ploppin' P.


PH Custom Lures Ploppin' P Specifications

Type Topwater
Length 3"
Weight 5/8oz
Material Wood
Colors 5
MSRP $19.99


Impressions: The Ploppin' P by PH Custom Lures is a bit of a rarity in today's fishing tackle world. It's a plug made of wood. In fact all of the company's plugs are made from wood which explains the premium price points. The Ploppin' P's raison d'Ítre of course, is that unique, metal tail designed to gurgle and plop on the surface.

The Ploppin' P is a different kind of plopper

Real World Test: I fished PH Custom Lures's Ploppin P on board my ARK Rods IVK610MLXS Invoker spinning rod matched with Quantum Smoke S3 25 Spinning reel spooled with 10lb Sunline Supernatural†nylon monofilament. For once I managed to match the right line with my topwater bait.

Rigged and ready to go

Castability : One of the reasons I chose spinning tackle for this bait was for the ease of casting. Being a balsa wood bait that is not really all that heavy at 5/8 of an ounce, I found it easier to cast and place the Ploppin' P where I wanted with spinning tackle. With no wind in the equation, casting tackle would be no issue, but overall, spinning is just easier with this bait.

What makes it different is it's hand crafted out of wood

Ease of Actuation : Once in the water, it's just a matter of beginning your retrieve to get the Ploppin' P plopping and spurting. It behaves pretty much as expected at all speeds but I like it best somewhere in the medium rate retrieve area. I like it to just where you can hear it gurgling, not just see it, and a nice bubble trail is behind the bait.

And features a metal plopping blade

Another option for the retrieve is to pull the bait forward a foot or two like you're working a wood-chopper, but with pauses in between to give fish a chance to look at the bait before it takes off again.

The Ploppin' P is effective with a straight retrieve but I found that mixing up the retrieve really could pay off depending on how aggressive the fish were. Sometimes fish would hit it right after the pause, other times they would only hit it when burned. Don't be afraid to mix it up depending on water temps, clarity, and the mood of the fish on each particular day.

Thanks to that wood body, this bait has really good buoyancy in the water

The Ploppin' P has really good buoyancy in the water when resting too. If there's one area of caution or something to look out for is after a few fish or a cast into something unexpectedly solid like a dock piling, rock, or tree trunk, the blade is susceptible to ending out of shape. Usually a little twist here or there is enough to get the blade back in working order but it's not difficult to imagine the blade getting damaged enough to where the bait is inoperable.

The metal blade, however, is subject to fouling and getting bent out of shape

Design/Ergonomics: The Ploppin' P is available right now in about five standard colors. It's really an easy bait to fish on either casting or spinning gear, I just seem to be better in tune with the bait on spinning. The bait's hooks are from an unspecified brand but held up just fine during our tests.

The bait is available in 5 different colors

Price & Application: Retail cost for the Ploppin P is $19.99. Not an outrageous sum considering this is a hand crafted balsa wood bait with a custom metal blade. Old school anglers will appreciate the craftsmanship that goes into making these baits.

Retail is $19.99 per bait


PH Custom Lures Ploppin' P Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Nice build quality 8
Performance Casts well and plops at all speeds 8.5
Price For a hand crafted wood bait, very reasonable 7.5
Features Quality hardware throughout 7.5
Design (Ergonomics) Limited color pallet 7
Application A good topwater alternative 7.5

Total Score


Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:


+ Hand crafted, balsa wood bait - Limited Color Pallet
+ Plopping action at all speeds - Though the hooks seem to perform fine, it's always nice to know what you're buying
+ Nice buoyancy thanks to wood body - Blade can fall out of tune

For those who appreciate hand crafted, wood baits, the Ploppin' P is right in that wheelhouse

Conclusion: Hand crafted wood baits will always have a place in my tackle box. I appreciate the effort and artistry that goes into making something like the Ploppin' P. Sure, I'd like to see more colors and some name brand hardware, but those are somewhat minor points. What is available with this bait works, and ultimately, that's what really counts. I look forward to checking out more of this company's hand made products but for now, if you're looking for an old school take on a modern design, PH Custom Lures's Ploppin' P is a fun bait to take out for a spin.


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