Good morning and boy this is a good topic to discuss.
I believe I wrote a post and hopefully it can be found where it was mentioned the difference between the ANGERMANN - LAV and RUSTFRI jigs as far as how they are made.
First the big thing with a GROUNDFISH style fishing jig is that the design was developed and modified by those from Norway going back a hundred or more years ago. They did not put a SS jacket over their jig, and just fished a simple shaped piece of lead and caught fish to feed their families and make a living from fishing.
Based upon this premise, the inherent design of the Norway jig, WORKS, and it now comes down to all the tweaks such as:
1- Plating - whether or not it has an added finish such as the ss jacket, nickel plate or buffed on a wheel like Harry did.
2- Design - on whether it has a longer or shorter neck, the angle of the sweep on the bottom of the jig, etc.
I am very fortunate to speak to a number of people who actually design various jigs. There happens to be much more that goes into a jig then putting eyelids into a jig, or mixing a pot of lead, or adding in plating if it is used on that jig.
Every jig you use, is a variation of a design made by other fishermen over the years and we cannot escape that. What changes is how much REFINEMENENT goes into the newer designs, and from the basic Norway design, jig makers have imparted WHAT THEY FEEL WILL MAKE IT A BETTER CATCHING JIG!
Understand though, and unless you know something about making jigs or any fishing tackle, much trial and error is done to come up with the final product. But we also have to understand the fish or type of fish that will attack this lead shaped object.
Cod and pollack, will eagerly attack anything placed in front of them. That is a no brainer, and when these fish were around in great numbers, a lead pipe, or a cod shaped bomb with treble hooks attached, caught them.
What jig makers are now trying to do, is come up with a jig that has SOMETHING INHERENT TO IT IN WHICH A FISH LIKE A COD WILL ATTACK IT AND EAT IT OVER ANOTHER JIG. That is the game now, and both Danny and Dave have made jigs that stand out among the cod jigs that are on the market.
Look at what we do with jigs, altering its look, by putting flies or teasers of different length and color on them. Does this matter when we drop it down to the bottom in the GOM or Georges, where little light is available to see the brillant purples, pinks, oranges and greens, that make OUR world so colorful?
I have learned a great deal about jig design from the people I have talked to over the years. They have done the evaluating, testing and tweaking to come up with a tool, and that is what they have done, make a tool that works for catching fish.
We do know that we can make a jig have certain actions by flattening them, putting a hammered finish on them, curving the bottom and narrowing the top, or just elongating or making them bulge by how much lead we use.
As much as we think good jigs catch fish, good looking jigs first catch fishermen since many of you know that there are at least 50 different designs and shapes of jigs on the market for fishing for cod and pollack.
I remember a story told to me years back by one of my fishing mentors whose commercial vessel was docked up in Canada during the sixties. When he had the time he was walking around the docks and he saw and ending up watching a teenager tossing some metal object in the water, and catching, mackeral, pollock, small cod and even a flounder. After a while his curiosity made him walk over to the boy, and the first thing that caught his attention was that he was using what looked to be a hand rolled shaped piece of lead with a small treble hook on one end. Anyone could of fashioned something pretty similar and that their was no swivel, but just two holes on each end where what literally was hardened metal wire key rings, were attached.
Yes a basic design, probably not modified much from when that boys dad, or whomever past fishermen, used a similar object for catching fish right off the land. It worked, and there was no CNC machinging, or exact measuring of the weight, or plating, or many of the other things we now discuss when designing a good fishing jig used, and yet it caught fish.
Again I repeat that this simple jig shaped piece of lead, caught fish.
Maybe it now comes down to the fishermen who uses the jig to catch fish these days.
There are so many things we now do to our jigs to make them better fish catchers because of the state of our fisheries at this time.
Just maybe it only comes down to the personal favorites that we buy and put in our tackle bag, since all jigs no matter the maker, do catch the various groundfish in the New England region