Bay de Noc Lure Company - 2010
The tour of this family owned fishing lure manufacturer was offered as part of the Good Sam Samboree in Escanaba. It was a short drive to the company's building. It was a very interesting tour conducted by the sons of the founders of the company.
The building had no signage except a small sign on the door.
They have been manufacturing lures with spinner blades and spoons - since 1955.
The first lure was the Swedish Pimple® that they imported from overseas. They soon developed their own product line.
We entered the building into the assembly and packaging area.
This gal was assembling a hook and blade with a split ring. The machine was designed by the founders mainly from sewing machine parts. They can assemble and package 22 dozen and hour.
Another gal placed the lure in the clear plastic bubble container, dropped in the foam filler piece and covered it all with a printed backer card.
Then she slid the dozen packages into the sealing machine. After a noticeable 'bang', she slid the tray out and she had a dozen sealed packages ready to ship.
We then entered the production area. A very compact area - lots of history in the building. Anders started as our tour guide. Due to the size of our group we were unable to hear Anders so Dave took some of us to complete the parts we missed.
There was not a lot of extra room for guests.
The building was jammed with machinery and equipment.
Rolls of copper wire weighing 125 pounds are unrolled, cut to length and straightened by hand.
The products they make may be small ... but ... the machines are large and heavy-duty.
Dave is holding a brass wire that was pressed into several blades. They still have the scrap attached.
A strip of them was hanging on the wall.
The other press uses cut brass individually heated and place on stamping machine then pounded twice. It is then placed in a metal box to cool before going to scrap removal area. The surviving founder, 90+ years old, comes in each day to do this. Notice the chair with the old egg crate seat, it has seen a lot of years of service.
Fred held one.
Another machine removes the scrap.
The scrap is recycled so they make every attempt to recover as much as possible.
Leaving the blades.
The blades were stored in bins and trays
as they traveled through the factory.
Until a few years ago, they hand-polished every blade - both sides. Special tools fit into the two hoes in each blade.
One of the fathers found out about using a large tumbler to smooth the blades from a salesman for pocket clips on ballpoint pens.
This is the plating room. They don't do much of their own plating any more. Most is subcontracted. The room remains just in case it is needed.
The blades were hung on the hooks and the rack dipped into the tanks.
These were so highly polished, Dave would not touch them with his bare hand. They send the blades out to a vendor for 'gold' plating.
Some are nickel plated.
Most of the lures are still drilled by hand.
Some are painted with florescent paint. A recent addition to the line have a 'cracked ice' sticker added to create flash. Seems the fisherman like them.
Like most of the operations, it is a hands on task. Dave said if he was not helping with the tour, he would have been painting. He does all the painting.
Some are two-toned. They will buff the over-spray off.
They also use different finishes and attach colorful stickers - fish like FLASH.
Get more information on their Web site ... www.baydenoclure.com ... See all the sizes, colors and types.
Every time their company or products is mentioned on a magazine cover, it is framed.
The family portrait is also hung on the wall.
It was a very interesting tour. It took about an hour. Dave and Anders were great hosts and very proud of the company.
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