Bleeder Bait Company Bubbler
Bubbler Fishing Lure
Bleeder Bait Company - Dallas, Texas
Among the more unusual lures ever made were those manufactured by the Bleeder Bait Company of Dallas, Texas. According to Carl Luckey, this company was making the 'bleeder' line of lures in the late 1930's, one of which was called the "Bubbler".
The "Bubbler" is a wood lure, measuring 2-5/8" in length, has painted eyes, and two treble hooks. In the belly of the lure is a hole approximately 3/8" in diameter in which a special tablet called a "bleedlure tablet" was inserted. The tablet produced a "...bleeding, oozing action that more closely resembles live, wounded prey..." according to the lure's instruction pamphlet. A metal cover plate which is part of the front treble rig rotated over the hole to hold the pellet in. One used the plate to adjust the amount of 'bleeding', i.e., leave a small or large opening as desired. The instructions called for using 2 pellets at a time, stating that they would last from 20 to 35 minutes depending upon the opening of the gap.
Bubbler Bottom View
Included with each lure was a tube of 12 pellets and a set of hook guards intended to keep the lure's trebles from tangling with other baits, clothing, or fingers. Additional pellets could be purchased in tubes of 12, 25 or 50.
Bubbler Color Chart
The Bubbler came in 20 different colors (numbered 1 thru 20) as shown in the color chart above.
Bleeder Fishing Lure Models
The Bleeder Bait Co. made 12 different baits including the Dido, the Bubbler (floating and sinking), the Chunker, the Ranger (floating and sinking), the Mouse, the Muskyite, the Broken Back, the Teaser, the Fish King, and the B.P.S. 100. A chart of the various models is shown above.
I haven't seen any recent pricing on Bleeder baits but would suspect they'd be in the $50 to $100 range. Having one in the box with the tube of pellets could easily be double or triple that. (Note: these price estimates are from the original 1999 article.)
Special thanks to NFLCC member Chris Hauser for the material for this article on the Bubbler Bait!
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Heddon Airplane and Kit
Around 1916 or so, the Heddon Company owned two Jenny bi-wing airplanes which were painted exactly like this piece. Heddon used the planes to actually deliver fishing lures and boasted that they were the only company to deliver fishing tackle by air! There exist pictures of these planes with boxes of fishing lures lashed to the wings with their pilots standing next to them ready to take off.
The "Heddon Airplane" is not, as many believe, a advertising piece made by the Heddon company. Rather is is a plastic kit airplane produced in the 1960's by the Renwal Company. In response to a posting on a message board by a collector, I discovered this fact. According to the kit's paperwork, this particular model was made to illustrate the Jenny airplane that was used by Heddon. The instructions are dated 1967; a copy can be viewed HERE.
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