Review by Alex (Makk) Mychalyszyn
It’s been a couple of years since I bought my first Mark Houghton Lure and I have purchased many more since. If any of you readers are not familiar with Marks lures, don’t worry, this is a nice review of these fantastic lures as I am a big fan.
Well where do I start? Ah, I know I’ll start with the…
Build Quality and Components
All of the lures I have that were made by Mark never seem to falter in their outstanding build quality. His current baits are made from balsa and are ‘through wired’ to give maximum support and strength.
The lures are tank tested so they achieve the best action possible. The diving vanes of the Crank-baits are made of a very strong plastic that can handle the hardest abuse we lure anglers can give them. I have bounced several of the lures into concrete, metal plates and masonry from casts that went awry on the local canal and they still appear to have no damage whatsoever.
Whilst being unbranded, the hooks and split rings that come supplied with the lures have not let me down. The hooks stay sharp for a very long time. The wire gauge has a nice balance of thickness which helps us retrieve these precious lures from snags, whilst making sure those hooks are properly set onto a fish.
The small split rings are very strong and I’ve not yet encountered a bad one. If you want to avoid damaging your fingernails I would advise getting a set of ‘Texas Tackle’ split ring pliers from www.chicoslures.co.uk.
Finish and Patterns
All the lures have a very tough, water tight, epoxy coating, which greatly reduces the chances of damage to the Balsa body from those hard hitting toothy critters we have in our waters. This durability is a favourite for both Mark and his customers.
If you’re worried or undecided on the specific colour pattern you want on your lures, don’t be. Mark has 70 patterns to choose from and all are available on his website. From the all natural ‘Esox’ and ‘Real Perch’ patterns to the bright and flashy ‘Hothead’ and ‘Clown’ varieties. What’s more, if there isn’t one that you like, simply send Mark an email and he will spray the pattern you desire; after all he has ‘Custom’ in the name.
Types of Lures Available and their Price Tag
Mark makes a range of lures to suit everybody’s needs and budget. His lures vary from the largest Jerk-baits to the smallest of alphabet style Crank-baits, and still there are more to offer. I have even had a few Spinner-baits and walk the dog style surface lures.
The lures are very reasonably priced and won’t break the bank. Prices vary from £3.99 to £6.99 on the current stock and all postage is free. Mark also has a custom ‘pimp my lure’ service if you have any lures that need a freshen up or simply a better look.
Marks lures are certainly fish catchers. The Crank-baits are by far my favourites, with one of his alphabet Crank-bait lures resulting in my PB lure caught pike from the River Trent.
With the lures being handcrafted and tuned to perfection they give off quiet possibly the best action you’d expect to attract fish, with either a nice tight wiggle or a wide wobble, either way they catch fish.
MH Custom Lures are by far the best I’ve seen, used and caught with. With them being handmade and tuned to perfection and with a big selection of styles to choose from, plus the huge array of patterns available, there is surely one to fit into everyone’s lure box. It certainly beats buying cheap plastic mass produced lures from the far east.
Marks customer service is top rate. I have had a couple lures which seem to have been damaged in delivery and did not work correctly in the water. I contacted him asking for advice and he had no hesitation in repairing and replacing them as my attempt at tuning the lures had failed.
Visit www.mhcustomlures.blogspot.co.uk for more information.
That’s the end of this review folks. I wish you all the best for your angling adventures.
Alex (Makk) Mychalyszyn