Published May 14, 2010, 02:24 PM

Heddon Crazy Crawler lives up to its crazy name

One look at the Heddon Crazy Crawler and you quickly understand why they gave this fishing lure such a strange name.

By: MARK GREENIG, DL-Online

One look at the Heddon Crazy Crawler and you quickly understand why they gave this fishing lure such a strange name. It seems to resemble a struggling bird in the water. Make no mistake, fish do eat birds when the opportunity presents itself. Most of this lure’s action is made by the fisherman imparting action to his or her fishing rod. Such action activates two metal wings that not only cause water movement, but significant noise as well. This commotion is easily keyed upon by the eyesight and lateral line of fish — two key reasons why this lure had great fish catching potential.

One key way of dating Heddon lures, certainly crazy crawlers, is the type of hook fasteners used on their lures. A very quick run down of such hardware consists of: cup rig, 1905, L-rig, 1915-34, toilet seat, 1926-34, one-piece bar, 1927, flap rig, 1934-48, and staple type used sometimes on experimental baits. I won’t even begin to describe each type, but to the trained eye the differences in each are easily recognized. A super visual reference for the many hook fasteners can be found in the book titled, Old Fishing Lures & Tackle, 7th Edition by author Carl F. Luckey.

Let’s talk about these crazy lures. The Heddon

Crazy Crawler first appeared in their 1940 catalog. Early baits were made of wood. Note the first plastic “Spook” appeared in a Heddon 1957 catalog. It should be noted, another great way to date Heddon lures is to reference their early catalogs. However, such paper products are quite costly, which makes contemporary books a more economical way to research lures.

The most desirable crazy crawler is their musky model 2150. It was first made available to the public in 1940 and made only for a short period of time. Thus, not a great deal of these large crawlers are in the open market. In 1950 it was again reintroduced for a short period of time. Value range on this lure, depending on color, is $75 to $150. Another rare model is the model 2120 chipmunk crazy crawler, again first introduced in 1940. (Yes, fish also eat chipmunks. Just imagine one falling off a tree branch and struggling in the water. It then becomes an easy meal for a waiting fish.) The largest model 2150 in good condition should bring you at least $100. Add the correct box in good condition and you come close to double that value.

Newer plastic crazy crawler models have a collector value range of $10-$20. Even with this entry-level lure, color makes a difference.

Like most fishing lure companies, Heddon had numbers for all its lures. In addition, Heddon had an extensive color code for its lures. These two pieces of information are invaluable for a collector to insure they are purchasing the correct and the appropriate box. All that information is available in the book titled, The Heddon Legacy by Bill Roberts and Rob Pavey. Most lure boxes have the lure number and color code stamped on them. Always look for that when trying to match a lure to a box.

Crazy crawlers can still be found. If you know what you are doing, I recommend flea markets for your best buys. Most run of the mill crazy crawlers will cost you $25-$50. Make sure you check the hook fasteners before buying. That’s where you can make some money if the seller is not educated on how such hardware dates the crawler, thus affecting the value. I find this lure pleasing to look at primarily due to its’ unique design and multitude of colors available.

Until next time, may all your searches be successful.

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