Sometimes the best things do cost that bit more, and whilst there may well be loads of options to the OSP DoLive Stick, so far I haven’t come across a “twitchbait” style of soft plastic that I prefer. Horses for courses and all that, but I like the lure, it works very well for me, and until something better (for me) comes along then I’ll stick with them - but they ain’t exactly cheap as chips, and sometimes they can be a swine to get hold of. I’ve been paying roughly £11 for a pack of six 6’’ DoLive Sticks, keep an eye on here and here if that helps. Call me tight if you like, but I have come up with a few simple ways that are geared towards getting as much life as I can out of these lures……….
I am more than happy to stick the outstanding Lunker City Texposer weedless hooks in the white senkos that I tend to fish with at night, but then the Wave Fishing 5’’ Bamboo Sticks are made from what seems to be a relatively tough sort of soft plastic that doesn’t tear up that easily - whereas the DoLive Sticks rigged on the same hooks don’t last nearly as well. They seem to be made from a softer kind of soft plastic, and because of this I do like to use one of those hitchhiker style weedless hooks with them. At not far off £2 a lure, I’d kinda like to get a decent bit of use out of them, and whilst yes, of course they don’t cost anywhere near as much as a decent hard lure, bass can and do sometimes rip a DoLive Stick clean off the hook.
The two hitchhiker style weedless hooks that I have most experience with are from Mustad and Owner. The Mustad Wide Gape hook in 5/0 or 6/0 works great in the 6’’ long OSP DoLive Sticks, and I like how these hooks aren’t very expensive at all. I have never, ever had a single issue with those Mustad hooks and the sort of fish we are catching from our shorelines, but if you tied me down and allowed me to use only one style of weedless hook with the DoLive Sticks then it would be the more expensive Owner Twistlock, code 5167, the ones that have a yellow sticker on them that says “Designed by Gary Yamamoto”. The size 5/0 and 6/0 just fit the 6’’ DoLive Sticks absolutely perfectly, and I do think that the little centering pin on Owner’s version of the hitchhiker (Owner Twistlock) makes for ever so slightly easier rigging than the regular hitchhiker screw thing that is on those Mustad hooks.
Bear in mind we’re talking about small margins here, and both hooks/systems work perfectly with these lures. I just slightly prefer the way the Owner hook sits with this particular lure. Both hooks last ok as regards rusting up, but they don’t last like the amazingly rustproof Lunker City Texposer ones do. In reality this doesn’t really matter much when you think of the amount of use you can get from a hook that you will very rarely snag up and lose anyway.
Then what I do when I’m fishing with these soft plastics is to keep an eye on them - if they start tearing up due to catching fish or repeated casting, I’ll take it off, put a new or previously repaired lure on, and keep that damaged DoLive Stick in my lure box for repairing when I get home. If they are going to tear up, it’ll be around where the hitchhiker secures in the front of the lure, or around where the hook comes up and through the body of the lure. You could of course keep fishing with the lure and not take any notice of them starting to tear up, but I have found that I can prolong their life a lot by not letting them get too damaged before replacing them.
And when I say repairing, I mean doing a bit of simple surgery with the “never be without” Mend-It soft plastic repair glue - paint around, in and over the holes with Mend-It, let the lures dry, and take them out fishing again, almost as good as new. If you fish with soft plastics that you pay decent money for and don’t have any Mend-It soft plastic repair glue then you owe it to yourself to get some. Anyway, yes, I am obsessed all over again with the OSP DoLive Stick, and yes, trying to prolong their life might be considered a little besotted, but I couldn’t give a stuff! Hope it might help a bit……...