Shur-Strike and Creek Chub Plunkers

22 Sep

Comparing Shur-Strike Plunkers and Creek Chub Plunkers

The Shur-Strike Plunker which was the economy or trade line of Creek Chub was first cataloged in 1938. Creek Chub used the same “Humpback” style of the first Creek Chub version, but there are some distinct differences to help a collector differentiate.

Creek Chub came out with their first version of the Plunker in 1927 for their main line or brand. The body style was referred to as the “Humpback” version as shown in the picture below.

Creek Chub only continued with this style for a few years. The picture of the Humpback style remained until 1938 in the catalog, but Creek Chub was known for leaving old pictures in the catalog for several years before changing the advertising. In the early 30’s the Plunker took on a longer sleeker style as shown in the picture below.

This version would remain until the 60’s when it was changed to a plastic version.

The Shur-Strike version used a small cap/washer in the tail where the hook was attached.

There could be some rare examples with no cap/washer at all, and the screw was used directly into the tail with no other hardware. I believe any examples of these would be a quality control issue where it was missed at the plant, or possibly a fisherman removed it when changing the hook. I have 21 examples of Shur-Strike Plunkers in my collection, and only one does not have a washer/cap in the tail. The Creek Chub Humpback Plunkers had a small cup in the tail as opposed to a cap/washer. This is noticeably different from the pictures below.

Shur-Strike Plunker compared to Creek Chub Humpback Plunker

If you look closely at both the Shur-Strike Plunker and the Creek Chub Humpback version, you will notice that the Creek Chub is somewhat more round shouldered. This is a very slight variation, but can be used to help differentiate.

Another difference is the position of the eyes on the lure. The Shur-Strike version eyes were placed 6/16” (3/8”) from the front of the eye socket to the mouth. The Creek Chub Humpback Plunker was 4/16” or (1/4”)slightly closer to the mouth. The Shur-Strike versions of the front cup are also slightly farther from the mouth as well.

The last and most important difference is color schemes. Creek Chub and Shur-Strike had different color schemes so knowing the different colors will help determine the brand. Red/White is a color both brands used, so you definitely need to go to other steps to confirm.
It is also important to note that the color schemes changed over the years. The scale pattern used by Creek Chub was larger on the older lures and also covered more of the belly on the older patterns. Creek Chub started stenciling the back of their lures around 1935 as well, and as far as I know, none of the Humpback Plunkers have a stencil on the back. We know the Standard thinner body Plunker was being used in 1935 or earlier, since many of these have been found with stencils and without. Color patterns changed on the Shur-Strike brand as well. The 06 Shiner Scale color is a great example. It started with a brownish green color around the eyes and back when first introduced in 1932. The color changed to black color around the eyes and back around 1938.

The later version of the Creek Chub Plunker is the thinner longer body style as previously indicated. This design of the Plunker preceded the Shur-Strike design. It was simple for Creek Chub to bring back the Humpback design for Shur-Strike with a few modifications, so that the Shur-Strike design was not competing against the main line.

An example of a Shur-Strike Plunker and a Creek Chub Humpback Plunker are shown below.

The Shur-Strike is in 06 Shiner Scale color with the black around the eyes and back. The Shur-Strike Plunker was first cataloged in 1938, so the color scheme is confirmed. The washer/cap appears on the tail, and the eye socket is 3/8” from the mouth. The cup on the bottom hook is 11/16” from the front of the cup to the mouth. Everything checks out to be Shur-Strike. The Creek Chub example is in Golden Shiner color. The color scheme is correct for the late 20’s in scale style, and was cataloged. The body is also more rounded than the Shur-Strike. There is no stencil, which confirms it is pre 1935. The cup appears on the tail, and the eyes are closer to the mouth at 1/4”. The bottom cup is 10/16” which is closer than the Shur-Strike. This confirms it is an early Creek Chub Humpback Plunker.

Keep in mind that it is best to confirm more than one of the factors above to make an ID. Creek Chub was not perfect, and sizes can vary slightly.


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