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Legendary NJ Plug Maker Bob Hahn Dies at 66
Written by Bob Maehrlein   
Tuesday, 09 April 2013 20:41

Bob Hahn{jcomments off}This past Sunday marked the passing of a true legend of our sport. Plug making pioneer and accomplished surfcaster, Bob Hahn, died at the age of 66. Always willing to help out his fellow fisherman, Bob’s plug building skills were only surpassed by his generous heart. A true friend to NJ Saltwater Fisherman, Bob was one of the first people to respond when I started looking for people to donate to our NJ Saltwater Fisherman inaugural banquet back in 2008.

I stopped by Capt’n Hippo’s Bait & Tackle in South Toms River, NJ to offer my condolences to Bob’s younger brother, Lenny Hahn, and to talk about Bob’s life.

Born in Weehawken in 1947 and raised in Woodridge, NJ, Bob fell in love with fishing at an early age. The story goes that when Bob was a small boy his father took him fishing for the first time. Demonstrating a cast, his dad told him, “This is how you do it, son.” With that, he promptly let go of the rod and launched it into the water. Bob was hooked ever since.

As a young man, Bob moved first to Hazlet and then to Keyport where he enjoyed fishing Sandy Hook and the Long Branch pier. Around 1977 he moved to Point Pleasant after purchasing his parents’ home. It was in this home, in 1986, that he built his first plug, which was a surfster.
“I’m not sure why he started building them, other than he just had a love for fishing,” explained Lenny. His love for fishing showed in the 200 plus days a year he spent fishing the local surf. He would get up at 5:00am to get in a couple hours of fishing in the morning before going to work at his day job, as a master carpenter.

It was during one of those mornings, while he was out fishing with one of his early plugs, a fisherman noticed him catching and promptly bought the plug from him on the spot. Thus, the legend of Bob Hahn Plugs was born. Bob’s plugs quickly earned a devoted following amongst the surf fishing community. From his early surfster model, Bob’s offerings grew to include Dannies, poppers, jointed eels, needles and many other popular styles of plugs.

Bob Hahn StriperBob was a very generous man who often gave away his lures to charitable organizations, tournaments, and other events - especially to those that were geared towards children. Today, nearly every plug builder signs their name to their creations. Bob almost never did, except for one reason - charity. Lenny explained, “Bob would only sign one or two plugs a year. They were given to St. Jude’s (St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital) to be raffled off for the kids.”

About eight years ago, Bob moved down to Florida with his girlfriend, Brenda. He continued to make his plugs until a few years ago when he suffered a stroke. According to his brother, “The stroke affected the fine movements in his hand.” His attempts to work the lathe after the stroke proved stressful. “With the loss of movement in his hand, he was afraid he would lose his fingers in the lathe.” It was at that point that Bob made a decision. It would be the end of the line for Bob Hahn Plugs.

That night he made a fire and threw everything in it. Every plug that wasn’t finished yet, from the ones he had just turned to the ones that were almost completed, were burned. Even his original plug templates were engulfed in that fire, ending over 25 years of plug making and putting a final exclamation point on the Bob Hahn era.

Bob Hahn PlugsSome have wondered, as I did, why he didn’t sell the name or the rights. Lenny’s son even expressed interest in continuing the company and the Bob Hahn name. “They were his plugs and he didn’t want anyone copying them. He didn’t want the name to go on without him,” explained Lenny Hahn.
In light of some of the newer, more modern plugs, Bob’s plugs would not be considered fancy. A “working man’s plug” might be an apt description of them. Unfortunately, it has become almost popular in some circles to disparage these great lures. That’s a shame. Because to those who have used them, including myself, they are nothing short of beautiful. They swim right and catch fish. And that’s what it’s really all about. Isn’t it?

Bob’s family is planning a private ceremony in Florida after which he will be cremated. His ashes will then be sent back to NJ for Lenny to carry out Bob’s wishes to have them taken out to sea and scattered upon the ocean.

Tributes to Bob have been showing up all over the internet from fishermen everywhere. One that Lenny shared with me, and was especially touched by, was from popular surfcaster, author and seminar speaker, Crazy Alberto Knie. Knie described Bob as, “…indeed a sharpie and well respected within the surfrat community… I will cast his lure on my next outing in respect for all he has done and offered to our sport.”

When I asked Lenny if there’s anything he’d like people to know about his late brother he said, “Just that he was a great plug maker.”

Of that there is no doubt.

Join Capt Rich For Jiggin Inshore Bluefin Tuna
Written by Rod Houck   
Thursday, 21 March 2013 19:00

{jcomments off}

Captain Rich Kosztyu


Jiggin Inshore Bluefin Tuna

With Captain Rich Kosztyu from M.R. Charters at Harry's Army Navy In Robbinsville On Saturday March 23rd at 1:PM

Captain Rich will be going over General Inshore Locations, Rigging, Tackle and Equipment.

Come Help Kick Off SPRING !!!! With Capt Brian Rice
Written by Rod Houck   
Thursday, 21 March 2013 18:17
capt. brian rice

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Come Help Kick Off SPRING !!!!

Join Captain Brian Rice from Jersey Devil Charters at Pride Tackle in Red Bank on Saturday March 23rd at 4 pm.

Brian will be going over new gear, tactics and intel for stripers as well as answering any questions that you may have.

Brian will also share his experiences when it comes to helping our junior anglers!!!!!!!!!


2013 NJ Summer Flounder Regulations
Written by John Oswald APP   
Monday, 11 March 2013 05:30

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Summer FlounderThe New Jersey Marine Fisheries Council voted unanimously on Thursday to approve a 122-day summer flounder season that will run from May 18 to Sept. 16 with a 171/2-inch fish and a five-fish bag limit for the 2013 season. The Council approved Option No. 2 from a possible choice of six options available. That option was the preferred choice of most fishing groups going into the meeting.

“It’s fair for the state,” said Greg Hueth of the Save the Summer Flounder Fishery Fund. Hueth said the regulations give the southern part of the state, where the fluking is good earlier in the year, a chance for a good season while providing northern New Jersey part of a September season, when the fishing usually improves.

Several of the options included a longer season, a bag limit of eight fish and an increase in size to 18 inches. However, concerns over quota overages associated with those regulations led to a decision erring on the side of caution.   Source. App.com

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