SAURUS: The Meeting of East and West. | The Fishermans Hut

SAURUS: The Meeting of East and West.

When we add knowledge and experiences we eternalize and justify our own existence. And when America and Japan met they sealed the future of sport fishing in the world!

And so the first artificial bait factory in Japan was born, Alpha and Craft, the predecessor company of SAURUS which was founded by Hirosuke Nori, known as Japan's legendary fisherman in the 1970s.

It all started with the occupation of Japan by the Allied Armed Forces which took place between 1945 and mid-1952 led by the United States and which had a great influence on its culture, food and lifestyle.

To this day the United States maintains military bases on the island of Okinawa, the most “American” island in Japan.

During the American occupation, soldiers liked to fish for Black Bass in the lakes near Tokyo, such as Lake Ashinoko in Hakone.

At that time, the young teenager Hirosuke Nori, a Black Bass fisherman, met American soldier Charlie and developed a great friendship with a passion for fishing in common.

Charlie taught Hirosuke what he knew about fishing for Black Bass with artificial lures. Hirosuke then spent his days trying to improve his technique using American baits.

Since then, Hirosuke has accumulated experiences and was recognized as a great fisherman in Japan. In the 70s he decided to create high quality Japanese baits, founding Alpha and Craft & Balsa 50, the first artificial bait brand in Japan.

Until then, Hirosuke used American Big-O lures, created by Fred Young, from whom he had great influence.


The first bait created by Saurus with a design by Tadashi Nishioka was a balsa wood crankbait called Balsa 50 Original, probably one of the most popular baits ever developed in Japan and today a rare collector's item.

In the following years Hirosuke Nori focused on the development of saltwater and bass fishing lures.

In the early days of salt water lure fishing in Japan, fishing with minnow plugs and metal jigs was mainly from the field and the targets were Sea bass, yellow tail or small size of trevally.

After that lure fishing from the boat began to take place.

The casting game with the plug which aimed at the sea bass at first.

Some anglers have come to use metal jigs frequently because of distance.

In the late 90's many Japanese saltwater anglers started jigging fishing in search of even bigger ones but the problem of this era was the soft rod and nylon line.

The metal jig had to be large in order to use the stretchy nylon line and a flexible rod to bend the big balls, and a long rod was needed to move it quickly. To solve these problems SAURUS made a good original metal jig with a 9 foot jigging rod and a water bite. That's the raise oh the famous famous Hilla Jiglla and the beggining of the modern concept of vertical jigging.

Hilla Jigla

GT fishing with huge poppers initiated by the famous Australian angler Barry Cross has grown to be a very popular fishing in Japan and SAURUS has also developed a giant popper and stick bait compatible with GT fishing. Those are the legendary Tobi Pop and Tobi Pen which are currently in the process of being updated and relaunched in the market.

Today SAURUS JAPAN continues to produce artisanal wooden baits and SAURUS INT.  produce and develop not only baits but all kinds of saltwater material under the supervision of Diogo Yamada, always seeking to maintain quality control and respect and honor the name of Mr Hirosuke Nori and his legacy.

If you are interested in Saurus products and you are in the United States, find it at The Fisherman's Hut. We will be delighted to receive you.

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