When I started making mine a respected fisherman told me to always add a contrasting color : my favorites in order
3 red beads, 1 gold, 3 red, 1 gold
3 gold beads, 1 red, 3 gold, 1 red
3 dark purple, 1 hot pink, 3 dark purple, 1 hot pink
3 green, 1 yellow, ......, .....
I use mostly small, faceted beads. I prefer the metallic beads and don't mind changing them when the coating wears off. Giving them a coat of lacquer helps the life.
FYI: The WBSA is planning a spinner & knot tying meeting in August, in Sandusky at Margaritaville.
Try some of the craft shops for beads when you start buying. Although places like Jann's are GREAT for beads they can be kinda pricy, sometimes the craft places have beads on clearance too. You can wrap a bunch of $ up on beads and tackle real quick.
And dont do like I did and drop your multi compartment bead box, makes for a long winter.
As far as color combos for beads, I like to stick to a few basic combos in darker natural colors (blues, greens, browns) and a few bright patterns (chartruese, flor orange). Sometimes I mix whites in for different patterns. Typically I use 6mm beads and sometimes 8mm beads. I ususally use a smaller (3 or 4 mm) bead above and below the quick-change clevis to allow it to spin more freely. Stack enough beads above the top hook to allow the largest blade you would use to spin and not touch the snell on the top knot. I usually use five or six 6 mm beads or four or five 8mm beads. SOme guys liek the "stacker" or minnow beads which is molded in one piece, rather than using multiple beads. Most of my beads come from Wally mart. Bags of multicolored beads in 6 or 8mm beads in 500+ counts for less than $3. Jo Ann Fabrics have some nice sbeads, if you want to check your man card at the door.
I prefer 14# Trilene XT for most of my Lake Erie Harnesses. I'll use 17# for short dipsey harnesses w/double willow blades.
By building your own you will save $$$ in the long run.
Blades i will use a gold blade either plain or with the various painted colors on them. the hot pink pattern and purple have been good this year.
Line, I use 17lbs berkley vanish.
Beads, I like a few colors: red, bright green, yellow, purple or rootbeer the transparent ones.
i usually will tie a couple with a treble hook as the bottom hook and only use it if the are biting short and I start to miss them.
you can spend about 30 to 40 dallors buying supplies but if you do a lot of fishing you get your monies worth compared to buying them at 4 or 5 buck a pop when ever you go out.
when i was making my own harnesses i always used quick change clevices.they give you the ability to make endless blade size and color combinations without having to make up alot of different harnesses.