Sunday Classic / Use Old Plano Boxes For Bulk Fly Storage

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Plano boxes work great for boat and travel fly storage. Photo Louis Cahill

Of all the thousands of dollars of bass fishing gear that I’ve accumulated over the years there’s very little of it that I can find a use for in my fly fishing today.

Well, I could probably find a way to use some of it, but I’d definitely get bashed for it by my friends. My Plano tackle boxes, however, have proven to be very useful for me in my drift boat and when I’m traveling across the states on my fly fishing trips. I can load up one Plano box for my drift boat and I’m good for the day, and if I’m traveling out west, I often use one to throw all my big dry fly patterns or streamers in, so I don’t have to keep up with several smaller fly boxes during the trip. Every morning I’ll take out what I need and stow them in one or two fly boxes that I can carry easily with me on the water.

Plano boxes are cheap and they seem to last for ever if they’re not the super old models. Latches have been improved and these days you can even find waterproof models for just a few bucks extra. I’m all for using the state-of-the-art fly boxes on the market but I’ll never stop using my Plano boxes for bulk fly storage. I love that you can quickly adjust the compartment sizes to match the size of your flies, and you don’t have to struggle fitting your flies in tiny foam slots. Dig around your garage or in your tackle room next time you have a few minutes to mess around. Chances are, you’ll find at least one old unused Plano box that you can clean out and start using for your boat or travel fly fishing needs right away. And, it’s always a good feeling to recycle fishing gear.

Anyone else out there utilize Plano boxes for they’re fly fishing? Drop us a line.

Keep it Reel,

Kent Klewein
Gink & Gasoline
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11 thoughts on “Sunday Classic / Use Old Plano Boxes For Bulk Fly Storage

  1. I have never understood the logic of smashing a bunch of flies into a flat little box.even the smallest Plano type divided boxes are so much better at storing flies.i use small foam boxes.with magnets that hold them closed .but in my bag I will have several small dived boxes with several flies of each type.i stock the foam boxes from these.ther really are no practical fly boxes for large bass bugs.

  2. I’m an old bloke on a part aged pensioner and I have never wasted money so I have approx thirty 3600 or 3700 Plano boxes set up for my flies which range from #8 to 7/0 hooks. I cut foam and hot glue it into the boxes so that I can secure the flies. In a few of the boxes I store large flies ie 5″ or bigger.

    Apart from those boves I’ve gone a slightly different way with fly storage using 75mmX100mm or 75mmX125mm zip bags depending on the type of flies and then storing them in 175mmX230mm Tackle Binders or Binders I have made.

    I’ve chose this way to cut down on weight as these flies will be flying to a remote destination and one must watch the weight going onto the aircraft.

    All of the flies in the 100mm to 150mm length tied on 3X strong or heavier 3/0 to 7/0 hooks.

    A fair few of the blokes I have fished with on trips over the past nine years have said they were going to steal my storage idea.

    All of my flies which go on any trip will be washed and dried thoroughly once I am home so I don’t worry about water proofing the boxes and having more weight.

  3. Never throw the Plano boxes away, because when you get really old they do a nice job of keeping your morning and night pills separate.

  4. They work great to hold flies with weed guards on them. By not putting the in a slot you keep the weed guard from getting crushed.
    I like the adjustable compartment model.

  5. Been using the Plano (and equivalent) boxes for years. You have the option of several sizes, and one of their models –

    even comes with dozens of small holes on the top and bottom of the box to aid in airflow through the box. Perfect size box if you fish larger streamers and poppers (which we do here in TX) and fits in a sling or backpack perfectly. Tacky makes some great boxes but you can buy two or three Planos for the price of one Predator. Use one for my pills too, Fred!

  6. I ‘ve used them for years, from my guiding days, as my bulk boxes. Even now as I look behind me at the book shelf there are 16 of them full of flies. I am still a compulsive tyer.

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