Introduction: How to Make a Cheap Rod and Reel Protector
After a fruitless search to find an inexpensive way to store and transport my three cheap fishing rods, I devised this quickie solution. Using scrap PVC pip to protect the rod, and sewing scrap canvas to fit the pipe and provide a pocket at the end to protect the reel, I now have just what I need to carry three rods, with reel and lures still attached, without them flopping around or tangling together!
Step 1: Collect Materials
I happened to have some scrap PVC irrigation system pipe lying around, and a canvas dropcloth purchased at Harbor Freight.
The pipe is 1-1/4 inch thin-walled PVC, with one end widened to allow pipes to be fit together easily. This was big enough to allow the loops on the rod to fit in.
Obviously I used a sewing machine. This would have taken WAY too long without one. Whether it is the "correct" thread and stitch I have no idea. It doesn't have to endure a bomb strike.
Step 2: Cut PVC to Length
I cut the pipe long enough to extend past the end of the pole by three inches, to protect the tip of the rod.
The widened end of the pipe fits over the base of the reel mount, and stops right under the reel, providing a simple stop.
My three rods are two different lengths, and I should have made them all the same longest length, but I didn't figure that out until after the short one had been made!
Step 3: Cut Canvas to Size
I'm a very intuitive person when it comes to measuring and cutting, which means I'm not exacting. I just laid the rod inside the pipe on the canvas, folded it over, and cut out an approximation of what would fit around it. I made it longer at the tip and at the base, to allow for "tweaking."
The base ended up just long enough to cinch closed with a piece of rope.
Step 4: Sew Canvas Together
I'm not great with a sewing machine, but after getting the thread loaded up it was pretty simple to sew the piece closed. I started at the wide end and stitched it large, to allow room for the reel. I had made a little mark at the point I wanted the pipe to start, and brought the stitching down to there.
It was a little tricky to sew the long sleeve portion with the pipe between the canvas, but it made for a good snug fit. I just kept the presser foot right beside the pipe, but not under the edge of it. I finished off the tip with a little curve to the crease.
Step 5: Hem the End
After trimming the edges, i decided I wanted to hem the end to keep it from unraveling.
Step 6: Trim and Invert Over the Pipe
Before sliding the canvas over the pipe, I trimmed the excess canvas off.
Starting with the tip, I stuck a little of the canvas sleeve into the end of the pipe and then "rolled" the canvas over the pipe until it was turning inside out as it slid down. If it had been a tiny bit tighter I might not have been able to make it fit, but luck was with me. (and intuition!)
Step 7: Slide Rod and Reel In, Go Fishing!
Now all I have to do is slide the rod into the pipe until the reel bumps against it. The end can either just fold over or be tied closed.
And there you have it! A fifteen minute, almost-free storage system for fishermen!