Introduction: IMPROVED Pop Bottle Minnow Trap
I wanted to make a cheap minnow trap (see the many instructables already done on the subject). But I incorporated a few tweaks; they seem a little too small, for one. I worry that I can't put enough bait, and that if I leave it out too long, the minnows will either die from lack of fresh water or escape.
As well, I thought it would be handy to use something with a handle, for easy carrying and to attach the leader / line to.
So I started with two bottles; a 3.78L (one gallon) bottle, in my case an Ocean Spray container; and a standard 2L pop bottle. (I like 7Up, they have a nice long funnel-shaped neck.)
Process: I cut most of the bottom of the large bottle out, leaving a hole the same diameter as the 2L bottle.
I also cut the neck of the 2L bottle off. I made little cuts in the large end of the funnel, to create tabs that can then be folded over.
Now, I don't like leaving the threaded portion on the funnel (if I were a minnow, I wouldn't swim through it!) So I put it in a vice and cut it off with a regular saw. If you wanted a larger hole (going after larger minnows), you can just cut a little higher up. I made my cut right behind the flange.
Then, just like the regular trap, I heated a needle held in vice-grips. I poked two holes through each tab, and into the bottle. Now, I've assembled other traps with nylon fishing line. This time I used baling wire (regular thin-gauge aluminum wire), curving it, pushing it down through one hole in each tab and back up through the other, then twisting and cutting off. It took a while and was a bit fussy, but it feels very secure, I'd do it this way again.
I heated the blade of a very small screwdriver and melted some holes in the lid as well. I still need to put some additional holes in the body of the trap (to allow it to sink quickly). Then I'll throw in some pebbles for ballast, add bait (dog food and cracker crumbs) and some nylon line tied to the handle, and it's ready to go! I'll try to update this instructible once I've used it a bit, to see if it works better than the 'standard' model. Hope you found this interesting!