Friday, September 23, 2011

Build a Rod Leash for Kayak Fishing



“If you don’t want to lose it, strap it down or make sure it floats.”  While I can’t remember where I first read this, I certainly haven’t forgotten its importance when fishing out of a kayak.  I tend to carry four or so rods with me when I head out on the water and have been used homemade rod leashes since day one.  These cheap leashes have saved me from losing a rod on a couple of occasions so far.




I made my first DIY Rod leashes from cell phone car charger, a brass clip and a section of strong, waterproof Velcro.  Large zip ties and marine adhesive shrink wrap create the clean and strong connection points.  The spring-like action of the coiled car chargers help to keep the cords bundled and out of the way.  

While the Velcro option is secure, I found a connection method that I like even more.  About 6 months ago, I was in Home Depot and came across a product designed to keep cords and wires organized called the “Cable Cuff".

I purchased a couple of the smallest versions for $0.99 each.  These little cuffs are surprisingly strong for their size and fit perfectly on most fishing rods.  They ratchet into place and wont scratch or damage the rods.  The kicker is that it is very easy to secure and remove these cuffs on a rod – even one handed.  This factor alone gives them a large advantage over the Velcro version. 



These are very easy to construct.  Start by drilling a hole in the tail end of the cuff as pictured below, making sure the Cable Cuff is in the open position.  Secure the charger wire to the Cuff with a large zip tie.  I used a small length of marine heat shrink to dress up the tag end but this is not necessary.



The pivoting arm of the Cuff needs to be trimmed at the second tooth back to make room for the cable wire.  A little pressure on a sharp hand chisel makes a very clean cut.


Add a clip of your choice to the other end of the car charger wire, utilizing the same connection methods used on the Cuff end.  Here I used light weight Nite Ize S clips available at The Backpacker if you are in the Columbia area or most Harbor Freight stores.
Enjoy! - Paul

 ****One note on coiled cell phone car chargers - they aren't all built the same!  Look for a thick coiled model that is uniform in shape and will stretch to at least 6'.  Most of the Nextel branded chargers are very strong, as are the Motorola and Verizon branded models.  I often donate old clothes and other items we don't use anymore a church-based consignment shop called "His House".  I purchased 4 thick Verizon car chargers there for $1 each.  The money goes to a good cause the chargers stay out of a landfill and they work perfectly for this application.****





32 comments:

  1. Cool... Another weekend project :)

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  2. Glad you like it. The best part is they are very inexpensive to construct!

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  3. The goodwill in rock hill has tons of those car chargers for next to nothing. Just FYI for another cheap place to get some supplies. I'm sure they all have them.

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  4. Thanks I know where I'm headed next!
    Eric Esper

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  5. inspired me! I found some plastic clamps at the $1 store in two sizes, one opens to about 4 inches, the other to 2 inches. They have a release trigger, ratchet closed e.t.c. EZ One hand operation. Perfect for lip gripper, paddle leash, rod tender e.t.c. Thanks for your great ideas.

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  6. I am off to Walmart, $ store, and Home Depot; thanks for the great idea.

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  7. Thanks for this great idea. Appreciate your sharing this!

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  8. Thanks for the tutorial!!!! Bought all the produsts from Home Depot tonight and made three rod leashes!!!!!!!

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  9. How does the metal part of the cable cuff hold up to salt water?

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  10. @City of Ash - the metal screw/pin on the cable cuff hasn't shown any sign of rust or discoloration even during repeated saltwater use. I was actually surprised b/c I thought the metal was just zinc coated. Turn out it is actually stainless steel! From cable cuff's website - "Constructed with durable polymers and stainless steel". I couldn't be happier with the construction of this .99 cent part.

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  11. Any reason a regular phone cord wouldn't work? I have a few laying around where my work got a new phone system, looks to be about the same size as a charger cord?

    So you just take the end of the charger cord, and loop it throught the hole and then zip tie the end you put through back to the cord and that will hold it?

    Thanks

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    1. Sorry for the late reply...yup, everything you have stated here should work fine.

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  12. Awesome idea - best I've seen yet for homemade - I'm getting my supplies tomorrow.

    James

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  13. I just made three of these and only spent 12 dollars on materials (minus the chargers, which i had) awesome diy project, cant wait to try mine out... thanks

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    1. i finally got to use these things, first time ever on a yak and sure enough i tipped it over, very glad that i had these great leashes, i couldve been out some expensive gear... also an idea that i tried, they make a slightly larger (orange) cable cuff that fits around a paddle perfectly, made it the same way as your leashes but used about 3 1/2 ft of rope instead of a bungee... worked great and again very inexpensive, thanks again... i will be using more of your ideas if you dont mind lol

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  14. Love your ideas. I have followed several of your projects. Keep them coming please. Nothing like cheap D.I.Y. upgrades for your setup. Would love to get an email of any ideas for upgrades you mave have bud. Todd.fishfast@gmail.com. Thanks so much and tight lines to you. Oh and leader crimps work great in place of cable ties.

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  15. My zip ties are tearing the covering off of the wire from my charger wire. How can I fix this?

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    1. Hello - Try wider zip ties and better quality chargers. The Motorola or Nextel branded chargers (try the flea market or thrift store) will hold up for years.

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  16. Fishing in dubai tour brings a complete package for your family. You can enjoy the trip with utmost fun. I love it.

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  17. Fishing is a great way to pass time, as well as catch something that you can cook for dinner. This activity can also be a little frustrating if nothing was caught.

    fishing resources online

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  18. That is so cute, I would of never thought of that. I am definitely making me one or maybe a few! Lol

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  19. Made three of these tonight and they look great! Thanks for sharing your projects. This is the second project of yours that I've done and I can't wait until the next.

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  20. I made a couple of these and they work great! The cable cuff is easily opened and closed using one hand. Using the coiled wire from an obsolete phone charger is thinking outside of the box: you are a genius.

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  21. Made a few of these combining the weed whacker cord technique with the Cable Cuff clip. Seem to function as intended, excited to get them out on the water. Thanks for the great idea.

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  22. OMG!!! You're a genius. I am glad found this website.. I had saved lot of $$$.

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  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

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