Posted on: 15 February 2018
You could own the most expensive rod you can find, sophisticated lines made of space-age materials and a collection of lures that could fill a room, but without a suitable protective case to keep your fishing tackle in it will quickly fall victim to knocks, scrapes and weather damage. As such, your tackle case is one of the most important investment any committed fisherman can make, and choosing the right kind of tackle holder for your needs is vital.
This means choosing between soft tackle bags made of fabric, or rigid tackle boxes made from tough plastics and, in rare cases, metals such as aluminium. While bags are the traditionalists choice, rigid boxes are becoming ever more popular, and they have a number of advantages over soft tackle bags that can make them well worth your time. However, there are also drawbacks to choosing boxes over bags, so you should thoroughly familiarise yourself with the pros and cons of rigid tackle boxes before you invest in one.
What are the advantages of choosing a rigid tackle box?
Maximum tackle protection
The tough construction of a good rigid tackle box provides unparalleled protection for your lures, lines and equipment and is especially useful for protecting your precious gear from accidental drops. Unlike soft bags, boxes also provide excellent crush protection for your tackle, allowing you to stack fishing equipment on top of your box when transporting or storing your gear without fear of damage. Some boxes are also fitted with rubber seals to make them waterproof, a useful quality during rainy days (or if you accidentally kick your box into a lake).
While a tackle box is designed to increase the longevity of your gear, it is no slouch on the durability front itself, and a well-chosen tackle box will usually last significantly longer than a soft tackle bag before it starts to wear out. This is especially true if you routinely carry heavy loads in your tackle case.
Finding the lure and line you need in a bag full of them can be challenging, and many bag users have to use rigid plastic trays inside their bags to properly organise their gear -- defeating the point of a soft tackle bag entirely. Rigid boxes are much easier to organise, as they come fitted with a variety of distinct compartments that allow you to find the equipment you need at a glance.
What are the disadvantages of rigid tackle boxes?
Difficult to carry
Nobody could ever describe lugging a tackle box loaded with equipment as 'fun', and carrying a large, heavy box over long distances can be distinctly uncomfortable. Some come fitted with shoulder straps and handholds for easier carrying, but a tackle bag will still be the most comfortable option if you routinely walk long distances to reach good fishing spots.
Difficult to repair
While tackle boxes are less likely to become damaged than bags, if they do take a beating, the damage dealt is pretty much permanent. By contrast, a torn or split tackle bag can usually be repaired in the field with a needle and thread.Share