DIY Fly Boxes

I'm a big fan of supporting all fly shops and spending what I can, both local and when I travel.  I enjoy trying to give back to the local economy and fly industry and it's always good connecting with some of the local fly guys in their own environment.  Hell just ask Jeremy at DuPage Fly.  But there are some things that I think are a bit over priced or I may already own, and want another.  

After buying a few of the popular Cliff Boxes, I was hooked.  The boxes hold the exact amount of flies needed for varying adventures, as well as larger boxes for streamers and swinging flies.  I had been eyeing one of their larger streamer boxes while at the fly shop one afternoon and just couldn't convince myself to spend $30+ on a glorified box that looked like it could easily hold colored pencils as much as flies.  After doing some research, I found out that one of my customers is actually the company that manufactures the empty cases.  When I found out how much each box was, and what it would take to turn it in to a fly box, I placed an order and sat back and waited.  My first evening, I had put together four streamer boxes, and spent less than $24.  Ever since, I get a handful of requests around the holidays for gift exchanges.  

After having more than a few people ask me for the details on how to build one, I figured I'd share this with the rest of the class.

Secret #1 - Flambeau is the company that manufactures boxes that seem identical to the ones you see in the store.  See here: FLAMBEAU 2020-2 ONE COMPARTMENT

Total cost for this project was about $13, and that included a 4 pack of magnet sheets for $9.  And you can probably get about 6-9 of these boxes per mag sheet.  So the more you make, the less expensive each becomes.

Here's the rest of what you need:

Scissors and razor blade, 6mm foam sheet, magnetic sheet with sticky back, straight edge

This is the empty box.  My thought behind this was small nymphs on one side and dry flies or larger nymphs on the other.  One side is thinner than the other and it's up to you which is which.  I chose to use the deeper of the two for my dries.  

Use the case to get a rough outline the size of the box on the magnet.  It should be a little more than 2.5" wide and about 3.5" tall.  

Use the razor to cut and trim the magnet sheet.  Fit it in place, and when you're ready, peel the back off and apply to your preferred side.  

Measure and cut, using the straight edge, 2-3 foam strips.  I recommend fitting and trimming before gluing.  

Glue in the strips using super glue or head cement.  Be careful here as the glue may cause the foam to slide.  Let it dry and you're done.  

Depending on the set up you're looking for, they cover most of the needs you'll run in to and modifying or customizing the boxes is a cinch.  I'll show how I build the others in later posts as there are some tricks to the streamer boxes and cutting the slits to hold the flies.  

Hope this helps and Happy Holidays!