If you’re a fisho, PVC pipe is pretty handy stuff, as SAMI OMARI reveals in this budget DIY piece.
A NUMBER of simple yet extremely useful DIY projects can be undertaken using a few basic pieces of equipment, plus various lengths of PVC piping. Three quick but handy projects include making a rod tube, making tubes to house long stemmed floats and, finally, making sand spikes to hold rods while beach fishing. Total cost, including the pipe, fixings and adhesives, should be about $60 and all the materials needed are available at your local Home Hardware store. When completing these projects remember to use PVC sewer pipe, which is much stronger than thinner walled stormwater applications pipe. In this piece we’ll run through the step-by-step process to make a rod tube. This will arm you with the knowledge of how to work with PVC piping. From there the options are only limited by your imagination!
DIY ROD TUBE
The pipe you have purchased will likely to have been unevenly cut. The first step is to cut one end of the 100mm pipe to give an even edge. Use a mitre box to ensure the cut is even and square.
Run your tape measure across the pipe from the square edge you just made and mark out the required rod length on the tube. Add on the additional amount of length required to cater for two foam discs that will be glued into the end caps which will be added later to protect the tip or butt of the rod – I’m using three quarter inch thick foam, so have added an inch and a half to the total length. Finally, add a little more length “just in case” to allow for sample variation and discrepancies in sizing between rods.
Place the tube in the mitre box and cut the tube squarely at the designated mark.
Using the PVC pipe offcut from the first step, trace around the inside of the offcut and onto the foam with a marker to create an outline of the protective foam disc.
Using a Stanley knife, carefully cut out the foam disc.
Mix some epoxy adhesive directly in one of the end caps – this is the glue that will hold the protective foam disc permanently in place.
Take a close look at this picture. I’ve placed the PVC pipe offcut from the first step lightly into the end cap – this will ensure the foam disc is positioned perfectly. Then place the foam disc into the end cap and onto the glue. With a couple of fingers twirl the disc onto the glue and press into position. Once the adhesive has set, remove the PVC pipe off- cut leaving the end cap plus foam disc firmly attached.
Place PVC solvent cement on the end the pipe in preparation to glue the end cap with foam disc attached into position on the rod tube permanently.
Press the end cap onto the pipe firmly; remember to be forceful and quick as you will only have a matter of seconds before the bond is permanent. Sewer grade pipe can take quite a beating so keep a block of timber and a hammer handy if you find the end cap binding and requires additional persuasion!
Now with the end cap permanently secured, push the threaded coupling onto the other side and place the rods in the tube for a trial fit. Notice the difference in length of the seven foot rods! I should also point out that the threaded coupling adds a couple of
extra inches to the rod tube; you can take this into account and cut the tube a couple of inches shorter if so desired.
Remove the rods and the threaded coupling from the tube then place PVC solvent cement on the end of the tube and on the inside of the coupling in preparation for gluing of the coupling to the tube.
The coupling has a few inches to slide down; be forceful with the coupling to ensure it slides down all the way. I butted the other end of the tube against a block of wood at the base of a retaining wall and hit another block of timber placed directly on the coupling with a hammer – quite a bit of force was needed to slide the coupling down the last centimetre or so.
The final step. Repeat the process earlier to mark out a foam disc using the piece
of PVC pipe offcut, cut out the disc and glue into the threaded end cap. I also removed the o-ring and placed some glue beneath it to ensure it doesn’t fall out in future. Screw the end cap on and your rod tube is now ready for use. With the end cap screwed on, you can drill a hole in the side of the end cap and one on top to take a suitable padlock. You can now travel with your rods having peace of mind that they are protected from any harmful knocks and bumps by a simple yet effective DIY rod tube.
PVC FLOAT TUBES
Now that you know how to accurately measure, cut and bond PVC piping, making small tubes to hold long stemmed floats is a breeze. Here are a couple of examples that were quickly created with 50mm sewer grade pipe along with screw cap fittings and push on end caps. Just remember to make the tubes long enough to house the required floats – I’ve cut the top tube longer to house ocean floats while using a screw cap on one end; the bottom tube is for smaller estuary floats and uses a push cap that can be popped on and off for easy access.
PVC SAND SPIKE ROD HOLDER
Creating rod holders for surf fishing rates as the easiest of the three projects. Simply measure a reasonable length (60cm should suffice) of 50mm pipe and cut one end at 45 degrees – it’s that easy! When you get to the beach, push the 45 degrees end into the firm sand and hey presto, an instant rod holder.
Some PVC pipe plus a few additional items can yield items like these which are simple to create, quick to assemble and extremely functional; a practical project for novices and seasoned home handymen alike!