Tackle Organization

Picking the Perfect Tackle Box for All Budgets

Gear Tips
Boxes like these from Flambeau are solidly built and stack perfectly for easy storage.
Boxes like these from Flambeau are solidly built and stack perfectly for easy storage.

Like all things in bass fishing, tackle boxes have come a long way. The days of only having the choice of simple metal boxes with trays are in the rearview mirror, and today's bass anglers have many more options. There is also a wide range of priced boxes that can cost just a few dollars to those that cost more than $50 each.

Like everything else in bass fishing, one must consider their own needs and budget before selecting your next tackle box. Here are a few tips for picking the perfect tackle box for all budgets.

Things To Consider

Aside from budget, the other things to consider are storage needs. Single tackle boxes typically come in two sizes, commonly called 3600 or 3700. However, they are many different sizes, and picking the right one for your needs depends on how much tackle you have and where you plan to store them. Most tackle bags are designed for one of the two sizes, and some have configurations that allow for a handful of each.

For boats, tackle compartments also vary significantly by brand and model year. Most newer boats are designed to store the 3700 boxes, including some with tackle trays built right in. This makes the decision easy if your boat is built for a specific size, but it can be challenging. If you have a dedicated storage area for the tackle on your boat, you can brush off your math skills and grab your tape measurer after viewing the size specifications of different boxes online to find the correct box and how many will fit in your boat

Watertight And Rust-Resistant

Most of the newer tackle boxes are designed to keep your tackle organized, but there are also features built-in that will help prevent moisture from getting in. One of the biggest problems with moisture, even a little bit of it, is rust buildup. Rust can ruin lures in a hurry as it spreads quickly.

One good tip to prevent rust is to ensure your lures and hooks are completely dry before storing them back in storage and changing to a different lure. Dry them on the deck of your boat or keep them separate from the dry baits until you can ensure they are completely dry. It is extra important for baits like jigs that hold moisture in the skirt material.

Companies have learned about the problems with rust, and top tackle storage companies like Flambeau and Plano have solutions. Flambeau builds their Zerust material into some boxes. The Plano Edge boxes were constructed for more ventilation and have moisture-wicking silica packets that fit into some dividers.

Factoring In Cost

The great thing about tackle is that you can store it anywhere, from an actual cardboard box to high-end boxes built for durability to last for years. Cost is undoubtedly a factor in choosing the correct box, and there are options at all price points. One of the first things to consider is your budget. Here are a few options for several price points.

Boxes like the Flambeau Tuff Tainers are well-built and sturdy enough to hold many heavier objects like drop-shot weights.
Boxes like the Flambeau Tuff Tainers are well-built and sturdy enough to hold many heavier objects like drop-shot weights.

Budget Tackle Boxes – All major brands have a standard latched box. They are clear and have dividers you can customize to fit different baits. Starting at under $10 for the 3600 size are options like the Plano Pro Latch Utility Box 3600. They do the job but may not last as long as higher-priced boxes.

Mid-range boxes – The next step up would be something similar to the Flambeau Zerust Max Waterproof Tuff Tainer. Retailing for around $20, they are much sturdier than the budget options and have the built-in Zerust to help eliminate some of the issues with rust.

High-end boxes – The Plano Edge series is a quality box that will cost quite a bit more than a basic tackle box, but they have become so popular because they are built well and have some great features built-in. Starting at around $30, they are not cheap, but boxes like their jig and bladed jig box are worth the added expense.

Specialty Boxes

If you have a lot of one lure style, it may be time to look into specialty boxes. There are specially designed boxes to fit items like spinnerbaits, jigs, crankbaits, jerkbaits, and more. The following are four great specialty boxes.

The Plano EDGE Jig/Bladed Jig box keeps these baits secure and organized.
The Plano EDGE Jig/Bladed Jig box keeps these baits secure and organized.

Plano Edge Terminal Tackle Box – For storing all of your hooks, weights, and other terminal tackle, a dedicated terminal tackle box keeps things organized. This box has dedicated spots for hooks as well as weights. Tungsten weights are organized into small trays for easy storage. It's also available in two sizes, both 3600 and 3700.

Plano Edge EDGE Jig/Bladed Jig Box - Another option in the EDGE lineup is the jig and bladed jig box. It stores these baits in perfect slots that keep them organized and easy to access. It's also available in two sizes.

Flambeau Zerust Max Crank Bank – This box is excellent for vertically storing your crankbaits so they don't get fouled up and hooked to other baits. In addition, it makes it easy to see from above which bait is which, so you can grab the one you are looking for in no time.

Bass Mafia Blade Coffin – For storing your spinnerbaits and jigs, the Blade Coffin has a unique bag system that stores plenty of the baits. The box has 25 clear bags that can hold your baits, more if you double them up into each bag. It's a solid and well-built box that lasts for years.

Picking your next tackle box can be as straightforward or as complicated as you want to make it. The most significant consideration is how much you are willing to spend, just like everything else in bass fishing.

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