I'm always looking for ways to make my tackle storage a bit more modular. I'm always jumping from pond to pond or hopping in a buddy's boat for a few hours before sunset. Although I have my own boat, I've learned that it's pretty difficult to narrow down the tackle I want to bring when I'm in the mood for a quick pond session or when my friends call and invite me to go fishing in their boat. Inevitably, I end up being "that guy" who throws a bunch of stuff into a grocery sack and calls it good.
While this may work sometimes, it definitely gets frustrating after a while. Digging through a half-ripped plastic bag filled with a pile of unboxed crankbaits isn't exactly the most enjoyable thing in the world. It hinders my adaptability on the water and it has also poked more holes in my fingers and caused more cuss words than I care to admit.
With that being said, I've been testing the Plano EDGE 3500 Box for quite some time and it has been hugely convenient for me. It's a smaller, intelligently designed box that allows me to be ready for an impromptu fishing trip whenever the occasion arises. Hang with me for a second and I'll explain what I've liked so much about it.
Compact and convenient
A lack of mobility can drastically hinder your fishing success. I've harped on this for most of my career but as I mentioned earlier, I'm not the best example of it. Sure, you can throw some stuff in a sack and weed through it and probably make it through a fishing trip. But man, it sure is nice to have a compact tackle tray that you can always keep on standby.
I actually keep the Plano EDGE 3500 Box in the door pocket of my truck most of the time. It fits perfectly and if I'm in town and within a few minutes of my favorite pond, I'm ready for those quick, 10-minute fishing trips just to scratch the proverbial itch. This box is a perfect size to store my essential terminal tackle.
Its compact profile also comes in handy when I hop in the boat with a buddy. I live about 300 yards from a very popular boat ramp so I'll often get calls when friends are launching their boat for a quick evening session. Packing this box with the essentials and keeping it in my truck ensures that my buddies don't have to wait at the ramp for me anymore while I frantically throw some tackle together. I can be there in just a few minutes without any stress to speak of.
Perfect for a bunch of different storage needs
As you can see, I chose to be a little more terminal tackle-focused with my Plano EDGE 3500 Box but by all means, you don't have to use it the same way I do.
This is going to be an outstanding storage option for panfish and crappie fishing, in my opinion. I don't chase those species near as frequently as I chase bass, so I don't need a big ol' tackle box for that type of fishing. You can fit just about anything you could possibly need for targeting panfish in this single box. Even better, it doesn't take up a bunch of room so you can put it in a kayak, Jon boat, canoe or backpack.
I've also thought about getting another one to store fuses, wire connectors and other emergency boat items. It would also be an excellent choice for a small first-aid kit. It's totally waterproof so I can shove it in one of my back storage compartments and never worry about the contents getting wet.
Heavy-duty steel hinges make it a true workhorse
I get so sick of tackle trays breaking on me. I've used a lot of cheap tackle trays in the past and I feel like I'm constantly replacing them due to broken latches or hinges. I've realized over time that when it comes to tackle trays, you really do get what you pay for.
The Plano EDGE 3500 Box features heavy-duty steel pin hinges which, in my experience so far, have been absolutely indestructible. The whole box just has a sturdy feel to it and I don't know how anyone could possibly break the latch or hinges. I wholeheartedly expect this box to last decades for me.
Water-absorbing dividers offer easy customization
Another issue I've had with tackle trays has been the obnoxious process of cutting and placing the dividers; if you don't trim 'em just right, they won't fit correctly and small terminal tackle items can slide under the dividers and create an unorganized mess.
Fortunately, the Plano EDGE 3500 Box comes with pre-cut vented dividers which also absorb water. When I first got this box, it took me about one minute to set everything up how I wanted it. The dividers fit perfectly and you don't have to break out the scissors and go through that whole process. I unpacked it, took the label sticker off, threw in the dividers and within just a few minutes I had a fully stocked "emergency" pond/co-angling box.
I can confidently say that I'm going to get more of these boxes. I've had all kinds of ideas for different ways I can utilize them and I'll be sure to update everyone when I get a few more. If you like to pond fish and go fishing with friends, I would absolutely recommend getting one of these boxes. It'll make your fishing experience much more convenient.