I love working on tackle. There's something therapeutic about going out to the shop and tinkering with my gear. To be honest, there are times when I prefer that to actual fishing when the conditions are unbearable and doing tackle is all there is to fill the void.
So I'm always looking for ways to change up how I store gear and tackle in my boat. I like to mess around with it until I get it just how I want it. A little while back, I wanted to find a better way to store my fishing line and spare reels. That's when I stumbled on the Plano XL Dry Storage 1812 and bingo, I found what I was looking for.
But there are a couple other applications I'm already liking for this box as well. So let's dive into those now and discuss some of the features of the Plano XL Dry Storage 1812.
Size and seal
For starters, this is a fairly large box, 17 inches x 10.38 inches x 13 inches to be exact. So it will take up a good bit of a compartment in your boat. But it's well worth it. Doing what I do, I've ridden in the nicest boats money can buy over the years and I haven't been in one yet that has 100 percent waterproof compartments. Whether it's a torrential downpour that comes along or that one time you forget and accidentally park the boat on a slight incline, eventually with any boat, water will get below deck.
The Plano XL Dry Storage 1812 has a waterproof seal and a tight clamp to ensure that no matter how much water enters the boat, none will enter this box. This also makes it great for kayaking, camping and metal boats. Throw this box in a John boat and you are effectively adding a waterproof compartment to the rig because of is size. If you're planning a kayak camping trip and want to ensure your lantern, flash lights and fire starters aren't rendered useless by a summer shower or an unfortunate topple from the boat, this is a great box for that as well.
Line and reel storage
I wrote a whole story on this for Wired2fish so you can check that out for more, but I'll at least quickly skim the surface. When storing fishing line, you want to do so in a dry, dark and cool environment. The XL Dy Storage 1812 gives you that. And it makes it easy to take all your line from the boat to the truck, hotel room or the shop in one fell swoop.
In addition to my line, I decided to start storing my spare reels in this box. It makes perfect sense since I usually have those reels spooled up with line that also needs to be stored properly. All you need is a little bubble wrap or packing paper and then you can just layer the reels on top of the line or vice versa. Plenty of room and works great.
Rustproof filing cabinet for troublesome baits
If you're looking for a way to store troublesome baits like spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, ChatterBaits and jigs, the XL Dry Storage 1812 may be an option. It's extremely frustrating to use a spinnerbait one time, throw it in the rod locker and the next time you go to use it it's all rusted and useless.
Instead, take a Berkley Soft Plastic Bait Binder 1490 and load it down with your troublesome baits that are prone to rust. I'll often leave a ChatterBait or spinnerbait in its original packaging when storing it in my boat to prevent it from getting wet and rusting. Well with this system, there's no need for the packaging. So when you average it all out, you're really not losing any space even with a box this big.
The Soft Plastic Bait Binders are the perfect length and depending on how many baits you stuff in each, the XL Dry Storage 1812 with hold 2 or 3 binders. That makes is an interesting option for storing a lot of baits.
Tools, paperwork and emergency equipment
Due to the size of the XL Dry Storage 1812, it's really a great catch-all for anything in your boat you don't want to risk getting wet: paperwork like your boat registration and owner's manuals, emergency equipment like jumper cables and flares, first aid kits and a handful of tools.
If I throw a pair of channel locks, a couple screwdrivers and a wrench in my boat, the first time I go looking for them I either won't be able to find them or when I do find them they'll be a rusty mess. This box allows me to stay organized and keep my tools in good shape. When I finally need them, I need them for real and don't want to waste time looking for them or trying to pry them apart.
Tray and additional compartment
The 1812 comes with a tray that you can lift out. The best part about the tray to me is that it allows you to do more. Instead of having to buy a box for tools and a box to store fishing line and extra reels or whatever else, you can do multiple things in the same box and make the most of your investment and space.
The XL Dry Storage also has a compartment in the top of its lid. It's not 100 percent waterproof but due to its location atop such a big box, there is nothing short of a true catastrophe that would ever allow actual water to enter it. And the slight moisture in the air that might seep in won't hurt things like spare fuses, electrical tape and wire connectors.
Whether you need a catch-all that will stay dry or a dry storage option for kayaking, camping or jon boat fishing, the Plano XL Dry Storage 1812 is pretty awesome for whatever you fish from. It even makes a great bank fishing box that is strong enough to double as a seat.
It's great for storing line, spare reels and troublesome baits as well. And the tray and added storage on top of the box make it customizable and a box that you can use to do it all. The vast array and amount of gear you can protect with it and the $28.99 price point make it an easy investment in my opinion.