Feb 28, 2008 at 8:18 pm #1227552
In the past I’ve used fluorescent lamp guards like THIS which I cut to the length of my fly rod and used the provided caps. While not as nice as the BPL ultralight fishing ROD CASE both options are insufficient for younger (read – less careful) fly fishers (e.g. my son) or for significant bushwhacking. In my opinion their wall thickness is a bit too thin. Therefore, I’ve been searching for the right material which provides a better balance between strength and weight. I wanted to share with you my results and conclusions. I was able to acquire sample material from Home Depot (lamp guards), SMALL PARTS (clear polycarbonate tubing) and PETRO PACKAGING (clear cellulose acetate butyrate tubing). The following are some dimensions and weights for the materials I sourced. I’m leaning on using option 2 for my on trail hiking, and option 4 for my son’s rod and when I plan to go off trail or need to fly via plane to reach the hiking destination.
OD=outside dimension, ID=inside dimension, WT= wall thickness
Option 1) Fluorescent lamp guard (appears to be similar in weight and thickness to the BPL rod case)
– OD 1-23/32, ID ~1-11/16 ID, WT ~1/32
– 0.076 ounces/inch
– 2.05 ounces for a 27 inch tube
– great for on trail hiking and saves nearly 4 ounces from more durable options
Option 2) Cellulose acetate butyrate (nearly identical to above lamp guards)
– OD 1-3/4, ID ~1-23/32 ID, WT ~1/32
– 0.121 ounces/inch
– 3.28 ounces for a 27 inch tube
– slightly more durable than the lamp guard (but not by much)
Option 3) Polycarbonate
– OD 1-3/4, ID ~1-21/32 ID, WT ~3/32 (sold as 1/16 inch WT)
– 0.300 ounces/inch
– 8.10 ounces for a 27 inch tube
– The strongest of all four options but is also considerably heavier than option 4 (perhaps its more impact resistant, but I’m not playing stick ball with the tube!)
Option 4) Cellulose acetate butyrate
– OD 1-3/4, ID ~1-11/16 ID, WT ~1/16
– 0.225 ounces/inch
– 6.00 ounces for a 27 inch tube
– perfect balance of strength and weight for situations where option 2 would not provide enough protection
While polycarbonate is known for its impact resistance, I’m not all that familiar with the impact resistance of cellulose acetate butyrate. Using the samples provided, they seem capable of resisting any impact they would experience while bushwhacking.
Comments or questions are more than welcomed!
BrianFeb 29, 2008 at 7:57 am #1422506
@ccorbridgeLocale: Southern Oregon
Thanks so much! Great research.Mar 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm #1423135
@sethayotLocale: Western Oregon
How would you compare the durability of options 3 and 4 with the standard fabric covered pvc tubes that come with pack fly rods? I am looking or something that is close to as strong as the pvc type case; I have used one of the BPL fly rod tubes and it was definitely not strong enough for me.
Thanks for your research and input,
SethMar 5, 2008 at 9:07 pm #1423198
I’d say option 3 is really close in terms of the strength of the schedule 40ish Cordura covered PVC tubes. In my opinion I think it overkill. Perhaps you couldn’t drive a car over it but it certainly could be slammed in a car door (hard). When I squeeze the tube on one end I can just barely get the tube to flex (moves ~1/16 of an inch). I also worry about the ID of this tube. A 4pc fly rod in a sock may not fit since the WT is ~3/32 of an inch.
I suggest saving the 2-3 ounces (depending on your fly rod length) and go with option 4 (rather than option 3) if you wanted a bomber but lighter weight tube. I can’t foresee any scenario that could occur in the backcountry or even to and from the location being able to break the rod while in this tube. Aside from running it over with your car/truck, it should withstand most everything else. FYIW, when I squeeze this tube on one end I can get the tube to flex about 1/4 of an inch. I’d go as far to assume you could also shut this tube in a car door without breaking your fly rod.
One last piece of information, my Cordura covered Scott fly rod tube weighs nearly 23 ounces! Dropping this weight to even just 6 ounces saves more than one pound.Mar 6, 2008 at 3:57 pm #1423298
@sethayotLocale: Western Oregon
Thanks for the info, its something Ive been looking for for a while.Mar 7, 2008 at 8:28 pm #1423456
@jeffcadorinLocale: paper beats rock
never mind….thanks for the research. Much AppreciatedApr 1, 2008 at 11:07 am #1426544
I have also used fluorescent lamp guards.
$1.99 @ Home Depot. Trim and add a couple of pieces of duct tape and mine comes in at 1.2 oz.May 8, 2008 at 2:44 pm #1432289
I have a number of these tubes for carrying fly rods.
I have purchased all of mine from these folks:
They don't have a surcharge for small quantity orders and their shipping charges are reasonable. They sell the endcaps as well.May 27, 2008 at 11:15 am #1435152
How do you guys cut the tubes to size?May 27, 2008 at 8:06 pm #1435244
A hacksaw works well:May 30, 2008 at 7:11 am #1435719
@mowLocale: Minnesota, USA
I realize something more durable is necessary for younger people, but I've never carried a rod tube. I use a Gossamer Gear ThinLight Insulation Pad and wrap it around my rod. I then use two pieces of velcro tape to secure it closed and place it in the side pocket of my Jam2. It provides a great deal of protection and has a double use as sleeping insulation.May 30, 2008 at 8:37 am #1435733
@creachenLocale: East Bay
Thats a great idea- I am going try that one for sure. No Brainer!!May 30, 2008 at 1:57 pm #1435801
@mad777Locale: South Florida
These tubes look interesting and affordable. I take it that you are satisfied with their durability.
If you can weigh yours, I'm sure everyone would appreciate the report.May 30, 2008 at 4:34 pm #1435836
Bought one piece of 4' tubing and made two rod tubes. They didn't have extra caps so I put a piece of duct tape over one of the ends on each. One weighs 1.65oz and the other weighs 1.5oz.Jun 2, 2008 at 6:19 pm #1436249
Kai, I picked up two separate tubes from the source you recommended. Nice find! The end caps weighed 0.15 ounces each (for a 1.75 inch OD tube). I ordered two separate tubes. In keeping with this thread’s numeric ordering, I’ll refer to them as:
Option 5) Cellulose acetate butyrate (seems slightly heavier than the options 1 and 2)
– OD 1-3/4, ID, 1-11/16 ID, WT 1/16
– 0.121 ounces/inch
– 3.26 ounces for a 27 inch tube
– somewhat more durable than the lamp guard and option 2 (actually, I’d consider this a perfect ratio of strength and weight for adult backpackers if you expect normal bumps, etc)
Option 6) Cellulose acetate butyrate
– OD 1-3/4, ID, 1-5/8 ID, WT 1/8
– 0.223 ounces/inch
– 6.00 ounces for a 27 inch tube
– The perfect lighter-weight tube to resist serious insult (e.g. kids, scouts, etc) but is likely overkill for careful adults.
I paid $12.18 for 6 feet of option 5, $6.30 for 6 feet of option 6, and $1.44 for 6 end caps. The order shipped for $8.57. I’ve decided to have both available depending upon whose going and how much abuse the rods tubes are expected to be subjected to.Jun 18, 2008 at 11:52 pm #1439046
Mine is 8.9 ounces for a tube of about 4 feet in length (for a 2 piece rod.) That includes two end caps, and a little piece of soft foam I put at the bottom to cushion the rod when it's in the tube.
Most folks will use a rod with more sections, so the tube will be shorter.
I've had no issues with durability (and I'm a bushwhacker.)Sep 11, 2009 at 4:49 pm #1527006
glad I bumped into this thread as I've ordered a new pack rod (sorry it's a spinning rod :)) and wanting to keep the weight down on the tube.
my current aluminum tube is rather bullet proof, but weighs ~ 8 oz- this is for only a 18" tube mind you
by using the 1/16" WT tube mentioned above I'll be under 2.5 oz (including caps) :DSep 27, 2009 at 2:10 pm #1531017
I also ordered some tube from american plastic (had to go slightly larger 2" od for the spinning rod)
I went w/ the 1/16" wall and I agree it's just about right from a protection standpoint, you might get by w/ the 1/32" and save some weight
I think Brian's post above inadvertently has the 1/16" and 1/32" weights listed and not the 1/8" and 1/16" as my tube (same material and wall thickness- just a hair bigger od) shows it to weigh 5.8 oz at 20", which comes to ~ 0.29 oz/foot which is consistent w/ Brian's first post- 0.225 oz/foot for 1/16" wall and 1.75" od, but not the last post
I tried a florescent tube holder, but the id was a hair too small for the spinning rod- it very noticeably flexed a lot more as well
still cuts the weight in about half from my aluminum rod case :)May 20, 2012 at 8:15 am #1879436
were can i find option 4 or 6,and what the part numbers if i order,thanksMay 20, 2012 at 8:48 am #1879441
That first post is 4 1/2 years old.
I think you are on your own.May 20, 2012 at 3:14 pm #1879565
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Tenite butyrate tubing in numerous diameters/thicknesses and lids are still available from US Plastics. I recently bought some and made a tube for my grandson's fly rod. Main problem is that the minimum order for the tubing is 6 feet.
It's easy to search the US Plastics site for the size you need.May 20, 2012 at 4:51 pm #1879578
@richardcullipLocale: San Diego County
I have had good luck with a fluorescent tube protector that is designed for use with T12 fluorescent lamps. This tube protector is made of a clear polycarbonate material and can be easily cut to size to fit your fly rod. My local Home Depot has them. I use the protective cloth bag that came with my fly rod and just slip the rod and cloth bag into the plastic tube and tuck it inside my pack. It feels real safe and secure packed this way and I can't imagine a situation where I could break the rod. If so, I'd have much more serious problems than just a broken fly rod.Jul 9, 2012 at 7:04 am #1893300
I have also used fluorescent lamp guard had at the Home Depot. Saved me over a pound on the two fishing rod set ups. Pretty big savings & saved a bunch of room as well. Hardly know I've got the pipe on the side of my pack…Jul 9, 2012 at 7:13 am #1893305
+1 on the fluorescent lamp guards at Home Depot.
They come in two sizes, the smaller is perfect for the TenkaraUSA rods.
Then head over to the section that has the plastic cups for chair bottoms, to find "end caps". Mine was a bit loose, but a 1" piece of vinyl tape on the tube made it very snug.Aug 1, 2015 at 10:42 am #2218443
I just attempted to place an order for 6' section of tubing w/ end caps from usplastics.com and they wanted over $20 in shipping. Yikes! That sounded like a good option, but for that price I'll keep looking.
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