Fountainhead Tenkara Fly Fishing

A stick, some string and a fly

Tenkara DIY

PVC Tenkara Rod Case

Posted by Tenkara Flyfish on April 14, 2010 at 6:54 AM

One rod housing option.




I have a problem, er I mean opportunity that is probably unique to only me.



Bright shiny aluminum/carbon rod tubes that come with alot of rods are nice, very nice, actually TOO nice.




I drive a pickup, and when I go fishing, I often park my truck in spots that have alot of people coming and going, often times at least a few with prying eyes. I also park in other places that are pretty remote and desolate. If someone happens across the truck, they know they have plenty of time and no witnesses. In both of these environments, I don't like to have any sort of nice or shiny looking rod tube left inside my truck. When some folks see a nice rod tube, they figure it might have a nice expensive rod inside. I feel there is no need to tempt fate or the occasional passerby.


A long time back, I started making up rod cases out of pvc that I use to safely transport my fly fishing rods when I knew I'd be leaving the cases in an empty truck. I actually don't even put the empty cases inside the truck, I just leave them out in the open bed. Anyone who wants to open them up and see that they are empty is welcome to have at it. Their idle curiosity is solved, and they don't have to smash my window or pry open my door to find out.


These rod cases are very cheap, easy and quick to make, even for a monkey like me. They cost less than $5 to make, I figure if they save even one smashed in vehicle window, I'm ahead of the game.


 Start off with a trip to the hardware store, you'll need to buy a length of PVC pipe (I used 1 1/2" diameter) and some assorted fittings.  The fittings consist of (left to right in the photo) - an unthreaded cap, a threaded adapter, and a threaded cap.  The only tool you'll need is a hacksaw, or some other way to cut the PVC to length.  If you ask nicely, they may even cut it for you at the hardware store.


  You'll need to measure your rod in order to cut the pipe to length

 Once cut, 90%of the work is done.  You can add the fittings.  In most cases, a press fit will do.  If it makes you feel better, you can cement them in place with PVC cement.  I've never had a problem just firmly seating them without the use of any adhesive.

 There are several different options for what threaded cap to use, these are the two caps I like best.  Playing with these components is like playing with tinker toys. There will be bin after bin of components at the hardware store.  Look until you find something you like, and be sure to test fit everything at the store.

 Each cap gives a slightly different look


Total project cost, less than $5, total assembly time, less than 10 minutes.  Satisfaction of knowing your rod is safe and secure - Priceless.

UPDATE -  I've found some thin wall 1 1/4" pvc that makes an excellent case that weighs less than half of what a thick walled case would weigh.

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1 Comment

Reply powerstache
1:08 PM on December 6, 2013 
All of my rod cases, except for my one fenwick case, are made in the same way. I dress mine up a little by wrapping them with the internal threads of paracord and I usually add a strap of some sort. They are cheap, fun to make, and have saved me broken tips etc. I even made one with a cut out for my reel. I agree, the thin walled PVC is much lighter, but if you are taking these on an airplane you might still opt for the thicker walled pipes to keep them from being smashed. Thanks for sharing.