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crittergetter 12-12-2010 10:30 AM

Poor Boy Rod Holder
Poor Boy Rod Holder Recipe

by crittergetter


2 feet Copper Tubing 5.97
2 3 Magnetic Flanges (Harbor Freight) 4.97 (each)
2 T connectors for Copper Tubing .87 (each)
2 3/8 inch Squeeze Connectors .57 (each)
1 pipe Foam Insulation 4 Feet .97

Total Parts Cost less than $20.00

Parts I didn't buy but had in my shop

Gorilla glue >> (glue copper tubing together)
Tubing Cutter >> (tool to cut copper really easy)
Bungee cords >> (used to hold down the fly rod)
hole saw >> (open up flange for squeeze connectors)
Dremel Rasp >> (cleanout hole)
Soft Cloth >> (glue to bottom of flange so you dont scratch your car)
Cloth Glue >> (craft spray glue)
Zip Tie >> (zip tie the foam and bungee on the T connect)

If you don't have the means to cut, drill, grind or glue, then buy the rod holders from Orvis.

I drove down I70 to Kansas City (130 miles away) averaging 75 miles per hour with a fly rod in it, without incident. I got spooked by wind gust a time or two passing freight trucks.

Construction Details

Cutting the Copper Tubing

4ea, 4" long, used for Horizontal T
1ea, 2" long, used for Roof Mount Vertical Post
1ea, 4" or 5" long, used for Hood Mount Vertical Post. (Length depends on Reel diameter).

Hood Mount Detail

Note: Adjust the hood mount vertical post to your reel size. A 4" post meets all my needs.

Roof Mount Detail

Flange with Compression Fitting (Top View)

Note: This was the hardest thing on the project. You will need to drill out the pre-drilled hole 3/4" opening. I used a 3/4" hole saw. I used a burring tool with my "Dremel" as well.

After hole is drilled, insert the 3/8" Squeeze Connector in hole and tighten.

Spray cloth glue on flange bottom and cover with soft cloth to prevent scratching your car.

Flange with Compression Fitting (Side View)

Flange in Package

Horizontal T Detail

Note: I compressed the ends of the tubing by about 1. Drilled a inch hole and then bent it 90 degrees. This isnt necessary. This extra step should make stretching the Bungee easier. If you dont do this step the bungee can connect to the raw pipe almost as easy.

Drill a hole in the middle of the Copper T.

Glue the Copper Ts together.

Then glue the T to the vertical post.

Attach the Post and T to the 3/8 squeeze connector and tighten.

Next to last step is to cut the foam pipe insulation to cover between the Ts. I glued the foam as well. (Don't know if necessary) then Zip tied the ends and middle (see finished product)

Last step is to push a zip tie in the middle of the T (through the pre-drilled hole) and Zip the bungee down.

Finished Product

Davec921 12-12-2010 01:51 PM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
over all looks like a nice project.
My only concern would be that the gorilla glue would loosen up over time.
I have not had good luck in the bast trying to glue metals together.
I would suggest soldering the joints as well as using an actual copper male adapter to attach to the magnet. The male adapter is 1/2 pipe thread. And you would be able to use the lock nut like before. you would only have to trim the threads a little so they would not stick out past the magnet.

All so in stead of soldier they do make a specific glue just for copper water lines. I would use that instead of gorilla glue. The copper glue was made to bind to copper and should not let go because of expansion an contraction.
Over all a nice Idea an I believe I will look in to making one.
Thanks for the info.

jpbfly 12-12-2010 01:58 PM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
Great job,congrats:thmbup:

Frank Whiton 12-13-2010 11:13 AM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
Hi Everyone,

This would be a pretty easy project for most people. Here are a couple of ideas that you might also consider.

1. I agree that soldering the copper would be a good idea. It is not hard and can be done with a butane torch and a little practice.

2. Thin Wall (EMT) aluminum conduit could also be used instead of the copper.

3. I think the best material would be PVC Pipe using PVC glue. The PVC joints will with stand high pressure. So will soldered copper.

4. On the ends of any one of these materials you might consider using an eye bolt instead of bending the ends.

5. Magnetic Flanges are also available from Amazon and Northern Equipment. Crittergetter uses 95 pound magnets. They are also available in 200 pound or higher. The Magnet ratings are based on a 3/8" steel base. So on the hood or top of an auto the holding power would be some what lower. Crittergetter has used his a lot and hasn't had a problem with his magnet strength or construction.

Overall Crittergetters project is a neat project and I hope some of you take advantage of it.


Jimmie 12-13-2010 12:07 PM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
I agree with Frank about a neat project. Thank You for sharing it Crittergetter.

JoJer 12-19-2010 01:54 AM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
Soldering this thing together seems like a lot of extra work. If I was wed to the idea of having it "T" shaped like the store-bought jobs I'd probably make it with plastic pipe.
I threw my rod holder together in about 30 min once I got away from the "T" shape mind set. Rather than all those angles, I used a piece of thin steel strap, bent it to a "C" shape and fastened foam to the top of the "C" and the magnet to the bottom. Then a bungee to hold the rods in place.
The upper end is just foam attatched to the magnet with holes and slots cut into it to hold the rod tips.
As I write this I realized I could have done this much easier with aluminum strap.
Certainly not as good looking as Critter's but it works, & was cheap and easy.

Ard 12-19-2010 02:55 PM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
That is real dogged ingenuity Critter for sure! Nice job!

For all of those with concerns; whether you have a factory built or home grown rod rack for transporting rigged fly rods remember that they are for moving from spot to spot along a river not for driving to and from your destination.

Solder, glue, PVC pipe, whatever way you choose to get it done being able to strap the whole kit & caboodle to the car or truck and mush up or down stream a few miles is a good thing. Just check to be sure all fittings are good to go before you guys jump in and hit the gas.


JoJer 12-21-2010 06:22 PM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
Good point, Ard. Mine does what it's supposed to and it never moved or made me worry but I wish I'd spent another $5 and gotten the heavier magnets.

P.S. DO NOT stick the magnets to the car untill you have some kind of handle attached to help you get them off!!

dian11 01-07-2014 08:52 AM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
Great job and well done :)
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mcnerney 01-07-2014 09:39 AM

Re: Poor Boy Rod Holder
Those are pretty slick rod holders that Kris built back in 2010. He built a second one and gave it to me as a present, thanks again Kris!


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