Make a 360-degree light to fish after dark safely and, in many states, legally. My young fishing buddy, Mitch Sanders, showed me one that he and his dad, Todd, made for just a few dollars. Mitch had a slimmer conduit pipe from another home project that the LED bulb fit into; I made one with a 5-foot section of 1 1/4-inch black plastic plumbing pipe. The larger-diameter pipe fit perfectly into a tackle crate rod holder — no rattling around. I plan to add some reflective tape and a flag.
All captions: Dave Mull
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The key component is a Diamond Visions COB (Chip On Board) LED light, which I found at a local big-box home-improvement store for $3. Three AAA batteries were included, as was a magnetic base.
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Remove the light from the base and “waterproof” the COB LED with a sandwich bag. Press as much air out of the bag as you can.
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Fold and wrap the plastic bag opening around the base and tape it in place with about 5 inches of friction tape. Place a 3 1/2-inch strip across the light’s bottom to hold your ring of tape in place when pushing the light into the pipe.
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Carefully work the bottom of the bulb into the pipe — until it fits snugly.
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Add another ring of tape to take some wrinkles out of the bag. Not the slickest DIY project for your yak, but for about $10, it can keep you legal and safer when fishing between dusk and dawn. Plus, it’s considerably brighter than many kayak lights that cost $50 or more, most of which have much shorter posts.