Tackle box seats have long been regarded as the only real options for boat and shore anglers, but there are more compact alternatives. Here Des Westmore looks at the sturdy Sportsmans Utility Dry Boxes stocked by UK Hooks.
I have been looking for the perfect tackle box to stow my gear and keep it dry since my first charter trip eons ago. Nowadays I also lug camera equipment with me so the need for a decent box is paramount. A few years back a friend brought a couple of interesting boxes over from the States. They were called SPUD boxes, which, in the singular, is short for Sportsman’s Utility Dry box. I showed them to Mike Taylor at UK Hooks who set about stocking them immediately having been swamped by a big wave that killed both his mobile phone and car remote fob on his own boat just days earlier. UK Hooks have stocked SPUD boxes ever since.
SPUD boxes are made by American firm MTM and four sizes are available: SPUD 1, 2, 6 & 7 – I have no idea what happened to numbers 3, 4 & 5. Made from injection moulded plastic, they are available in orange, green or black. The only metal parts are two alloy rivets used to hold the handle on the SPUD 6 and 7.
The lid to box joint incorporates an O-ring seal which ensures everything inside remains dry as long as the box is closed. I have deliberately left them on the deck with waves and spray crashing onto them and their ability to repel water is without question. The lid has a handy built-in quick access compartment that is not O-ring sealed for those items of regular use. A fifth box, the SDB-2T is also available. Similar in same size to the SPUD 2, this does not have stowage in the lid; thus maximising the boxes internal dimensions.
The leaky Beta seat box that I used to pack my boat gear in has long since been discarded. A SPUD 7 now takes my fishing kit, while my cameras are well protected in SPUD 6. These stack on top of each other and occupy less space that the Beta box. I also used to carry weights in a bucket, but a SPUD 1 has that job now. My SPUD takes plenty of lead, rides the weight element without issue, and the strong handle makes lifting easy.
SPUDs are a high quality range of boxes with numerous outdoor and indoor uses. They will also be of use to divers, small boat owners and yachtsmen. Shore fishermen should check out the SPUD 6 & 7 boxes which feature carry straps and can be sat on. Available from UK Hooks, tel: 01983 868687; email: firstname.lastname@example.org