What to Do With Old Fishing Equipment? [Top 7 Uses]

What to do with old fishing equipment? Here are some suggestions:

If you have fishing equipment that you no longer need or want to repurpose, consider donating it to local charities or organizations. Many of these organizations accept used fishing equipment and redistribute it to those who may not have access to fishing gear.

Plus, it’s a great way to give back to the fishing community. To find donation centers near you, check out websites like The Fishing Info or inquire with organizations like Goodwill, as they may accept fishing rods and equipment.

In this guide, I will also explore the different ways you can make use of your old gear, ensuring it doesn’t go to waste and benefiting others in the process.

7 Innovative Uses for Your Old Fishing Equipment

If you’re an avid angler, chances are you have accumulated a collection of old fishing equipment over the years. Instead of letting it gather dust in your garage or throwing it away, consider repurposing it into something new and exciting.

Here are 7 innovative ways you can give your old fishing gear a new lease on life.

  1. Garden Decor
  2. Art Projects
  3. Furniture
  4. Storage Solutions
  5. Educational Tools
  6. Home Decor
  7. Pet Toys

1. Garden Decor

Transform your old fishing rods, reels, and lures into unique garden decor. Fishing rods can be repurposed as stakes for climbing plants or to support delicate flowers.

Fishing equipment for Garden Decor

Hang lures from trees or pergolas to create an eye-catching wind chime. The shimmer and colors of the lures will add a touch of whimsy and charm to your outdoor space.

2. Art Projects

Unleash your creative side by incorporating fishing equipment into various art projects. Old fishing nets can be transformed into beautiful wall hangings with a nautical theme.

Hang them on a blank wall to bring a coastal vibe to your home. Fishing lures can be used to create stunning jewelry pieces. Attach them to earring hooks or necklace chains for a unique and personalized accessory.

3. Furniture

Give your interior a rustic touch by repurposing old fishing rods into functional pieces of furniture. For example, a fishing rod can be used as a curtain rod, adding a distinctive and unexpected element to your window treatments.

Fishing rod use as towel rack

Another idea is to use fishing rods as towel racks in your bathroom. Not only will they add a unique flair, but they’ll also provide a convenient place to hang your towels.

4. Storage Solutions

Fishing tackle boxes are ideal for organizing small items. Repurpose them to store craft supplies like beads, buttons, or paintbrushes.

They can also be used to sort and store hardware such as screws, nuts, and bolts. If you have a collection of jewelry, tackle boxes can be an excellent way to keep your accessories neat and organized.

5. Educational Tools

Old fishing equipment can serve as valuable educational tools, especially for children. Fishing nets, for example, can be used for bug catching and studying insects up close.

Kids will love exploring the natural world around them using these nets. Fishing rods can also be utilized to teach basic physics principles, such as gravity and force, making learning a hands-on experience.

6. Home Decor

Repurposing fishing gear can add a distinct and quirky touch to your home. Turn old fishing reels into unique picture frames by removing the line and attaching a photo to the spool.

Hang them on your walls for a conversation-starter. Fishing nets can be used as a backdrop for photos or even as a room divider, offering a creative and coastal-inspired element to your interior.

7. Pet Toys

 a playful cat batting at a fishing lure dangling from a string

Don’t forget about our furry friends! Some fishing equipment can be repurposed into entertaining toys for pets. Remove the hooks from fishing lures and use them as interactive cat toys.

The movement and shiny materials will surely captivate your feline companion. Old fishing nets can be repurposed as climbing structures for cats or even as perches for birds to explore and enjoy.

FAQs For What To Do With Old Fishing Equipment:

Can I Recycle Old Fishing Equipment?

Yes, you can recycle old fishing equipment. Many recycling programs accept items like fishing rods and reels. Check with your local recycling center or search online for specialized recycling programs that focus on sporting equipment. This helps reduce waste and ensures these materials are disposed of properly.

Where Can I Donate Old Fishing Gear?

There are several options for donating old fishing gear. You can donate to local youth or community organizations, schools, or fishing clubs. Another option is to donate to nonprofit organizations that support fishing programs or initiatives. Research local organizations or get in touch with angling enthusiasts to find the best donation option in your area.

How Can I Repurpose Old Fishing Equipment?

There are creative ways to repurpose old fishing equipment. You can transform fishing rods into decorative wall hangings or use them as curtain rods. Turn fishing reels into unique coat hooks or paper towel holders. Old nets can become garden trellises or hammocks.

Let your imagination soar and give new life to your old fishing gear.

Are There Organizations That Refurbish Fishing Equipment?

Yes, there are organizations that refurbish fishing equipment. They collect used gear, repair and restore it, and then distribute it to individuals or groups in need. These initiatives help make fishing accessible to more people and promote sustainable practices. Look out for such organizations and consider donating your old fishing equipment to them.

How Do I Properly Dispose Of Damaged Fishing Gear?

When disposing of damaged fishing gear, it’s important to do so responsibly. Some recycling centers may accept damaged gear, but it’s best to check with them first. If recycling is not an option, wrap the damaged gear securely in a bag before placing it in the trash.

This helps prevent injury to waste management workers and reduces the risk of environmental damage.


To make the most out of your old fishing equipment, consider donating it to local conservation organizations or non-profit youth fishing programs. They can give a new life to your gear while introducing the joy of fishing to the next generation.

Another option is to sell your equipment through online marketplaces or local classified ads. This way, you not only declutter your space but also recoup some of your initial investment. If your gear is beyond repair or no longer suitable for its original purpose, repurpose it creatively.

Turn fishing rods into stylish curtain rods or wall decor, or transform fishing tackle boxes into handy storage containers. By reimagining your old fishing equipment, you not only reduce waste but also add unique and personalized touches to your living space.

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