Whether it's for your Fisherman's man cave, to hang by his favorite chair or to light up his desk, this is a fun and useful re-purpose that will definitely make a statement! This project is super simple and took less that 2 hours of time! The Only part of this project that is not re-purposed is the 11' wiring kit I used for the light itself.
List of items to collect: 1 bait can

1 fishing pole (I used a deep sea pole, with a high weight limit)

1 metal clip stringer

1 fishing rod mount

several spinners or lures to hang from stringer

1 - 11' or 15' electrical light kit

16" piece of baling wire (sturdy wire)

Tools you will use: Tin snips

Manual can opener

needle-nose pliers
I gathered my supplies
A bait can is normally a galvanized can with another galvanized can inside of it, both with handles. The can that fits inside the other is the liner and usually has a lot of holes or dashes. (Something perfect for emitting light from.) It also has a hinged lid that also has holes in it.

My particular can also had a Styrofoam section that I removed.
I used the can opener to cut the bottom out
I used the needle-nose pliers to crimp around the edge of the can to get rid of any jagged edges. This worked perfectly and now the edge is smooth and I don't have to worry about cutting myself when I change a light bulb.
This is what it looked like after cutting and
I don't have a picture of this next step sorry, but I traced around the light socket on the lid of the liner with a sharpie, and used the tin snips to cut that small hole.
This picture is blurry but it shows the light
So all of my cutting is done and now I take apart the light wiring to string it through the fishing poles eyes. Just like a fishing line. Adjusting the wire and leaving enough hanging down so that the can has the clearance it needs to hang straight. I have had packages of wiring that have the instructions to remove the socket on it, but this one didn't have them. Luckily you can just look at it and see how it comes apart. The key is remembering how to put it back together. Make yourself a step by step list if necessary. Don't be scared! It really is simple.
My light wiring package.
You want the part of your wiring that plugs in to be down at the fishing pole handle end, and the light fixture part coming out of the top, and usually the smallest of holes at the opposite end of the pole.
Shows how I fed the wiring through each eye o
This one shows my socket as I put the pieces
This one shows how I left some wire hanging b
This one again to show how the socket went th
This shows what it looks like with the electr
Next I clipped the metal stringer on with the clips and then hung some old lures, a bobber and a couple of spinners. Just a suggestion here you might want to remove the hooks from these or you might risk snagging something else.
Put them on which ever way looks good to you. You could even punch a small hole in some fun family fishing photo's and hang them from the clips to remind them of a great time!
There is more to tell you but for some reason the system won't let me put it on here. so I have to send you to the original blog post. Sorry!
Debbie Harris
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  2 questions
  • Mary Coakley Mary Coakley on Jun 18, 2016
    How do you come up with your ideas,you must have a great imagination.Thank you for sharing.

  • Lisa Bolton-Brown Lisa Bolton-Brown on Apr 26, 2021

    Where did you find your fishing rod mount? I have everything else but can find a rod mount that I can attach to the wall. Thanks.

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3 of 58 comments
  • Nancy Carlson Nancy Carlson on Feb 19, 2017
    I picked up one of those minnow keepers at a thrift shop for $3 last summer! Now to figure out who in my circle might like this! Wonderful idea!!

    • Debbie Harris Debbie Harris on Jul 12, 2017
      Thank you so much for commenting! I'm really glad you like it. I hope whom ever you gave yours to, loved it.

  • Sandee Boyd Sandee Boyd on Nov 25, 2020

    My grandson would love this! I think I have everything here at my house except the electrical part! Sweet!