Jump to content
Fly Tying

Recommended Posts

Here is how I create my simple Altoids Fly Box:






Empty Altoids Tin

Foam Door Hanger

3D Printed Template

Razor Blade


Step 1




Cut foam to fit the inside of the tin.


I set the tin on the door hanger and cut around the edge. For a more precise cut you can trace the outline then cut.


Just remember to cut the foam a bit larger than the internal dimensions to give the foam a tight fit.


Step 2




Place foam into the tin. You'll notice this piece was not cut very well. It works, but it drives me crazy. A product of rushing to get some pictures for this guide.


Step 3




Insert the template into the tin. This particular model has a bit of play to make it easy to take in and out.


Step 4




Cut the lines. A few passes could be needed to get a clean cut all the way through the foam.


Step 5




Drill or punch the holes. The drill leaves a bit to be desired. A sharp punch or hot nail produces a better hole.


Step 6




Populate with your fly of choice and get fishing.



So what if I want nice clean cuts and don't have a 3D Printer?




Obviously a template is not required to make this fly box. However, I think it puts a nice finish on the final product.


For those that don't have access to such a device there are several options.


I designed the 2D version of this template in a free software called InkScape. It is a vector based design software that allows you to draw almost anything. It will allow you to apply a scale to your drawings so a 2" object is printed accordingly.


Once I got the dimensions of the Altoids Tin, I drew the outline in InkScape and added the lines and holes. The 2D form was then extruded in a web based 3D design program called TinkerCad, also free for basic use.


ShapeWays.com is a great resource for those who wish to dabble in 3D Printing and Design without the overhead of a printer.


To do this without the 3D template, a sticker based approach could work by printing the design from InkScape onto a sticker paper and applying the sticker to the foam door hanger.


Another way is a lot of careful measurements and cuts, but I'm way to lazy for that. :lol:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Why do you need to drill holes? I hope that question isn't too dumb.


No reason really.


I was attempting to replicate a Umpqua streamer box foam cutout. My goal was to get a factory looking finish. Still have some progress to make but I'm getting close.


For those that don't have the door hanger type foam, I was able to glue sheets of the typical craft foam sheets together to get a good thick sheet to cut from.


I'm not sure if this method will hold up as well but so far so good.


Thanks for the link flytire!


Inspiration for version 2.0.


I may have to resort to the laser cutter for that foam pattern.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sir do they make an extra large altoids box for us salt fisherman haha, I need more than 4 flies haha


This is one of the boxes a friend took on our last fly trip haha




Nice fly box, I will take one on my next freshwater trip

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

SC, go to Micheals craft store and find a box similar to what you have pictured. Also purchase a couple of sheets of 1/4" thick (labled as 7mm I believe) and make a big one. I have 6 of them now for a total cost of 20 bucks. Also look on their website before you go as they have a 40% off printable coupon!!!



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's 1/4" or 6mm craft foam. Comes in a 9" x 12" sheet and is available in white and black. Just ran in the other room and checked.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

You can also buy the door hanger foam at the local Dollar Tree stores in North Carolina......

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I came across these at work. Our pharmacists was etching the hinged tins for wedding decorations. She gave me a couple and a fly box was born. Use the foam insert at top or the strongest adhesive backed magnetic sheets you can find. Phil



Those are nice clear top tin boxes but their shipping charges are awfully high. They wanted $10 shipping for a $5 order. However, that just came to about $3 per box. I like the clear top so you can see what's in it w/o opening it.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...