Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Making a 1/6 Scale Fishing Pole

I wanted one of my stories to involve a fishing trip, so I checked around to see if I could find some 1/6 scale fishing poles to purchase for my dolls.  Yes, I could find some, but decided not to buy them.  I found some that were relatively inexpensive, but I decided not to spend any money at all on doll stuff that I'm probably only going to use a couple of times.  I'd much rather spend my money on dolls.  How hard could it be to make a fishing pole, right?

I started brainstorming on how I would make my poles.  So as I do almost always when faced with the prospect of making something from scratch, I asked my husband if he would make them for me.  He said no.  I asked him what I could use to make my fishing poles.  He told me to go out into the yard, grab some twigs, and tie some string to them.  I told him that I thought that I could do a little bit better than that (I asked him to whittle me some poles, but he didn't go for that idea).

He suggested using some straws, and I thought that straws would be a little big for my little people, but then I thought about the long coffee stirrers and decided to give them a try.  So my idea started to take shape.


1.  Round up the necessary items:
    • long coffee stirrer
    • tape (I used duct tape)
    • push pin
    • used staple with one end slightly unbent
    • super glue
    • scissors
    • links from an old broken necklace
    • bead from an old broken necklace
    • thread (or dental floss, or whatever)
    • old pencil eraser

2.  Bend the end of the push pin.

3.  Cut the straw to the desired length.
4.  Fold the end of the straw so that it is narrower at one end.
5.  Add tape to the other end to make it wider.
6.  Tape the links and the push pin to the straw.  Be sure to tape the push pin to the same side of the straw as the links.  I did not do that, and I did not feel like fixing my mistake.

7.  Wrap the thread around the push pin a few times and glue it in place.
8.  Guide the other end of the thread through the links.

9.  Add a bead to the end of the thread (paint it first if you want).
10. Tie the staple to the very end of the thread as a hook and add a little glue.
11. Add a pencil eraser to the sharp end of the push pin as a handle.
Finished Fishing Pole

Eddie Strong is ready to test out the fishing pole.

It's flexible, lightweight, and the perfect size for him to grip.  But why does it have to be red, he wonders.

Here he inspects the reel.

Here's a closer look.  The reel is not actually functional.

Alright, it's show time.  Eddie is ready to cast out.

He's got a bite!

This must be a big one!

 Reel him in, Eddie, reel him in!  Oh yeah, the reel does not work.

Well, he got away, but Eddie swears that he was THIS BIG!


  1. Very creative. I wondered how you made the fishing rods in the fishing story featuring Brad and Bob. I initially thought you used paint brushes.

    I bet if you really wanted, you could make the reel functional.

    What did hubby think about the end result?


    1. Thank you, Debbie! My husband did not understand why I was spending so much effort making these things. He kept saying "The song goes 'you get a line, and I'll get a pole'. All you need is a line and a pole!" I told him "Well they're not going to the crawdad hole, they're going to the lake!" Knowing where I was planning on taking my dolls fishing, he said "That is not a lake!" I said "It's a lake to THEM!" He had to agree with me on that one.

      When I was emptying out Barbie's make-up case to use as a tackle box, my husband laughed some more. "You're really trying to make them look like professional fishers." Once I finally finished my fishing poles, he inspected them closely. He said "Very impressive." and he gave me a slow round of applause.

      I think that I could make the reel functional by attaching it to the straw with one of the links from the chain. That way, the reel would be able to rotate. Maybe I'll revisit that some other time, and also fix my rods so that the reel is on the correct side.

    2. Your husband is too funny with his slow applause.

      Sometimes they don't realize the importance of our attempts to add realism and are often impressed with the end result. I think you did a great job. I wouldn't worry about making the reel work unless there are plans for a fishing video.


  2. Hello from Spain: I like your idea of ​​a fishing rod. Nice pictures .. Keep in touch

  3. Cute Rod! I am wondering what he was fishing for. Tuna maybe?LOL Oh and fishing rods come in all colors...right?

    1. Thank you, The grandmommy! I thought about attaching one of the cats' toys to the end of the pole and trying to capture one of my cats playing with it while Eddie Strong was fishing, so that I could say he was fishing for "cat fish". But then I decided that it's best to keep the dolls and the cats separate. :) Yes, I did a google image search and I did see some red fishing rods, so I don't feel bad.

  4. I'm impressed by your fishing pole - very cool. Fast applause. Yay.

    Brain whirling here - thinking of other playscale rods. Barbie had one years ago 1960s-era and maybe just recently. (Can't imagine a more unlikely fisher than the current Barbie, lol) One of the Power Team guys had one, too. Just mentioning those in passing.

    What I really loved is how Eddie Strong gave us a perfect model "toosh" - a la ANTM. And the way you posed Eddie as he does his fishing thing. And I totally believe that the fish was as big as Eddie gestured ;-)

    1. Thank you for your fast applause, D7ana! :D Apparently, Barbie likes to fish, and her sisters Stacie and Chelsea are joining her for some fishing fun. I like my poles better.

      Yes, I think that the velcro in Eddie Strong's pants gave him a little extra strength in the back. Good job to him for striking that perfect pose.

  5. That's a very realistic looking fishing pole - definitely lots of applause. And I am sure that Eddie's fish was that big.

    1. Thank you, Carrickters! Eddie swears that it was that big!

  6. I agree with your husband, very impressive! It's the details that make our hobby fun and when we can make our own stuff it's even better!

    1. Thanks Muff! I was happy that I did not have to spend any money, and I think that this has built my confidence that I can make other things and save even more money in the future.