On the right and leaning on a stump, check out my homemade broomstick gaff and hook un-hanger. The boat cushion is for scale. |
From tip to tip, the gaff measures 44". I made it from a broom handle I found in a corner at my fish camp. On the ends and from Ace Hardware, you see two 7/8" copper pipe collars and two 1/4" x 3 1/2" eye bolts.
The copper collars prevent the broom handle ends from splitting. Any sturdy material would work, probably even PVC pipe.
Total cost including tax = $2.51 + maybe 10¢ for epoxy.
That gaff is a handy tool. The gaff end works great for snagging limb lines and bottle lines or for pulling the boat closer to whatever. The other end will un-hang a hook in a matter of seconds. Just loop the end over the line, give the broomstick a half-twist, then slide the end down the line and knock the hook free. In about the time it takes to read that sentence, the hook is free.
If I drop the gaff in the lake, it floats.
From now on if you see me in a boat, that gaff is in the boat with me. It's that handy.
Here's a closeup of the gaff end. Note that I simply pried open the eye of the eye bolt. The hook looks a little small, but it works just fine. If you want a larger hook, use a larger eye bolt.
I drilled a pilot hole for the eye bolt, and I drilled the pilot hole slightly large so as to lessen stress on the thin end of the broom handle. Just the edge of the eye bolt's threads caught in wood. A couple of daubs of epoxy on the threads keep the eye bolt permanently in place.
With just a little work with sandpaper, the copper collars slid right over the ends of the broom stick. I sanded until the fit was with just slight pressure.
A little epoxy on the copper collars and on the threads of the eye bolts, and I was finished.
Here you see the hook de-snagger end. I pried the eye bolt eye apart, then hammered one side until the eye was smaller. As you can see, I left a space in which to slip the hung line. I turn the eye 1/2 turn, and the circle closes on the line.
Given the cost of stainless steel catfish hooks, I'll soon recoup my $2.51.