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Equipment Review: Plano’s New Levels of Flexibility

Western Outdoor NewsPublished: Jan 19, 2017

Remarkable, customizable Rail System highlights Plano’s versatile new 2017 Guide Series Tackle Bags


As odds go, 80 percent is a pretty solid bet. It’s the exact chance the tackle box or bag in your boat — or in any other angler’s possession—bears the Plano logo. Across seven decades, the beauty of tackle storage solutions from the famed fishing brand is that, just like a treasured rod or reel, other than occasionally pausing to marvel at its dependability, you rarely think twice about it. Solid bet, indeed.

Behind the scenes, it’s a different story. Even now, angling engineers (a real job title) are jabbing at whiteboards, crunching numbers, and generally stressing big-time over painfully mundane details. The results of their calculated efforts have culminated in the most versatile and complete tackle bag of all time — the 2017 Plano Guide Series.

The 2017 Guide Series 3700, 3600 and 3500 bags begin and end, literally, with the ultra-functional Utili-Tackle Rail System. As a lid, the system sports four over-molded rubberized corners to secure a StowAway Utility Box, while solid attachment points allow for bungee cord box tie-downs. Further, the rail itself offers 17 different attachment points to hold every accessory known to the sport. Forceps, lanyards and clippers? Of course. But there’s also room for split-ring pliers, a Line Saber, fishing towel, retractable ruler, hook file, wacky rig tool, even portable rod holders (we could go on) — not stowed in some far recessed compartment, but right at your fingertips.

Moving to the underside of these Guide Series bags, things get interesting. Consider a tackle bag that’s designed a little like a beach house on stilts. Some might say the point of a tackle bag is to safeguard your stuff. So by simply reversing a second Utili-Tackle Rail System on the bag’s base and adding elevated corner “feet”, ample clearance is created to keep your tackle out of standing water. Ingenious.

And should a rogue wave wash across the deck or the dock — or even if it’s merely slippery with fish slime — the Utili-Tackle Rail Base’s special over-molded rubber surface makes the bag stick. No sliding around and into the drink. Plano engineers have even implemented attachment points for tying the bag down to kayaks, ATVs or boat decks in the roughest conditions. Throw in attachment points for another 17 accessories, and you now possess the most resourceful tackle bag in existence.

Plano’s 2017 Guide Series consists of six models, from the 3700 Hydro-Flo, 3700, 3600 and 3500 – all incorporating the smart new Utili-Tackle Rail System – to the tackle-specific Worm Binder and Blade Bait Bag. The stylish and earthy color schemes on these great new bags make a classy and outdoorsy statement, while durable advanced fabric defies wear and multiple zippered pockets assure fast and ample storage. Side pockets contain tool holders and compress and collapse to keep them from interfering with accessories. See more at

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