DIY Line Spooler

Easy instructions for building a fishing line spooler

The author and creator of this spooler, Sami Omari, writes at fishingworld.com.au: "When it comes to spooling up a fishing reel, I often find myself grabbing a screwdriver and poking it through the center of a fresh spool, then roping in family or friends to hold the spool of fishing line and apply tension. The tension on the spool isn't the only tension that builds, and after a few boring minutes of telling them to apply more pressure, the relationship with my volunteers can often strain. There had to be a better way." — Doug Olander, Sport Fishing Editor-in-Chief

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
DIY Fishing Line SpoolerSami Omari / Fishing World

Tools and hardware you will need:

  • Drill
  • Jigsaw, circular saw or hand saw
  • 3/8-by-6-inch bolt and suitable hex nut
  • Three washers
  • 3/8-inch wing nut
  • Compression spring that will fit over the bolt
  • Wood adhesive
  • Wood screws
  • Omari used a couple of pieces of 1- by 6-inch pine, though he says wood cuts of similar size will do.
DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 1Sami Omari / Fishing World

Cut the two planks that will form the frame for the line spooler. Measure and cut lengths of approximately 10 and 16 inches. The longer piece forms the base and the shorter piece forms the upright. Scaling the dimensions up may be required if you’ll be using large, bulky line spools. Pre-drill a hole for the bolt about two thirds of the way up the board you’ll use for the upright; ensure the hole is centered. You will also need to pre-drill screw holes along the base of the upright and the base board to secure the two pieces of wood together.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 2Sami Omari / Fishing World

Omari drilled five equally spaced holes in the upright as illustrated.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 3Sami Omari / Fishing World

Run a bead of wood adhesive along the surfaces being joined, then screw the two boards securely. You should now have the basic frame for your DIY line-spooling device.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 4Sami Omari / Fishing World

With the frame constructed, push the bolt through the hole in the upright board and secure. A bolt threaded along its entire length would have been ideal; however, Omari made do with what he had at the time, using a carriage bolt with a pan head and a small hex section below. He drilled the hole for the bolt to ensure a snug fit, pushing the bolt through the hole then placing some adhesive over the hole before hammering the bolt into place (which he likens to forcing a square peg into a round hole).

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 5Sami Omari / Fishing World

The glued bolt should look neat and sit flush with the board; clean up any excess glue and ensure a secure fit before setting aside to dry. If you use a fully threaded bolt, you can simply use a nut and washer to secure the bolt to the upright. Once the glue has dried, it’s time to thread on the components required to complete the line spooling device.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 6Sami Omari / Fishing World

Once the glue has dried, the bolt is ready for the components to be threaded on.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 7Sami Omari / Fishing World

Place a washer onto the bolt, then place the compression spring onto the bolt followed by another washer. This spring helps with the application of pressure; the basic operation of the device is to tighten the spool of line against the spring. The tighter you screw down the spool against the spring, the more tension you will have when winding the line onto your reel.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Step 8Sami Omari / Fishing World

Finally, place your spool of line onto the bolt followed by a washer and a hex nut. The addition of a wing nut helps lock the hex nut into position and prevents it from loosening while you wind the line onto your reel. Tighten up the hex nut until it pushes the spool firmly against the spring. Once you are happy with the tension, screw the wing nut down to lock the spool in place.

DIY fishing line spooler instructions
Completed Line SpoolerSami Omari / Fishing World

Not only is this project quick and easy to make, it also takes the hassles out of spooling a fishing reel. More importantly, allows you to apply the necessary tension required to ensure your line easily peels off the reel when you hook that fish of a lifetime.