With these ice-fishing tip-ups, you’ll always know when you have a bite when fishing on a frozen lake.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
- Tape measure
- 2 L screws
- 2 Finish nails
- Spring doorstop
- Metal coat hanger
- Bright-colored felt or cloth
- Braided fishing line and snelled hooks
- 1 3/4-inch x 22-inch dowel or straight branch
- 10-inch dowel or straight branch that fits into the end of the doorstop spring
WHAT YOU’LL DO
1. Cut the dowels to length and sand smooth.
2. Drill pilot holes, then hammer in the finish nails about two inches from the base of the spring doorstop and four to five inches apart. Pre-drilling the nail holes will keep the wood from splitting. The fishing line will uncoil smoothly if you polish the nail heads with fine sandpaper.
3. Screw both the L screws in place as shown.
4. Drill a snug hole for the coat hanger, push it through and bend to shape. The coat hanger should fit snugly.
5. Screw the spring doorstop to the end of the large dowel.
6. Screw the small dowel into the end of the spring doorstop. You might need to whittle down the end of the dowel so it will screw into the spring.
7. Glue on the flag. You can customize your flag or just leave it square.
8. Tie the braided fishing line off around one nail, and wrap about 25 yards of line around both nails. Add a snelled hook.
When a fish pulls, the flag will release to signal you have a bite.
FISHING IS SIMPLE. CATCHING CAN BE HARD
Ask at the fishing store how many tip-ups you’re allowed and what kind of bait to use. Usually worms or minnows work best. Start fishing with your bait just off the bottom. You might need some weight to get it down.
ICE SHOULD BE AS THICK AS A BRICK
Ice should be three inches thick before you venture out. Dress warm and always go with a friend to be safe. Some towns place signs out on the ice to let you know if it’s safe.
HAVE SOME EXTRA FUN
A tennis ball and an old golf club are all you need. Golf from hole to hole. Whoever makes it in the hole gets to watch the other guy check the bait and clear any accumulated ice from the hole. This simple game can keep you warm and having fun.