hybrid Plano FlipSider effectively blends both soft and hard tackle storage
Total Score: 8.33
their most revolutionary product in the last few seasons when they introduced
the new FlipSider hybrid. The FlipSider successfully blends elements from the
company’s soft and hard tackle storage systems to create a new and exciting way
to organize and safeguard all your tackle.
20.5" x 12.5" x 10.25"|
Foam exterior, Rubber Hardbottom|
FlipSider Enclosed, 1 main compartment (three 37000 utility boxes), 3 side
Plano: Plano is no newcomer to the tackle storage game. The company has been
producing storage solutions for both outdoor and indoor applications since 1952.
While anglers know Plano best for tackle systems the company also turns out
archery and firearm storage boxes, hardware storage, and even home storage
The bold new Plano FlipSider
bag (or box.. depending on how you look at it)
you’re like me when you think Plano you think of the very first tackle box you
ever had. I have many memories of carrying my hip roof box out to the local lake
loaded with powerbait and bobbers. Today my boat has pretty much become my
oversized tacklebox and I fill it with a surfeit Plano utility boxes.
The FlipSider didn't roll
around our truck bed like other tackle boxes
Today’s Plano tackle systems
can be divided into two sub-systems, Hard or Soft. Plano’s “Hard Systems” range
from the very entry level single tray solutions for kids to specialty boxes and
oversized Guide Series solutions. Recently Plano also introduced hard rack
systems which make use of their utility boxes making it possible to make
multiple configurations for each and every trip.
The bottom features a rubber
hardbottom and oversized feet for more grip in the car and on the boat
soft systems are broken into two subcategories, “Softsiders” and the “Guide
Series.” Softsiders are simple easy to use soft bags which hold a variety of
utility boxes. These bags also have pockets to hold other items like plastics
and tools. These bags tend to be inexpensive and easy to use, making them a good
choice for anglers that like to quickly grab just the utility boxes they need
for a day trip.
The bag is best carried with
the shoulder strap
comparison to the simple rather utilitarian softsider bags the guide series bags
feature all the bells and whistles. While they house utility bags in the same
fashion they come with much more reinforced bodies, and many more pockets and
straps. These bags look more attractive, are built stronger, are more ergonomic,
and are better suited for long trips and even travel.
Latches look familiar?
With the introduction of the
Plano “FlipSider” the lines between hard and soft systems has
been breached. While
technically categorizes the FlipSider as a soft system, it really has elements
of both systems integrated into one unique new bag or box (depending how you
look at it).
The "flipsider" system is
integrated into the front of the bag
Design: I first saw the FlipSider in Plano’s
booth last year at ICAST. The bag caught my attention right away due two the
attractive “Burnt Orange” exterior and the tinted window in the front of the
bag. The “Duraview” window features the same Prolatch system used on Plano
utility boxes. Housed behind this clear window are 3 rows of “FlipSider”
compartments which hinge outwards for easy access to lures.
Open the ProLatches and the
Duraview window flips down
Besides the main flipsider
compartment the bag has pockets on all sides. All pockets zip open and closed.
On the top of the bag there is a large zip-top opening which provides access to
the main compartment and configurable utility boxes. The more I looked at the
bag the more I wondered just how well this design would translate into
functionality in the field.
Another look at the latch in
the open position
Real World Test: To
test the FlipSider we decided to conduct a long term test that would test the
bag’s functionality, ergonomics, and durability. What followed was a season of
use, torture tests, and plenty of perplexed stares from local anglers as we had
a competition to see just how far each of us could heave the bag into the back
of the truck as we tested for durability!
One the window is opened the
flipsider trays open up
Next Section: The field test results...