It was only a few weeks ago that I had been recommended the Ripplebox via one of my Instagram followers. Within a matter of days, I was speaking with Josh and James and they went out of their way to get a prototype my direction and fast!
So what is it that got me interested?
Well it was something new, something innovative and something different. Looking at the US market, it is saturated with new product ideas, which never make it this side of the Atlantic, despite the potential customer base here. It was refreshing to see someone within this part of the world make an eyecatching and innovative request for funding. That’s to say both guys also have extensive experience of product design and angling which mean I am pretty sure this won’t be the last from them!
Product and Key Features
I want to be clear that I only got to review the prototype and not the end product. Therefore my pictures do not represent the size of the final product nor the design. I am simply testing the ripple effect silicone. However there are completed prototypes available.
We are looking at a fly box. Not a normal fly box, but something that has been developed to make fly changing and fly arranging a quicker process. Perfect if you are like me and have severe fly OCD where everything has to be in complete order!
To achieve this, the product has a unique silicone insert which has been compacted to create a ripple effect. In doing so, the ripple itself allows flies to wedge within the folds and be held securely, yet also adds the luxury of being able to move them about freely, aiding perfect organisation of flies
All parts are manufactured within the UK and the box itself, according to the guys, contains “a durable nylon latch, tough polycarbonate case, marine grade stainless steel pin and unique silicone ripple, ripplebox is saltwater friendly, and built to last a lifetime. “
Other notable features include:
– Clear viewing window to view flies
– Weatherproof Seal
– Lanyard Loops
– Stackable boxes
How exactly do you test a flybox?
Load test: To do this, I simply crammed the rippled silicone insert full of flies. I filled it with nymphs, I filled it with blobs, lures, salmon flies, buzzers and dry flies of all shapes to see if the hooks would slot in. All hooks and fly shapes seemed to hook in easily. Obviously there is less space with the bigger flies but the 2.5 in x 2.5inch patch held 48 flies with ease.
The stick test: Once loaded, I would simply turn the box around and tap the back of it to see if any flies would move. All flies seemed to hold comfortably, no movement other than the ability to slide the flies up and down the patch, which I was surprised about. I had loaded in dries, wets, nymphs, lures, salmon flies and buzzers at different points. No issues.
However, in pushing this to the limits, I found it struggled with smaller flies like size 20 and 22 but that was logical, given that the bigger the hook gape, meant the better the grip and these small flies had less of a gape. That’s not to say that the guys maybe haven’t already encountered this issue and have maybe addressed it in future models.
I also tried double salmon flies, only to push the product to it’s limits and maybe singles would have fitted better. I did feel that bushier dry flies also dislodged easier. The angle of the fly to compensate the feather, makes the fly sit out further from the ripple and more susceptible to being dislodged.However, i stress this was with big dries!
I can see what prompted the guys to design something different. It was only recently that I had to retire an old foam slit flybox, until I could replace the foam in it. I don’t know if it is indicative of me chopping and changing on the water, but it had been pierced that many times, that any time I opened my box, flies were falling all over the place. With the Ripplebox, that does not appear to be the case.
They are easily pushed in, securely held and easily removed or adjusted, without the worry that extreme wear or tear of the silicone will affect the life of the product. Early indications are that the silicone can be removed, so there might possibly even be scope to replace it, even though i highly doubt there is even a need to.
Why should I invest and how do i invest?
If you have OCD and like your flies to be organised, without the effort, then this is for you. The simplicity of it, the uniqueness and the durability of the silicone, gives you the impression that this will last for a long time.
It’s an ethical, environmentally-friendly product, made from home sourced, recyclable materials, with all manufacturing taking place in in the UK.
Check out their video below: