Whilst feeder fishing chairs are becoming increasingly popular with anglers, the seatbox remains the ultimate choice for the pole fishing, especially when fishing at longer lengths. But with a whole host of options available, what is the best fishing seatbox on the market?
A good seatbox enables the user to fish out in the water on natural venues that lack platforms, and a variety of drawers and trays will hold all the equipment necessary for a full session - including an essential fishing tackle box that all anglers need. Keepnets and pole rests can be attached too – creating the perfect fishing station!
The best fishing seatboxes at a glance:
• Best Compact Seatbox - Daiwa 90
• Best Budget Seatbox - Shakespeare Superteam
• Best Seatbox For Accessories - Preston Innovations Inception Station
• Best Weight Seatbox - Map Elite Z36 MK2
Seatboxes vary in price depending on a whole host of factors, including weight, storage and the number of seatbox attachments or accessories available for the product. Anglers, therefore, have a lot to consider when it comes to making a seatbox purchase. Fortunately, a box doesn't have to be a regular buy, as modern models are sturdy and hard-wearing, especially if you pick one of our options listed below...
1. Daiwa 90
If you're the kind of angler who doesn't take the kitchen sink on to the bank, a box with a wealth
- Outstanding weatherproofing on trays and drawers.
- Shallow trays will hold loads of rigs while taking up little space.
- The popular deep-side drawer isn't included but can be purchased separately.
Weighing just 11kg, the Shakespeare Superteam Seatbox box has a fully padded pole-style seat, a
- Lightweight and adjustable, with plenty of storage space.
- Easily used with or without footplate.
- Spring-loaded telescopic legs can slip slightly with sudden heavy movements.
The Garbolino Competition 36-31 is a new addition to the D36mm leg range, featuring a 'Monobloc'
- The Pinlock legs prevent slippage.
- Airvent trays are a superb addition which avoids condensation or mould build-up.
- A choice of colours would be welcome on a high-end box.
Featuring Mag-Lok clips, footplate locking plungers and soft-touch handwheels, the Preston
- Reliable box from a company with a great seatbox pedigree.
- Designed to accommodate popular Preston accessories.
- Comes with minimal pole rig storage as standard.
All the trays and drawers on this top-end Guru RSW Seatbox are 100 per cent waterproof, fully
- Trays are so waterproof they can even withstand immersion underwater!
- Unrivalled additional tray and winder storage options.
- Capacity of drawer units is quite small.
The Decathlon CSB Adjust Still Fishing Station is a budget-priced compact fishing box rated to 17
- Ideal children's seatbox.
- Extremely lightweight.
- Perfect on flat ground but lacks stability on difficult pegs.
The recently revamped MAP Elite MK2 Z36 features a stunning new blue aluminium frame to reduce
- Lightweight for a box of its build quality.
- D36 leg stability from a compact frame.
- Larger or taller anglers might find the seat and footplate a bit small.
Best Compact Box For Storage
Boasting a compact size yet with a surprising amount of storage, the great-value Maver Reality
- Features a now rare traditional base unit for larger items like reels.
- Ideal canal or long walk river box.
- Lack of a side drawer could be a deal breaker for some.
A single-handed footplate release, non-slip footplate with spirit level, hard-wearing PU-coated
- Strong and spacious trays.
- Larger footprint and superb stability - perfect for the larger or taller angler.
- More bulky than most models.
What to look for in a fishing seatbox
There are two key factors when it comes to selecting a seatbox - comfort and storage. On the comfort front, boxes with adjustable legs will ensure you are sitting level. Those with 36mm legs give you the most rigid and secure base on which to sit. However, a box is only as stable as the clamps and mechanisms that secure those legs, so take a close look at these.
Boxes with legs allow you to add on accessories such as side trays, feeder arms and keepnet arms to make your fishing easier too.
In terms of storage, modern boxes have less overall capacity than traditional seatboxes, so you have to keep the smaller items that you need close to hand in your seatbox and bulkier items such as reels and feeders in separate bags and boxes in your carryall.
Most boxes are sold as a basic system, with extra trays and drawers available separately. Some boxes also have under-frame 'stacks' that can be removed for wading, lifting into vehicles or up banks. The trays in these stacks can be swapped around depending on where the angler is fishing.
For ultimate comfort and to reduce the risk of backache, set your box level. With your feet flat on the footplate and knees at 90 degrees, your thighs should be level and parallel to the ground.
To achieve this, the distance between the footplate and the cushion should be right. On some boxes, this is adjustable. On others, you will need to add or remove trays and units to achieve this.
Glossary of seatbox terminology
Footplate: An area where you place your feet when sitting, ensuring they are level and at the correct height – which is especially important when fishing a pole.
Rig/winder tray: A shallow unit designed for storing ready-made pole rigs on winders of various sizes.
Side tray: A table-like device that fits onto your seatbox legs, allowing you to keep bait and other items within easy reach while fishing.
Accessories: Devices or gadgets that attach to your seatbox legs and serve a particular function.
Keepnet arm: An accessory designed to secure a keepnet to your box Feeder arm: A way of attaching your rod rest to your seatbox and providing a place to position your rod when float or feeder fishing.
Tool bar: A multi-purpose accessory that normally fits across the front two legs of a seatbox, primarily designed for holding multiple keepnets, but might also take pole socks, tulips, or rod rests.
Spray bar/pole support/gentlemen's rest: An elongated foam-covered bar that goes across the front of a seatbox and is used to help take the weight of a pole, keep it still in wind or hold a pole float steady in flowing water.
D36/D25: An abbreviation of seatbox leg diameters in millimetres. A D36 leg box will have round profile legs of 36mm diameter, while a D25 will have 25mm diameter round legs.
Stacker: Many framed seatboxes have a removable stacker that fits under the frame, designed to carry pole rigs. Consisting of the same trays that fit above the frame and under the seat, the lidded storage can be removed from the box.
Wheel kit: A set of wheels or handles that attach to your seatbox to turn it into a trolley.
Do I need legs on my seatbox?
If the venues you are planning on fishing have uneven banks, buying a seatbox with adjustable legs is essential. Old fashioned boxes never used to have legs as standard, but anglers were soon purchasing attachments to add them. Even on fairly even ground, they make the whole experience a lot more comfortable.
Will I need a footplate with my seatbox?
Most boxes on the market these days are supplied with a footplate. For pole fishing, this allows the angler to sit in the correct position for speed and comfort. Most footplates can be locked in or removed entirely if you prefer not to use them.
What tackle can you store in a seatbox?
This question entirely depends on what product you buy, but most seatboxes will have storage drawers and compartments for all your end tackle items. Some will include deeper storage areas that can hold reels, baits and other products too. However, most anglers keep these larger items in a separate holdall.
How much should you spend on a seatbox?
Seatboxes vary massively in price, so how much you spend really depends on what extras you are looking for. Expensive boxes will allow you to make all kinds of moderations via attachments, so you end up with the ultimate fishing station with everything to hand. If you just want something to store tackle and sit on when you go fishing, however, you really don't need to spend a fortune and a budget fishing seatbox will meet your needs.
Can you get seatboxes with chairs or back support?
Yes. There are several brands on the market that have made chair seatboxes. These are primarily aimed at feeder anglers which may spend a long time in a different position to pole and float anglers watching the rod tip.
Author Dan Webb first became involved in angling journalism in 2015 and has worked as Tackle Tester at Angling Times since April 2021. He is a fanatical all-round match angler and former England Youth International.