Glass Fishing Floats - A History

Glass Fishing Floats - A History

There is something alluring about a glass float isn't there? The shimmering coloured round glass in rope that has spent years tied to fishing nets and set adrift in our oceans to help catch fish.

My first memory of glass fishing floats were like these beauties. My Dad had similar ones in the garden when I was growing up. Hundreds of them were found washed up along the Eastern seaboard during the middle of last century when the Japanese used to fish in our deep sea waters. 

Do you know where glass floats originated from?

Many think it is Japan but records show that they were first produced in Norway as far back as 1840. They were made to replace wood or cork floats, and by the 1940s were being used by fisherman all over the world. 

Glass floats were tied to fishnets and set adrift in the ocean. 

They floated on the surface to give the fishing nets buoyancy.

Today, most of the remaining glass floats originate from Japan because of its large deep sea fishing industry and not many are used for fishing anymore. However, glass floats that slipped out of fishing lines all those years ago can still be found roaming our oceans, particularly in the North Pacific. 

To find one on the beach must be one of the biggest thrills.

Glass floats are not only collectors items but also a popular item for vintage lovers, beachcombers, home owners and interior designers, and come in all different sizes, colours and shapes as they were designed & used for different types of fishing. 

Over the years we have sourced our extensive range from collectors and from Japanese fishing villages. 

Take a look at the what we have available in-store here:

https://coastalvintage.com.au/glass-floats-fishing/glass-floats/