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Old 10-06-2007, 10:54 AM
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Warren Warren is offline
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Building a Rod

I think I want to build a few rods this winter. Or at least one to start with. I have no equipment or materials. For that matter I have never even seen it done. But that is no obstacle for me. I can read and see what others have done. If I can assemble a Diesel engine form a box of parts I am sure I can build a rod and make it come out decent.
In any case I would like to know what some of you seasoned rod builders recommend for tools & equipment. I see Cabela's & others have kits and components etc... But if the kits are like any other kits I have purchased in the past, they are incomplete or lacking in some way. I find you are better off to buy what you need to get things done, even if it is more expensive to get started. Like any job, I can imagine having the proper tools and good materials is the key to success.

I also need a good how to book, once again there are numerous books I see advertised. But which one is good?

I would also like a good source of components.
I can get Sage blanks from my friends fly shop or another local shop handles T&T, Loomis and Scott. However they are not into rod building so other stuff may be hard to get from them.

In the mean time I will research some more on my own
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Old 10-06-2007, 09:04 PM
nmbrowncom nmbrowncom is offline
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i'm not a rod builder, but smiitty at rod builder's workshop in kingston ma is probably the best in this area for the country!-and he's quite helpful albeit a bit crusty. give him a call. i think he is offerring classes this fall. 1-781-582-1015.
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Old 10-07-2007, 07:39 PM
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flyjkol flyjkol is offline
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I'd recomend any type of class or online reading you can find on the subject. I learned through a local builder, flex coat's little paper back black ang white book and Start to Finish Fly Fly Rod Building which is also by flex coat.

that being said....

Get yourself a rotary rod drier.
Its possible to hand turn a drying rod, but the results will be better with a motorized drying rack.

I do just fine without a comercially made rod tying rack. I don't do the most intricate rod designs, so I use a cardboard box with notches to hold the blank as a stand for the rod blank I'm wrapping.

I used a cabelas brand foregrip on one of my builds and wholeheartily regret it. I've used the rod quite a bit over the past two years and the cork grip has deteriotated considerably even though I rubberized it during the building process.

Rod building is fun and fairly easy. Any mistake that you make can be fixed pretty readily except for the actual rod finishing, which is fairly starightforward to the instructions of whatever finish you choose.
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Old 10-08-2007, 02:07 PM
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Jim Miller Jim Miller is offline
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Hi Warren
I've just gotten back into building rods. Forgot how much fun it is.
I'd say: take your time, don't be afraid to take your wraps apart & redo. Practice with the epoxy finish on a test piece before the actual rod finishing. Try making your own cork grips out of cork rings. Lot's of cool looks to be acheived!!

A lot of valuable techniques at this site: rodbuildingforum.com

Have fun


Edited for non-sponsor link.

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Old 10-08-2007, 03:57 PM
flytyer flytyer is offline
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The rodbuildingforum mentioned is a great source of information.

Tom Kirkman's book on rod building, the previously mentioned Flex Coat book, and Dale Clemens book on rod building are very good. There are also a few good videos in DVD format out on rod building that are worth a look.

Things like good quality pre-formed rod grips, reels seats, guides, glues, etc. are best gotten from one of the vaious rod building supply stores.
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Old 10-09-2007, 12:38 AM
Herry Herry is offline
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I get my components from shoff tackle, an online store (shofftackle.com). They have pretty good stuff. You can either get full kits or buy individual components. I've built three rods with components from their shop.

For wrapping, I built a rod wrapper out of wood and some minor components that looks just like the Flex Coat Hand Rod Wrapper (look at one on Cabelas website for an idea). My components cost about $20 and building it was easy. Basic shop skills and a few tools the pretty much anyone would have on their workbench and you can build one in few hours.

For the finishing step though, I spent about $70 on a motorized rod turner. It works great and is well worth the money. Some rod turners are several hundred bucks.

Like was said by others earlier in this thread, don't hesitate to strip and re-wrap your threads if you don't like them before you put the finish on them. Also, I go to the Sage website and get their guide spacing chart for the rod size I'm working on to make sure I have them spaced correctly.

The hardest part of the project (for me, at least) is getting the guides all aligned perfectly pre-finishing. You don't want to assemble your rod when you're done and see your guides not in a nice straight line.

It's pretty dang fun, though. I look at mine closely and notice imperfections but I think it gives them character. Not to mention, I can build a $700 rod for about $380 depending on component choices.
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