Splitting Cane: Thursday’s Rod Making Class Highlights

Wednesdays are hump days.  The rod building team of Jeff and Jon finished in record time with both bamboo rods glued up by 6 pm.  Thursday mornings are kind of like Christmas at Raine Hollowbuilt Fly Rods, as all of the students can’t wait to unwrap their rod sections and see what’s inside!   Before anyone starts cleaning up bamboo rod sections,  cork rings must be glued together to form the handgrasp for the fly rod.

Jon on the Hardinge turning down his cork grip for bamboo fly rod

After the grips are turned on the lathe, students jump over to cleaning up their freshly-glued rod sections.  All sections are glued up with URAC 185, one of the classic glues for bamboo rod making.  Care is taken in sanding off the excess glue, so as to assure that only some of the enamel is removed from the rod, protecting the valuable outer power fibers.  Removing the outer power fibers of the rod by careless sanding or intentional sanding down of the strip compromises the rod sections, leaving them soft and lacking the nice quick action of a bamboo fly rod that is made the correct way.

Carefully removing the glue from the bamboo fly rod strips

The day progressed with both students fitting the ferrules of their rods, and turning the ferrule stations to size.  Gluing the ferrules in place comes next, then the grips.  Afterwords, the rod sections are dipped into traditional marine spar varnish.

Rod section extracting from dip tube.

Posted by on June 14th, 2010

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