Author Topic: How to build a fishing rod tutorial  (Read 11577 times)

Offline crookedneck

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Re: How to build a fishing rod tutorial
« Reply #15 on: July 02, 2012, 06:33:34 PM »
The Final step in the building process is to apply the finish.  The finish used for rod building is a 2 part epoxy specifically designed for rod building.  This is where all your hard work can be made succesful or come to a screaching halt.  The tools used in this portion are simple.

You need your 2 part epoxy.  Mixing cups, a spatula or mixing sticks (popsicle sticks work) and bruhes.  I use several different types of epoxy I use Flex Coat and Thread Master finishes.  I recommend for fresh water rods using a regular or a lite build epoxy.  They make a high build which is good for ocean rods.  For mixing cups I use small plastic drinking cups.  For brushes I use 1/8" craft brushes that can be found in your craft department at Wal-Mart for a buck or two.



The first part in doing finish work is to make sure that you use two equal parts of epoxy.  The epoxy comes in a resin and a hardner.  I recommend getting rod building syringes to measure out the epoxy.  You need to be exact on your measurments, too much resin and the epoxy won't cure, too much hardner and it will make your epoxy brittle.  Rod building finish remains flexible after it cures.  Measure out two equal parts of the two part epoxy, put it into the cup and mix it well.  You will find a lot of opinions on how to properly mix this epoxy.  Some say becareful not to get bubbles as it will cause bubbles in your epoxy.  I mix it fast and don't worry about the bubbles. 

After properly mixing your epoxy it is time to apply your epoxy.  I use a rod drying motor.  It rotates the rod.  A drying motor isn't needed it just makes it easier.  To apply epoxy  use a disposable brush and lightly apply epoxy to the threads. Ideally, the epoxy should run no more than one quarter inch past each wrap and onto the blank. This is to prevent moisture from seeping under the wraps and rusting the guide feet.  After applying the finish let the rod rotate on the motor until dry.  If you don't have a rod drying motor, then then you must keep rotating the rod a quarter turn every 15 minutes or so to prevent the epoxy from dripping and sagging.  You will need to keep doing this for 3 to 4 hours or until the epoxy sets.   



The key to a good finish is to use light coats of epoxy.  It is better to do several coats of epoxy versus one thick coat.  You should allow at least 12 hours between coats of epoxy.  During the drying phase of the epoxy watch your epoxy for bubbles.  If you start getting bubbles use a straw to blow the bubbles out of the epoxy.  Some builders use an alcohol torch to pop the bubbles. This is an option, but honestly in hundreds of rods the bubbles pop very well with a straw.  Too much heat can damage the blank and the finish.  Do not use a match or lighter as this will leave a black soot on your epoxy.  Not that I have ever done that  :oops:

There are a lot of things that can cause the epoxy issues.  I like to mix my epoxy in small amounts so that way it doesn't start to cure in the cup.  It allows for better finish.  I might have to mix 2 or 3 times per coat.  If you find that your epoxy starts to set you can put it in the micrwave for 4-5 seconds to make it flow better if it starts to thicken up.  But, if you do that be aware that it will then set faster after that. You will want a clean room to apply your epoxy in.  Make sure your wife doesn't use any furnisher polish around your epoxy as it will cause the epoxy to fish eye.  (looks like the 2 parts separate) 

« Last Edit: July 02, 2012, 06:53:26 PM by crookedneck »

Offline crookedneck

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Re: How to build a fishing rod tutorial
« Reply #16 on: July 02, 2012, 06:41:03 PM »
After applying your final coat of finish allow your rod to cure for at least 24-48 hours before using.  If you use it too soon it will cause your wraps to fog up due to moisture getting under the wraps. 

Here is the rod that I was using in this tutorial after I finished it.  The grips are turned from Spalted Hackberry from Dbroswoods.   I inlayed several feathers on this rod also.  If there is an interest in doing feather inlays let me know as this is another tutorial for another day. 





After the rod is finished one more thing left to do.....grab your kid and go fishing....



« Last Edit: July 02, 2012, 06:55:39 PM by crookedneck »

Offline lazyMlazyK

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Re: How to build a fishing rod tutorial
« Reply #17 on: April 06, 2013, 11:47:35 PM »
I know this topic has a little dust on it, but every time I come back to it I can't help but to go digging back into checking out prices of kits and planning what my first rod type and handle type will be.  This is a GREAT tutorial and thank you SO much for sharing your insight!
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