This is a rod that will be going out next week. It's a 7'11" hollow built 4 wt. The next batch of rods that I am making have a darker flame to them. I really like the depth and warmth that it brings to the rod. Am I set on doing it this way? I don't think so. I still like light flaming and the dark honey color it brings to a rod. I will probably do both just to keep changing it up and not be stuck making just one kind of rod.
When looking at this rod please notice the winding check area. When you look at it you will see that I didn't put a winding check. Sometimes I put one on and sometimes I don't. It really just depends on the look I am going for and if it looks good with the wrap scheme I am doing. If you also notice the cork that butts against the rod wraps you will see a slight amount of varnish on the cork. This is the same effect most of my rods have. The cork absorbs the varnish right around the winding check wraps. This is the same thing in the very top picture on my blog. It gives each rod its own identity. I could make the exact same rod 100 times and each rod would be slightly different for this fact alone.
I am a cork snob. I wish I wasn't, but thats just the way I am. I personally think that if you use cork that is very pitted it takes your eye away from the bamboo. Does it affect the way the rod casts or feels, no. Maybe someday I will go to counseling for this.
The reel seat insert is a Cherry Burl. The only thing I can say about it is "I love it!" I have about 20 pieces of this and I am already worrying about when it runs out.
I have changed what I write on the rods now. I felt like that I was writing too much. It took away from the bamboo. So now the only thing that comes on the rod is the Carpenter Bros. Rod Co. and the date it was made.