Friday, December 22, 2017

Merry Christmas

I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We are working hard on the 10 yr rods. I hope to send the first one out by the end of January. We have all the blanks completed and have begun ferruling them. Some have even had the pleasure of getting their grip.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Thursday, October 19, 2017

New Reel Seat Hardware

Here is a pic of the new nickel silver pocketed cap/ring reel seats. On the 10 yr rods I am making right now this is an option. I have two options on the stacked bamboo inserts. You can chose either Blonde or Honey. The Honey is a warm brown color that matches the color of the blanks perfectly. Sometimes I like matching the color and other times I like to offset it, like in the pic below.

I am leaving today to go to the Southern Rodmaker's Gathering. I should have a good report to post when I get home.

Saturday, July 22, 2017


I just received a shipment of 5 star cork. I plan on using this on the 10 yr rods I am currently working on. Sometimes as builders we become obsessed with things and they don't necessarily have to do with the action of the rods. I have always been a believer is good cork on my fly rods. It makes the whole product look cleaner and better. You really can't buy 5 star cork anymore. The best you can get is Flor and its debatable if it is really Flor grade. However, good cork is hard to find and its expensive.

I have attached some pics of the cork. The top row is the 5 star and the bottom row is the Flor I purchased off the large auction site. Back to the point I was trying to make in the first paragraph. The cost of the grip on the 10 yr rods will be almost 10% of the total cost people paid for the rod. That is ridiculous, but like I said we get hung up on things!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Thursday, June 15, 2017

10 Year Rods

I am going to chronicle the process of making the 10 year rods, so check back regularly. This is a process that will take about 6 months. Making 10 rods is not difficult, but not easy either and since I am actually making more than ten rods it will increase the difficulty level. I have made the decision for this series to actually make about 15 butt blanks and 30 tips. I will then select the best ten butt sections and 20 tips for these rods. I will destroy the rest.

When making quads, its a little different than hex's, there is a lot of waste when it comes to the strips. Due to the angles and processes not being as refined as hex making it causes there to more waste with the strips.

The top pic is the culms ready to get flamed. There are actually more culms outside the pic that will be needed for the tips.

In the lower pic you can see the butt section strips all sanded ready to go. There is one batch of tip strips also. When dealing with so many strips (I have done this before) you can get them mixed up from one another. So in order to avoid this the butt sections are colored different than the tip sections.

Why does it matter that the strips stay separated? Several reasons, the main being I hand select each set of culms for either tips or butt sections. I believe all builders do this and all probably have their own theories of what to do. I know many quad builders want the XL poles for their quads, I don't necessarily. I am not going to get into what I do here, because I think its one reason why my rods have a better action than most bamboo fly rods. There are many inconsistencies in the bamboo, no one can master this aspect!

Next week I will post a video of the demo 10 yr rod in action. I let one of the Carpenter Bros. use it on a recent trip catching 12" trout. One theory I have about this is if it holds up to a 10 yr old buggy whipping the hell out of it and it doesn't break its a good rod!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

10 Years Building

I started building rods 10 years ago this fall. It has been an amazing adventure! My thoughts and philosophies have changed several times over the years and I keep evolving.

To commemorate this milestone I am making 10 special rods. They will be 7'9" quads designed for 4/5 weight lines. They will be two piece rods with two tips. The rods will be medium flamed with a great medium fast action. They will feature a special stacked bamboo reel seat with your choice of aluminum or nickel silver hardware. The nickel silver reel seat is the top pic. I will use CSE standard ferrules

These rods will be specially priced at $1250. This is much lower than my normal prices. I am expecting these rods to be completed in December of 2017.

UPDATE: I have only 3 rods left!

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Blog Update

Well, its been a few weeks since my last update. I have been busy in the shop, but haven't had time to update my blog. The warmer weather has many of us ready for the fishing season.

The first rod I am talking about on the blog is probably my favorite rod I make. It's the 8' 3 weight and casts like a dream. I like to throw soft hackles with this rod up to 40'. It can cast farther than that, but I feel that is what the rod/taper do best. This rod is a demo rod and will ship out shortly to several people that want to try it out.

The second rod in the photos is a graphite rod that I built up for one of my local fly shops.

I will be back in several weeks with several other rods I am currently working on. I am restoring two rods as well at the current time and will have photos of those as well.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

First Quad Spliced Joint

My first quad spliced joint rod is about to go out the door! It has been very exciting to start making quads again. For some reason I really enjoy finishing them out. There is something about the four sides that make them have a clean look.

I have added quads to the side price list. For right now I am only offering spliced jointed rods. These will be made in small batches, generally a different length and weight each year. Right now I will probably make four or five rods a year and each will be the same. Each rod will be numbered to the slot they were made. For example, a rod will be listed as 1 out of 5 or 2 out of 4. All rods will be made to the lightest tolerances.

In the past I have made quads with other builders. From here on out it will be me from beginning to end.

Here is a pic of the first rod. Its a 7' 10" 4 weight. All cork reel seat and aluminum hardware. The total weight on this rod is 2.9 oz.

I plan on getting back on my plan of writing on the blog every week, so please check back frequently. Thanks!