Rodmakers

Archives: August 2015

Casting Rod Build Details, Part 2

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You can make this as easy or as difficult as you like

You can make this as easy or as difficult as you like

I dislike pre-formed cork handles, and every rod on the rack has them, even the more expensive rods. However, I wouldn’t get on any rod builder’s case for using them. I keep a few around for repairs and real inexpensive jobs. Cork rings are what I learned how to build rod handles with and these extra steps to build a rod make it even more unique. Cork rings and composite rings are available anywhere you buy rod building components. Looking at my catalog I count at least ten different types of material rings come in. Just don’t be that guy that thinks he needs all ten types in the same rod handle.

The parts above are some examples of what I call cookies. When individual cork rings are epoxied with others of different material rings and then trimmed down close the original size of one ring (11/34″ O.D. , 1/2″thick), I call it a cookie. The two cookies on the right are two-piece cookies, half rubberized and half burnt burl. The cookie in the middle is a poker chip cookie (Very difficult and time consuming to make without a special jig; I don’t have that special jig).

When epoxying the cork rings and cookies to the rod, you put a dab of epoxy on the rod blank and then slide the ring in place. Repeat a dozen times, and then clamp tight. We’ll see this step later on. My point now is to explain why I make the flat cookies like the two on the right side of the photo. Why not just treat the two thin rings as a full cork ring in the handle epoxying step, dab and slide? Because these little guys are fragile. Four-piece cookies more so, and 19 pieces cookies even more. If you don’t make the cookie first you could have the little pieces pressed unevenly and turn out wobbled. Imagine that the thin cork rings are pancakes and the epoxy is syrup. Now stack twenty pancakes and push down. Get the picture? Again, making the cookies first prevents even the slightest wobble between thin rings, assuming your cookies are made correctly.

Casting Rod Build Details, Part 1

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All the parts before we begin

All the parts before we begin

Rod design can be tricky without following a pattern or being able to hand-pick components from bins and sure-fit parts together. Beginner rod builders typically depend on kits or some form of impersonal instruction like a book or video. If you can get into a workshop or have someone with experience walk you through your first rod you’re ahead of the curve. With over ten years of rod building experience I still appreciate a little outside expertise. Before ordering it is important to be familiar with things like guide sizes, tip top barrel sizes, and how to use calipers or a micrometer to check other measurements. A lot of this will become second nature as your rod building experience grows. We can see now that the rod designing, or plan, is the first step, and as my first teacher of this craft always said, “You gota have plan!”

For this project we are using a St. Croix rod blank, model 5S66MLF2-G. This means it is a ‘graphite 5’ blank, spinning model, 6 foot-6 inch, medium-lite fast-action, 2 piece, green finish. We’re using REC recoils made of nickel titanium; these are flexible and corrosion resistant. Our cork is premium flor grade, plus we’ll be using some burnt burl as well as rubber composite. The reel seat is a Fuji graphite, exposed blank trigger seat. The rest of the parts include a Struble nickel silver winding check, a small chrome hook keep, a Fuji titanium SiC tip top, and a Fuji rubber butt cap. We may not end up using the butt cap. Most of these components will have to be modified first before being assembled to the rod.

Fishing Rod Repair

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Fishing Rod Repair, Santiago Chile

Fishing rod repair, Santiago Chile

If you’re searching for fishing rod repair near Santiago you’ve come to the right place. If you don’t find the information you’re looking for in this post then please visit our rod repair page Guide Replacement & General Repairs or contact us at our shop near Park O’Higgins. We will put you on the right track to getting your rod back in action.

We repair and replace all hardware that is built on the original rod blank. This includes butt caps, fighting butts, reel seats, cork handles, winding checks, hook keeps, thread wraps, guides, tip tops, and clear coat finish. Our fishing rod repair pricing depends on the price of the components used and our labor hours to get the repair done. You might be surprised how quick and affordable we can be. We also put the same quality towards repairs as we do all our custom fishing rods.

One thing that we can’t always fix is broken or damaged graphite or fiberglass, like the rods in the photograph above. With rod blank damages we recommend researching the manufacturer of your fishing rod in order to learn the details of their warranty program. What will the total cost be? What is the expected return time? If you would like a second opinion or for us to handle your warranty claim, then contact us or visit us for an estimate. This may even be an opportunity for you to get involved in rod building and learn some basic rod repair.

Did you know that you can remove most tip top guides with the heat from a cigaret lighter? If you break a few centimeters off of your tip during a fishing trip, then try this. Heat the tip top guide with a lighter, take it off of the short broken piece of rod and stick it on the other broke end of your rod- while the guide is still hot. There should be enough adhesive in the tip top guide barrel to secure it for the rest of your fishing trip. If not, then use whatever adhesive you have available. We recommend planning ahead and taking an extra tip guide and a small piece of top adhesive; we can provide that for you.

We hope you don’t have any breaks or rod failures in your angling adventures but if you do please let us help. Thanks!

Our Rod-Building Shop

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Welcome to our Rod-Building Shop, Santiago Chile

Rod-Building Shop, Santiago Chile

Our Rod-Building Shop in Santiago Chile will open its doors this November, 2015. Our unique facility and workshop will be located in the center of Santiago, near Park O’Higgins and metro station Rondizzoni. We bring seventeen years of rod making in North America to our little shop. We wish to offer anglers in Chile our finest custom fishing rods made using the best rod blanks and components available.

Besides offering fine finished products our rod-building workshop will provide a comfortable environment for those who wish to build their own rod. We provide instruction and guidance as well as the tools and materials necessary. We take care of the final steps, cleaning and preparing the rod for epoxy, and applying the clear coat finish over the thread wraps. Don’t forget the inscription or custom 360 dpi labels that can further personalize the rod. When the final coat is dry a rod sock and hard tube can be matched to cary away the prized finished product.

We’re happy to invite other “Cañaderos” (my made-up Spanish word for Chilean Rodmakers) of all skill levels to visit us and share rod-building practices over a cup of coffee or tea. We would be happy to assist with rod projects and we would be open to learning new techniques. This is what inspired us to call our shop Rodmakers of Chile. Its the community that we wish to cultivate. Contact us, come in and have a conversation about these special tools which we use to pursue wild fish. We’ve accomplished something if we could inspire you to take an angling adventure.

My name is Michael Munoz, and I’m a rod maker, a philosopher, and a dreamer. I’d like to share my passion for fine custom rods and help you create something special.