Admittedly the title of this post will probably draw some attention from non-anglers, but I wanted a description other than “New Fiberglass Fly Rod Build”. As I sat there on Sunday morning wrapping the guides onto the blank with black and then silver thread, I realized that, in essence, I was rolling my own fly rod. The tobacco color of the blank only added to the metaphor.
This is my second fiberglass rod build, a two-piece 7′ 4″ 4 wt. The first was a one-piece 6′ 6″ 4/5 wt. that I use almost exclusively for kayak fishing. It has a soft presentation, but due to some minor modifications involving the dark art of injected foam, it has enough backbone to throw poppers, hairbugs and bring a nice bass to hand.
The blank for the latest build came from a gentleman in PA who was offering it in both two- and three-piece options. I asked him for his personal preference, and he responded that he uses the 2-piece on the spring creeks in PA. I also wanted this as a small stream rod. I prefer fewer sections, so I chose the two-piece. My guess is that the 3-piece makes a better travel rod. If you’re interested in building one of these send me an email and I’ll put you in touch with him.
The next step was to order the hardware (reel seat, grip, guides, etc.). I contacted “The Hole” twice, but when I explained that I needed some help with sizing and ordering parts, the guy completely blew me off both times. Guess he had some spincast builders on the other line. I will not be trying them again.
I called J Stockard, where the friendly voice on the other end walked me through options for the various components, and helped convert measurements from standard to metric where necessary. I continue to be a big fan of these guys. I hope they will consider my request to open a J Stockard retail store.
The rod building process is pretty well documented, and a quick search on Google can provide you with the how-to. There are also a number of video tutorials on YouTube. I won’t try and compete with them, but rather share a few shots from this build.
After a few coats of color preserver and epoxy, the new rod was complete.
The first trip was around the corner to Mill Pond to see how it cast. It was a sunny day and temps reached the 70’s. After the first few tries, it delivered a small popper to this eager customer, who put a nice bend in it.
To celebrate the completion of this build, I bought a t-shirt from one of my favorite blogs, The Fiberglass Manifesto.
As spring comes into focus, there will be more opportunities to test my new fish stick. Enjoy!
Looks like you did a really nice job with the glass. I’m almost tempted to try it myself, but can’t quite place it high on the priority list. I’ve still got a couple of nice fiberglass rods, one custom made, that I enjoy using, despite all the graphite and bamboo.
walt´s last blog post ..Spring Journal: the LeTort
Thanks Walt. It is in the 30’s here now, but supposed to reach 60 degrees this weekend. I’m looking to give it another workout. Fiberglass really does give a softer presentation.