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Itís time to put the finish on the wraps.


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#1 OSD

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Posted 09 February 2004 - 07:19 PM

This is the one of the most important aspects of making a good looking custom rod in other words this is the part (that can make or brake) the looks of your hand crafted rod.
In this process the preparations are as important as the actual brushing on of the finish.
Depending on what kind of finish you are using certain things should be done before applying the finish.

I going to be using Flex Coat High Build Rod finish it has worked well for me and with the size and weight of this rod I feel that it will be prefect.
If the rod was in the 2 to 4 weight fly rod range, I might have chosen a lighter thinner finish.
This Flex Coat formula is a two part finish with a resin and a hardener that needs to be mixed in equal amounts normally the finish comes with syringes for measuring.
Here are a couple tips for mixing the finish.

First never mix finish on paper or cardboard.
Use a plastic mixing cup or just a plain plastic cup thatís been cut down like the one I am mixing in.
Second, never use the brush to mix the finish.
(You will cause air bubbles in the finish that may not dissipate as the finish hardens)
Third use cheap disposable brushes and never use a brush that has a hair bristles,
(You donít want brush hairs in the finish).
also never finish more than a few guide wraps at a time

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To get a good mix for Resin and hardener I always thin the finish by placing the bottles of finish in hot water to heat the finish making it thinner more mixable and also reduces the bubbles when string the two parts of finish together.

I found that putting finish on the wraps is a lot like painting.
With that Idea in mind I always mask the areas were I donít want the finish.
When I finish a wrap I never want the finish to extend out onto the blank more than 1/8 inch beyond the wrap so rather than relying on a steady hand I run some scotch tape 1/8 inch past each end of the wraps on the guide.
The tape will be removed once the finish has been applied and has thickened slightly
This will also create a nice sharp even end to the finish (very professional looking).

user posted image

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Now remember to make sure the finish doesnít run YOU MUST rotate the rod.
It might be a good idea to get an egg timer and set it for regular intervals and then rotate the rod a quarter turn every couple minutes until the finish cures which may take a couple hours.
So before you start this finishing project make sure you have some time to kill


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#2 OSD

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Posted 14 February 2004 - 01:44 PM

Once you are done with the finishing of the wraps and the finish is completely dry clean up the rod blank with a paper towel and some glass cleaner make sure to take off all pieces of masking tape and clean any tape residue off the rod blank.

Now you have you will a unique fly rod built just for you.
The blank and components that have chosen and incorporated in this rod will most likely set it apart from any rod that you can buy off the shelf and if you pay close attention to the details while building your rod most likely it will cast better than a factory rod that uses the same blank.
And the biggest thrill of all is catching fish with a rod you have crafted by yourself, just as it is when you have caught a fish on a fly you have tied.


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