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7' 6" 4wt. - Rod Specs
 
Components  
Source
Cost (approx.)
Blank - Forecast Hook & Hackle $18 (sale)
Weight - 4 wt.    
Length - 7' 6"    
Pieces - 2    
Action - Fast    
Finish - Deep Gloss Navy Blue    
Modulus - 31 million    
 
Tip top - Pacific Bay Black Hook & Hackle $1
Guides - Pacific Bay Single Foot Snake Guides, Black Hook & Hackle $4
Stripper - Hiloy, Black Hook & Hackle  
Hookkeeper - Standard U, Black Hook & Hackle $0.25
 
Grip - A Grade Reverse Fine Wells, 7" Hook & Hackle $10 (sale)
 
Reel Seat - Pacific Bay A7, Black Hook & Hackle $10 (sale)
 
    Rough Component Cost - $43
 
Other Details      
Thread - Gudebrod Nylon, Size A, in Candy Apple Red (0335) and Black (0001), Gudebrod Metallic Size A Gold
Color Preserver - U40 Color Lock
Finish - Flexcoat High Build    
       
Comments      
The first of two trout rods I'm building for thew two sons of Dan Fisher; this is Max's rod. I'm doing rods like these for "practice"...nothing gets you better at something than repeated practice.
 
Things I learned while building this rod

The finish on this rod was a little cold, so I hit it with the hair dryer to warm it up and get it thin. That worked well, but by the time I was done it was already getting pretty "stringy". I think the heat application really reduced the working time. The unfortunate side effect was that I think this caused more bubbles to be trapped in the finish. Next time I might have to finish a rod by mixing two separate batches, the 2nd one half way through the process, in order to get that pure-bubble free finish we all strive for (and is a lot harder than they make it sound). Yes, I applied heat after the finish job was complete. Even came back 15 minutes later and popped the new bubbles that appeared. So it's either that the finish cured to rapidly or I'm back to the old "doubting the color preserver" problem.

On the upside, those diamond wraps are getting a bit easier with all the practice. However, with the red thread on blue blank, I found that even the really tightly packed threads still showed some of the blank through them. Kinda looks like what happens when insufficient color preserver is applied, but looking closely I can see it's the blank showing through, not the thread getting darkened. In other words, the red wraps on blue may not be a good combination.

Another new thing, I'm trying Dave @ Creekside's method of putting down a coat of finish over a black block of thread PRIOR to adding the inscription. So after this rod has been approved, I'll add the final inscription and another coat of finish to the butt wrap to preserver the inscription. Haven't done that yet, but in due time...

One final note, I tried a new method I came across where the finish is applied to the wraps only..it DOES NOT bleed onto the blank. I saw it in a book, it looked nice, tried it and well, it's really easy.

 
Pictures
An overview of the rod - I really like how the 7' 6" 4wt 2pc. Forecast is when set up with the Hobb's Creek Large Arbor HCI Fly Reel (balances perfectly) and lined with SA Air Cell DT 4wt. It casts like a much more expensive rod...pure joy for a fraction of the price! A view of the diamond/cross wrap and thread block at the base of the blank. Another shot of the decorative butt work - the black thread block will later form the background for the inscription on this rod.
The Stripper Guide... The Pac Bay Single Foot Fly Guides in Black. The tip top of this rod.

 

 

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