I got the feather inlay on. Because of the nature of these feathers I used my 'alternate' way of doing it and it needs three hands for photos of doing it. I can describe it though.
Put a coat of color preserver on the thread and wait a full two hours before the next step. Mark the centerline on a piece of masking tape at the end of where the inlay will go.
For feathers with a broader than needed profile that 'thin' down well, like Barred Wood Duck Flank, dip the entire feather in color preserver holding it with tweezers by the stem at the base. Lcae the stem end on the center and trap down the stem end in place with the tweezers. Then take your index finger and lightly brush the feather into place going from the stem to the tip. Do not let the stem end slip or you will bunch and likely destroy the feather. If it does slip, STOP immediately and slide it back in place by the stem and it will sometimes save it. Brush the excess color preserver off being careful not to disturb the feather. Wait at least one hour before applying a second feather.
For feathers that do not slim down well, like the Grey Peacock Pheasant I used as the second feather in this inlay, instead of the method above, this is the alternate method. Take a piece of clear plastic wrap, about four inches or a bit longer off the roll and place on a close and clean spot. Take a brush and put color preserver in a liberal amount where the feather will go. Take the feather by the stem, and very carefully
drop the feather in place so just the centerline of the feather is touching the rod. Do not slide it at all if you miss. In fact most of the time if you try and adjust it, you will wreck the feather. If you don't have steady hands, have a spare feather standing by, because this is pretty much a one shot deal. Once the feather has been dropped into it's place, take the plastic wrap and holding it between your hands. hold it out flat parallel to the rod. Come down on the feather in a straight down motion so the plastic contacts the feather along the centerline that is in contact with the rod. Pull down lightly till your hands meet under the rod. Hold it steady in place till you force color preserver up through the feather. Once it has been 'soaked' (10 seconds or so) let go of the plastic wrap. Gently and slowly
peel it off from the stem to the tip. Wipe very carefully away
any excess color preserver, of which by the nature of the way this is done, none of it will be on the Feather. do not try and adjust in any significant way the feather. This will keep feather with features like the round 'eye' i this example from being slimmed down into an oval which is what would happen if you used the traditional method as stated in the first example. Again, wait at least an hour before adding a second feather. You can mix the methods.
The feathers in the way I just put them on the rod.
An inlay that has the first (traditional) method used in doing a feather inlay.
An inlay done using the alternate method. Note how the 'eye' in the feather remained round. This is not possible to achieve with the traditional way of doing this.
A second rod that used four feathers. The first three are the alternate method.
The second and third are not visible from this angle because the go down on the side of the blank. It's the bottom rod in this photo.
After waiting two hours for the last feather in an inlay to dry, place a final coat of color preserver over everything. The last thing is to put the finish on and go fish.
Here is a weave done with multiple colors. Sometime I should do a step by step for that as well. This was my favorite all time 'Copywrite Violation' rod.
(Keep it a secret)
I will turn the rod tomorrow and then photograph it.