Ard, yes, the shop is very well supplied for rod building; from the cork borers, to the lathe to the thread winding jigs to the drying rollers, and everything in between.
They also have a policy that once you're built a rod you can build as many more as you want using their facility and with guidance/help from them, if you need it. All you have to do is to purchase your materials through the shop; which, all things taken into considerations, seem like a pretty good deal to me.
One of the things that I lamented most when I left the Poconos was the thought of never finding a Fly Shop up here that compared well with the ones that I frequented back there. But, I was wrong. This one, Eldredge Brothers Fly Shop in Cape Neddick, ME, is every bit as good as the best that I had in the Poconos. So, there's a bright side to the switch. Now, if the fresh water fly fishing could only compare as well.................
Location: Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
Re: First Rod Build
I wish I had a fly shop around here. I'm glad you have a good one there. I also have to ask where you got the cork rings from. They look from the photos to be exceptionly high quality rings. It's really hard now days to get your hands on good cork.
I stopped in at the Fly Shop to pick up my rod last Friday, but after looking at it carefully and talking with one of the guys who teaches the rod building course, we decided that it could use one more coat of Flex on the guide wraps. I'd been going very lightly on the Flex Coat; not wanting to overload the guides, but I think I was a little light and a few of the guides could use a little more material on them to smooth out the finish. Better too little than too much, I guess.
So, it's back to a razor blade and a third coat of Flex next Friday.
Hopefully, that will do it and it will be ready to take home the following day. We'll see....................................
Rather than finishing up with this rod two weeks ago, as planned, I visited the shop twice more over the past two weeks to prep the guide wraps for the final FlexCoat. I had bubbles in the first coat and I had to get them and the surface imperfections off the wraps with a razor before I put the last coat on.
It's far from perfect, but for a first rod build I like it and I'm already thinking about the big trout that I'm going to land on it!
Here it is:
I'm glad that I decided on an agate stripper guide; I think it looks good with the wraps and the wood reel seat insert:
A closer look at the ferrule wraps:
I like the way that the tip top came out:
At least I'll remember who built this rod.....................
I decided to pair it with a 3.0" Hardy St. George Spitfire reel:
Nice job, Allan! Now I want to see the action shots, and first fish landed! And that Hardy reel does look good on there too. Got me wanting to go out and make a rod, but then I would have to budget time away from tying, and Heaven forbid, fishing.
Beautiful! I love it, clean, simple, and refined looking rod, even nicer with the reel added. I like the winding check and color choice and think the agate guide is a good addition. I put one on my 4wt and like it everytime I pull the rod out. Congrats on your first build.