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brian miville 02-03-2013 01:05 PM

Drying motor question.
So having given this a lot more thought I am thinking of maybe actually giving rod building a go. I am browsing equipment needed, and I think I can relatively easily build my own wrapping station. Seems pretty simple. What I am debating is the rod drying unit. First thought is buying a motor unit with a chuck (I see I can get one off ebay for about $22) and setting it up myself (I have never wired a motor before but figure that should be no issue). The other option is just getting a motor already wired and mounted. This option would only ad $10 or $15 more, but hey, it would be money saved in the end for other things. :D Any thoughts on this?

Also, the motors and units, etc. offered vary in motor speed. Anywhere from 6 RPM to 22-25 RPM. Does the revolutions speed matter in rod drying?

And one last question (for now ;) ). I see there is a couple different chuck options. One uses three plastic screws, then there is another that uses 2 heavy duty rubber bands that center the handle. Do both work just fine, or one better than the other?

williamhj 02-03-2013 01:50 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
I bought one off ebay, I believe it is 22 rpm or so. It was fairly cheap and it works well and the set-up was cake. Make the stand and support from scrap wood I had around. It has the three screws and I've liked it fine. The reel seat fits in there fine for the bottom section and the other sections I use dowels or sections of broken rods.

People do take motors off of small appliances but I didn't have any around and the $20 I spent seemed worth it. For RPMs, I'm not sure it matters much unless you're going to apply the finish to the wraps while the rod is turning. I did this on a couple rods and found I had a harder time applying it right. So I just apply it while the rod is on the wrapping stand and then put it on the dryer. If you want to finish the wraps on the dryer perhaps someone else knows the ideal speed you'd want.

Guest1 02-03-2013 02:06 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
I got a motor, actually two of them from Cabelas. Speed is not to horribly important. Fast enough to keep the flex coat from sagging and slow enough it isn't a NASA test for your rod is fine. I built mine right into the stand for my thread tension device. It really works out well. It adds weight to it so it doesn't try to slide around while I'm doing the thread. I made the arbors myself. I used an empty plastic sewing thread spool for heavy thread. It's shaped lile a cylinder with a pretty large flaired bottom. I put 4 screws in the flaired end for rubber bands. By the way, I like the rubber bands. It works fast and easy. Inside of the cylinder, I used a section of an aluminum arrow shaft and built it up with tape to fit the inside of the cylinder portion. After I glued it in with abou 5/8" sticking beyond the small end, I drilled and tapped it for a set screw. The shaft on the motor has a flat side. I did the same thing with the first motor except it was cork instead of the spool and I just used masking tape to secure the butt of the rod till it was dry. Bith work, both were essentially free, but I like the bands way best.

Rod stands are a snap to make. Make the U shaped rests for them by srilling a hole in the wood and then save the other half. You can either use it for a second set or a short set that holds the rod up and steady for doing the writting on it. On the end where the grip is I put two screws, and use a 1" web strap with holes burned in the end and two rubber bands. I originally came up with it to help out a blind friend of mine in a rod building class I helped with. If you are blind, wrapping thread either requires three hands or this thing.

Here is the thread tension thing I mentioned. The rod tips are for keeping a constant tension even if you back the rod up a bit. Losing tension causes problems. The little second one changes the angle the thread hits the blank for when I do weaves, it makes it easier to do with the weave on top of the blank instead of over more on the side like it would be if I were setting down just wrapping.

Here is the one with the cork end on the motor. It has the second rod tip I just mentioned. It also has two tension devices. There are some neat tricks I came up with that needs two. I also is handy if you are doing two colors and don't to have to keep changing thread spools..

Here's how I set the motor in the thread stand. I added velcro straps to keep the cord out of the way when I'm not running it.

Rod building is not as hard as some people think. It is fun in fact. Plus you get rods that are the way you want them. When you get really good at it you will have rods that are better than any factory rod around and look like it too.


Originally Posted by williamhj (Post 523116)
People do take motors off of small appliances

I just apply it while the rod is on the wrapping stand and then put it on the dryer.

Rotisery (sp?) motors work good.

I do it the same way. You have better control and as long as you are not slower than molases it turns fast enough by hand not to sag.

brian miville 02-03-2013 04:52 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
OK, that makes plenty sense about the motor speed. And thank you Dan for the very descriptive post. I figure the more I can build, equipment wise, the happier I will be (hey, sometimes saving $20 is a small victory :D ). I am pretty good at working with my hands (I am an industrial fabricator by trade) so building simple things, like the rod wrap station and such should pose no problem. And thankfully a simple Google search turns up a slew of pictures and posts that have given me all I need to know to build the simple wrapping station. Even the rod dryer should pose little problem, and now I know speed does not matter TOO much I think I am ready to grab me something off ebay, or perhaps see if one of the rod building suppliers online can provide a nice cheap motor.

In the end I figured this might be the best thing for me in the long run. I think I came into this with a baitacster/spincaster frame of mind in that over the years I have only "needed" 2 or 3 rods to chuck big lures out there. But now I am delving more into the flycasting world I am seeing how 2 or 3 rods may work OK, but that having more to fit certain situations is probably going to be the norm. And as you say, Dan, the thought of being able to customize and eventually build high quality rods to my own standards for potentially less or equal financial outlay than for a maker built rod holds a high value with me.

I guess the moral of the story is, for many years in mechanical/warmwater fishing I lived by "the fish is everything" mentality whereas flyfishing you are buying more into something that is a lifestyle than just about catching the fish. :D

Guest1 02-03-2013 06:30 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
I went and visited the Winston factory in Montana a few years back. They had people doing the thread by hand like I do. The guy showing me around the place told me they bought power wrappers for them once and in under two weeks they stopped using them. Could not get as neat wraps with them. I had been thinking about buyin one right up till he told me that one. I have no complaints with the way I do it. Making it myself was a lot less expensive.

brian miville 02-03-2013 06:52 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
Well, after considering all options on the motor I think I am going to pick up the one I am looking at on ebay. It is 5-6 RPM and comes with the chuck and mounting shaft. I figure it is probably better to make a mounting block for it myself so that I can more easily match the height of the holding block on the other side. I can probably make up the thread wrap station while I am at it, and just need to get the tensioning device figured out.

Looking at places like Jann's Netcraft it looks like I can get a 9' 7wt blank for around $50. So this should make for a good inexpensive start, and fill out one the weights I want to get. Even if the thing is junk and gets chucked in a year or two it would still be a valuable and inexpensive starting point.

whalensdad 02-03-2013 07:06 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
I went through what your going through now back in December. I purchased the motor off of ebay (went with a 10 RPM) and built the rod wrapper from scrap wood using a plan I saw on another forum. Wiring is pretty easy. You could go with a faster motor and wire in dimmer switch to control the speed.

My other comment has to do with Jann's netcraft. Make sure you verify the rod weight when you get it. I ordered a 7'6" 5wt from them and unfortunately didn't test it until it was too late to return it. Using the common-cents system, it was only a 3.5 ERN. To be fair, they did offer me $10 off and free shipping on a new kit, but had I checked within their 30 day window (I was at 42) I could have had a new kit sent out.

brian miville 02-03-2013 08:39 PM

Re: Drying motor question.

Originally Posted by whalensdad (Post 523193)
My other comment has to do with Jann's netcraft. Make sure you verify the rod weight when you get it. I ordered a 7'6" 5wt from them and unfortunately didn't test it until it was too late to return it. Using the common-cents system, it was only a 3.5 ERN. To be fair, they did offer me $10 off and free shipping on a new kit, but had I checked within their 30 day window (I was at 42) I could have had a new kit sent out.

Thanks for the heads up. That is something I probably would not have even thought of doing. :o

---------- Post added at 09:39 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:29 PM ----------

Hmmm. I just found this interesting, and super dirt cheap, tip for making a thread tensioning device:

Mouse Trap Rod Winder

This may be worth the very least if it turns out to not work well I am only out a couple bucks it cost for the mouse trap.

williamhj 02-03-2013 09:40 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
If you have the wood lying around make a some extra supports. One for the wrapper that can stand on the table and hold the blank even with the wrapper - it's helpful when working on a long blank or the tip-top so you can use your two supports on the wrapper to hold the tip section while wrapping it (it flexes a lot). Might not be bad to make an extra for the dryer as well in case you're ever drying a long rod. usually don't do too many guides at once but if you ever finish three ferrule wraps at once you can support the blank well.

brian miville 02-06-2013 05:05 PM

Re: Drying motor question.
Well, the deed is done. I pulled the trigger on the 5-6 rpm motor with the chuck. It is a three screw type chuck, but I think I know how I can still use the rubber band method to hold the rod end. I found a nice big chunk of 3/4" plywood at work that is scrap, so I have enough to make a base for the wrapping station, a base for the drying motor/chuck, and a 4th base....possibly even more if I wanted too.

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