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Thread: Switch Rod as a first build?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Strathroy, Ontario, Canada

    Default Switch Rod as a first build?

    Hi Guys

    New member here....glad to have found the place. While I have perused a lot of the forums, I admit I have not been 'everywhere' if there is a post related to my topic, I apologize for the duplication.

    I am a lifer fly rodder...all freshwater fisheries...virtually all species (inluding some not typical for fly rodders...i.e. channel cats) all across Canada. I also tie flies and teach tying and casting (single hand).

    BUT, as seems the genesis of many....I am drawn to build rods. At the same time, I am also being drawn to expand my collection of the form of switch rods (I know, its a slippery slope into Spey-ville once you start I've heard). Fishing (now) the Great Lakes tributaries, single handing my 10' has been very effective for the introduced Pacifics...but I want more toys.

    With that, and sorry for the long intro....I have been researching and studying and watching and looking....and I am going to be getting a kit soon (to start) for my first build. For those of you 'in the know' on this topic, is it reasonable...or even a good idea to start my first rod building experience building a switch rod? Is that extra back grip and longer grip going to pose issues for a newbie? I think myself to be an adept craftsman...and particularly finicky with details...but can't pull the pin on this. I suppose I am a bit concerned about making really expensive tomato stakes (hah).

    Any comments and guidance would be appeciated.

    Thanks in advance

    King Joe, Outa Here!

  2. #2

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    Hi Joe.
    Welcome,check out The Rod Building Section where there's info posted,where to buy your Blanks,Grips,Reel Seats,Tips,Runners etc,etc by some very helpful people who have built stacks of Rods.
    I hadn't built a Rod for over 30 years & was given info which would have taken me weeks to source,all I did was order & wait for it all to turn up.

    I really don't think it matters what Rod you decide to build first,I still have 4 to be Finished,one of which is a Switch Rod.,the main reasons I've been held up is I've had to build new Wrapping & Drying Machines as well as Crook Shoulders,hands & Fingers,however I shall return to The Building when The weather gets warmer.
    After seeing Dan's Rods & his Custom Grips I've decided to order Corks, Mandrils,make my my own Clamp,also a Tool to inlet The Reel Seats into The Grips & eventually make my own Grips which has again held me up.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Wasilla / Skwentna, Alaska
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    You're in the right forum section Joe. Welcome to the group,


    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

  4. #4

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    I don't think starting with a switch rod would be an issue. Just dry fit everything before mixing up the epoxy to be sure you have the grips and reel seat fitting right. If you get a kit or follow a spec sheet you'll have the guides you need and they'll let you know what a good spacing would be.

    One thing I'd wonder about is if the ferrule wraps would need to be a bit longer than on a single handed rod? I might do 3 or 4 times the diameter of the female ferrule opening for extra insurance. Perhaps someone else will weigh in and correct me on that.
    - William

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    First off, welcome to the forum! This is a great place with a ton of good information.

    As for building a rod I see no reason for it not to be a switch rod. I have built about a ton of rods and would be more than happy to help you if you have a question. Just out of curiousity, where in Canada are you? I'm right on the border myself. It would take a move of less than half a mile for me to be a Canadian to eh.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Akron Ohio (don't let that fool you)

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    Its shouldn't be too different, just more steps. The only thing I could see being a pain is getting all the guides aligned. Diver Dan is the man to see for building the long rods he's put together some mind blowing spey rods as well as single handers.
    Oh I live to be the ruler of life not a slave

  7. #7

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    Here's a quickie this morning ... use a laser level to line up your guides! It doesn't care how long something is .. it'll be true! So easy!
    Welcome to the bunch, King!

  8. Likes wt bash, fredaevans liked this post
  9. #8

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    Use the sage tcx black. Unreal stick

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    White City (tad north of Medford) Oar-E-Gone

    Default Re: Switch Rod as a first build?

    Only thing about building a 2hander rod that's a pain is doing a 'cork by cork' build of the butt sections. You really need a lath to properly sanding down to where you want same.

    You can get 'pre-made' ones (Angler's Workshop shows them in their catalog) so it the 'fit' is proper it will save you a lot of grief.

    Loved the idea of using a laser to line up the rod guides; new one on me.
    When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost; when character is lost, all is lost. - Billy Graham"

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