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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    clinch river regular
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    552

    Default Clicking noise in Rod grip

    Thought I would post here under rod building as I suspect some of you good folks have also dabbled in older fly rod rehab. I recently purchased a 21 yr old Sage LL 586-3 factory build rod that was taken care of but also fished quite a bit. The dealer did, as always, a stellar job cleaning up the cork grip. Not sure of his method, but the cork is not dry, brittle or ridged any. The first 5" of the grip from the winding check feel solid and do not move or squeak/click. The last 1 1/2-2" where the skinny waist of the handle and the rear flare (over the hide away hood) don't seem to move visually, but a side to side hard motion or twist with moderate pressure causes the noise. I suspect there is a little bit of dis-bonding of the cork to blank and/or cork to nickel silver hood.

    Should I worry about this or just fish it as is? It doesn't bother me when fishing the rod. I just worry it will get worse and the cork will deteriorate prematurely. I don't want to develop a gap that water could get into even though I am always careful not to dunk my rods (but it still happens occasionallyClicking noise in Rod grip). Is there a fix like a way to inject some glue in there?

    Appreciate any and all advice!

    Mike


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  2. #2

    Default Re: Clicking noise in Rod grip

    About the only way I know is to maybe drill the cork, inject glue in and fill the hole in the grip. Maybe someone else will have a better suggestion.
    The clicking is interesting. Im not sure why it would make a clicking noise. I hope its just loose epoxy youre hearing, and not some form of damage to the actual rod.
    If it doesnt bug you, you can fish it. There shouldnt be any worry of water getting stuck in there. If it did, theres nothing in there that would be damaged by it, its just the rod, cork grip and some epoxy. I doubt even in prestine, perfect condition is the grip to reel seat perfectly watertight on most rods anyways.

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    clinch river regular
    Posts
    552

    Default Re: Clicking noise in Rod grip

    Actually, the noise is something like a creaking step in a staircase of an old house.


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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    quiet corner, ct
    Posts
    8,607

    Default Re: Clicking noise in Rod grip

    I've dealt with that issue before. A couple of times actually.
    Both times the cork grip eventually broke.

    On the first rod, I replaced the grip and reel seat, which is not all that difficult as long as you're doing both at the same time

    With the second rod I just glued the pieces back together and then wrapped the grip with baseball bat tape.
    I liked it just fine that way and as it was a 10wt that regularly took a beating, it was probably an improvement
    But.... when the tape got too ratty, I pulled it off the find that you could barely see the repair.
    It's still like that today.
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements.” --- Horace Kephart

  5. Default Re: Clicking noise in Rod grip

    A little late to this, but, send it to Sage. They'll likely put a new grip on it for you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Albuquerque, NM
    Posts
    1,299

    Default Re: Clicking noise in Rod grip

    Not surprised to hear that this is a Sage. What they at times failed to do was completely fill the area inside the grip and reel seat with epoxy, which left voids. Those voids would flex as the rod is used, and start working their way loose, cracking, peeling, etc., leading to the noises you hear. By not completely filling the empty space inside that handle area, they could build rods faster and better--from outside appearances--because they did not squeeze epoxy out that could either foul the reel seat hardware, or need to be wiped up, and that leads to fewer rejections or do-overs in the assembly process. By the way, Sage may not be the only ones that do/did this, I just know that they had an issue with it.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Clicking noise in Rod grip

    I concur with El Jefe, this is an unfilled gap between blank and pre-formed cork grip ID. Commercial rod makers having been performing this short cut in rod finish for a long time and it represents significant time/money savings for them. On top of this common flaw, in the case of LL, yes I know its is loved by many, the reel seat hardware is undistinguished and the inserted up-locking hood is a cheap stamping. I would send it into Sage for repair though I have in the past when a cork grip split at a cork ring due to this issue did like Rip and forced some glue in there and taped it up.

    Since we are down here in Rod Building this is a lesson to be learned to all who custom build from blanks. Rat tail file out your own cork rings one at a time and glue and clamp them up on the blank yourself. In this crafting you not only get a solid build but get to custom sand the cork to a shape tailored to your own hand and aesthetic. Back in the day I had built my own cork clamp out of a couple blocks of wood and threaded rod with wing nuts.

    A solid, dense cork grip is an important tactile connection between the casters hand and the flexing fly rod.

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