Friday, May 16, 2008

Building a Fly Rod: Part 8 - Try it Out

The Rod


The finish is on the rod and dry. The fly rod is complete! Here is the final rod.



Complete Rod – Side View


Complete Rod – End View


Test it Out


After waiting a few days I finally had to test the action. As it was still a few days before I was going to make it to the lake I grabbed my reel and headed out back. Sure, I got strange looks from the neighbors, but it was worth it. The action on this rod is amazing! I should note that nothing was caught during this outing.



Trying out the Rod


It is finally time for the water test. I set out to the local lake where I knew I could get into some fish. Heading out in the pontoon I sent a few casts out to an area where I know the fish hold. In no time I had my first hit – a small Crappie. Not quite large enough to require an 8 weight, but fun nonetheless.




First Fish on the Rod


In 4 hours about 18 fish were caught, including this Large Mouth Bass.



Large Mouth Bass on the New Rod


What a way to break in the rod!


Conclusion


Building your own rod is extremely satisfying. If you can tie your own flies, you can build your own rod.


I have tried to show the steps involved. As with everything there are many other ways to build a rod. This is how I do it. You do not need many tools, and you do not need to spend a lot of money for an excellent rod. You can spend a lot of money on tools and supplies, but it is not required.


You do not need to worry about making mistakes. Until you put the finish on the rod you can always cut the wraps off and start over. You can dry-fit the handle and reel seat until you know it is what you want. I am confident that most folks can hand-craft a very acceptable rod on their first attempt if they just take their time and enjoy it. Being out on the water with a one-of-a-kind rod you built yourself is well worth the effort.

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