Selection, splitting and staggering.Step two
mm fly rods
Heat treatingStep five
Hand planing 1Step six
Hand planing 2
Final dimensionsStep eight
Attaching hardwareStep nine
|This part of my web site is designed for
the person who'd like to build a bamboo fly rod, but believes the
process is too complicated, or the tooling is to costly.
In reality it probably is cheaper to buy one of my rods (or rods from several other builders) than to tool up to build one rod. However, if you want more than one bamboo rod or if you want a custom rod that you built, then here's the way I do it.
Much of what I do is "on the cheap." By that I mean I build most special tool, myself. To me it's part of the fun of building in bamboo. Fish - tested bamboo fly rods are built following the steps that are used in traditional hexagonal fly rods. The processes on these pages are the way I do it and are only suggestions, not hard and fast rules. You'd never know it from listening to some builder, but there are very many different ways to achieve your goal. There are at least 5 ways to build a good binder and at least three ways to get a really keen edge on your plane.
TimeOne builder claims there are hundreds of steps in building a bamboo rod. I guess if you count every single act, you could get to a very big number, but I found I only have to do about 12 major steps to produce a happy customer. Of course, some are repeated six times for each strip. That's a total of 12 times for a 2p, one tip rod. But it's not really 12 steps. It's one step repeated 12 time. It does take some time to hand plane a bamboo fly rod. I figure I can produce a rod a month without breaking a sweat. This leaves time for fishing and my wife. The actual time involved is about 40 to 60 hours. There is some time that's "drying time." Those hours (or days) can't be rushed, so if you're in a hurry, buy don't build.
So here we go.When I receive an order, the first thing I do is check my inventory to make sure that I have the parts I need. I order the cork grip, ferrules and any other special hardware. Delivery time is usually under a week. That's plenty of time to get everything in house before I need it. I don't stock cork grips and ferrules. They're just to expensive. Grips go for around $30 each for good cork(which is hard to come by) Grips come in Cigar, full wells, half wells, western, and superfine. Ferrules cost at least $32 a set and come in sizes 9/64 up to 19/64. Keeping a complete range would be $320 plus shipping, at the very least. I do stock a few reel seats that are a standard item, along with the snake guides and thread, all of which doesn't cost me much. I always have a supply of bamboo on hand. I need to select sections that will be right for the ordered rod.