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grip and reel seat


tjtroester
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I wanted to share with you all pictures of something i just tried with a grip and reel seat. The rod was donated to a fund raiser. I was pleased with the results but it did involve a little head scratching to turn out what was in my minds eye. LOL Timothy Troester

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What material did you use? Over the years I have examined fly rods with wood grips. They were beautiful works of art featuring woods like cherry, maple and walnut. They seemed heavy compared to traditional cork and the gloss finishes seemed like they would get slick when wet. So I made no purchases. Cork and EVA seem better to me. I used to build rods and currently am considering putting grips on some economy Tenkara Rods. I considered cork; but to build a 10" grip, the rings alone would cost more than the rods. My dirty secret is that I like EVA. In your pursuit of your art, have you come across EVA or Korkalon grips that might work on a fly/tenkara rod? Thanks.

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What material did you use? Over the years I have examined fly rods with wood grips. They were beautiful works of art featuring woods like cherry, maple and walnut. They seemed heavy compared to traditional cork and the gloss finishes seemed like they would get slick when wet. So I made no purchases. Cork and EVA seem better to me. I used to build rods and currently am considering putting grips on some economy Tenkara Rods. I considered cork; but to build a 10" grip, the rings alone would cost more than the rods. My dirty secret is that I like EVA. In your pursuit of your art, have you come across EVA or Korkalon grips that might work on a fly/tenkara rod? Thanks.

 

the wood was persimmon. as it turned out it is a difficult material to turn, but it had a beautiful aroma. you pin pointed the problem with cork, the good cork, it is pricey. I have made grips from various materials, diferent barks as well as cork: pine, oak, walnut. sme of them had a finish and some were bare. truthfully, I think the cork get slicker with a dunking. I think the trick to wood grips is to get the right shape. the suprising advantage to a wood grip is increased sensitivity. if you are a nympher, you can fell ever tic tic tic as it strikes the rocks. I haven't found wood to be too heavy or notable weight-wise, in the hand. but then, I am not putting 10" grips out of stabilized wood. I've put them on smaller rods. I have never run across a second source for eva or korkalan. if I do I will share that information. timothy

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TJ That is a good point about the feel of wooden grips. Supposedly the best Tenkara rods have wooden handles custom made by the owner. How much would a suitable lathe cost? Or should I just buy premium cork rings?

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TJ That is a good point about the feel of wooden grips. Supposedly the best Tenkara rods have wooden handles custom made by the owner. How much would a suitable lathe cost? Or should I just buy premium cork rings?

 

mike, a medium sized wood lathe from grizzle or harbor freight is enough for grips. you also need to be able to hold the mandrel you turn the grip on or if you turn the grip on the rod, a hole thru the head stock large enough to fit the rod thru. for a long time I would lay my drill press on it's side in a cradle and turned the cork rings on the rod using a steady rest to hold the long end of the rod. I have seen cork grips shaped with a hand drill. another set of hands helps. you do not have to use flora grade cork. I have seen grips formed from wine corks, cork rings cut from champagne corks or cork stoppers bought at the hardware store. cork is natures best dampening material. it does deaden the feel. I have fished with a lot of wood grips as have others. functionally, I have not experienced any of the possible disadvantages I had anticipated prior to having used wood for grips. timothy

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Let's keep it here then.

 

You may be able to tell that I am looking for the perfect rod grip. It has these features. Comfort, sensitivity, and economy. The first rod I built had a cork Tennessee grip. I have used that simple round shape ever since. Comfort achieved. Cork rings from Herter's were cheap too. As you mentioned, cork falls down on sensitivity. So this Graphite Tennessee grip, highly touted for sensitivity, has cork bushings that defeat the purpose.

023010300007.jpg

On Mud Hole I found a number of offering, but the EVA foam caps and trim pieces they. offer have the same weakness as cork bushings. Bushings of a more rigid material are needed. My search continued but ended in a dead end.I found a Tennessee Sensor grip with graphite bushings. The site that it is on seems to be abandoned and functions poorly. I cannot get ordering or pricing information.

 

So there is where I stand. do you have any thoughts.

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Let's keep it here then.

 

You may be able to tell that I am looking for the perfect rod grip. It has these features. Comfort, sensitivity, and economy. The first rod I built had a cork Tennessee grip. I have used that simple round shape ever since. Comfort achieved. Cork rings from Herter's were cheap too. As you mentioned, cork falls down on sensitivity. So this Graphite Tennessee grip, highly touted for sensitivity, has cork bushings that defeat the purpose.

023010300007.jpg

On Mud Hole I found a number of offering, but the EVA foam caps and trim pieces they. offer have the same weakness as cork bushings. Bushings of a more rigid material are needed. My search continued but ended in a dead end.I found a Tennessee Sensor grip with graphite bushings. The site that it is on seems to be abandoned and functions poorly. I cannot get ordering or pricing information.

 

So there is where I stand. do you have any thoughts.

 

...and, it must be something you can purchase and use or make with the tools you have. of course, anything with a cork or eva bushing would have the same sensitivity as cork. the best grip I ever used was turned from wood thread spools and was wrapped rattan style with leather thongs thong were impregnated with wax. before you think that sounds weird, it was a colonial reproduction. you can not buy a decent wood grip because they're just made from lumber and can be heavy. maybe, you could use the eva you like but cut out a section. you could glue a wood ring or suction to it about the length of a thread spool then push the halved eva grip on the the rod from either side and affix them as usual. you would have comfort, yet, direct connection to the rod vibrations them selves. you can drill thru a wood spool without the bit getting off track, it will track the hole, and you can easily turn the spool to size with a hand drill. tjt

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I like that though wood spools are getting hard to find too. How about this? Two 1/4" EVA or foam bushings 1/4" apart. Fill the gap with 2 part epoxy paste. The paste will cure to a solid ring bushing. Would two or three of these inside a 10-12" tubular grip do the job?

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try an antique store for a spool. the other, you would just have to try it. I have seen some ridged bushing before that sand down easily. i's sure you have seen those. with the store shelf 2 part epoxy it depends how much gap there is between the grip and the rod. epoxy becomes weaker the bigger the gap.

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I found lots of wooden spools for craft projects on Amazon. When the time comes, I will use PC 7 2 part paste to be the sandwich rings when the time comes. Thanks for all the tips.

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