Monday, April 13, 2015

I have made  few switch rods over the last years, but never a spey rod. This has to do with my personal orientation towards trout fishing, but also the lack of DH blanks in fiberglass on the market. Many of my Scandinavian friends have been fishing with double handers for decades, and ever since I received this blank, I have showed it to many of my salmon fishing friends. All of them are very impressed of the action and balance of this taper. Carl McNeil and the Epic team made a great job designing this rod. It has a lot of punch and a solid back bone, without compromising that lively glass feel with a deep flex all the way down between the hands. The balance is spot on, and when you wiggle it, it feels light in hand and very crisp. Length 11'6'' and line weight 320-540 grains gives us a very versatile spey rod in fiberglass. This rod was appointed with a NOS Struble reel seat and Snake Brand Originals, all wrapped with YLI Charcoal silk and finished with epoxy. I look forward to build more of this blank in the future. 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Here comes the last blank from the batch of 7'9'', 4/5wt Fine Tackle Progressives. This will serve as a demo rod for my UK vendor Alternative Tackle. This rod was appointed with a length-wise stacked bamboo reel seat and NS hardware, together with a 6.5'' straight Ritz grip and chrome guides under YLI silk. The reel seat is both up- and down locking. Why chose, when you can have both? 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

I have two blanks left from the old Fine Tackle Progressive project. This is the first of them, and the last one is under completion. This build was appointed with a home turned wooden reel seat in myrtle wood. I received this piece of wood from a friend of mine who is a friend of Montana rod builder Marty Karstetter. I couldn't think of a more flattering provenience for a piece of wood, and it really gives a nice flavor to this rod. NS hardware and a straight Ritz grip, with stripping guide and snakes guides in chrome.  This rod was made on customers order. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

It's been a while since I completed a James Green blank. This is one of the last semi-parabolic blanks left from our cooperation a few years ago. I still have one left that I will keep for my personal use. This is a very nice taper, I love it even more today than back when we designed it. Light weight, semi-parabolic taper, very crisp and responsive. It was appointed with my own reel seat in blued brass and cross-cut Bocote. Straight Ritz grip with a flare at the front, Snake Brand Originals in dark nickel wrapped with Gossamer silk. This rod was sold before completion. 

This Epic 480 was made on order to a Swedish customer. The appointments are very contemporary, with a very comfortable Snub Nose grip and a downlocking reel seat from Joel Lemke. The insert was turned by me, and is made from Wenge wood, which is a very hard and has a deep and beautiful color. All guides on this rod were made by Alps, and they have the best coating on the market. Extremely durable, which is rare when it comes to black hardware. Wrapped in grey Gossamer silk, with black tipping.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Here comes another Epic 480 in white. It's appointed with my new up/downlocking reel seat. All hardware in blued brass and brown rubber. Straight Ritz grip in flor grade Portugese cork. Arched Mildrum style stripping guide and Snake Brand Originals. Stripping guide has a signature wrapping in Gossamer Pearsall Java, the rest in white silk. This rod is for sale through Alternative Tackle, UK. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

This is a new Japanese blank, Alchemy Dharma 7'5'', 4/5wt that was designed by Mr Akihiko Kawasaki on Alchemy Tackle in Japan. I'm very pleased about the performance of this rod. Many people refer to glass rods as "close to bamboo", but I would say that is quite unusual. Modern glass is light and crisp, and not very like bamboo at all. At least when it comes to traditional progressive tapers. But this taper is parabolic, which means it has a flat mid section and a soft butt. This taper geometry gives the rod a very special performance. The soft butt section acts like a hinge in the blank, helping it to load very deeply. This makes the rod an excellent distance caster, but it's also great for casting situations where you need to unload the line in narrow spots, for example roll casting in between trees. The swing weight is relatively high on this blank, which makes the rod less line weight sensitive and more open to different line weights. The mass distribution makes the rod load nicely by using only its own mass, which allows the rod to load with a lighter line than it's designed for. There is a big gap in the market for parabolic rods, and I will get back to this blank in future builds. 

This build was appointed Japanese style with nickel silver and bamboo details, featuring my new down/uplocking reel seat. It will be sent to a fellow rod builder in the US who is currently making a rod for me on the same blank. I can't wait...