Butt Section Setup
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Now starts the real process of building the rod, at this point onwards we start working with a real living creation as the rod slowly transforms from a fibreglass stick, some guides, a butt section and some thread into a beautiful piece of game fishing equipment. OK enough fantasising lets get to BUSINESS.
The first step is to apply several strips of masking tape to the butt section end as can be seen. Now the idea here is that the removable butt section end has to fit snugly onto the blank, this is achieved by "building up the blank" with the masking tape, so that when the butt section is applied there is virtually no play. It has to be tight without getting stuck. Now if you have put too much tape on just take some off and vice versa. Leave a couple of millimetres in between the tape spools for the glue to grip.
The next step is to offer up the butt section, now when this is done and with a very sharp razor cut away the remaining masking tape to allow it to finish flush the the removable butt section. Do not GLUE ANYTHING at this stage.
Ok the next stage is to prepare the Cork Grip. I get my grips from Freeway Tackle here in Australia, for those who live in Australia you can ask to be supplied these pieces of equipment by Freeway Tackle suppliers, for those of you who live out side Australia you can deal with Freeway Tackle Suppliers directly, and with our dollar being so cheap compared to the US dollar you can get this stuff cheaper from here than in the USA.
Now back to the grip. First of all with your black fine point permanent marker draw a line along the length of the cork grip. Now cut the grip into 4 approximately equal distances, and mark them 1,2,3,4, in order. Now what we need to do is file away at the inside of the cork grip 1 at a time in order, so that the grip slides over the "handle" part of the rod, don't panic if you make the filed hole a little to big as you will need to build up the the blank accordingly with masking tape.
Now when building up this part of the blank, build up the blank in sections relating to the cut section of the grip that you are working with at the time. Remember don't panic if you filed out a little to much of the cork as we can build it up.. Build up as much as required with masking tape. The thinner end may require less tape, just see how you go with things, its not hard just take your time. Now once you are happy that the cork slides on as a tight fit you are ready to glue the handle and removable butt section
You will need to use 24 hour Araldite only - not the 5 minute stuff as its not strong enough.
Now apply enough glue to the first section with a brush, if the glue is a little to thick heat it up with a craft air blower or a low powered hair dryer on max heat setting. Now slide the first section of the cork on as can be seen in the above set of pictures, followed by more glue to the remaining sections of masking tape and slide each section number in order making sure that the black line that we drew earlier lines up correctly.
Clean up any excess glue with a clean non lint cloth and "shellite" petroleum spirit available from supermarkets or hardware stores.
Now comes another hard bit, well more fiddly than hard, BUT VERY IMPORTANT, so don't rush it.
We need to attach by glueing the removable butt section to the taped up butt of the Blank. The trick is that the curved but has to be lined up with the top of the back bone. Now just jumping back a little, remember earlier I got you to mark the backbone at the tip and bottom of the rod, well now we have to place a marker at the tip of the rod to line up the curved butt. the best way to do this is with the tip Alutecnos roller guide that we are going to use. Simply extend down the scored mark at the tip of the rod indicating the backbone, draw down say 3 inches or 75mm. Now place the roller guide onto the tip (may need to be built up with a small amount of masking tape) and line the guide up with the extended line. remember how the guide sits on the rod, go to the finished pages and have a look, or this can be seen on the action shots page. Anyway line the guide up with that marked line. Now attach the curved butt into the removable butt section. Now apply plenty of glue to the built up masking tape end of the blank and slide on the butt section. Now with your eye line up the butt with the end roller. To do this more accurately place a game reel on the butt and use that to line up the end roller which in turn is lined up with our original mark. Once this has been done remove the curved section of the butt form the part now attached to the blank and place the blank on you working rollers and leave it till the next day a good 12 hours away before you do anymore work on it.
Well done you have now completed the 1st real part of the process, only another 2 processes to go binding the guides and epoxy finishing the rod.
The next day with some light sandpaper (300) make sure that the cork handle is nice and smooth with no uneven bits or glue sticking out etc.