general notes

                     note: my bamboo rods are listed for typical usage rather than actions as are graphite rods…ie. medium , fast etc… email me and I can give better descriptions as to what style of angling I would pursue with any given rod or blank I make…dry fly, streamer rod etc..my rods are appreciated as art as much as valued angling tools…and many time I take orders for rods strictly for display or presentation.

 

note on classic and proprietary designs

 
           WM does not copy proprietary tapers or rod models of other or companies, current or past… I do not make “knock off’s” of classic collectables or existing rods… I do make replacement tips for older rods along with doing repairs on them…but not for the purpose of restorations specifically for re-sale as originals…with the rise of fakes and misrepresented products , I don’t want to be in any way associated with that. If I think someone is “fishing” with me to see if I will assist them is such activity I will inform them of my stand on such issues, and turn away any work.
 
weather, temperature & casting  guidlines
 
             I use these guideline’s for temperature and conditions my bamboo rods should be used in, they are  as follows…on rods that have my “guide finish” applied …those can be used in wet environment’s, but not continued submersions…40 degrees and under, or whenever ice can build up on snake guides etc…metal ferrules freeze way before bamboo does , and there can be a conflict of the two materials in very cold conditions…basic wipe down, and allowing rod to be completey dry before prolonged storage is standard…when in doubt pull that graphite out!          
 
                 On bamboo rods I make with my hand rubbed oil/spar poly finish, I recomend limiting complete sumbersion to a minimum…and suggest a wipe down periodically during the day after a “dunking”…and avoid fishing completely and casting in temperatures below 38-40 degrees…for the same reason as mentioned above, icing conditions can damage wraps on ferrules and guides…and should be avoided entirely.       
 
              ”Lawn Casting” or similar should, only be done in areas that are free of obstructions and on fly lines that only have a leader tied on…I have seen many folks, after hearing and even experiencing themselves the incredible casting ability of Bamboo Rod ” push” there limits to see if they can “hit the backing”…sometimes  too much line can get out  to be managed properly…and create a bit of a backlash… something every angler has experienced…but when you have 25+ yards of line out things can get tangled up, and if there is brush or debris causing the line to get snagged, adding all the line weight etc can cause undo stress on any rod , not just a bamboo one…I recommend strongly that any “casting for distance” be done over water… where you can really “go for it” and also protect that valuable line  from getting frayed or cut in the process…or worse yet stressing a ferrule connection etc…
 
              This tid-bit does not come from reading or second hand information, but after making some dumb mistakes myself over the years…I have always given casting lessons over water for a reason…my goal is to never have to use that “extra tip”…LOL…… I supply a detailed fact sheet on proper use and care of bamboo rods to all my customers… 
 
general care and maintenance
 
…here are a few suggestions on care and use…
 
…Bamboo rods…
 
      Bamboo fly rods are actually pretty darn tough, they can handle regular usage for years if not decades or longer…with some common sense care they will gives you years and years of pleasure astream. Here are some suggestions I have on doing that.
 
     Avoid prolonged complete submersion or your rod in water. I they get really wet, make sure they are thoroughly dry before placing them back in a tube for storage for any period of time other than a ride home from a day fishing.
 
   Drying them with a soft rag (I like old flannel shirts) before placing them in the sleeve is important. Then letting the sleeve hang in a spot out of direct heat or cold until they are completely dry is what I do before putting them in an aluminum tube or case for a while.
 
   Bamboo rods since they are made from a natural substance can occasionally take a “set” or twist , particularly in the tip sections…this can be easily corrected by just gently , but firmly grabbing the tip section, while firmly holding the male end ferrule, and slightly twisting in the opposite direction…usually one or two attempts gets it all perfect again.
 
  I  supply a small piece of “bees wax” to apply once or twice a year to the male ferrule section for a dry lubrication. If this builds up after a while a small piece of maroon “scotchbrite” can be twisted a bit to restore a milled finish…if you ever hear a “clicking sound” while casting, it means the ferrules are not secure, and can use a bit of bees wax and correct orientation of guides etc.
 
 If for whatever reason a ferrule section does not come apart with relative ease, do not force excessively, a match or lighter for a short period on the metal only can open it up…I like to take a small rag or piece of paper towel dampened on the wraps to protect them from the direct flame. This has only happened to me after storing a rod on the wall for display for several months. Something not really recommended, but I do it because I like to look at some of my rods when not in use.
 
 If a rod has been hung up on a wall for a while it may take a “belly set” , a slight curve to the inside of the rod. This can be easily rectified by just hanging the rod the opposite direction for a week or so to restore the original straightness. Bamboo rods generally all have a slight turn or curve to them, not affecting performance at all.
 
 Angling with a bamboo rod is really no different than with any other fine piece of gear…travel to spots it is always best to keep the rod disassembled until you get to the stream…most damages all occur in parking lots, doorways …of course there is always the hang up in trees…rather than “yanking” at the stuck bug, I recommend setting the rod out of harms way and snipping off the tippet or leader if you cant reach it. Real damage can occur if the fly line is caught up, making a lot stronger connection than a 4lb test tippet. flies are cheap…enough said…if you cant reach the leader…grab the fly line securely and pull it until you get your line un stuck…who has not seen a leader and fly atop wrapped up in overhanging branches…better that loss than a tip top, ferrule , or worse yet an upper tip section being damaged.
 
  If there are any problems or questions you run into please feel free to contact me and I will do my best to help figure out the situation…  
 
 
 
 
 
                      The nets I make are supposed to take more abuse and practical use than the commercially available units out there…but they are still made of wood…and wood is no match for truck tires, car doors, granite boulders or a 175 pound person falling on them…

 
 
    But if you are somewhat careful, and enjoy using gear that has an appeal of craftsmanship and natural materials…here are my suggestions…
 
     I always use a tether on my nets so I can let go of them in need be, and they wont float downstream. (this has happened more than once). I love using my nets for Catch & Release especially…its possible to not even handle the critter and damage their protective slime by just collapsing the net around the fish…and using forceps to remove a hook. If I do take a picture I always make sure I never handle fish with gloves or un wetted hands…no matter how cold it is outside…another good reason to use the “no hands ” method I described. Working as a guide in C&R areas I have seen countless fish that were seriously hurt only because of hands or gloves that removed that all important “slime” coating…in some cases actually seeing hand or finger prints on them.
 
     After doing that I,like to acclimate the fish in the current…open up the bag and let them dart off on their own totally un hurt.
 
      After a seasons use, the clear bags can get a slightly “dingy”color to them…even “gin clear” waters can have some dirt in them…and the more use, the more exposure…
 
     I will take the net with bag attached, place the bag area in a plastic shopping bag, and soak it with a generous dose of “Spray nine” …after soaking for about 10-15 minutes the natural clear color will come back almost completely.
 
    After a few seasons the bag may need replacing, contact me and I can send you one or give you a source to get a replacement unit. the line has enough of a remnant after the half hitch knot, if care is taken can be undone with a needle nose pliers…then re-wrap through every mesh in the net bag…making sure location and tightness are returned to original shape. If the braided nylon is damaged or badly worn( which is part of its protective purpose) a piece of 1-1.5mm line can be used to replace it.  I can get that for you too if you need some. or can’t find it.
 
   The top coat finish can also be rejuvenated with a “Krylon” or “Rustoleum” clear acrylic spray…a slight “scuff up” with “scotch brite” will make the surface ready for a few new coats of finish…making the net ready for another few years of use.
 
 
 
 
 
…enjoy your rod & net ……wm