Classic Kingfisher Restoration and Rebuild.
One of the many Bamboo rods I own is a classic King Fisher 7'9" that I got from Rainbow. When I received the rod it was in extremely poor shape finish wise, grip wise, and guide wise. The finish was so old, and damaged that it looked like the rod was owned by a leper, bubbled, and pitted. The reel seat was an aluminum or tin down-locking ring assembly with "kingfisher" engraved into it. The grip was a cigar shaped hunk of wood that a very thin layer of cork was glued over and flaking off in chunks. The wooden holder was rotten, poorly made and the cover rotted. Restoring this beauty will take some, care and ingenuity.
The first Step was to remove all the guides that where left and there wrappings.
The next step was one heck of a challenge. The grip and reel seat needed to be removed. placing it in a baggy in boiling water removed the reel seat and the little bit of cork that was left. The wooden grip needed to be heated directly and still needed to be cut off in-order to remove it.
Over the course of three days with a heavy duty straight edge razor I scraped the rod down to bare bamboo and Flattened the Flats properly.
Next post Will be about the construction of the new reel seat and grip.
*The process of restoring classic Bamboo rods has taught me how honestly poorly constructed these rods where made in-order to produce enough to fill the demand and keep the price down. A lot of the materials where low grade.
Last edited by CharlaineC; 12-04-2013 at 12:16 AM.
The reel seat and grip for this beauty turned out to be a slight challenge. The original grip was a peace of turned soft-wood that was covered in thin cork. This grip served as an attachment point for 2" of the rod as well as the base for the reel seat sleeve. The new grip needed to be strong to handle the stress from fighting a strong fish as well as casting the rod, all while looking good. This was solved by deciding to turn a fully wooden polychromatic grip consisting of 1/2" maple and walnut peaces, with a 3/4" peace for the up-locking hood. (Just a note all of the wood used for the grip, came from Shop scrap.) To attach the reel seat I will need to turn a hardwood dowel to fit into the grip and the seat and meeting at the but of the rod. The seat wood is a beautiful hand turned maple with chrome up-locking hardware.
next post "Finding the taper!"
Last edited by CharlaineC; 03-09-2014 at 03:00 PM.
With the guides removed and the rod cleaned back to bear bamboo. It was time to find and check the taper. Stating at the tip-top and a 5" rule I marked the rod every 5". for a total of 17 stations from the tip to the butt. next with a caliper we check across the flat to find the size of all three then add the total an divide by three to find the taper.
17-.365 2" rounded to glue into grip
Last edited by CharlaineC; 12-04-2013 at 12:18 AM.
Today I glued up the Polychromatic grip with two part epoxy after trimming the points off the squares in preparation for turning on the lathe. The grip style I have chosen for the KingFisher is a classic Full Wells to compliment the polychromatic colours.
Last edited by CharlaineC; 12-27-2013 at 08:54 AM.
Well The last few days have been an interesting time of wrapping the guides onto the Kingfisher.
the guide placement had to be modified because of two reasons. one was to give more room for striping and the other was because of where the guides fall on the rod. Guide placement was done for a 7'9" rod. The thread I used is a dark tan or med brown silk.
Well this morning i'm not to happy with one of the guide wraps after the first coat of helmsman so I cut the tread off and will re-wrap the guide.