Help on a 'rare' rod?
In by email:
Hello, My name is Benjamin Arnold, and I have a question in regards to a Bamboo fly rod that I am beginning a restoration project on. To begin with, let me first say, this is by far, above and beyond the oddest bamboo fly rod I have ever seen, and or worked on. What I am trying to find out now, is if I can get help from you as to the manufacturer and any possible value from what I can describe below. I can tell just from the condition that this rod is currently in a few things. First, a half hearted attempt has been previously made to restore this rod, as on one section it can plainly be seen that some wraps were not rewrapped, and it is obvious by fade in the bamboo and varnish that at one time, a manufacturer's sticker used to be present, but is/are no longer present.
Let me describe this rod to the best of my ability, hopefully you can provide me with some answers. First I will describe the bamboo, and right off the bat, you will see that something is bizaar. There are 5 different Bamboo pieces. I am certain that all 5 pieces go together just from the make and design of the ferrules. Of the 5 pieces, three are Tips, and two are mid-sections. Try and follow me here, as this part can be a bit difficult to explain. Two of the tips, one short, and one long, only attach to one of the mid-sections, the one that I call "long-mid". The remaining tip section, which is rather long, about 30" or so, only connects to the remaining mid-section (a two piece rod), which I call "short-fat" because it is only 22" long, and is rather fat. Here is the funny part, the "long-mid" section can if I so desire connect to the "short-fat" mid section and create a three piece rod, with two tips.
Before I describe anymore now, I must next explain the cork hanlde, which is unlike anything I have ever seen. The cork handle is just that, a cork handle, there is no bamboo sections directly attached to it, is just a cork handle, but built into the handle are two female ferrules on either end, and a hook keeper to go with each. Each Female ferrule is of a different size. On the cork handle are two sliding mechanism's, which I presume are for the reel, though their is no traditional reel seat. Both sliding mechanism's are free to move from one end of the cork to the other.
Now, getting back to the bamboo, and combining in the cork, things again get very strange. The two piece rod I described above, with the "short-fat" mid section only connects into the larger of the two female ferrules of the cork handle. With this in mind, you can see that this rod has here, using the larger female ferrule to be three different rods.
1. cork - "short-fat" mid section - long tip 30"
2. cork - "short-fat" mid section - "long-mid" mid section - short tip
3. cork - "short-fat" mid section - "long-mid" mid section - Long tip
Now, again getting back to the bamboo and the cork, using the narrow female ferrule, I can also make 2 different rods.
1. cork - "long-mid" mid section - Short tip
2. cork - "long-mid" mid section - long tip
So, as you can see, I have the ability with these 6 pieces, the five bamboo, and the cork section, to make five different rods. I hope that what I have been able to describe can give you enough information to identify this rod, and provide me with some insight as to the age, manufactuer, and maybe even value, if it were mint. Again, this is the oddest rod I have ever seen.
Thank you for your time, and any information you can provide me would be a great help.
Benjamin N. Arnold