I recently was fortunate enough to get my hands on a Fred Paddock two piece blank. This is one of his “lemon drop” series and weighs in as a 7’6″ 3/4wt. I had hoped to have a new build for this late April-early May’s hatches here in Pennsylvania but the weather has been so temperate that most bugs have been emerging about 3 weeks early. As I type this there are still sulphurs, cahills, and march browns to look forward to and this 3/4 weight (Fred has stated that he prefers it with a WF4F) should be just right.
The blank arrived quickly and I ordered components as soon as I could. Coincidentally, shortly after I received this rod, Fred made the announcement on www.fiberglassflyrodders.com that he was getting out of the fly rod making business. Given this news I would like to make sure that I do this build justice. I’m not a pro builder, I wouldn’t even consider myself a hobby builder. The few rods that I’ve built have been very utilitarian and out of financial neccessity so we’ll see how this goes.
One thing that I’d like to add about components…if you plan on doing translucent wraps on your guides, the shape of the feet will matter as you’ll be able to see through the silk. I ordered Hopkins and Holloway snake guides (hey they’re good enough for Sage) and I am somewhat dissapointed with the guide feet. I’m sure the guides themselves are of great quality and if I was using color preserver it wouldn’t matter but I’m not. I worked on these all afternoon with mill file and sand paper and all I have is torn up hands. I’m going to try and borrow a Dremel this week and fix them to my liking. If that doesn’t work I’ll be ordering some Snake Brand guides.
I’m still waiting on my reel seat and spacer so in the interim I’ve mounted the tip top, located the spine/spline, marked the guide spacing on the blank, and rough fitted the cigar grip and nickel silver winding check. So far so good. More to come later…