A renovation.

splinters

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 18, 2013
Messages
1,810
Location
Co. Armagh.
I was gifted an old Milwards Flycraft mkII by a friend. Rotten cork, rusted guides, loose reel seat and ferrules. The top and second sections were as crooked as a donkeys bent thing. I stripped the varnish taking care to preserve the ink and decal. The stripper and tiptop were ok with no damage to the inserts. The reelseat although heavily tarnished and jammed was salvageable. I straightened the two sections and reset and pinned the ferrules. I released then polished and reglued the seat after replacing the handle. I was unable to source the correct red and black twist thread so I got black and white and dyed it red with archival quality dye. The match is good although probably wouldn't have been originally with unfaded wraps. Still, I'm pleased with the result. A new set of intermediate guides and a varnish job and it's done.
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It'll never be anything but a wall hanger I suppose but I might fish it once or twice just to see. On the grass it's a great casting machine with a five or six line.

Simon.
 

glosterboy

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Joined
Apr 24, 2017
Messages
37
Location
Gloucester
Nice to see an old rod brought back to life, it looks great.
How do you go about straightening an old cane rod?
 

Lewis Chessman

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Mar 16, 2008
Messages
1,950
Location
Isle of Lewis
Well done, Simon, it looks handsome and no doubt was a labour of love. What length is it?
Sure, you've got to take it out a couple of times and try to Christen it - it's a 'born again rod' after all. :)

Sorry to read that you've not been great and delighted that your test came back -ve! Keep fighting the good fight,
James.
 

splinters

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 18, 2013
Messages
1,810
Location
Co. Armagh.
Nice to see an old rod brought back to life, it looks great.
How do you go about straightening an old cane rod?
I heat it up and bend it against the curve of the set. Lignin is the natural glue which holds bamboo and any woody material together. It is also a natural thermoplastic. If you heat it and bend it into a shape it will hold that shape when cooled. Think bentwood chairs and the oak ribs in wooden boats. It's the same principle. If you heat bamboo to around 100c the lignin softens allowing you to straighten the section. You can feel the bamboo give in your hand as it softens. It takes a little practice but isn't really difficult to master.

Thanks James, all good now although I'm on steroids for eight weeks to settle me down. The covid test was insisted on by the hospital as they were sure I'd been exposed in A&E. Seems I might make it to the end of the season yet. Linda's put the insurance policy back in the drawer anyway.
The rod's a 9' #6 although I rather like it with a #5.

Simon.
 

Lewis Chessman

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 16, 2008
Messages
1,950
Location
Isle of Lewis
If I may add, I gently took a heat gun to my late uncle's old bamboo rods last year. They'd developed quite a set and I hoped to rectify them. They're 'blue collar', unnamed rods but they served him well and it was he who introduced me to the fly on the Beauly back in '73. I loved him dearly and, though I won't fish them, I wanted to bring them back to the straight and narrow, as much in his memory as anything.
Anyway, a little flash of the gun and the cane became plastic, soft and malleable. It was actually far easier than I ever imagined to tempt them back to True so I'd encourage any member with a bent stick to give it a go. It was actually rather satisfying to feel the organic change in the rod and reshape it. Nae bo'rr a-tall, as they say.

Good man, Simon. I'm a big fan of steroids after several doses of cortisone in most of my hinges. They've done wonders and kept me working when I've been quite literally crippled. Truly, I hope they do the same for you.
P.S. My brother is finally going to fish that 'winey' rod in Northumbria this month. Here's hoping he gets to put a bend in it at last!
 
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