At this point in the building process you can jump around a little. Steps 5, 6 and 7 can be done independent of one another. Once the guide positions are marked you can even work on different sections of the blank. The winding check is a decorative piece that transitions between the handle and rod wraps.
Fitting the winding check goes quickly; if you work quickly you can use the same batch of epoxy to attach the tip top. Read step 6 if this is what you’d like to do.
The Key is to make sure the winding check is properly sized to the fly rod blank. The wraps for the hook keeper are what really hold the winding check in place. I install it now with a little dab of epoxy to make sure it’s on before starting to wrap guides and such. I’ll be honest; my best friend’s fly rod doesn’t one because I noticed it was missing after I started wrapping the stripping guide. Don’t make the same mistake that I made!!
Items you’ll need for this step:
- Winding check. These are made of rubber and metal
- Sand paper 120 grit
- Paper towel and alcohol for clean up.
Summary of the Steps
- Test fit the winding check.
- Mix up some epoxy and glue into place.
- Clean up
Test fit the winding check
If you have a rubber winding check just slide it down into position and you’re done. Simple! If you have a metal winding check it needs to slide easily all the way to the handle. You don’t want it tight, because it might cause a stress fracture. Some component kits come with a couple different sizes to test fit. This is a sign of a good kit. If the check slides within ½ to 1 inch of the handle you can sand the inside of the check to get it to slide the rest of the way. I roll the sand paper up and rotate within the winding check until it is sized correctly. If the check stops over an inch away from the handle, you might want to get a larger size.
Mix up epoxy and gluing winding check into place
Like I said at the beginning only a dab of epoxy is required. The primary way the check is held is by the hook keeper wraps. Once the epoxy is applied slide the winding check in place. With the check in the home position set the handle section in an upright position and wait for the epoxy to set.
If you’re careful you won’t have to worry about cleaning up. If required wipe up any epoxy that might squeeze out.
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