A fly rod winding check is purely decorative. Having it or not doesn’t affect the performance of the fly rod.   So use this as an opportunity to customize your fly rod with a personal touch.  I speculate that winding checks came into being by closing the gap between hexagonal shape of bamboo fly rods and round holes in cork handles.

So what tools do you need:

Find a full listing of tools needed to build a fly rod HERE

  • Tools
  • Rod
  • Winding check
  • Hand Wrapping Jig
  • Thread
  • Epoxy and mixing tools.
  • Thread puller
  • Razor or scissors

Steps for Installing a Winding Check

  1. Slide the winding check onto the rod blank all the way up to the grip. Double check that the fit is flush and tight to the cork. I’m going to apply a black accent wrap that will extend a ¼” above the winding check. Mark this spot to start the wrap.
  2. I’m going to put a small black accent wrap onto the rod blank.  It should go well with the black hardware on the reel seat and the black reel I’m planning to use.  Wrap the black thread onto the fly rod blank terminating tight to the rod grip. Cut off the tag end of the wrap. You don’t have to worry too much about cutting the wrap tag super close. The tag end will be covered with the winding check
  3. Mix up epoxy a small batch of epoxy. Apply a small amount of epoxy right at the intersection of the wrap and fly rod handle. I daub epoxy on 4-5 spots around the joint. If you put too much epoxy on the joint, you’ll spend lots of time cleaning epoxy off the handle.
  4. Double check that everything is tight between the winding check and handle. With all the epoxy wiped clean, set the rod to the side so the epoxy can set. During the finishing phase you’ll apply a finish to these wraps and everything will be held tight forever.

Installing a winding check video

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