I just finished building my first rod. Short of a couple issues, I think it went well. All but one of the guides came out well. The one problem I had was using the finish epoxy over the area between the hook keeper and and intermediate wrap where I had written on the blank. But when I put the finish on the blank to cover the writing when it dried it is a little wavy. I read that was usually caused by to much epoxy, but I was really careful to not get a lot on the blank. I sanded the first coat with 1500 wet dry to smooth a little and put on a second coat. I put on a very thin coat and made sure it was as even as possible, but still have a few uneven spots. Towards the wraps and in about an inch in it is smooth. So wondering if the epoxy has a hard time adhering to the bare blank? Should I scuff the blank with 0000 steel wool in the future? I used flex coat and it was on a rod dryer when applying and to dry. Any tricks to line up the guides? That seemed to be one of the hardest things, and keeping them straight once they were lined up.