Strip and refinish or not?

et

Member
I’m working on a H-I Tonka Queen rod that I picked up at a garage sale. How do I determine if I need to strip and refinish it, or if it’s OK as is, possibly adding another finish coat of varnish? The varnish on the rod looks pretty good, except for an area that's dark. Most of the guides are in poor shape, so I was going to replace all of them. The two top sections have issues, so I was going to scarf the good tip from the one with damage further down to the other top section that has a wrapped tip.
 

PhilR

Active Member
I think that it would be easier to do all that on a bare rod, and then finish it after. Steve turned me on to tru oil instead of varnish for the blank, but I still use varnish over silk wraps.

Sounds like a fun project. Keep us posted.
 

Steve Kokita

FISHON206
Can you post some pictures of the rod? If it’s fishable with minimal repairs, I’d buff it, touch up the areas that need varnish and replace the bad guides. Most of these vintage rods lacked enough guides, so I add some to make it a better casting stick.
 

et

Member
Here's some pics. The rod's 7' 7"-ish with 7 snake guides, spaced around 7" apart. Should I add one more?

Showing some of the issues on the top sections - wrap at the tip and gouge between the two top guides. I was going to scarf the good tip from the top section with the gouge in place of the wrap repaired tip. Do you think it's worth doing this, or should I just leave it as is?
20191129_104713.jpg


Splitting/delamination by the ferrule on the top section with the gouge
20191129_105043.jpg


Some of the darkening of the finish
20191129_104904.jpg
 

et

Member
Not yet ... house issues, out of town visitors, and Christmas have got in the way. Any wisdom or tips on scarfing above and beyond what I've found on-line? (scarfing block, tightbond II, etc)
 

Steve Kokita

FISHON206
I use a vintage bench belt sander and finish with files. For tip sections I just use files, Mark about 1.5” on each section and do a long reverse angle on each. Do the scarf joint under a snake guide. So far I don’t think it matters which angle is on top. I’ve been using Titebond III with decent results.

1CBBAE2C-6465-45D4-A0B6-EE9D1F76D173.jpeg
 

Tom Bowden

Active Member
For taped splice joints and permanent scarfs, I use a 20:1 splice. For example, If the rod diameter on the flats is .200", the joints should be .200 x 20 = 4" long. This length provides adequate support and reduces stress on the glue line. I have a crude wooden jig that I built to plane (or sand) the scarfs at 20:1. You could also use a file or belt sander and do it "by eye."

Like Steve, I try to put permanent scarfs under a snake guide so the wraps support the glue joint. I take it a step further and do "invisible wraps" with 6/0 white silk at the end of the joints.

This really isn't very hard. If your splices are slightly too thick or thin, it won't effect the action of the rod.

Hope the helps
 

Rob Allen

Active Member
I think that it would be easier to do all that on a bare rod, and then finish it after. Steve turned me on to tru oil instead of varnish for the blank, but I still use varnish over silk wraps.

Sounds like a fun project. Keep us posted.

Did the oil affect the coating for the guide wraps or did you use the tru oil after you wrapped and coated the guides?
 

Buzzy

Active Member
Did the oil affect the coating for the guide wraps or did you use the tru oil after you wrapped and coated the guides?
Hi, Rob -
At @Steve Kokita's advice, and after stripping all finish off the bamboo and preparing it for the final work, I rubbed seven coats of Tru Oil onto the blank. This was a four day process to let the product cure between coats. After the seventh coat, I lightly buffed the rod with 0000 steelwool and then wrapped the guides on and finished up with the epoxy on the wraps. Epoxy bond to Tru Oil - no issue.
Pat
 

Steve Kokita

FISHON206
Hi, Rob -
At @Steve Kokita's advice, and after stripping all finish off the bamboo and preparing it for the final work, I rubbed seven coats of Tru Oil onto the blank. Epoxy bond to Tru Oil - no issue.
Pat
I have to give credit to @Tom Bowden, many years ago Tom turned me on to Tru Oil and haven’t used any other finish on my bamboo. The finish is the easiest and holds up beautifully! Just rub a coat of gun stock wax periodically.
 

et

Member
If I use a Tru Oil finish on the rod, is it better to use spar varnish or epoxy for the wraps ... or is it personal preference??
 

Steve Kokita

FISHON206
I think either would work, I’ve always used Flex Coat or Threadmaster epoxy...one coat and done. It takes longer to cure, especially in colder weather. Varnish most likely will dry quicker, but will need additional coats for the same coverage. Just my .02
 
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