3 wt question

With all of the knowledge on this board perhaps someone can provide some help/advice.

I notice that 3 wt blanks vary greatly in length from 7 ft to 11 ft. Most 5 wt blanks seem to be in the 9 ft range. I can understand the advantages of a shorter 7 ft length , but wondering why a 10 or 11 ft 3 wt rod?

My second question is re using epoxy finish on the wraps. I have fly rods that are 30 to 60 yrs old that did not have epoxy finish on the wraps and they are in great shape. Is it necessary (as I am told) to use an epoxy to protect the wrap, or are there other options?

Thanks for any help.


^ me and Bridger
You don't need the epoxy on your old wraps unless you are rebuilding the rod and want epoxy. If your wraps are good then just go fishing. If the wraps are dry you could just apply some spar urethane. Some people like epoxy, others use the spar. I am not fond of the blob effect one can get from epoxy. The spar is ez to use and it is what I use when I build a rod.

Long 3 wt rods - just a reason to have another rod and that is a good thing.

Thanks for your reply. I didn't word my question well. I wasn't thinking of using epoxy on my old rods but
rather on a new build. My point was that the old rods survived 60 years without epoxy. (Not sure what was used in those days. )
I am going to look into spar as I don't like the 'blob' effect either.
Appreciate your help.
Epoxy is supposed to be a new and improved way to do things. Is it? Not sure yet. I have done rods with many different finishes, epoxy is the only one I know of that can be done with one coat. all or most others will require at least three? I really do prefer the look of single component finishes, they lay flatter, don't get the football look, and are easier to clean up and refresh later. The old varnishes that were used have been replaced with spar urethane or similar type products that contain U.V. inhibitors. Check out PermaGloss or Bullards CPXtra if you can find some. If you choose epoxy try the Diamond II and use very thin coats, you will get a similar look to the single components.


Active Member
Epoxies when applied correctly should not give you blobs or football shaped wraps. If you are getting that you are using too much epoxy. Generally even epoxies should be done in two coats(sometimes more) to avoid those issues. PG and lumiseal do an excellent job of wrap finishing with lighter weight than epoxies even with the minimum of three coats. They also will not yellow over time like epoxies. That said they also have their drawbacks...fast setting time on brush, the stuff hardens in bottles if air is not replaced out with CO2, lids become permanent part of bottle,tendency to bubble a bit more if "brushed" on. Spar varnishes will work as long as they are taken care of. They will yellow and crack with time especially if left out in the sun. I use Lumiseal on bamboo repairs and rebuilds and any type of rod where the customer wants to get the lightest rod possible, otherwise I use epoxy.
I use Flex coat epoxy on all my rods. Only once it didn't totally set, some of the wraps are faintly tacky to the touch. Funny enough, it's a new 10' 3wt. If you put one light coat of epoxy just enough to cover the wraps, it turns out great! Don't tell anyone but I use it on my bamboo rebuilds.....Steve

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