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October 2004
Issue 17

Power Fibers is published in Adobe Acrobat format. To view the magazine, you must download the Adobe Acrobat Reader. You can get it here.

To get this issue, order the 2004 Issue CD on the “Backissue CDs” page.

The October, 2004 issue of Power Fibers contains:

Rodmaker Profile: Wayne Maca

Revolutionary ideas and processes only come around once in a “blue moon”. On one hand we can count the true pioneers in the craft of rod making. Rod makers with names like Leonard, Lew Stoner, Powell, and Louis Feierabend. These trailblazers left us a legacy of things like production processes, hollow fluting, scalloping, and Super Z Ferrules.

Now, there is an emerging name and a force in bamboo rod making who, with his revolutionary ideas and construction processes....

Classic Taper: FE Thomas Special, 4wt

F.E. Thomas rods have always interested me. My Grandfather always wanted one and Sid Gordon , the author of How to Fish from Top to Bottom (Stackpole Books, 1955), one of my fishing heroes, fished Thomas Rods. Sid’s book is a classic and is as valid as any written today; but that’s another story.

I discovered the Rod which is the subject of this article in an online auction..


Hollow Building Rods, Part I 

I have always been fascinated by the ingenuity of America’s Western rodmakers. California rodmakers Lew Stoner (co-founder of R.L. Winston Rod Company) and E.C. Powell created some of the most forward thinking rods of the classic era. In studying both men, it is easy to see that their rods were influenced by the casting clubs as well as by the steelhead and trout that raced up California’s tributaries.

Their rods had many heavy demands placed on them. As casting tools they needed to be powerful and accurate, yet light enough to meet tournament-casting requirements. As fishing tools they needed to be...

Lathe Rod Support

When I set out to build a support, I made the typical wooden support with a cork insert. It worked, but I wanted to support the rod section in two places, and I really did not want to store another large, clumsy fixture....

The Fly Rod Grip, Part II 

Few purchasers of fly rods today have an opportunity to select the grip they want for their fly rod. Only those placing a special order with a maker have such a choice. Even then, the selection of the grip design is more than likely based on an initial impression of "what looks good" or "what feels good...

Making Planing Forms 

Making metal forms can be a real hassle but maybe this article will help take some of the hassle out of it. Hope it does. My approach is just a bit different.

Lets look at what you need to get started:

For removing metal, my # 1 tool is the Vixen file....


Fishin’ Cane 

The Yellowstone, Lamar, and Boulder Rivers were blown out due to a mudslide and spotty weather, but I did find a great lake that contained Kamloop trout, steelhead hybrids crossed with brook trout and rainbows. I caught the fish pictured on the Bamboo rod that I made and that many of you cast at Grayrock this year. It was Dennis Higham's Mystery...


2004 Metolius Bamboo Rod Fair

I am writing that at 2:30 a.m., as my brother sleeps in the spare bedroom, and I contemplate the road trip ahead. Some people might call me nuts to be up at this hour, my wife for one, but who ever said that fly fishermen fall into the sane category? Our destination is Camp Sherman, OR for some fishing and for the Metolius Bamboo Rod Fair. I’m going because I have rods to be picked up from both A.J. Thramer and Steve Blake and because I love fly fishing...


Classic Flies, Partridge & Orange

As I stepped into the Pere Marquette River in Michigan I reflected back to a day in the past when I had stepped into the same river one bend up from this spot. On that day I was trying to figure out what fly to put on when I noticed a gentleman coming downstream fishing what appeared to be wet flies. What made me think that this is what he must be doing, was the way he cast and the way he would swing the flies through the runs and riffles...



We all like our tools, toys, and amusements. Rodmakers are suckers for new tools and toys. Rodmakers are also easily amused by waving a simple stick (a.k.a. Cane Rod) in the middle of a stream. Yet in the simplicity of that stick lays untold truths. It is that search of those truths that begins a journey that many rodmakers never finish. That truth is the taper. Tapers! What makes a good taper? Analyzing a taper! How to make a better taper? Tweak the taper! Converting a beloved taper yet retaining its beauty. Issues that haunt rodmakers.

Consider Garrison working out his stress curves in a hospital bed using only his slide rule (surely you remember them – if not just substitute a handy dandy scientific calculator) and then plotting the resultant stress curve...


Colorado Rodmakers Reunion 

I was fortunate this summer to be able to attend the 2004 Colorado Rodmakers Reunion (CRR). Those who know Colorado know what a fantastic place it is for flyfishing. My home waters offer little in the way of good dry fly fishing but Colorado has great hatches especially in the summer so I love to get to Colorado when I get the chance. This article is intended to inspire you to get out to a gathering, but especially the CRR since you can talk rodmaking with some great builders who love fishing the rivers that are just made for flyfishing and you can experience great fly-fishing all in one trip...


Bamboo, brookies and an Antique Stream

I’d like to think I own the river.

It begins as a dozen spring seeps that trickle from ledges far up the highest slopes of the Catskills.

The seeps weave together into a stream that thread through deep woods and plunges over moss-backed boulders...

Todd Talsma, Editor - 8412 N Maple Ct  Zeeland  MI 49464  (616) 970-1601
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