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Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Peter Chan (---.hsd1.mi.comcast.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 12:24PM

As my rod building skills have grown, I have glued-up and turned a few nice custom cork handles for fly rods I have built. What are the pros and cons of sealing cork? What product works best? Should it be done before handle components are assembled or can it be done after a rod is put together? Thanks for your feedback!

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Scott Armstrong (---.sw.res.rr.com)
Date: May 24, 2011 12:36PM

I've used U-40 Cork Seal and tried Thompsons Water Seal. The U-40 is far superior in my opinion because it keeps a more natural appearance over time. I apply after I've applied finish to my wraps since you can just wipe away the Cork Seal from the finish.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Michael Sledden (---.176.42.254.ptr.us.xo.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 12:47PM

I also like the U-40 cork seal. One thing, when you want to clean your grips, it makes it easier to do.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Bob Riggins (---.se.biz.rr.com)
Date: May 24, 2011 01:15PM

I use TruOil on grips where I have mixed burl and cork. It brings out the contrast in the materials. I don't use any seal on solid cork grips.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: gary Marquardt (141.211.151.---)
Date: May 24, 2011 01:22PM

I've always thought about using a water based varnish on some grips. the stuff looks just like cork seal but I'm sure it's different.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Greg Marshall (---.northropgrumman.com)
Date: May 24, 2011 01:51PM

Years ago I was going to buy some U40 cork seal from Clemens Custom Tackle. Rose, bless her heart, was the one that took my orders and she told me that she didn't like it as it usually ended up coming off like a peeling sunburn. She never lead me astray before so I didn't fool with. Instead, I bought some teak oil from Lowe's and put it on in three coats giving each coat about 5 minutes to soak in before wiping off the excess. Brings out the grain in cork beautifully. Now, I don't know if this seals anything, but it looks good and I really like the way it wears. Still gets dirty, but it gets that worn saddle look and feel. Kinda like an old catcher's mitt, I guess. If I want cork to look nice, I've gotta stay on top of it with cleanings and fillings and then again, it'll look too much like it came off the shelf at Acad#$% Sports. For me, I was just wanting something different.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 24, 2011 02:40PM

Greg,

It doesn't come off like that.

...........

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Todd Kreikamp (---.hsd1.va.comcast.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 03:55PM

The U40 has never been a problem for me. Don't put it on too thick and you should be fine.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: David Aiello (---.bstnma.fios.verizon.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 04:00PM

I use U40 cork sealer and never had problems. I just seen one of my rods I made 6 years ago and the cork I sealed with U$) looks great just like when I put it on. I had problems with U40 cork sealer.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Chuck Mills (---.gctel.stellarllc.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 05:50PM

Never had it peel. Works great! Customers ask for it on their rods.

Chuck

_________________________________________
"Angling is extremely time consuming.
That's sort of the whole point." - Thomas McGuane

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Col Chaseling (---.lnse4.cht.bigpond.net.au)
Date: May 24, 2011 06:34PM

Hi Peter,
Another fan of U-40 sealer. Stops cork getting that grey oxidised look if left in the natural state and aids cleaning. Cheap, effective, easy to use and a little bit goes a long way. Can be applied anytime after grips have been sanded. Haven't found any cons with this product.

ESFNEM Col
Port Kembla, NSW
Australia

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Michael Sledden (---.dsl.emhril.sbcglobal.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 06:40PM

Only time I have seen the U40 sealer peel is if you try to use more than 1 coat. It says to use only one coat, but putting a second coat on will peel away from the cork

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Dennis Danku (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 07:26PM

No cons for me. I think it gives cork character, makes it look richer.

Dennis J. Danku
(Sayreville,NJ)

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Bill Eshelman (---.neo.res.rr.com)
Date: May 24, 2011 07:45PM

I like Tru-oil, it darkens the cork just a little bit more than U-40, and I think it is a better seal. second choice would be U-40 Cork Seal.

Bill

Ohio Rod Builders

Canton, Ohio

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: roger wilson (---.hsd1.mn.comcast.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 08:32PM

From time to time to get the look that I want and to keep the dirt from fishermen's hands from penetrating into the cork, I will use common oil to coat the cork. Wipe it on until the cork won't hold any more oil. Let it sit for a couple of hours and then wipe off any excess oil.

Basically the oil will fill any of the pores that normally get filled from the dirt and grime that accumulates from repeated and long term use by a hard core fisherman.
Then, when it comes time to clean up the handle - just use simple liquid soap and a brush and the grime easily comes off of the oil that has been left on the cork.

After cleaning, and the cork has dried, simply apply another coat of oil, let it sit for a while to allow as much as will be absorbed and then wipe down the handle. You will be set to go again.

------------
This is the same principle that I use when going to do a job where I know that I am going to get my hands dirty or greasy. I will first take come clean oil, and then simply wipe my hands well with oil. Wipe the excess off with a paper towel and go do the job.
The dirt and grease will lay on top of the oil that is filling the pores in your hands.

When the job is done, use soap and water to wash your hands and your hands will be clean in a jiff. No need for heavy duty cleaning, since the dirt and grease is simply lying on top of the oil that is filling the pores in your hand.

Unconventional - you bet -
Effective - absolutely.


Take care
Roger

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: lorenzo tellez (---.hsd1.il.comcast.net)
Date: May 24, 2011 09:07PM

I also like to use the Cork Seal, i makes it a whole lot easier to clean, and like the looks, there is only one thing I don't like about it, when it gets wet, like after I handle a fish or it just gets wet for some reason, it gets really slippery, more then a cork handle without the seal, thats just an opinion of mine. Have a good one.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: rick sodke (109.253.41.---)
Date: May 25, 2011 12:21AM

I have used U-40 cork seal and Tru-oil and I like the look of both but I don't like the feel of Tru-Oil. I find it changes the texture of the cork while U-40 only changes the color. I don't see how it would be possible to have U-40 peel off.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Steven Garvey (---.hsd1.ma.comcast.net)
Date: May 25, 2011 09:21AM

I've never used any sealer on my cork, but am looking for something to seal in the filler.
Sounds like U40 deserves a try.
I did try using (1) coat of spar urethane but found it made the cork slippery.

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: Chuck Mills (---.grenergy.com)
Date: May 25, 2011 03:20PM

If I wipe my hands with oil before I start a dirty job I drop my tools. On a more serious note, I would be concerned about "common oil" de-laminating the glued up cork rings.

On the plus side, you could use oiled cork grips as a hook keeper.... no rusting. :|

_________________________________________
"Angling is extremely time consuming.
That's sort of the whole point." - Thomas McGuane

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Re: Pros & cons of using cork seal?
Posted by: roger wilson (---.hsd1.mn.comcast.net)
Date: May 26, 2011 10:15AM

Chuck,
Common oil does not do anything to cured epoxy. As long as you are using natural cork- no issue.

By the way, give the oil treatment a try sometime and see how it works for you. The oil does give a nice look to the cork and it DOES keep your hands able to be easily cleaned when working on a dirty greasy job.

I suspect that the results would surprise you if you tried it.

Take care
Roger

By the way, if you have any machine tools in your shop like a drill press lathe, band saw that for some reason is not going to be used for a while and if the tool has a cast iron work surface, the use of common oil on a paper towel - wiped onto the machined cast iron work surface keeps surface rust from forming.

Most of the work tools get used every day. But once in a while there is a "special tool" that only sees occasional use. If that is the case, apply a light film of common oil to keep the machined surface free of surface rust.

By the way, if you do have a machined cast iron surface with surface rust, a good way for easy removal is with the use of a steel wire cup brush on a high speed angle grinder and wd-40. Liberally spray the machined surface with wd-40. Then, go ahead and use the high speed angle grinder with the attached wire brush on the rusty machined cast iron surface. The wire brush will take care of the rust, the wd-40 will put the rust in suspension and allow it to be carried away by the brush.
Without using wd-40 or other oil or solvent for a carrier, the rust will tend to lodge on the surface, create dust and will take much longer to clean up. Then, a final spray down with wd-40 and a paper towel and the machined surface looks like new again.

Take care and enjoy the day.
Roger

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