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Balancing a rod
Posted by: Robert Flowers (---.res6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 13, 2022 11:09AM

This topic was addressed previously. I just wanted to add that weight can be added at the butt section by placing strips of thin tungsten sheets under the reel seat. Lead sheets are easier to find. However, tungsten is heavier, and non-toxic. The sheets can be cut with scissors to make strips of whatever sise you need, and are adhesive backed. Just another option.

Tight Lies and frisky fish

RJF



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/13/2022 11:18AM by Tom Kirkman.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Kent Griffith (---)
Date: September 13, 2022 11:18AM

I re-read your clarification of adhesive backed. And if used after construction and would be visible or felt I would avoid in that location. Maybe remove butt cap and place inside blank?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/13/2022 11:29AM by Kent Griffith.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (185.202.220.---)
Date: September 13, 2022 11:28AM

I don't think iadding weight s necessary - but inserting and epoxying it into blanks butt is best.
Herb

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.inf6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 13, 2022 12:35PM

Perhaps if, instead of cementing a butt-cap into the rod handle, rod makers could use a screw-in butt cap - leaving access to the hollow rod butt. That would allow rod builders to easily increase or decrease the weight of the rod butt with lead weights until the rod balanced nicely, add more weight if using heavier plugs, heavier lures, or heavier sinkers - or use helium if the rod is too butt-heavy.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: September 13, 2022 12:42PM

Phil Ewanicki Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Perhaps if, instead of cementing a butt-cap into
> the rod handle, rod makers could use a screw-in
> butt cap - leaving access to the hollow rod butt.
> That would allow rod builders to easily increase
> or decrease the weight of the rod butt with lead
> weights until the rod balanced nicely, add more
> weight if using heavier plugs, heavier lures, or
> heavier sinkers - or use helium if the rod is too
> butt-heavy.


RodMaker has done several articles on this type of adjustable weight butt cap. The only reason I can think you'd ever adjust it once dialed in, would be if you changed reels.

Rod Balancing is a debatable topic. Personally I just build as light as I can and let the balance fall where it may. Obviously in some techniques you may wish to have a tip-up or tip-down balance. Rich Forhan has written extensively on this.

..............

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Michael Danek (---.alma.mi.frontiernet.net)
Date: September 13, 2022 05:24PM

Most rods weigh 4 oz or so and are tip heavy. Reels weigh usually 7-9 oz. Putting weight directly under/over the heaviest contributor to balance is not, IMHO, the right place to put it. If one wants to offset tip-heavy, put it on the butt farthest back as you can.

For my kind of fishing, I do as Tom does. Build light as you want/can afford, and go fishing.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.inf6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 13, 2022 07:13PM

Instead of adding weight to the rod why not add weight to the caster's forearm? #6 lead shot in a canvas bag attached to the caster's forearm with velcro straps will have the same result as lead-filled rod grips, and allow the caster to quickly and easily add (or subtract) weight to and from his arm.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Lynn Behler (---.44.66.72.res-cmts.leh.ptd.net)
Date: September 13, 2022 07:35PM

I think Robert was referring to fly rods, I could be wrong.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Michael Danek (---.alma.mi.frontiernet.net)
Date: September 14, 2022 07:22AM

Ah. Makes sense, Lynn.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: roger wilson (---)
Date: September 14, 2022 07:56AM

Lets stop for a moment and think about a teeter totter.

If one is to follow the advice (no matter how well intentioned) of placing weight in the reel seat - or the point of fulcrum in a fishing rod, this is equivalent to putting bags of cement on the frame that supports the teeter totter at its balance point. All that this weight is going to do is to make the overall mass and weight of the teeter totter heavier.

The same is true of attempting to balance a rod by placing weight on the reel seat. i.e. the rod becomes heavier without achieving balance.

----------------------
With respect to putting weight up the inside of the rod blank.
Not such a good idea.
In theory, it could be fine, if the weight only goes up the rod blank 1/2 inch or so -- with a weight well removed from the reel seat and as far back as possible on the rod, the length of the balance arm is increased and the efficiency of any added weight is increased.
Years ago, I tried doing this on a commercial - very tip heavy rod. I finally achieve balance by adding weight all of the way from the butt of the rod, all of the way up to the reel seat. But, a very very severe penalty in added rod weight. Bad plan, and never did it again.

If any weight is added, a person wants the weight added to the longest possible balance arm - like the case with a teeter totter.

Although, I no longer add any weight to a rod blank ever - I used to balance a rod by either adding a weighted butt cap to the rod, or I would use lead tape - as golfers and tennis players use to balance clubs and rackets.

When using a cork grip, I would cut a tenon into the rear grip at the very extreme end of the rod, right on down to the rod blank. Depending on how much lead tape is needed to balance the rod, I would cut the cork 1/4,1/2, or 3/4 inch wide. Then, I would simply wind the lead tape onto the rod blank and or remaining grip material to add weight to the extreme butt end of the rod blank. The typical thickness of the rod butt that I would place over the lead would be 1/16th of an inch. This is in the form of a rubber cup, that is milled to size and fits perfectly on the butt of the rod to match the rest of the rod and grip.

However, weight, is weight, is weight.

As a result - I have gone back to moving the reel seat up the rod to the point where the rod, when completely built and with the expected reel seat in place along with finished guides, wraps and other finishing items to be perfectly balanced with the rod sitting level when nested in an open grip. On a longer rod, that means a longer grip - but for myself, that is just fine.

I retain all of my casting distance that I would have with a shorter grip, since I only cast with two hands. I always have one hand curled right around the butt cap and the other hand gripping the normal placement on or around the reel. As a result, the reel seat position makes no difference to me with respect to casting distance.

Physics 101 -
Balance is most easily achieve by using minimum weight with the longest fulcrum distance or the longest balancing arm.

Do NOT put weight under or in the reel seat.
Do NOT put weight inside a rod blank.

Do put weight on the outside of the rod blank at the extreme butt of the rod in the form of a weighted butt cap, or in the form of lead tape that is wrapped around the butt most position of 1/2 to 3/4 inch of rod blank.

Or, to balance the rod, simply move the reel seat up as far as needed to achieve the desired balance.
Use two hands when casting and you will not have any degradation or reduction in casting distance.

Best wishes.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.inf6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 14, 2022 10:24AM

Buying a really light rod and a really light reel will allow you to attach a lot more lead weight around the reel seat to achieve a balanced outfit.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Robert Flowers (---.res6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 14, 2022 04:00PM

I mistakenly stated that the tungsten sheet had an adhesive back It doesn't. It would need to be glued in place. Available lead sheets do have a sticky back, but again, lead is toxic.

Tight Lies and frisky fish

RJF

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Lynn Behler (---.44.66.72.res-cmts.leh.ptd.net)
Date: September 14, 2022 07:31PM

So Robert, were you referring to fly rods?

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Robert Flowers (---.res6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 14, 2022 10:13PM

Yes.

Tight Lies and frisky fish

RJF

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Chris Catignani (---)
Date: September 14, 2022 10:43PM

Robert Flowers Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I mistakenly stated that the tungsten sheet had an
> adhesive back It doesn't. It would need to be
> glued in place. Available lead sheets do have a
> sticky back, but again, lead is toxic.

...also Robert. Tungsten is only heaver by volume. 1oz is 1oz whether it be tungsten, lead or zinc

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Robert Flowers (---.res6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 15, 2022 01:01PM

As it is heavier by volume, it uses less space for equal weight compared to lead sheeting. You can glue in strips to achieve the desired balance. And yes, an ounce of lead equals an ounce og tungsten, equals an ounce of zinc, equals an ounce of mercury, etc. That bieng the case, I would rather try to increase weight with tungste, than with aluminum. Osmium would be even better if it wasn't so hard, and toxic. It's really heavy.

If you can't find tungsten, or lead sheets, you can use lead, or tungsten wire, as used for tying fishing flies. Simply wind a sufficeint anount on to achieve your desired balance, then uce a ball peen hammer, and anvil to flatten the wire into thin strips (I do silversmithing and so have a nini anvil, and hammer for shaping silver base material)..

Tight Lies and frisky fish

RJF

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Marty OConnell (---)
Date: September 15, 2022 02:38PM

Isn’t it easier just to put a tailored amount of lead ore line under the backing? This can be dialed in easily as the user prefers and does not move or permanently affect the rod blank.

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.inf6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 15, 2022 06:33PM

What is the anticipated, or better yet - observed - benefit to adding weight to a fly rod? More distance, or more accuracy? Or do people who strap weights to fly rods expect to reduce effort by moving more weight around? This would crush physical scientists and their silly "laws!"

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Robert Flowers (---.res6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 16, 2022 02:38AM

I'm not arguing that adding weigh is either good or bad. I'm just giving info about available weight products for those who may want them.

Tight Lies and frisky fish

RJF

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Re: Balancing a rod
Posted by: Jeff Shafer (---.s3309.c3-0.atw-cbr4.atw.pa.cable.rcncustomer.com)
Date: September 16, 2022 08:20PM

I had a stash of these in my golf club building box. And think I used a couple during the last few years. Also available in lead.

[www.golfworks.com]

"The greatest barrier to discovery is not ignorance, it's the illusion of knowledge" - Daniel J. Boorstin



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/16/2022 08:21PM by Jeff Shafer.

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