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Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Tom Harrigan (---)
Date: September 05, 2023 11:15PM

I was ready to use tape for an arbor, started to do a little research and found that tape arbors have to a degree fallen out of favor.

No problem, figured I'd try a foam arbor.

My reel seat I.D. is just under 14mm, and I don't seem to be able to find an arbor with that O.D.

There are plenty of larger sizes available.

What's the best way to proceed, just turn one down? Or am I just looking in the wrong way?

Many thanks....

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Mark Talmo (---)
Date: September 06, 2023 12:42AM

Tom,
Contrary to what many might say, there is nothing wrong with masking tape arbors, IF DONE PROPERLY. The process has been successfully employed for many years. While present-day foam / graphite arbors may be the best regarding weight, thin tape arbors (< .25in) allow the builder to produce an arbor of the exact size without the need of turning the OD of the foam / graphite arbor. As long as attention is applied to ensuring the tape is encapsulated within the epoxy and not allowed to absorb any water, you’re good-to-go. Given the option, foam may be better but tape can certainly be more than acceptable. I'm certain that should stir some negative comments. Nonetheless, I stand by it.

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!! BUILDING YOUR OWN SIMPLY ENHANCES THE EXPERIENCE.

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Michael Danek (192.183.59.---)
Date: September 06, 2023 06:30AM

I just tore down a broken 9 wt which had tape arbors, had numerous times been submerged in salt water as fish were landed, was about 5 years old if I remember right, and the encapsulated tape arbors were like new. Wrap tightly, compress them to be sure they are tight, and encapsulate like Mark said.

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Les Cline (---)
Date: September 06, 2023 08:23AM

Tom

I turn my foam arbors down on a lathe with a fine metal file held tight on the tool rest. Calipers help a great deal. Go slowly. Check often.

Or, pull the tail stock back and slide the reel seat over the mandrel and arbor to check the fit (with the lathe turned off). I use one of Andy Dear's mandrels that have a locking collet at one end, a threaded tip, and two copper tubes to hold the piece between them. The tubes lie below the working surface of the piece which allows the reel seat to slide over the arbor without removing it from the mandrel. Small washers work in place of the tubes, too, if their O.D. is less than the work piece. A nut on the threaded end of the mandrel adds tension.

I sometimes cut a foam arbor into segments (or in half) and spread them out if an arbor is a little short at the ends of the reel seat. I number the pieces to follow the taper of the blank and coat all surfaces of the arbor with epoxy. This saves a negligible amount of weight - I do it more to get the ends of the arbors where I want them and avoid reaming and fitting another arbor.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/06/2023 02:13PM by Les Cline.

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Richard Kline (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: September 06, 2023 08:26AM

Tom:
Just got 2 original Loomis Casting rods to replace existing reel seats, both rods had masking tape reel seat bushings. The bushing were in excellent shape I have used tape bushing on Fly and UL rods with no issues, but I am going with fiber bushing on the Loomis rods, just my personnel preference.

Rich Kline Custom Rods

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: John DeMartini (---.inf6.spectrum.com)
Date: September 06, 2023 08:42AM

I use over sized arbors.

First, I fit the arbor to the blank, I then remove the arbor and mount the arbor on a mandrel and then turn the arbor down to a snug fit in the reel seat, this way all the parts will be concentric.

You can mount the arbor on the blank and turn down the arbor to fit the reel seat if it is easier for you.

I use tape wrap when the space between the reel seat and the blank is too small to effectively turn down an arbor.

There is nothing wrong with the tape wrap it works as well as any other method. Choose the method you are most comfortable with.



Have fun

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: September 06, 2023 08:58AM

When you have a very small space to take up, you can use fiberglass drywall tape (mesh) to form bushings. This is a vastly superior method over masking (paper) tape bushings.

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

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Tom Harrigan (---)
Date: September 06, 2023 09:14AM

Thanks, everyone-

Great information-

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Evan Cobb (---)
Date: September 06, 2023 12:14PM

How are you guys reaming foam arbors without epoxying them into the reel seat first? I use the poly foam arbors on most builds but I need to epoxy them in the reel seat prior to reaming, otherwise they get destroyed during the reaming process. Even when installed in the reel seat there’s a good chance they rip apart. I’ve tried using the graphite brick arbors but have never get them to fit properly without

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Daryl Ferguson (---)
Date: September 06, 2023 12:57PM

Tape works great and is cheap. I see no reason to fix something that isn’t broke at an added cost.

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Les Cline (---)
Date: September 06, 2023 03:17PM

Evan,

I generally fit my foam arbors inside the reel seat first. Next, epoxy the arbor inside the reel seat. THEN, ream the cured assembly to fit the blank. A short bevel on the leading edge of the arbor will help direct epoxy onto the I.D. of the reel seat surface - rather than 'plow' or 'squeege' the adhesive off as the arbor is installed. I also slowly rotate the arbor as I install it for 360 coverage....and back it out partially as I go to see if there is epoxy on the arbor.

Be sure to do best practices surface prep to the area of the blank the arbor will bond to, and also the inside of the reel seat. Scotch Brite pads work very well for this purpose.

As Tom mentioned, I like fiberglass drywall tape/mesh for all tape or thin arbors. Works great to over-wrap a foam arbor that has more slack than I want, too Granted, drywall tape/mesh is a bit more fiddley to apply than masking tape. However, I have confidence that the drywall tape/mesh will never degrade even IF water does reach it. The mesh also allows for the epoxy to bond to the blank surface directly under the tape's footprint, creating a matrix of epoxy and fiberglass through and through, from blank to reel seat.

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Evan Cobb (---.rochester.rr.com)
Date: September 06, 2023 08:38PM

Les,

Thank you for the detailed explanation!

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Re: Fly Reel Seat Sizing - and Arbors
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (107.1.212.---)
Date: September 07, 2023 10:44AM

I will do 3 small drywall mesh arbors so I can get epoxy between them on each side of the arbor. Masking tape will also work but I do not use it. Weight in that section of the rod is usually not a factor and may actually balance the rod to give a better light feel to the tip, it will however, add to the total weight of the rod.

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