Bamboo Tips - Contributors - Obuchowski, Chris

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My name is Christopher Obuchowski, and I live in Portland, OR.

I'm on of the younger crowd, 41 yo, but I've been making rods since 1996, and on the list here since '98 or '99.

I first got inspired, like many, by the writings of Gierach, and as a poor college student, then Med student, couldn't really afford to buy them (I did pick up a Phillipson 7' 5wt, wrapped by a different graphite rod finisher, as my first cane rod). A slide presentation by Bob Lancaster convinced me I could make a cane rod with a minimum of tools, as did Al McClain's fisherman's encyclopedia.

I picked up a copy of Cattanach's original book, got a copy of "a Master's Guide" for Christmas, bought a set of Colorado Bootstrap forms, and went down into the basement of my appartment in Pittsburgh, PA, to build a rod. One month later I emerged with completed rod number one. . .and haven't looked back since. In June of '98 I moved to Portland, and shortly thereafter became a protege and close friend of Ed Hartzell.  He's the one that got me invited to the Corbett Lake gather in 2000, and I've been a regular ever since.  Also, following Ed's tradition, I've taken a couple of students into the shop over the years, one or two at a time, to learn the craft of rodmaking.  Last summer I had built a dedicated 600+ sq ft rodmaking shop under my house, which allows us all more room (and better light than the old garage).

I used a Morgan Handmill to make all my rods since 2000, and make Hexes and Quads. I typically built around a half dozen rods a year, though that has become significantly  more of a challenge with very active 2 and 4 year old daughters at home.

My latest batch of rods have all had graphite or fiberglass ferrules (following Ted Barnhart's method, with some tweaking), and at this time I doubt I'll be returning to making NS ferrules for my rods in the future (except by special request, and only under duress).  These synthetic ferrules perform so far superiorly, IMHO, are easier to make and maintain, that I can't see a reason to go back. I'll be demonstrating their construction at the next Corbett Lake meeting in April of 2010.

If anyone is ever in the Pacific NW, give me a shout, and I'll host you to a scotch or beer, your choice.

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