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I've turned my stations and tried to glue my ferrules on using Pliobond, but it did not work, what is a good glue to use and how do I clean the Pliobond out of my ferrules?  (Tim Stoltz)

    How did you apply the Pliobond?  I have never had a Pliobond failure, my grandfather never had a Pliobond failure.  Did you apply to both surfaces, allow to get tacky to dry, heat the ferrule and slide on the ferrule?  Next day the ferrule may move slightly, but return.  Day two the ferrule ain't going anywhere.  (Chris Lucker)

      I have not been able to get a Pliobond ferrule to let go either, even if you didn't get the procedure correct the ferrule will tack up in a few days. I have found that when you flame the ferrule and rod station for an insufficient time the ferrule may move a bit when fitting 5 minutes later but by the time the varnish is on the rod and out the door it isn't going anywhere. Done properly the ferrule is well set immediately.

      Chris is the one who initially told me about this method several (more?) years ago. I set a half dozen ferrules with it at the time and forgot about it. When Dave mentioned it again a couple of months ago it got me to thinking, those ferrules were not pinned and they were still tight, might be time to try that method out again in a test. The last 20 rods have been ferruled with it and it works. Back to my old dictum - If Granger did it then it has to be right. :)  (AJ Thramer)


OK - I seem to have had a little bad luck with Pliobond gluing ferrules - after three days setting up time (72 hours) and two days in the warm sun the ferrule came popping off the cane tonight as I tried to separate the ferrules.  I gave the Pliobond about 15 minutes tack time before assembling ferrules to rod - seemed tacky enough to me.  One of the ferrule fits in the tip section of the three piece rod is still soft. So, anyone have a source for Accraglas Gel or Golfsmith shafting glue or an idea for me that I might have better luck next time?  (John Silveira)

    Pliobond is a contact cement, you need to apply to ferrule and bamboo and it should be dry, then apply. Denver Dave has a technique that he said Phillipson used, but you will have to ask him or check the tips page. I use 30 minute epoxy and I have used JB Weld with good results.  (Dave Henney)  (Bret Reiter)

    Pliobond is a contact cement (coat both surfaces, let dry, press together).  If holding well, it won't allow a sliding action to put a ferrule in place, it isn't suitable for this application.  Cyanoacrylates (super glues) also are unsuitable as they have little shear (motion perpendicular to the surface, IE., sliding) strength.  Use a hot melt glue or an epoxy instead.  (George Bourke)

    Your mistake was in not letting the Pliobond thoroughly dry. An hour is probably OK, but overnight is better. Coat both the rod section and the inside of the ferrule by seating them when the stuff is wet, separate them and allow to dry, then heat the ferrule to melt the glue, seat it again and allow to cool. It makes a powerful, lasting bond.

    Keep in mind that contact cement is not a great gap filler, If you have cut the cane a bit slack, use epoxy or ferrule cement.  (Tom Smithwick)

      I believe Dave would fire the Pliobond to accelerate drying.  His method took just minutes at the SRG.  Dave can you give a quick note on your "fire that stuff up method".  (Darrin Curtis)

        I have used Pliobond to repair and replace many loose ferrules on older rods. Use a toothpick to spread a little into the male and female ferrules, also spread some on the ferrule station of the rod. Then pass the rod over a flame to "ignite" the Pliobond, be sure to ignite the stuff inside the ferrule also. Let it burn for a few seconds, it will usually extinguish itself, if not just blow it out after 4-5 seconds. Immediately seat the ferrule on the rod. If it doesn't seat all the way, you can pass the ferrule over a flame to heat the Pliobond up a little, it will then seat fully. I usually hold it against my workbench for about a minute until the glue cools down. You can then easily remove the excess glue with a little acetone on a rag or Q-tip.  (Jeff Fultz)


I tried to find Pliobond in San Antonio last weekend.  I went to Lowes, Home Depot, ACE, and a few other stores and could not find it.  Is there some other type of specialty store that has this stuff.  I could not find rattan either.  Woodcraft was out and all the other craft stores did not carry it.  It looks like with over a million people in this town there would be more variety out there.  (Darrin Curtis)

    Try Weldwood Flammable Contact Cement. It is superior for most applications except knots.  (Bill Fink)


After seeing Chris Obuchowski demonstrate Pliobond for ferrules a week ago at Corbett Lake, and recently having failures with Devcon 2-ton, I removed the ferrules from a couple of rods that were recently glued up and wrapped, but I was not done finishing.  That was really disturbing.  It took less than 5 minutes to remove 8 ferrules (5 from a 3/2, and 3 from a 2/2) glued on with Devcon.  I heated them up with the heat gun and left them alone, came back a half hour later and they all just slid right off.

I glued them back on with Pliobond, but was not happy with that experience.  I charred the Pliobond a couple of times when I tried to flash off the naphtha, and then when I went to wrap them I noticed that none of them were fully seated.  The cement is thick and viscous enough that I could never get all the air out.  I decided to remove them all again after I had wrapped about half of them.  That only took about two minutes!  Warm them up and they just slide right off.

I glued all of them back on with Probond after carefully cleaning the ferrules and the cane.  That's what I used on the rod that failed a couple of weeks ago, and I really like the way that worked out.  The glue is fluid enough with lots of working time so you can squeeze out all the air, and it lubricates the ferrules so they go on real easy.  I have no idea how it will hold up, but I've noticed that it bonds very strongly to glass and it doesn't get brittle after it cures like Devcon does.  It also has no solvents in it.  It's 100% solids and is catalyzed by moisture, and it's supposed to expand as it cures.  I don't have any idea how it will hold up or how difficult it may be to remove ferrules.

I glued another ferrule to a reject tip to see if I can remove it after it's cured without destroying the blank, but that will be several days until I get results.

I would really appreciate any feedback about this.  I know a number of list members used to use Urethane Bond PU when that was available, but that stuff was really thick and I thought it was difficult to work with.  Now Bob Maulucci mentioned Power Bond PU.  How does that compare with ProBond?  John Zimny - Do you have any idea how polyurethanes will hold up?  (Robert Kope)

    The only cure for ferrules is Ferrule-Tite and pinning. Anything else is just temporary.  (Marty DeSapio)

      While I don't disagree with you, I wonder what the early fiberglass rod makers used to keep nickel silver ferrules in place?  Surely they didn't pin ferrules in fiberglass rods, huh?  (Harry Boyd)

        For fixing ferrules I use epoxy and I have NEVER had any problems. The trick with epoxies is to ensure the glue line is very thin. To achieve this the ferrule/cane fit must be very tight. I really have to push my ferrules on very hard to seat them. If the ferrules fit the cane without too much pressure then the glue line will fail. Pinning ferrules never stopped a poor fitting ferrule from coming loose, it just stops the ferrule flying off the shaft during casting.  (Paul Blakley)

          I think Paul put his finger on at least half of the problem. The ferrule-cane fit must be tight. If it's loose you are running risks even with pinning. I hand-fit my ferrules and sometimes I have a problem even separating them before gluing. The other half of the problem is not allowing a glue escape route, particularly with a heavy bodied glue like my favorite Weldwood Flammable Contact Cement. With a tight fit the ferrule is almost impossible to fully seat without the exit. An easy way to make this glue exit is to design your rods so that the ferrule ID is just a bit larger than the dimension across the flats.  With my pentas it's another story, but as Jack Benny was fond of saying: Never Mind That.   (Bill Fink)

            I think that pinning ferrules strikes me as sort of dumb.  I have always thought that the ferrule point was a point of greater stress on the rod, and that drilling a hole through it could do ought else but weaken it.  I know the great rod makers did it.  However I never have placed any of them in the realm of omniscient  or omnipotent.  Ferrule failure is I think, almost entirely an error on the part of the maker.  Adhesives are critical, and as you say quick cure epoxies don't cut it.  Most epoxies don't cut it.  Some are better than others.  Brittle glues are no good and I have never favored exotic combinations .  Urethane Bond was always good, but is I think no longer available.  However other  urethanes seem  to be able to fill the hole.. Ferrule fitting is very important, building up undercut cane is a no no.  Non concentric fitting is a no no.  Tight fitting is mandatory, although I doubt if I would go so far as to use your technique.  But for those who like pinning, I might suggest that a pair of vise grip pliers cranked down below the diameter of the ferrule might crimp it enough so that it won't slide.  Or if one pin is good are not three pins better?

            Oh well, I do what I want and each to his own.  (Ralph Moon)

              PU is a really good glue - I use nothing else for gluing up the rods.  But for ferrules? I don’t think so. Problem is: It will probably NEVER let the ferrule come off without ruining the bamboo. When the glue fails, the bamboo is already on fire!!!

              Don’t ask me how I know.  (Carsten Jorgensen)

                I have the same experience. I always use fast epoxy for ferrules because it comes off if I want it to. PU is like forever. Lately I wanted a butt cap to come off and the cork insert was black and already reduced to ashes when it finally came off. This also means you can heat straighten a rod without any problems!  (Geert Poorteman)

                I was able to remove the test ferrule glued on with ProBond, from a blank glued up with ProBond.  The blank I removed it from was a scrap tip of a PMQ that had the quad shape built up at the ferrule station with shims also glued on with ProBond.  Removing the ferrule even left the shims in place. However, it was not easy.  I have a Sears Craftsman Industrial heat gun which is apparently made by Steinel.  It has LEDs that indicate the temperature of the air coming out of it.  I had to hold the ferrule in 850 degrees (a setting of 12.5 on a scale that goes to 15) for 30 seconds, then grab it with a ferrule puller to pull it off.  I got it about 2/3 of the way off before it froze on me and I had to hit it with the heat gun for a few more seconds to get it the rest of the way off.  I briefly touched the ferrule when I grabbed the ferrule puller and got a tiny blister where the contact occurred.  The cane at the ferrule station is a shade darker than it originally was.

                According to Technical Services at Borden, temperatures over 400 degrees F may cause a ProBond glue joint to fail.  Needless to say, sustained temperatures that high will turn bamboo to charcoal and brief temperatures that high will soften the cane temporarily.  So I wouldn't use it to glue a ferrule on a rod glued up with epoxy or with Titebond.

                Another interesting point that I have stumbled onto:  Harry Boyd commented that Elmer's ProBond and Bohning's PowerBond appear to be nearly identical.  Bohning describes PowerBond as a water catalyzed epoxy, but I checked the MSDS for both and it appears that the two glues are identical.  They list identical ingredients with identical ranges of composition.  So anyone using Bohning's PowerBond (~$13 for 2 oz from an archery supply) can save themselves a little money by using ProBond (~ $9 for 8 oz at your local hardware store).  (Robert Kope)

                  I thought ProBond was a PU,  am I wrong?  (Ralph Moon)

                  I think we need to be more specific about the glue(s) in question. ProBond seems to cover a variety of different glues.  IE: there is a ProBond model cement, an epoxy, a polyurethane and a contact cement (at least).  Robert, which ProBond are YOU talking about?  (Neil Savage)

                    The ProBond Poly. I noticed the similarities in the MSDS forms after I  bought the Bohning glue and got curious. Robert is right, they read the same.  (Larry Blan)

                    Sorry about any confusion:

                    Neil is right, the ProBond line includes several products.

                    Larry Blan is right also, I have only been talking about the ProBond Polyurethane woodworking glue (currently labeled "the Ultimate Glue").

                    Ralph - I believe that Bohning mischaracterizes their product, PowerBond, as a water activated epoxy, and that it is a polyurethane like Elmer's ProBond PU

                    I also heard back from Bohning's technical folks.  They say that PowerBond will begin to soften at 350 degrees and would not recommend using heat to remove it from bamboo.  That's interesting since they recommend using it on wooden arrows and say it is readily reversible with heat.  On the other hand, wooden arrows aren't pieced together with heat sensitive glues.  (Robert Kope)

          Good point!  I believe glass as well as graphite being synthetic does not expand or contract with atmospheric changes the way wood does. Nothing to loosen up the bond.  (Marty DeSapio)

          The late Clarence Shoff, a cofounder of Lamiglas who owned a tackle shop in my home town, used to recommend Pliobond for attaching ferrules to glass rods. They never told me about "flashing" off the Naphtha. The process was to let the glue dry for a few hours, then force the ferrule on and let it sit for at least a week.

          BTW, I used Chris O's Pliobond method for a set of ferrules this week & it worked great. I'll be interested to hear how Robert Kope's ProBond experiment works.  (Tom Bowden)

            I am interested in your comment "force the ferrule on and then let it sit for a week." That would never work for me.... I would never be able to resist the temptation to fit the ferrules and flex the rod within an hour of fitting the ferrules! The idea of having a rod able to be flexed and tested sitting on the bench for a week is just unworkable in my case.  (Ian Kearney)

              I'm like you & was never patient enough to use Pliobond this way. The other way of doing it was to use Gudebrod ferrule cement. I carried a tube of it in my fishing kit because ferrules were always coming loose. The guys at Shoffs claimed that ferrules glued with Pliobond never came loose.  (Tom Bowden)

            I've used ProBond for 3-4 years.  Recently the bonds on the first ferrules that I glued with it have begun to fail.  I've had several ferrules pull off, the glue separating from the metal.  I don't think that any glued more recently than 3 years have failed (yet).  I am now pinning.  (Bill Lamberson)

              What's wrong with Brownells Accraglas?   I've used it and never had a failure and I routinely leave my ferrules very tight so that I've had to pull them apart using a partner many a time.  I think it works super.    Has this  fallen out of favor for some reason?  (Rick Crenshaw)

          I use the Pro Bond PU which is used in ferruling arrows, but I almost always pin them. Even the manufacturer says they can be reversed with heat. I look at it as an alternative to Ferrule-Tite made by the same company as a matter of fact. The Pro Bond does foam out like any PU, but it does look remarkably like Ferrule-Tite in many respects. Same color and everything.

          The other cements I have had good results with are the Golf Shaft epoxy and the JB Weld. I have been using the Pro Bond (recommended by Jeff Wagner) because it is one part.  (Bob Maulucci)

            Isn't the glue that Jeff Wagner recommends called Power Bond, (not Pro Bond)?  What the heck's the difference?  (Rich Margiotta)

              The Bohning product is called PowerBond (there is a Power Bond, made by System 3, not the same type of adhesive). It is a poly glue, using similar chemicals, according to the MSDS sheets for each product. PowerBond does not seem to foam as much, and the dried glue does not have the same texture as ProBond (in my experience). It sure seems to be tough stuff. I have done some simple adhesion tests with it, but I won't have a chance to try it on ferrules for  another week or two. The container is also filled with a "bubble" of nitrogen, to help prolong the shelf life. This is a probably a good thing, it isn't the cheapest glue out there in terms of cost per ounce.  (Larry Blan)

              Yes, you are right. Power Bond. Pro Bond is the Elmer's PU glue.

              The stuff I just brought up from the shop is Power Bond by Bohning. White bottle with black cap and red lettering. Good stuff except for easily being confused with the other PU Pro Bond.  (Bob Maulucci)

    Can't  beat  the  Acragel.  Retains  a bit  of elasticity,  has great "stick" properties,  and is pretty inexpensive, all things considered.  (Jerry Andrews)

    Well, the ProBond appears to be permanent.  With Devcon I would frequently hear little "pings" when I removed the string binding down the ferrule tabs as the tabs popped loose.  There has been none of that with ProBond.  This stuff seems to be much more tenacious than epoxy.

    Incidentally, I always had a tight fit of the ferrules to the cane when I used Devcon.  Ever since I got a lathe, I have chucked the rod sections and used the tailstock to force the ferrule on.  I didn't do that with the Pliobond because the rods had guides wrapped on or I would have had to change chucks for the PMQ.  Regardless of how tight the ferrule originally was, after heating and allowing it to cool, they always just slid right off.

    Tonight I took the scrap tip section with that I put a ferrule on with ProBond 2 days ago and tried to remove it.  I heated it up much hotter than I do epoxy, and the glue residue around the ferrule never even softened.  I put it in the freezer and heated it back up again, and I can't even get a tab loose.  Power Bond says that it is readily reversible with heat, but I can't get ProBond to budge.  I guess I better not make any mistakes if I use this stuff.  (Robert Kope)


I use Pliobond for ferrules. Reason?   I've used epoxies and after a thorough cure of epoxy the first time I false cast the rod (no line at all) I could hear the epoxy shattering inside the ferrule.  Never had that happen with Pliobond. Stuff's military marine grade contact cement from what I hear.  (John Silveira)

    Epoxy's funny stuff sometimes. It's seen as the cure to all that you need to glue but while 99.99999 times out of 100 it'll work and people swear by it there are things to remember.  It's gap filling which leads people to wrongly believe a loose fit is OK and let the glue fill her up,  some think you need a gap which is wrong. If there's too much glue it'll probably fail given time. Don't know exactly why this is because the glue itself seems fine but the joint isn't happy.

    Cleanliness and complete mixing is the thing. Mix it thoroughly in a reasonably large amount because very small amounts are difficult to get ratios right then leave for 5 minutes or so and remix. Make sure the joints are clean and dry of water if washed. It's also a good idea to roughen the mating surfaces not so much to have a key effect as much as to ensure any surface oils or corrosion is removed.  In the case of ferrules make the dry fit as close as you can, you don't need much glue, in a good fit even a tiny amount will coat it all and some will want to escape when it's all fitted.

    Back when I was a kid doing my boat building apprenticeship the boat yard reacted with horror at the thought of using epoxy for masts and spars. Epoxy works great with thinnish laminates of which rod splines are but it hates bonding thick parts like two lumps of wood 4 inches thick together. It glues and looks OK but seems to sheer in these cases. Could be for the same reason ferrules occasionally part company with the rod but it would be interesting to know if the ferrule fit was a close one or if there was much in the way of gap filling needed? Not suggesting you change ferrule cements but anybody who ever had ferrules part from the rod using epoxy may find this of interest.  (Tony Young)

      Certainly in the year 2006, structural epoxies are used in the bonding of very large load bearing laminae,  and with a great deal of success.

      Nearly every glue will fail on occasion, and because the manufacture and employment of bamboo  rods is  such a seat-of-the-pants sort of thing, we hardly have the critical parameters in place to enable us to assess what went wrong, or where.

      If you use a reputable glue, and use it within the specifications of the product,   you shouldn't go very far wrong.  If you have a failure, my suggestion is that you look first at your shop procedure before you think about the intrinsic qualities of the glue itself.  (Peter McKean)

        I very much doubt you'll ever find an industrial glue up using epoxy that isn't a lamination of what amounts to thin laminates. What's thin? If you have something that will wind up being 12 inches thick and 6 feet long for instance and you don't want it to fail you're asking for trouble to epoxy 2 or 3 laminations.

        A post 20 feet long and 6 inches square is thin but if the post is 2 feet long it's thick.

        Much better to use 8 or 12 to build the laminate up to 12". This is something I went into in a lot of detail when boat building because keels are laminates and recently (like within the last 3 months)  while building my house where I have to use laminates. In the end I'll use resorcinol by the way interestingly at the suggestion of the industrial laminate company.

        People tend to look upon non epoxy glues and write them off but when it comes to mission critical non failure if it doesn't have a purple glue line I'm never convinced personally.

        As far as rods go you can use what ever you like within the bounds of commonly accepted rodmaking glues because the laminates are very thin so there is a hell of a lot of surface area for the bond to take place.

        However, my point wasn't one of laminations as such, my point was that epoxy is strong but too much of it used to fill too much space is asking for failure.

        It's not hard to mix it well and it would be interesting to know if people who are confident they have left nothing to chance as far as mixing and application is concerned and have had failure nevertheless would say the dry fit of the ferrules to bamboo were firm or gappy?

        So how about it people? Of the ferrule to bamboo failures you've had would you say you depended too much on the gap filling qualities of what ever you used?   (Tony Young)

          ... my point was that epoxy is strong but too much of it used to fill too much space is asking for failure.

          Heh, your love for purple notwithstanding, this can be applied to any adhesive,  even the purple one.   (Larry Blan)

      I personally think a snug slip fit is about right for ferrules.  If you have to force the ferrule on without the glue, I feel the joint is going to be "glue starved".  That said, sloppy isn't good either.  If you really need to fill a gap with epoxy, you need to add some kind of filler to the glue itself (chopped cotton e.g.)  (Neil Savage)

        You make a good point with the filler.   I believe it's 3M that has a full line of different powder fillers to use with Epoxy.  I usually bought it at the West Marine stores when I was epoxying different things together and making laminated braces for boats here and there.  Some of the powders are for bonding and have more strength for adhering and others have filler properties.  (John Silveira)

          Most marine supply houses, maybe all, carry W.E.S.T. epoxy and the assorted fillers.  I used the chopped cotton for any gluing that might need a filler, "micro balloons" for putty, etc.  Never tried the graphite powder for making bearings.  I haven't looked lately, maybe they have expanded the line further.  I'm pretty sure their plain epoxy wasn't intended to use as a glue, rather as a wood saturation product (hence W.E.S.T., it stands for wood epoxy saturation technique) and for applying fiberglass or fabric covering on a boat. 

          BTW, Resorcinol requires a near perfect fit and quite a lot of clamp pressure to work correctly.  (Neil Savage)

      Fillers, by the way, are at least a part of why JB Weld works so well for so many applications.  The filler is already in the epoxy.  (Neil Savage)

        JB Weld has steel as a filler. I know it will work on aluminum, but do they make a JB with aluminum as the filler?  (David Dziadosz)

          Doesn't look like it.  The materials info on their web site says "powdered iron".  Other brands, however???  IBM used to issue us an epoxy  that was off white when it cured.  I don't remember if there was a manufacturer's label on it, or if it just had the IBM part number.  (Neil Savage)

        Rodmakers epoxy weighing. (Tapani Salmi)

          When I think of all of the time and materials wasted making an intricate balance then see something so danged simple and effective as yours I want to go hide under a rock. (Ralph Moon)

        Like so many others, I too, have had glue failures in my ferrule joints. But I don't believe the problem is due to a reliance upon gap-filling. Instead, I think the problem is due to an inadequate bond between the glue (epoxy, in this case) and the metal of the ferrule.

        In no case of my glue failures, has there been a sign of the glue itself breaking-down. Nor have my failures shown signs of the glue breaking its bond with the cane. What I have seen every time is a clean and smooth surface on the cured glue where it has simply separated from the metal in the ferrule itself. I believe the failures are due to shear stresses that ordinary epoxies simply can't withstand.

        Many epoxies become almost brittle upon curing, and don't seem to want to withstand the different stresses of  expansion/contraction that occur with changes in heat and humidity - or with the flexing that occurs when casting. In both cases, the glue-bond to the metal can fail.

        Three possible causes would be: 1) improper cleaning and preparation of the metal surface, and/or; 2) a fit between bamboo and metal that had become starved by being too tight, and/or: 3) the wrong glue.

        So, I've done three things. First, I always scruff-up the inner surface of my ferrules with a small, round file, and then thoroughly swab them out with MEK (take care with those fumes!).

        As a second thing, I switched to an epoxy product that's made by 3M, called "Duo-Pac 125." Joe Byrd tells me that this is what Winston has been using for some time. This epoxy isn't available on the open, commercial market, as I guess it was developed for some purely industrial application. It's dark-gray, and, although it sets-up in about 20 minutes, it takes another two or three days in my drying cabinet (at 95 degrees) to reach full cure. With a little difficulty, you can always just barely get a fingernail impression into its cured surface. The company spec-sheets compare this glue to a dozen or so other industrial epoxies they manufacture, and  show fully cured "125" as having their very highest mechanical resistance to failure under shear stresses.

        And for the third thing, I always fit my ferrules a tad on the loose side - just tight enough that there's certainly no "wobble" or "play," but loose enough that they slide off and on the prepared station with no struggle. That way, if the bond is good between glue and metal, the small volume of "rubbery" epoxy between cane and metal can function to help absorb and distribute the effects of shear.

        I've only been using the technique for a couple years now, but so far, no problems. We'll see....  (Bill Harms)

          All of the Duo-Pak  adhesives are available  from McMaster-Carr.  (Larry Blan)

            That's good to hear because others have asked. I bought a good supply a few years ago, but now I can't remember where I got it.

            One more thing about the packaging. There are a dozen or so different "Duo-Pak" epoxies (all meant for different applications), but all share the same awkward dispensing problems for the handyman. The "A-B" cartridges are built into a single unit, but are meant to be dispensed with a little gun that contacts the plungers. Without the dispensing gun, you'll need to figure a way to get at the plungers.  (Bill Harms)

              Yes, and that is one of the drawbacks. The guns are $250ish, although I have seen them on eBay for much less.  (Larry Blan)

          I agree completely  with your considerations about epoxy.  I have had 2 ferrules failures recently caused by distraction - I am a man full of distractions! - forgetting to prepare the inner surface of the female ferrules with a round   file   and...pluup!   (not   the   nice  sound   of ferrule-ferrule removing, but the horrible noise of the bamboo-metal failure). But I think there are also an other problem regarding epoxy glue: considering types and characteristics of epoxy and different brands, the number of epoxy glues are more or less two thousand, yes 2000.  Are we sure that we are using the right glue for the right use?  (Marco Giardina)

            Well, yes, that was my concern too. The several epoxy formulas are all designed to address different application issues, but most of the epoxies found "on the shelf" are probably pretty much the same. Their differences seem to have more to do with cure-time than anything else, and as a rule-of-thumb, the longer the cure-time, the stronger the mechanical properties.

            Even so, and for whatever reasons, none of these seem able to stand up to the shear-stresses that develop inside our ferrules (the glue-to-metal bond). But when you get into the industrial epoxies, formulas for different applications abound. And when you read some of the spec. sheets, you see that the mechanical, electrical, chemical and thermal properties of these epoxies are ALL OVER THE MAP.

            But, as I recently wrote to Larry Blan, I can't remember any of this stuff, because once an obsession to learn something passes from my attention span, I make my decisions, then forget everything and move on to something else. That is, I become a one week expert, and then an idiot. Oh well....(Bill Harms)

              This talk about epoxy bonding failure has me thinking to chime in - keep in simple - the cane should be well roughed up - not just clean - and not just a few scratches to help bonding but scratched deeply such as with 120 grit sand paper fully and crossways to the separating direction of the fit.  Second same for the inside of the ferrule - get some 120 grit sand paper and roll it up to fit the ferrule and fully scratch up the inside of the ferrule, might even get a hooked pick and gouge the metal inside well.   It's the "Shiny" surfaces such as glass that epoxy can be "Popped" off with pressure.  I'm sure the metal ferrules are flexing some with casting would be just enough to unlodge the grip the epoxy has on it.  I'm thinking the epoxy used should at least be the most flexible one you can find.  I still think Pliobond is the ticket. When it's flamed and cured it's quite hard and grips like a bugger and flexible - all the qualities I want holding cane to metal.  (John Silveira)

                I'll paraphrase a Michigan-Mississippi friend -- never hear about all these troubles when ferrules are pinned.  (Harry Boyd)

                  Good point!   But do you have any experience with Pinned ferrules coming a little loose and making that "Ticking" sound and feel ???   (John Silveira)

                    Not even once.  I use the PU glue Jeff Wagner sells, and pin the ferrules.  Never had one even wiggle.  (Harry Boyd)

                      Of course the other side of this issue is my experience: I do not pin ferrules, have never had one come loose and have used both epoxy and urethane glues. Ferrules need to be clean in the bore, roughed up in the bore, fitted snugly to the cane (never loose), and the cane needs to be given a "tooth" too by sanding a bit with 100 grit. (Ray Gould)


This weekend I tried my hand at installing ferrules.  I was using the method of hand fitting ferrules as described by Denver Dave on the tips page.  I prepped the ferrules and blank and all of that went smooth.  I took my new bottle of Pliobond out of the box and noticed that it said keep away from open flames and other warnings like that.  That didn’t alarm me too much because I was warned and knew to be careful.  I did just like the article said but when I put the ferrule on the blank, I tried rolling the ferrule tabs down with a round drill bar and they just didn’t rest very flat to the blank.  Also, I was left with black burned glue on the outside of the ferrules and on the blank.  I just didn’t like how it looked so I tried to pull it back off quickly.  Too late.  That stuff locks down pretty quick.  I did manage to heat it back up and  remove the ferrule.  I then had to clean up all of the glue residue.  I then decided I would just use the Pliobond without flaming it.  Everything went fine but now I have to wait two days like the packaging said before I can continue work so the only thing I had left to do was clean up the work shop which was needed anyway.

My questions are:

What is the best way when flaming the Pliobond to not get burned glue residue all over the place and how do I get the tabs to lay flat when doing it this way?

Will the bond be stronger, weaker, or the same with the flaming technique compared to not flaming?  (Greg Reeves)

    I can't offer any advice concerning Pliobond, but can tell you that before I set my blank on fire, I would be trying my hand with a piece of tubing and a piece of dowel. When it comes down to things that are time limited, like gluing or binding, I really like to have the mechanics down before Murphy tosses his hat in the ring. Murphy and I are old friends, he doesn't mind my feeble attempts to keep him at bay. (Larry Blan)

      I'm not sure if you remember my post last week about the tip that had a visible glue seam or not but I used it as my sacrificial tip section.  I did think about that as I watched my blank burning!  The dowel and tubing could come in handy for practice though if I want to try the flaming again.  I may just stick to straight Pliobond.  (Greg Reeves)

        It is a fine way to test the glue too. You can yank on it, toss it in the freezer, heat it, and generally beat it to death without worrying about damaging your blank.  (Larry Blan)

    Just remember when flaming Pliobond that it is the glue flaming and not your blank. It just scares the hell out of you watching it.

    I cannot answer your second question but here is what I do to solve the first. As soon as you have your ferrule seated all the way quickly bind the tabs down with a strong string (I have some Kevlar thread which does the job well) and allow everything to thoroughly cool. Remove the thread and wipe away the glue residue with a cloth saturated in acetone. The acetone dissolves the glue nicely.

    If you still have one or more tabs detached from the blank (which is frequent) then gently reheat the tabs with a heat gun and rebind.  (Steve Weiss)

      Just one little tip that I have found useful.  I bind tabs down using electrical fuse wire.  It enables a much greater pressure, it doesn't tend to loosen while you are wrapping it, it's easy to secure at the end, and it comes off quickly and simply without leaving any residue on the rod or ferrule.  (Peter McKean)

    What is the best way when flaming the Pliobond to not get burned glue residue all over the place and how do I get the tabs to lay flat when doing it this way?

    I use Pliobond for ferrules and don't flame off the solvent.

    • Get a good snug fit between the ferrule.
    • Coat the bamboo with a even coat of Pliobond.
    • Coat the inside of the ferrule with Pliobond.
    • Wait until the Pliobond dries on the bamboo.
    • Apply a second even coat to the bamboo.
    • Wait until that coat dries.
    • Use your heat gun to drive the solvents out of the Pliobond in the ferrule.
    • Start the ferrule onto the bamboo. Use your heat gun to warm the area of the bamboo where the Pliobond is and the ferrule.
    • Seat the ferrule while all is hot.
    • Don't burn the Pliobond!
    • Form and bind the tabs down.

You should be able to fit the ferrules right away.  (Jerry Drake)


Also, please give me your best methods for using Pliobond to attach ferrules.  I have heard everything from apply the glue and immediately attach the ferrule to allow the glue to tack up and then install the ferrule.

I am partial to Pliobond, just because it stays flexible.  Is that justification for sticking with it?   I have only had one ferrule pull off, using Pliobond, and that was from my initial installation methods.  OK, I screwed it up, there I said it!!!  (Pete Emmel)

    I've never had any luck with Pliobond.  (Harry Boyd)

    For Pliobond, look at the tips site for the long tutorial... The short explanation is coat the ferrule station and the inside of the ferrule with Pliobond, hit the glue with a flame to "flash off" the naphtha, then seat the ferrule while it's still warm.  If it cools and doesn't seat all the way, gently warm the metal and keep pushing.  Once cool you can use the rod immediately.  (Chris Obuchowski)

      Somewhere here awhile back, someone wrote that they did not flame the Pliobond, but instead drove off the solvents with a heat gun.

      It works!!!

      I was apprehensive about setting the end of the blank on fire.....  (Paul Julius)


Some time ago there was a brief discussion about the use of a glue which some makers used to affix ferrules, and which required flaming/burning prior to use.

I have puddled around in the  Archives, but since I cannot recall when the discussion took place, nor the name of the glue, nor the identity of the builder concerned, that was a bit of a fruitless exercise.  Can someone please enlighten me about this glue, and, please, how it is used.  In particular, can somebody tell me whether this glue is amenable to heating for removal from the rod when needed . I usually use Acraglas Green for this job, but have one rod where the requirement is a bit different, as it is essential that the ferrules be removed after a period for replacement.

Life is never simple!  (Peter McKean)

    That wouldn't happen to be Ferr-L-Tite would it? (Mark Wendt)

      Hmmm, that description sounds more like Pliobond.  (Larry Blan)

    The glue in question is Pliobond. It is a contact cement. I get mine from a local ACE hardware, but they had to order it the last time. It is getting harder to find. After shaking up the glue, I put some on an index card next to the already lit alcohol lamp. For the male ferrule, I put some glue inside the ferrule and some on the rod section and put them together and make sure it is spread around well and then take them apart and heat the ferrule over the lamp until the glue inside flames a little all the while wearing a glove. Then I put the rod section over the lamp and let that glue flame up and then slide the ferrule on the rod section and quickly align it and wrap the crowned sections with thread to hold them against the rod as the glue dries. Once dry in a minute or so you can clean up with alcohol or acetone and perhaps a bit of 0000 steel wool and you are ready to wrap. The female is done the same way except you don't need the glove. If the ferrule is going to come off it will come off now. If not it is on for years. I don't know how to get it off once it is on. If you are going to have to remove it I  would  suggest  using  the  old  fashioned Ferr-L-Tite that Mark mentioned. You can just heat it a bit and off it comes. If you plan to leave it on with Ferr-L-Tite I would suggest that you pin the ferrule.   (Hal Manas)

      I have some Pliobond, but also Fuji hot melt glue. I use it for tip tops whose rings do break over time and to get them off, you just warm it over heat while pulling lightly and when it's ready, the tip-top just slips off.

      I imagine ferrules would do likewise.

      I suspect you'd find one of these in any old fishing tackle shop.  (Sean McSharry)

        To remove a ferrule mounted with Pliobond you just need to heat it gently and it'll come right off.

        Pliobond is the best adhesive for mounting ferrules, at least that remains my experience.  (Chris Obuchowski)

          Perhaps so, Chris. But I still do not understand how one can securely bind ferrule tabs in the few seconds that Pliobond is pliable. Each time I have tried it I wind up with far too much glue under the tabs, causing them to flare like an exploded banana peel.

          Suggestions?  (Harry Boyd)

          Pliobond is the best adhesive for mounting ferrules, at least that remains my experience.

          It has a reputation for being very secure. Keep in mind that it is not gap filling. You need a sliding fit, but the ferrule should not rattle on the cane. If the flames do not appeal to you,  you can apply  the stuff as described earlier, and just let it dry overnight. Then heat the ferrule and slide it on the cane. A useful trick is to immediately wrap the tabs with copper wire, and heat that area again.  (Tom Smithwick)

          I'm somewhat perplexed by the responses of so many, regarding the materials/methods used for cementing ferrules to the rod sections. It may be agreed that using a 'cold' application is easier than applying heat. The question may be whether one is superior to the other, depending of course on the material. In my experience, the very simple method, and the best material, is that described in the G/C 'book'. 5 minute epoxy and 2 ton epoxy mixed together in equal amounts, and applied to the ferrule station and internally to the ferrule, tabs bound with  string, surplus wiped away, and allowed sufficient time to 'set', has produced (for me) satisfactory results made on rod sections so treated, twenty plus years ago. Not a lifetime (yet), that's true, but pretty good, I'd venture to say.  (Vince Brannick)

            Yeahbut what f you want to remove it without destroying the rod?  Hot melt or related would do the job.  (Dave Burley)

              Why would anyone want to remove a ferrule on a rod one made? (Vince Brannick)

                Broken ferrule?  (Mark Wendt)

                  On a rod you made? Tsk, tsk! Guess we'd just have to finish trashing the ferrule. No?  (Vince Brannick)

                    Nope, on a rod somebody else had made.  A Leonard 40 from Leonard.  The female ferrule somehow got crushed.  Didn't want to take a chance trashing the ferrule worse than it was since it might trash the cane underneath it.  It's a relatively easy job replacing a ferrule.  Why complicate it?  (Mark Wendt)

                  Loose male that needs to be replaced...  (Chris Obuchowski)

                    If it's loose, shouldn't be a problem to remove, should it? Watch out for pinning though, sometimes recommended??  (Vince Brannick)

                The buyer wants quite extensive engraving done on the rod hardware, and that is a time-consuming procedure when dealing with firearms engravers in this country.  But notwithstanding, the buyer would like to have his (otherwise finished) rod to use on a specific fishing trip, a deadline we just cannot meet with the engraved hardware.

                Ergo, I want to fit the rod with plain metalwork, let him fish his little heart out on the special trip, and then remove the plain fittings and replace them with the engraved issue when available. So I want the temporary stuff to come off easily and with no risk of heat-damaging the rod, as is a danger with Acraglas.

                As I stated, it is an unusual situation. A one-off, in fact, as I am not really very enthusiastic about the whole thing, but he is a good client.

                In fact, I believe that I will just use Ferr-L-Tite and trust that it is up to the task.  (Peter McKean)

                  Be aware that it is recommended to pin ferrules glued with Ferrultite. I made my first and most succeeding rods using Ferrultite but the first rod stood up to about 2 months usage before the ferrule started to pull loose.  At first I thought it was just the varnish cracking around the joint but it soon became evident that the ferrule was actually pulling off. Now I use that rod pretty heavily before the ferrule started to pull off so you may be OK for one trip.  After that I pinned all ferrules with no pull offs.  Last year I started using Pliobond.  (Larry Swearingen)

                    Not disparaging any other method/material. Just suggesting a safe and easy way.  (Vince Brannick)

                  With those specifics, why not use the hot melt glue sticks that we use for tip tops?  Easy to apply, holds up well, and easy to remove with just a bit of heat.  (Paul Gruver)

                    No reason to believe that hot melt glue sticks   wouldn't  work  as  well  as 'Ferr-L-Tite' or any other similar cement for the "specifics" Peter cites. If used for permanence though, loose ferrules I've encountered have usually been the result of dried out cement between the ferrule and the ferrule station. Again, usually not much of a removal problem in those cases. (except finding the pin sometimes).  (Vince Brannick)

    Flexcoat is a hot melt adhesive used for tip tops. Cabelas sells this and I think Mudhole. Janns Netcraft has it here.

    You can heat this with an alcohol lamp and even set it on fire, I think, not unlike sealing wax, it is just softer at lower temperatures.  (Dave Burley)

    Here's a little info on using Pliobond...  (Dave Collyer)


I looked through the Tips section and didn't find answers to my question, so I'll pester you guys. Is there a sneaky way to get ferrule tabs to stay down when gluing with Pliobond?  Usually I can take care of any little problem children when I wrap the ferrule.  Problem is: I am making a ferruled blank for a customer and I don't want to sent him a blank if one of the tabs decides not to play nice.

I read some where about installing the ferrule and performing the following if a tab decides not to play nice:  That would be to wrap some copper wire around the tabs and reheat the ferrule to get the glue to stick.  Does that work with Pliobond?  Usually I burn off the solvents in the Pliobond and then install the ferrule.  Never considered that you could  reactivate the contact cement with heat.  I also bend the tabs in, slightly to get them to lay flat on the blank.  Pliobond sets so fast when you burn off the solvents that wrapping the tabs to hold them in place doesn't serve much purpose in this situation.  (Pete Emmel)

    You need to tightly bind down the ferrule tabs when you glue the ferrule on with some type of string - I use binder cotton. This lets the ferrule tabs be glued in place for wrapping after you remove the string. I use professional five minute epoxy for my ferrules.  I do not know how the pliobond works for gluing but if you bind, you should be getting a much better job.  (Frank Paul)

      What 5 minute epoxy do you use? (Timothy Troester)

        I use Professional 5 Minute Epoxy made by Loctite Corp..  I purchase it at Lowes.

        Let me make one comment though. Ferrule preparation is most important. First, one must degrease the inside of the ferrules; I use a Q-Tip with alcohol as it evaporates well (you could also use acetone) but it is important to make sure there is no remaining grease. Second, I use a sharp file tip to score the inside of the ferrules in a circular motion from the bottom to top. What this does is create a ring of ridges that permit the epoxy to "grab" the metal ferrule, and keep the ferrule from being pulled off the rod. I do not pin my ferrules. I have not had any come off unless I took them off and have had no one that has had a problem.

        The nice deal with this approach is if you need to remove a ferrule, you can with heat from a heat gun and a ferrule puller - this does work as I have done it many times. The heat expands the ferrule and breaks the bond between the ferrule inner rings and the epoxy; it does take some pulling effort to remove, but it can be done.  (Frank Paul)

    I've been using 1/4 in pieces of electrical shrink tubing on my tabs to hold them down and so far  it's worked great.  (Tom Kurtis)


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