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I'm working on a rod for a Christmas present for my Mom's husband.  I'm making a Wayne C. Sir D.  I took the taper from the Hexrod archive linked from Todd's Tips Site.  The taper called for a 12/64  ferrule  - so  that's what I  ordered from REC  (Super Swiss).

Now that I have the glue scraped off and the blank sanded and marked for cutting I took some measurements at the locations where the ferrules will go. 

The flat to flat measurements are .196-.198 at the end of the sections where the ferrules will be located (obviously this gets bigger in the butt section and smaller in the tips section as you proceed down (or up) the rod).  This translates into 12.5-12.7 64th's.

My question is can I use my 12/64th ferrules or should I be using 13/64ths.  It seems 13/64ths would be a little loose, but that I'll have to sand quite a bit off the ferrule stations to make 12/64th fit.  (Keep in mind this is a Christmas present and I don't have any 13/64th ferrules).  (Aaron Gaffney)

p.s.  The butt section that started to delaminate (previous post) when I took the cord off turned out fine.  There were some small glue lines at a couple of the nodes, but after scraping and sanding off the glue they look okay.  I also slightly flattened the corners in those spots and that really helped to hind the lines.

p.s.s.  I have about 8 coats of Tru-Oil on my first rod and it looks incredible.  Thanks to Wilmer for the suggestion to use Tru-Oil.  It's very easy to apply and glosses up beautifully as more coats are applied.  After 4 more coats or so the finish should look like glass.

    My advice is to go ahead and sand or file down the cane so that the ferrules fit.  Take your time doing this and you will be amazed how nice they will turn out.

    You're only talking a half thousands or so.  It will go quicker than you think. (Joe Byrd)

      Personally, If the measurement goes at a 0.5 64ths or higher between a full size I use the next larger size, which in this case would be 13/64ths. But,  I would use the 12/64ths since you already have it. Be aware though, half a 64ths is just under 0.008 (8 thousandths), so you will have to remove that much bamboo to fit the 12/64ths. Be real careful to taper the cane under the serrations out to the full existing diameter.  (Darryl Hayashida)

    Measure the depth of the ferrule, then measure the length of the serration. Find the dimension on the blank for the ferrules and cut accordingly. Then mark the blank for the depth on  the ferrule and again where the ferrule serration is, starting sanding and fitting to the mark for the serration once the fit starts getting close, move your sanding out to the final mark tapering the blank to accommodate the flattened and tapered ferrules, everything will fit  together nicely.   (Pete Van Schaack)

    The Sir D 7' 4 wt has been my favorite taper and have made many of them. I find that  at 42 3/8" for the tip section  is .203 across the flats. I have used 13/64 ferrules on all the ones I have made.  (Tony Spezio)


At what point to people round up a ferrule size?  I'm building a heavy chuck'n'duck rod which should measure 15.2/64 at the ferrule.  (I'll know tonight when I scrape off the glue.) My inclination is to use a 16/64 ferrule.  Do people have a rule of thumb they would share?  (Frank Stetzer, Hexrod, Taper Archive, Rodmakers Archive)

    What I  have  always  gone  by  is  if  your  bamboo  measures 15.499/64 round down,  if it is 15.5 or higher round up.   (Joe Byrd)

    I dislike the idea of removing any material at all from the flats of a ferrule station.  So unless my ferrule is within just a hair's breadth of my flat-to-flat dimension, I always go up to the next size.  I realize this practice sometimes adds a little more weight than may be absolutely necessary, but I prefer that over the risk of weakening an area that is already vulnerable to high stresses.

    It's true that the metal surrounding the cane at a ferrule station more than compensates in strength for the cane that may have been filed away to accommodate a fit, and we also know that a rod never breaks within a ferrule. My concern, however, is with the transition from any filed-down area under the tabs, outward and away from the ferrule.  If too steep (to accommodate the smaller ferrule), you are creating a point of extremely high stress at the end of the ferrule.  I believe it is a better practice simply to step up to the next size ferrule, thus retaining all the cane you can.  (Bill Harms)

    I did a rod where I ran into the same problem, and made the mistake of rounding down. You end up taking off too much cane for safety, and if the round ferrule station is smaller than the Hexagonal portion of the blank, it just looks silly. the ferrule tabs stick up and there is a slight but noticeable swell. the transition from shaft to ferrule station is awkward. I always round up, even if it is close to the smaller size.

    Learned this the hard way. I ended up rebuilding the ferrule station with slivers of cane, then turning it to its original diameter, then going with the larger ferrule.  (Jeff Schaeffer)


I am using the PHY perfectionist taper submitted by George Maurer in the RodDNA program.  This corresponds with the values given to me by Dave Norling.  When I last met with Dave he examined my finished butt section and showed me how to determine the size ferrule to order.  Of course I forgot whether the size was 12 or 13/64ths after I got home so I grabbed the RodDNA printout.  It said 9/64ths!  I looked at the other two adjacent entries and both the perfectionist 7' and the 7.5' have similar sizes at the ferrule stations (201 and 203) and call for a 9/64ths.  The perfectionist II has 210 and calls for a 14/64ths ferrule!  This seems too great of a difference by my little brains thought process.  Is there an error in the entry or my thought process, shouldn't the 9/64ths really be 13/64ths?  (Ralph Tuttle)

    When you have the appropriate PHY selected in RodDNA, click on Tools -> Calculate Ferrule Sizes...

    This will recalculate the ferrule size according to the taper information.  A lot of the tapers have the incorrect ferrule info until you manually calculate  them.  It is a 13/64 BTW.  (Chris Carlin)

    When it comes to ferrule sizes, the various PC apps are pretty suspect. If Maurer presents the same taper in his book than I would use that at your reference for ferrule size.

    As a beginner this is a pet peeve of mine. You know the saying "trust but verify"? Well, it's particularly apt when using PC apps for as a taper source. If you can find the original source, always go to that.  (Jim Lowe)

    RodDNA contains a lot of models/tapers that were submitted or gathered from various sources.  I decided to only correct the obvious errors and to leave questionable values, like ferrule sizes as they were defined by the author.

    You can, if you like, use the ferrule size calculator in RodDNA.  I have found it extremely accurate, as the calculations are very simple.  (Larry Tusoni)

    I’m in the process of finishing up three Perfectionists and just installed the ferrule sets.  Calculations come up with 13.44  64ths rounded up to 14. That’s what I used and they were a fine fit.  (Al Baldauski)

    Thanks to all that responded.  I guess I was a little too tactful when I posted my message.  I wasn't asking what was the right ferrule size, I was trying to gently inform other users that the RodDNA data is less than perfect.

    Before anyone suggests that everyone should always check and recheck and reread every step, I already know that.  That is how I found the discrepancy.

    As a Newbie to the group I appreciate all of the tools and help we receive through this community.  I am further blessed by having someone nearby that is willing to take time and patience to demonstrate and discuss the art of rod making.  Not everyone is so fortunate.

    It seems to me that allowing a discrepancy in a taper to exist without comment does a disservice to those who are just beginning to learn this craft.  If I had not had Dave Norling's help I might have accepted the RodDNA data without question and purchased and filed and fitted a 9/64s ferrule onto my first rod.

    Larry Tusoni has stated that he feels it inappropriate to modify tapers entered by others.  He is probably right.  Thanks for your good work on the program.  There is however a place within the RodDNA program for comments. Wouldn't it be appropriate to inform the user that there exists a vast discrepancy between standard practices and this specific taper?  If I had tried to replicate a master's rod and was off on a station by 62 thousandths everyone would call me careless at best, more likely inept.  I know there is room for variance but 4 to 5/64ths is quite a lot and Newbie could use a little help.  No one suggested that the 9/64ths was appropriate, maybe a comment would help.  (Ralph Tuttle)

      As the one who supplied most of the tapers in RodDNA I must say that there may be, no, are mistakes in what I provided.  I just collected and entered the data I did not check to see if the data I collected was correct or not. If the taper I found said a 15 ferrule that is what I entered without checking.  Always double check.  Remember also on the tapers that unless they come from a book from the maker like Wayne or Garrison you may find dozens of tapers for a rod and they may all be correct according to variations when they were made and changes as them went by but kept the same name.  (David Ray)

        All the same, your contribution of time and information has been appreciated by many. If there would be an error it wasn't from the lack of generosity or devotion to the craft.  (Timothy Troester)

      Anyone who builds a Paul Young Driggs rod and doesn't think it is a modification of the original is fooling only themselves. I have built several and like what I have built a lot but at best it is my version.  (Timothy Troester)

      I certainly agree with you, but was hoping that users of RodDNA would help in this process, that is why I added the ability to add/view comments.  To be fair, RodDNA is not the only program out there with these potential issues.  Since you pointed out this issue perhaps you should enter a comment about it.  (Larry Tusoni)


My Holiday project was to take all the leftover strips laying about the shop and make some Franken rods so I would actually have something to fish with this year.

I did a Paul Young Midge using the taper in "The Lovely Reed". It is planed out and ready to glue, but then and only then I noticed something. At the ferrules, the tip section is .172, but the butt is .188. This corresponds to 11/64 male and 12/64 female. A rather substantial drop that I did not anticipate.

1. Did I misinterpret something here?

2. If this the way it was supposed to be how are you Midge makers dealing with this?

    a. a step down ferrule,  or do  one of the following for a Super-Swiss:

    b. Build up the tip ferrule stations

    c.  it by turning down the butt a bit more than just rounding the corners.

    d. Put the butt strips back in the forms and tweak the taper so the ferrule station diameter matches the tip. But how far down the butt did you start modifying the taper, and how did it turn out?

What did you do, and how did it work? I feel like an idiot for not have noticed this sooner, but if feeling like an idiot was important to me I never would have started making cane rods because it happens on an hourly basis when in the shop. About every two hours when I'm not in the shop.  (Jeff Schaeffer)

    In looking at the way the taper is presented, I would have built the rod the same way you did. I would suggest that you use the step down ferrules. The taper description says this is a fast action rod, and the step down looks deliberate to me.

    You could use #12 SuperZ's and build up the seat area in the tips to accommodate the larger diameter, but there will be a slightly bulky look and a bit more weight built in. In no case should you turn down the butt to accept the #11 ferrule. It's too much of a neck down, and you will be asking for trouble.  (Tom Smithwick)

    When I built one, I used a regular 12 SuperZ style ferrule and glued toothpicks to the flats for the tip section.  I then turned down the tip section.  I would agree with Tom and say that the ferrule looked a little bulky, a step down would probably look nicer, but if you are just going to fish the thing I would not worry about it.  I would not turn down the butt section to fit an 11 ferrule.  It is a great little rod.  (Mark Babiy)

    If it were me I'd be inclined to make the SupperZ as an 11 on the male end and a 12 inside on the butt end. Giving you about .008" less wall thickness on the female end. No bulky look and slightly less weight. Maybe not a "Snake Killer Rod" but it should fish well.  (Don Schneider)


Hey all.  In response to my recent question on whether or not to put step-down ferrules on my Driggs River (for which I'm still not entirely sure of the answer) Harry sent me an old post detailing the actual planing form numbers from Paul Young for the Driggs River (Larry Blan had also sent me the same post several months ago).  I'll copy it below.

My question has to do with how the rod was measured and how that might effect my dimensions.  According to the post it was measured on six inch centers starting from the butt end of each section. 

Therefore, if I'm thinking right the 0" point of the butt section represents the butt end of the rod, or 86" since its a 7'2" rod.  The 42" station of the butt section falls one inch short of the section length (43 inches) so the tip of the butt section would have to extend 1 inch past the 42 inch station.

Likewise, for the tip section the 0" station represents the butt end of the tip, or the ferrule location.  While the 42" station falls 1 inch short of the actual tip so the tip of the rod would have to extend 1 inch beyond that.

If I'm right with the above 2 paragraphs, then I think I might need to adjust my taper.  I used the taper from the Hexrod archive which lists a tip of .070.   But if  the tip is actually 1 inch beyond that, then the actual tip dimension should probably be a little smaller, say .066 or so.

This same line of thought also changes some of the other dimensions.  For instance if you assume a constant change between 6 inch stations, you could come up with what the dimensions should be at each inch interval.  Doing so changes the dimensions I used (based on 5 inch intervals) quite a bit almost everywhere.

For example, my 10 inch station is .109, but extrapolating between the six inch stations gives a dimension of .105.  My 30 inch station is .160, but on six inch centers should be .157.  My 60 inch station is .245, on six inch centers it should be .238.

I listed the numbers I came up with compared to the Hexrod numbers in an attached spreadsheet.  Maybe someone could comment on my thinking and tell me where I'm wrong.  I'd just like to bounce it off someone and my wife isn't really interested.  (Aaron Gaffney)


As I said earlier the Driggs or Driggs  River Special  was a  7' 2" rod - named for a UP stream - I have cast the original when it was in the shop. All Youngs were made on 6" center spacings starting at the butt so the original listing is as follows:

0" - 203"
6" - 190"
12" - 160"
18" - 150"
24" - 138"
30" - 115"
36" - 095"
42" - .070"

0" - 265"
6" - 265"
12" - 265"
18" - 260"
24" - 245"
30" - 225"
36" - 215"
42" - 205"

End of Wayne's post


    Would it not be easier to just set the forms at each 6" measurement instead of figuring the 5" stations. That is what I do when I have 6" station numbers.  (Tony Spezio)

      Yes, that is exactly what I would do.  I guess my point was that I was surprised what a difference it made in the taper.

      Also, my question was in how to read the taper when measure from the butt end, instead of the tip end.  Since each section will be 43 inches, where does the extra inch go?  At the tip end of the measurements or at the butt end?  (Aaron Gaffney)

        What you have to do is turn the measurements around. You know that the rod is 86" long, so given the starting point at the end of the butt to be 86", the next given dimension up is at 80", then 74", etc. The tricky part is when you get to the ferrules. Keep those dimensions at the target to plane to, but keep going towards the tip with your progression counting backwards from the butt. The odd dimensions at 43" and at the tip will be figured by Hexrod. Or you can just graph it out and extrapolate where your planing forms need to be set. I think it's very unhandy to try to set the forms away from the stations, so I always convert tapers to 5" centers figured from the tip, so far, the rods all work, though I'm not sure how close to the originals they are and I really don't care as long as the rods turn opt to cast the line I intended them for and do it well. I don't make clones and don't care to, I always mess with tapers anyway.  (John Channer)

      Another simple method to convert back and forth from 6 inch stations  to  five  is  to  get  a  plain  piece  of  graph paper,  take  the X-axis, horizontal, that is, and lay out the rod's length in inches(say 90 inches). Then go back to the point where you started and go mark off in the vertical  direction the  rod diameter  (say zero to .400 inches.). Now if you are given six inch stations, like in my old days, just go along the X-axis and mark off each six-inch station, and at each of them move straight up on the Y-axis and put a dot at the given rod diameter for that station. Then connect those dots in a smooth  curve.  Now  you  have it all.  You  go back on  the X-axis with 5-inch intercepts, move up in the Y direction 'til you hit your curve and that is your finish dimension .

      After reading this back, maybe Tony's method is better.  (Bill Fink)

        RodDNA does it for you automatically.  I was fiddling with some EC Powell tapers that were on 6" centers and the software did it without asking.  (Olaf Borge)

          This thread has popped up a couple times over the past weeks. And it got me thinking. The conventional wisdom is that step down ferrules were often used to create a slight drop in diameter between the butt and tip. But Young made parabolic tapers that had relatively stiff mid sections. It seems like a step down ferrule would almost defeat the purpose of a para action by enhancing flex in the tip section right where you would not want much taper at all! So what I am not understanding here?   (Jeff Schaeffer)

    This is one of those situations where you normally have to make your best guess. Figure the ferrule length, the tip top, get out the Ouija Board, pour a drink, and then have at it. In this case, though, I know that Wayne knows that I know that he knows how the rod is put together.  Perhaps he would share that with us?  (Larry Blan)

      I probably didn't phrase my questions very well.  I know what I want to say, but can't seem to get it written down.

      If I want to take Wayne's numbers and put them in Hexrod would I put in...

      0    0.070   - or -     1   .070
      43    .203   - or -   42   .203


      I just wasn't sure when measuring from the butt end of the sections where to add the extra inch to bring it to 43 inches.   (Aaron Gaffney)

        You can also draw it out yourself, on graph paper, to find your dimensions.  (David Dziadosz)

    I'm still pretty new to this bamboo stuff, but here's how your problem struck me.  It looks to me like the 0" dimension is at the butt of the sections, thus the extra inch should probably go on the tip end.

    With that in mind I flipped the dimensions and combined them to get

    1   0.070
    7   0.095
    13  0.115
    19  0.138
    25  0.150
    31  0.160
    37  0.190
    43  0.203
    44  0.205
    50  0.215
    56  0.225
    62  0.245
    68  0.260
    74  0.265
    80  0.265
    86  0.265

    You can put that the way it is into hexrod and it calculates 5" stations for you. I got the following:

    0  0.066
    5  0.087
    10  0.105
    15  0.123
    20  0.140
    25  0.150
    30  0.158
    35  0.180
    40  0.197
    45  0.207
    50  0.215
    55  0.223
    60  0.238
    65  0.253
    70  0.262
    75  0.265
    80  0.265
    85  0.265
    86  0.265

    The first taper is the version input with 6" stations as given and second is the adjusted version with 5" stations. As you Can see they are very close, though the original is slightly smoother.

    The difference arises because (as you did on your spreadsheet) Hexrod uses a linear approximation between EACH station to calculate the interior dimensions at 1" intervals instead of a spline curve. Because rods are made with steel planing forms the actual taper of any given rod is going to be a smooth curve passing through the points measured. You could try reentering the taper into Excel and plotting it, then doing a line fit and playing with the polynomial order until you get the smoothest curve. Then you should be able to find the actual dimensions at any point.

    My guess is, however, that the difference between these dimensions and the "adjusted" dimensions from Hexrod will be smaller than the resolution of your indicator anyway.

    And as has already been suggested, the other option is to set your forms by measuring at 6" intervals. Though, I'm guessing it would be more pain than it's worth.

    By the way, cool post. It was a fun exercise for me.  (Mark Shamburg)


I am in the process of building my first bamboo rod. I have finished bamboo blanks and am in the process of fitting the ferrules. The problem is that where I live (Colombia, South America) it is a little difficult to find the exact ferrule size. The smallest ferrule I could find is still a little too large. I was wandering if I could use masking tape or glue some extra wood to the ferrule station to build up its diameter and get a tight fit with the ferrule.  (Hector Gonzalez)

    Here is a great tip I received form the list:

    Take cut off from each strip and epoxy them enamel side to the enamel side of your ferrule station. Turn down in your lathe to the ferrule inner dimensions. Works great, especially when trying to get a round ferrule on a square rod.  (Bob Maulucci)

    Yes you can, depending on much bigger the ferrule is, You can take some some pieces of cane (power fibers) and glue them to the blank. Turn the enhanced ferrule station until it fits in the ferrule. Now if you can not get a smooth transition from the tabs of the ferrule to the blank you can take some epoxy and make a transition from ferrule tab to the blank. Sand the epoxy to blend in the taper of ferrule and bamboo and when it dries you can wrap over the epoxy up the ferrule. It will look very nice.  (Adam Vigil)


I planed the parts to final dimensions this afternoon and it went very well. I almost made one mistake though I forgot to think about shrinking after heat treating. The last part of the butt was already the right diameter. I did not taper before heat treating so it was no problem.

But anyway, I searched the archives and found out about two ways to calculate what ferrules I need (when I square them) but when I calculate it I get two different sizes. Which one is right? or better yet, what am I doing wrong?

The diameter of my rod is 0.181 at the ferrule.

1) diameter X 1.41 x 0.80 x 64
2) Rod diameter times four divided by pi.

1) 0.181 x 1.41 x 0.8 x 64 = size 13
2) 0.181 x 4 / 3.14 = 0.230  (which would be size 15)  (Danny Heus)

    I divide the diameter by .015625

    1/64th is .015625  (Joe West)

      I keep a little chart next to the workbench that has a list of x/64's converted to decimal...  Less strain on the brain.  (Mark Wendt)

        I put a little chart along with the Super Z chart on a 8 1/2 x 11 and laminated it. Hangs of the wall in back of the lathe so I can FIND IT and it doesn't get spotted with oil.  (Don Schneider)

        I gotta do that too. A calculator and .015625 is very time consuming!  (Joe West)

    In that case multiply the flat to flat dimension by 4.  This gives the perimeter which is equal to the circumference of the theoretical circle of the ferrule you want. Divide the circumference (perimeter) by 3.14 to get the diameter of the theoretical circle then divide the diameter by 0.0156 to get 64ths diameter.


    0.181 x 4 = 0.724

    0.724 / 3.14 = 0.230

    0.230 / 0.0156 =  14.78   (64ths)  round up to 15 or 16 if you don't get your ferrule exactly squared out.

    All of this above reduces to:

    64ths diameter = Flat to Flat dimension x 81.66  (Al Baldauski)

    If you are talking about quad ferrules that you are intending to swage (square). Use a 12/64ths broach in a 13/64ths ferrule for your rod. Use a step down style ferrule for best results. It is essential that you use a ferrule with no serrations. Otherwise the metal will split when you insert the broach (I know it is not technically a broach but that is what many call it).

    If it is a quad you are using round ferrule on you do indeed need a 15/64 ferrule.  This will look rather large and goofy, but it works.

    If you are using a hex ferrule, I apologize for confusing you, you need a 12.  (Bob Maulucci)

      I have 3 different sizes now though 13 ,14 and 15.

      Mathematics was never my strong side. I am still confused.

      Does it matter how I intend to square the ferrules? If there are different way's to do it that is.  (Danny Heus)

        The instructions that I use and that I know work (when I square them, but that is a long story) are from Jeff Wagner. If you get his broaches for squaring you will get a long explanation of how they work and how to determine the size. The 12 broach in the 13 ferrule is right out of Jeff's sample on his instruction page. Here's a link to Jeff's site.  (Bob Maulucci)

      I don't know about round ferrules looking goofy.  I have never seen a ferrule that was squared up that looked quite right.  You should also mention that if you're going to square up the ferrules you should really anneal the nickel silver to keep it from cracking.

      I've put round ferrules on my PMQs, and think they look just fine.  However, I go up one size from what I'd use on a hex rod, build up the flats with strips of bamboo, turn the station round and then taper the bamboo strips to blend into the blank.

      I also think the formulas you guys are using are unnecessarily complicated.  I just multiply the flat-to-flat measurement by 64 and round up for a hex rod.  So 0.181 X 64 = 11.584 that rounds to 12/64 for a hex so I'd use a 13/64 for a quad.  (Robert Kope)

        A round Super Z looks pretty goofy on a square rod, although I don't mind the look of a step down. Personally, I have been using unserrated step downs with minimal squaring and they look fantastic.  Formulas? I don't usually use them myself, I just pull some ferrules outta the supply and look them over. However, if you don’t have a bunch of ferrules on hand it sure is confusing. Personally I like Jeff's guidelines. For most rods, use the same size broach in the next size up ferrule. Most of my quads are 13 and 14 sized ferrules.   (Bob Maulucci)

    The diameter of my rod is 0.181 at the ferrule.

    1)  diameter X 1.41 x 0.80 x 64

    Danny, this is my empirical formula when using round super Z ferrules for quads, but you round up to the next size to get the final quad ferrule size.

    Your diameter is 0.181

    Ferrule Size = 0.181 X 1.41 X 0.8 X 64 = 13.1, round up to size 14.

    If the super Z is too large then it starts to look strange, but if you size it correctly, crown and thin the tabs, then square the tabs it will look great, and easier than broaching the ferrule square and you wont have any square corners to worry about cracking later.  Good luck!  (Kyle Druey)


If a ferrule size is sold in 64th increments, do you just take the actual measurement of the bamboo that needs to be fit (say .165) and then convert the ferrule size by division (10/64 actually equals .156)?  Anyone already have a table drawn up?  (Louis DeVos)

    Multiply .156x64 = 9.984 or 10/64 #10 ferrule.  (Pete Van Schaack)

    Just multiply the dimension by 64 then round up.

    Attached is an excel spread sheet with 64th decimal equivilants.  (Mark Shamburg)


I have just been testing some things and measuring my first tip section for ferruling. I know the flat to flat is 0.200 on mine at the cut area. I have a #14 ferrule set that I read was the correct ferrule based on the archives in RodDNA.  Did I get  the wrong one? #14 is 0.218. Should I order a #13 instead or just sand it just short of totally round?  (Barry Janzen)

    Yes, just take the corners off, to get you to the .200 mark. That will work out perfect. You just don't want to go way past the corners, as you are removing too many power fibers.  (Dave LeClair)

    .002" is mighty small.  You should be fine!  (Mike Shay)

    Sorry for sounding funny, but I am down to my last "thing" to learn in my 8 month process of rod building and I just don't have my head around it yet. I know that my ferrule sounds 0.018 over sized, but how does a round ferrule with crowned tips fit neatly to a hex shape? Didn't I read in Wayne's book that the crowns should point on the edges not the flats. If so, shouldn't I be measuring the edge to edge size?

    BTW, I was able to meet Stan Smartt and a couple of other rod builders today in person. It was also my first actual look at other rod tools and pieces. I have been a phone and internet student and I think I am doing fine. Still a few bumps ahead, but my first attempts don't look that bad. My first tip section is straight and has no glue lines.  (Barry Janzen)

    The distance from corner to corner for a hex is 1.155 times the distance from flat to flat. So, the corner to corner measurement at your ferrule station is .200 x 1.155 = .231. That means you'll need to sand .231-.218 = .013 off the corners. Your ferrule will fit tightly on the corners, and you'll have 0-.009" between the ferrule and flats for glue. Perfect!  (Tom Bowden)


Just about ready for a ferrule for my Sir D. If I calculated right I believe I need a 11/64 but I'm not certain (turns out I figured out later I needed a 12/64). Does anyone have a Sir D handy that they might take the measurement from for me?  (Wayne Caron)

    12 for mine.  (Pete Van Schaack)

    I come up with .203, and use 13 on all that I make.  (Tony Spezio)

    I figure 0.193 so I use a size 12 ferrule.  I'm not sure that we are using the same taper.  Where did you get yours?  (Hal Manas)

      I get .193 too, and a 12 is .1875. I dislike removing fibers from the very centers of the flats so I use a 13 as well. At .203 it sits a bit proud of the flat centers, but it sits ON enough of the rounded corners for me.  (Art Port)

        I also get .193. This works out to 12.35/64ths for the flat-flat measurement, and 14.2/64ths for the corner-corner. (12.35 x 1.15 = 14.20). So a 13/64ths ferrule is perfect. (Tom Bowden)

    It's not that complicated. If you’ve built the blank, measure it at the ferrule station, convert to 64ths, round up to the next size if you fall in between and buy accordingly. If you haven't built the blank yet, buy the one that fits the taper you use and give yourself enough leeway at each end to trim it where it needs to fit the ferrule you've ordered.  (John Channer)


When sizing ferrules do you go up or down in size?

What do you do when a blank measures dead in the middle of the band?  Which way do you go.  Remove more power fibers or build up the blank?

Hypothetical  Situation:  Blank  size  is  .1495".   A  9/64"  ferrule is .1406" and a 10/64" ferrule is .1562".  (Pete Emmel)

    When the ferrule station is X.4/64ths or larger, round up.  When X.39/64ths or smaller, round down.  In the case you presented, I round up to a 10/64ths ferrule.  (Harry Boyd)

    Round up: the distance across the corners is a whole lot bigger than across the flats.  Always take off less rather than more if you can help it... If you're cutting into the flats your asking the rod to break at the edge of the female ferrule.  (Chris Obuchowski)


I am building a rod that  has  a  ferrule  station  measuring .190 flat-to-flat.  This calculates out to 12.16/64.  I cut the station to fit a size 12 and did not feel good about the cut into the power fibers on the butt side (~.007).  The tip side is only ~.0005.  These are measured just outside the tabs to the smallest diameter inside the ferrule.  I am debating on several options.

A) Go ahead and use the 12/64 super Z  

B) Make a repair ferrule with a 13/64 socket on the butt side.

What rule of thumb does everybody use to pick ferrule sizes?  When do you go to the next size up?  Do you only use the measurement at the ferrule station to determine size or do you take into account the taper and where the tabs will end up?

I noticed this when I built a Dickerson 8013 that the ferrule station was a little undercut on the butt section side.  It calculated to a 13.09 at the ferrules station.  (Gary Young)

PS.  The rod is a 7'6" Sir D.  I was talking to another list member who pointed out that Cattanach specifies a 13/64 ferrule for that rod.......boy, did I feel like an idget.  Sometimes if I am not moving backwards I'm not moving at all.

    Bob Milward gave me his rule for ferrule sizing in writing so I can refer to it now for you. It is: 1.02 to 1.1 max. ID ferrule. So if you have a ferrule station of .212 you would use a #14 for instance. You don't ever cut into the dimension of the flats in other words. I hope this makes sense but if not then I can provide further explanation.  (Don Ginter)

      I will need a bit more explanation, sometimes I do not pick up on the obvious as quickly as others.

      So does Bob M. prescribe increasing the ferrule station measurement by 2% to 10% then sizing so it does not exceed the nominal socket size?

      In my example this would yield either a size 13 or 14 depending on which increase you use.  In your example it would yield either a size 14 or 15.

      Ferrule Station  (in 64ths)   1.02        1.1
      0.19                    12.16     0.1938     0.209
      0.212                  13.568   0.21624    0.2332

      Ferrule Size    Socket Size  
      12                    0.188  
      13                    0.203  
      14                    0.219  
      15                    0.234  

      When do you choose using 1.02 or 1.1?  (Gary Young)

        I don't think it's because you're slow, I think it's because it's a little tricky to understand and I didn't explain it well. So here it is again: Milward will take the rod design dimension of the ferrule station which is the same on both the butt and tip section. So let's use .212 as an example. That means that the rod section can't be turned any smaller than that dimension. That means that the rod will require the ferrule that will be at least 1.02 times that size or larger, up to 1.1 times that size. So we  go  to  the  ferrule  chart  and  choose  a  #14 which is .21875 or .219. So .212 rod size X 1.02 = .216 and .212 X 1.1 = .233.  Your  parameters  for  the  ferrule  are between .216 and .233. And now you turn your rod sections down so they will fit the  #14 ferrule to your liking. This is to be quite loose if you're using epoxy and not so loose if you are using some other glue. I won't go into that right now but suffice to say that epoxy wants a lot of room.

        An easy way to do this is to just take the size of the ferrule stations as designed by what the taper dictates and then go straight to the chart. The only thing is with this is that if you had a .219 ferrule station you would have a hard time getting a #14 ferrule to fit over it, considering that there needs to be space for the adhesive. Would you turn the ferrule station down enough so it would fit the #14? I think that Milward wouldn't and would go to the next bigger size. But I'm not exactly sure about that.

        Now that's my understanding of the procedure but maybe we could get Ron Grantham or Harry Boyd to chime in and give us their interpretation?  (Don Ginter)

          In the case originally described by Gary, I would use the size 12.

          If the measurements are 12.4/64ths or less I use a size 12.  If they are 12.41/64ths or greater, I use a size 13.  (Harry Boyd)

            Thanks for adding that Harry. I stick to the decimal measurements and so didn't try to relate to Gary's numbers. Too lazy to get out the calculator and convert them also so I'm thinking that your sizing is pretty much consistent with Milward's. Yes/No?  (Don Ginter)


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