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I have a female ferrule to re-mount on a rod and it has no water seal.  I’m thinking about turning a false male slide and inserting it to keep the epoxy from contaminating the female’s slide area. After the epoxy has set a bit I would remove the false male slide to keep it from bonding also.   Is there a better way to go about this or is this the way to do it?  (Mike Monsos)

    I have some Wright and McGill ferrules that don't have a water seal, I think they are size 12. what I have done is to coat the end of the blank with 5 minute epoxy then when I mount the ferrule I simply can take a Qtip with denatured alcohol and clean up the inside of the slide area and still have the blank sealed. Hope this makes sense.  (Joe Arguello)

    Many of the coarse fishing rods that I restore do not have water seals so this is the procedure I adopt.

    Apply epoxy to the inside of the female to within 1/4 " of where the cane will finish.

    Using a sharpened piece of cane as a scraper remove as much as possible of what you have just applied.

    Apply a generous amount of epoxy to the cane with a light smear on the end.

    Insert the cane with a twisting motion to just before the final position, align the tabs and finally position.

    Allow to cure standing upright with the ferrule upwards.

    If you look in the open end of the female with a light you should see just a thin ring of epoxy that will act as a seal.  If there is too much build up there are two choices, pull it all apart, clean off with alcohol and start again or wait until it sets partially and then scrape off the excess.

    Alternatively you could solder in a water seal.  (Gary Marshall)

    I apply a bit of epoxy to the rod end and let it harden. After it hardens clean up the sides flush with the bamboo so that the ferrule slides on like it should. Apply epoxy to the rod section without getting any on the top where the hard epoxy is. Twist the ferrule down on the rod section. This will keep any Epoxy from getting into the female end of the ferrule and distribute the Epoxy on the inside of the ferrule. The excess Epoxy will slide down ahead of the ferrule. This has worked for me real well with no mess to clean up in the female. If you have a right size punch and some thin nickel silver sheet, you can punch out a seal and glue it to the end of the rod for a seal. I have also done that.  (Tony Spezio)

    You can also use JB Weld to mount with.  It should form a water seal for you.  (Brian Morrow)

    I use those little hot-melt glue sticks that are made specifically for mounting tip tops and ferrules.  Similar to what Tony does, I seal the end of the bamboo with glue, and let it set up, then I smear the proper amount of glue around the rod, heat the ferrule slightly (so the glue doesn't set up on contact) and slide it on with a slight twist to spread the glue.  Hold it 5-seconds and it's done.  The glue becomes the water seal, for what it's worth.  (Paul Gruver)


Ferrule moisture plugs....why?   Why do we think they are required?  If the ferrule is lapped properly no excessive moisture should get in, unless you are scuba diving with rod in hand.  Bamboo ferrules don't have em, do they?  Spar varnish is not 100% impervious to moisture intrusion.  So what's the deal?  This question really arises when I think of impregnated rods.

Seems like extra machining steps to me and extra steps equal money or time.  (Pete Emmel)

    Here's one thought, I have some vintage Wright and McGill/ Grainger/ Phillipson ferrules which don't have moisture plugs in them! What I do when I use these is to cut the cane to fit the ferrules, then I simply take some 5 min epoxy and coat the very end of the blank that is going to be in the ferrule, then I use Rod Bond to set the ferrules. The 5 minute epoxy serves as the moisture plug and I can take a q tip with denatured alcohol to clean up the inside of the ferrule of Rod Bond without worrying about leaving the  blank end raw! Hope my rambling makes sense.  (Joe Arguello)

    I have fly fished for almost 35 years, most of which has been with bamboo and have never used a ferrule plug in my life.  It's non use has never effected the rod or ferrule of any rods I've ever owned in any way.

    I personally don't see the need for them.  (Scott Bahn)

      They definitely add a certain panache to a rod, but they are unfortunately easy to lose.  (David Zincavage)

        Sorry for the confusion, I wasn't referring to ferrule plugs that protect the inside of the ferrule.  I am referring to the metal dam installed or machined in the ferrule to cover the end of the Bamboo blank.  (Pete Emmel)

        Are we still talking about the moisture barriers incorporated in the ferrule to seal the bamboo socket from the male slide socket in the female ferrule?

        Seems if you are completely confident in your glue/pin attachment, they may not be required.  (Gary Young)


Reviewing the video presentations graciously made available to such as I, there is now an understanding of the many facets of ferrule production. However, being deficient in a number of areas, IE: hearing and sight, being deaf in one ear and not hearing well with the other, and not having a very fast focus on either eyeball, I'm somewhat handicapped in grasping all that is being shown and described. For example, the means and methods for affixing moisture seals in the end of a male ferrule, and somewhere in the female ferrule, had somehow eluded my perception of how the slugs (for lack of a better term) were actually made, and in the case of the female, located in the sleeve, especially with regard to soldering them in place. I have read with interest of the use of an alternate  material, but would appreciate learning more about the traditional methods. The videos are definitely helpful in many aspects, and truly appreciated, but there seems to be a lack of detailed written material on the subject, if in fact there's enough interest to warrant such an effort. Would welcome comment/criticism. (Vince Brannick)

    I punch "blanks" out of sheet nickel silver.  A blank punch is a little different than a hole punch.  The former is designed to punch a nice round "blank" out of the sheet, and the latter is designed to punch a nice round hole in the sheet.  Dimensions are different, and clearances are based on the thickness of the material being punched.

    Sounds like a lot of builders on the list also turn theirs out of round stock.

    If you want a couple of hundred in a few minutes, punching is the way to go.  (Chris Raine)

      Your method of producing moisture seals indicates (to me), a need to build a punch and die set ~ ala R. Venneri of Saugerties. I'm in the process of finding materials to do that. The reference to the videos that I've viewed was in respect to the wish that additional information had been included, with a bit more clarity regarding the moisture seals. This definitely isn't a criticism ~ the taping and presentation is certainly laudable and appreciated. The focus of interest with the moisture seals may be of minor concern to the majority of those more knowledgeable about the making of ferrules with tubing. The few ferrules that I've made were from barstock and I simply leave a 'web' in female, and part-off the male at the proper location. Trouble is, I'm about out of material for that ~ am reluctant to use 3/4" stock to make 3/16th 'slugs', and do have a sheet of .025 thousandth nickel silver. With the barstock 'slugs' my male end caps were shouldered, and it appeared in the videos that it may be necessary to just insert and solder in a plug, which may be much easier with a punch-out.  (Vince Brannick)

      Since NS is basically white brass, you can use yellow brass rod to make your moisture seals (and I do). I silver solder from the cane side (not the slide side) of the ferrule using liquid flux. I've made ferrules this way going on ten years now with no problems or failures. I also use yellow brass for the welts on the open end of the female barrel.  (Chris Obuchowski)

      I do the same as Chris, IE use yellow brass rod. I turn down a section that will make a dozen of so plugs and and then cut it into plug size using a Dremel tool. I use high strength Loctite to hold the plug in position but just make sure you totally clean out the ferrule after using Loctite as it is very difficult to part the ferrule if there is any Loctite left in the female ferrule (guess how I know).  (Ian Kearney)

    I make ferrules out of drawn tubing.

    I have friends who use a punch press to knock out their seals, one after another, out of NS sheet.  You can sometimes get punch presses pretty cheap, but the dies can cost you.

    I'm much "lower-volume" that those guys, so I turn each seal out of round NS bar stock. sells nickel silver 792 in 1/8, 1/4, 3/8 and, I think 7/16 diameters, by the foot.  That's where I bought mine.  one foot of rod will make a lot of seals.  I just turn them to size, then part them off.  Chris' idea to use brass is good in my opinion, probably cheaper and easier to find.

    For positioning the seal at the right spot in the female, I take a cut off peg from the butt of one of my rods, turn an end down to just loose for the ferrule in question, and I turn it down for the length of my slide, say 800 thousandths.  So I clamp the bamboo peg in the vise, put the female (welt-down) on the peg.  The welt will rest on the shoulder of the bamboo where I stopped turning. Then slide or tap in the moisture seal from above (want a tight fit so solder doesn't drip down inside the slide-part of the female - it sucks when that happens and you don't notice until later...). Until it seats on the end of the bamboo peg.  Then solder it in.  Everything must be cleaned properly of course.  The bamboo peg chars a bit, but when it goes bad, just turn another.

    That's just my way, but it works.

    Personally, I think ferrule-making is one of the most fun parts of rodmaking.  (Lee Koch)

      The most detailed answer to the question yet. Had pondered what material and configuration to use as a 'station' stop. How thick are the discs you part-off? And are you able to keep both sides perfectly flat? Another question relates to the actual soldering process. Do you 'tin' the perimeter of the water seal first?  Apply flux before inserting the seal? And how do you keep the end cap from "blowing out" due to the heat when soldering in the male? I had that happen with one of my shouldered end caps ~ and never did find the little bugger. I like the thought of using nickel silver rod and will search 'onlinemetals', not so fond of using brass, but I do have an ample quantity of that. It's okay for 'home consumption' of course, but on rare occasion someone asks me for a custom rod, and I'd hesitate using anything other than nickel silver hardware. Thanks so very much for your very good advice.  (Vince Brannick)


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