I have used color preserver on a number of graphite rods in the past. However, when I use it I have to make certain that the first coat of finish gets up under the guide foot to completely seal the wrap.  From experience I know that color preserver creates a hollow around the guide foot that will get all mucked up if water gets in there.

Now, I know that things are quite a bit different for bamboo because the guides are wrapped on a more or less flat surface.  However, are there ever any problems with air pockets under preserved wraps, or maybe big bubbles in the gap after dipping the rod?  Any other bugaboos that lurk for the unsuspecting user of color preserver?  (Jason Swan)

Use color preserver, no way for me. It might look good when done but a few years later it looks like h---.  Never had any luck with it.  (Tony Spezio)

Yep, there sure are problems with air along side the guide feet, and they will plague you regardless of what kinds of cp/finish you use. The only way I have been able to get rid of them is to completely soak the wraps on the first coat, to the point that varnish bleeds out along the guide feet, then let it sit guides up in the rack while it dries. Al's Silk Color Preserver seems to keep the color best, but Varathane is more foolproof. Remember that, if you dip your rod after the guides are wrapped, that you are subjecting it to enough pressure and saturation that the varnish will creep into any voids causing a dark spot. I use 3 coats minimum on the rare occasion I have to color preserve, then put 2 coats of the same varnish I dip in over that, making sure to seal the ends of the wraps and the  openings along the guide feet. The old makers that used lacquer color preserver got away with it because they either sprayed or brushed their finish, therefore, no pressure or soaking in varnish. The rod buyers of those days also didn't expect perfection, but they did expect that if they used their rod, it was going to have to be rewrapped sooner or later because the wraps would crack.  (John Channer)

I have a shelf full of commercial color preserving stuff, and they all have one thing in common- none of them work well. Shellac or lacquer is OK, but your best bet is to coat the wraps with Varathane 900. It gives a look that is almost as bright and opaque as color preserver (at least on the colors I use) and it is much less hassle. Never had a problem with blotching when using Varathane.

Note that it has to be Varathane 900, and not any of the other brands sold by Varathane. Don't ask how I found this out. Golden witch sells it.

The bottom line is that you are going to have to do some trial and error to find the color you want. And without preserver, it is amazing how  light the  thread must  be to  have even  a medium-hued final color. But always let it get completely dry,  and get the rod out in sunlight to see how it will look under actual fishing conditions. I did some purple wraps that were black in my shop, but looked kind of cool in bright sun.  (Jeff Schaeffer)

Sounds like color preserver isn't all that popular.  It is nice to see the thread as it will look when complete, but the hassle doesn't justify color preserver for a lot of people.  I've had to rewrap two rod after a few years because water soaked in under the thread and the wraps all turned kind of cloudy white.  (Jason Swan)


How is everyone handling maintaining the color on silk thread now days.  Should I use commercial color preserver or is there another option perhaps something from Home Depot?  I had heard of using non-wax shellac, tried it and now have a quart to use on something else (didn't work).  (Doug Hall)

You might try Mike Brook's Leonard style lacquer.

Every product I have tried from Mike has worked well beyond what I expected!  (Bob Maulucci)

I'll second that, Mike's varnishes and color preserver work very well.  (John Channer)

I used Gudebrod CP, once!  Not at all happy, I put about 6 coats on and still had blotches.  I've just let the silk darken lately.  (Neil Savage)

I have never had any luck with color preserver. Even if it looks good when applied, in time it gets cloudy. At least that was my experience with graphite rods.  I have been using Gudebrod 840 rod finish on the bamboo rods for an opaque finish. The green wraps on my 4 year old bamboo rod are still looking good. I do varnish over it, no problems yet. Some colors will take on about 1/2 shade darker, not too noticeable.  (Tony Spezio)

I recently had a case where I had to use color preserver on a clients rod. Tried lots of things, and settled on Varathane 900 gloss.  It works great.  (Joe Byrd)

When Joe says Varathane 900 he means just that. Other water soluble Varathanes do not work well.  (Doug Easton)

Over the past year I have messed with three color preserving methods. Here is what I found:

Gudebrod: when it works its very, very, good, but when it doesn't it is a disaster. You need to thin this stuff to the consistency of milk using water  (not alcohol as directed), then do multiple coats. Three is minimum, four is better. I use it only when I have to because each time I have to redo a couple guides.

Lacquer: This works, but you absolutely have to do multiple coats, with the first coat thinned 50/50. Again, three coats is the minimum, I would say that four is better. I had trouble with bleed through, especially on ferrule wraps.

Varathane 900: It is the only sure way of getting it "right" the first time. Varathane is not a true color preserver, it will darken the thread slightly, and it might best be described as semi-opaque. I use this almost exclusively because I got tired of redoing wraps. But, consider this. The color darkening seems minimal for darker hues, and is more noticeable on light hues. For example, I just refinished a Heddon Bill Stanley favorite with garnet wraps tipped with goldenrod. The garnet worked fine, but the goldenrod seemed a shade too dark. It was acceptable, but just so. The owner wanted a fast rewrap job, so that was the approach we agreed on. As a restoration it would not have been right. On the other hand, for some colors it works perfectly. YLI Jade is garish with color preserver, turns black with spar, but with Varathane it is a beautiful deep green.  (Jeff Schaeffer)


Just finished dipping a rod with color preserver for the first time.  Only took three tries before I figured it out. 

What I learned:

In order for color preserver to work when dipping, you have to coat the entire wrap.  That is, well above the interface between the wrap and the blank.  Then you have have to make sure that the gap around the guide foot is completely sealed.  I then gave everything a thin coat of Crystal Coat.  You have to make sure anywhere that varnish may contact the thread is completely sealed or you will get bleed through.  (Lee Orr)

I use the U-40 color preserver, and I lay it on heavy, and wipe away the excess with my fingers.  I then put 3-4 coats of Varathane on the wraps before 3 dip coats.  So far, good results.  (Greg Kuntz)

I’ve had no end of problems with color preserver.  My first rod had bleed through difficulties, #2,3,4 had  adhesion  problems.   The water-based color preserver just doesn’t stick to varnish!  I’m done with color preserver!  I ripped a hook keeper right off the rod with a slight bump. This sentiment pretty much echoes what guys on this list told me in the first place and I didn’t want to believe it.  (Al Baldauski)

I was right in the middle of writing a reply along the same lines.

The only time I saw a stripper guide come off a rod was on a rod where the wrapper used a color preserver. It was a graphite rod though.  (Darryl Hayashida)

I used Gudebrod’s one part water based color preserver.  That might have been part of the issue.  (Lee Orr)


I have gone through the archives and could not find a definite answer/opinion on color preservative.  I am using gossamer jasper 33 and everything I have used just turns them dark if not black.  (Doug Hall)

Try Al's Silk Thread Color Preserver from Angler's Workshop. Use at least 3 coats followed by 3 coats of varnish before dipping, preferably, dip first and wrap second. If you dip after you wrap make extra sure that you seal any openings under the wraps, such as along the guide feet and where the tag pulls under or you will get blotches.  (John Channer)

I have tried a number of products but the best is Aero Gloss (airplane dope).   (Tom Mohr)

Have you tried clear model airplane dope, either butyrate or nitrate?  I think Payne used to use a shellac.  You might also try a good lacquer (model airplane dope is a kind of a lacquer).  (Mark Wendt)


I am finishing my first rod and have a few questions about wraps.

1. I have done test wraps for every Pearsalls color I can get, and have noticed that the colors change quite a bit when I use the spar varnish to seal them.  I assume this is normal, and in fact looks like older rods.  What should I use if I want to keep the color closer to the original?

2. What wraps require an overlay and which ones are just one level?  In other words, I have read that the ferrule wraps go up and then back down, where the snakes, tip, and cork wrap just go once and not over each other.  is this correct?  (Louis DeVos)

I prefer not to use anything on the threads that will keep the thread at or near its original color.  When I do use something to preserve the color, it is likely Varathane 900 or Gudebrod 822 Rod Varnish.

I do not double wrap, or over-wrap anything.  Keep those wraps as flat as possible to make them look best, IMHO.  (Harry Boyd)

"I prefer not to use anything on the threads"

Harry, interesting approach, but how do you keep the threads from unwrapping in use?  (Larry Puckett)

Harry actually said, "I prefer not to use anything on the threads that will keep the thread at or near its original color."  Meaning, he doesn't expect the color to be the same when he finishes the wraps as it was when it hit the bamboo.  (Todd Talsma)

I like Varathane Diamond Spar Urethane to preserve the color.  It's a water based spar.  It does a nice job if you like the wraps to be opaque and colorful.  (Aaron Gaffney)


I am in the process of doing the guides and wraps on Rods  2 and 3. I have been following the threads on finishes and have read the archives threads on finishes. I will be using Java Brown with Scarlet tips gossamer thread.

I have done several test wraps coated with Aero Gloss clear with an overcoat of MOW. If I take my time and do several (more than three coats of thinned material), I can get pretty good results of color preservation. If I am not careful, I get dark threads among the beautiful. I would like a better result.

What clear varnish, if any, will preserve the closest to the silk original color? I dip before I wrap so MOW is not used on the wraps unless I overcoat. I will not use commercial CP, its results are questionable.  (George Hills)

Varathane 900 Gloss.  (Larry Puckett)

I saw a post awhile back on The Classic Flyrod forum from AJ Thramer, who's probably built more bamboo rods than any maker who's still living and he swears by Al's Color Preserver from Angler's Workshop. That's good enough for me.  (Will Price)

Let me second Will's comments about Al's Color Preserver from Angler's Workshop. It works very well if you are willing to put 3 careful coats of sealer on the thread, making sure to see that the preserver wicks under the guide feet wrap area. Just my experience. One or two coats did not work for me, but since using 3 coats I have not had any problems. Knock on Wood!!  (Frank Paul)

I've found over time, that there ain't enough of ANYthing in the world to make me use color preservative. No matter how careful I am, I have at least SOME failure somewhere on the rod, which causes a "do-over". I'm too old for sandlot baseball, so do-overs are no longer in my protocols.

Find a color you like under varnish, and give it up guy. There's no gold at the end of that rainbow.  (Art Port)


Has anyone had any experience with AeroGloss as a CP?  I got a bottle today and started coating some wraps.  I understand that you should use 8 - 10 coats.  I've also heard that it has the problem of "lifting" after a season or two.

I intend to coat the rod with spar after treating the wraps.  Should I sand or remove the little bit that spills over at the edges.  (Bruce Johns)

I've just about given up on using CP. I tried AeroGloss and it lifts badly. I tried Al's Color Rite and it came out beautiful but the first time I used the rod 2 guides popped out from under the wraps due I think to poor varnish penetration and zero adhesion. I asked Hank Woolman (Woolman Cane) about using CP and his advice was to avoid it and just adjust the wrap colors by choosing the right color silk. I love the color of CP'd Antique Gold and Java Brown but if the wraps don't do their job I give up.  (Larry Puckett)

PS-there is a good thread on the Rodbuilding Forum in the Bamboo Rods--General section.

Why do the plastic guys seem to have no trouble with water-based CP (like Al's) and their guides -- even on offshore boat roads -- while we struggle?

There are other clear brushing lacquers besides AeroGloss that can be used.  Some are amber-tinted and they will darken a the thread a bit.  Many classic makers used lacquer -- including Heddon, Granger, some Leonards, early Orvises.

The problem I've had with all CPs except for the original Varathane 900 and shellac (both of which are "semi-CPs" since the thread darkens a tad) is the dip tube bleed-through.  You have to use lots of coats if you're dipping and even then the stars must be correctly aligned.

BTW, if you like adhesion, shellac will bond the guide to the blank even better than varnish; it's almost as tough as epoxy.  (Rich Margiotta)

Well, all I can say is I wrapped another rod a year ago without CP and coated the wraps with MOW and those guides have held up great. I just don't trust CP'd wraps to hold the guides in place, especially if the rod is not dip varnished afterwards. The CP saturates the thread and prevents the varnish from making a bond with the rod and the guide feet can pull out too easily.  (Larry Puckett)

Well, for one thing, the plastic guys never heard of Gossamer silk!  Nylon is a whole different animal.  (Neil Savage)

So water-based CP will bond  nylon thread to a blank but not silk?  I will have to test that.    (Rich Margiotta)

Well, AeroGloss is not water based, at least it didn't used to be, it is/was lacquer.  Also, plastic is not varnished cane.    (Neil Savage)

I used to wrap guides in Naples silk and spar varnish them to get them translucent then coat in wrap epoxy over that.

I only made a couple of spinning and bait caster rods that way but I had significantly 'thinner' wraps than the standard way.  (Nick Kingston)

I've often wondered that very thing, Rich. I haven't had the desire or the need to try CP with silk, but I have a rod I built on an Orvis graphite blank that is well over 20 years old. It is as functional today as it was when I built it. The wraps are coated with Clemens Brilliance - a water based CP, and Clemens Crystal Coat epoxy. All of the guides other than the stripper are single-foot guides too. Once the thread is fully saturated and has received multiple coats of the CP, it is for all practical intents and purposes impossible for any finish to penetrate to bond the guide to the blank, any adhesion that exists is due to the CP, not the epoxy.

Now, to be sure, the thread isn't silk, the blank isn't bamboo, and the finish isn't varnish. I'm not sure I understand why any of that would make a difference. The difficulties presented by a dipped finish are still there, of course.  (Larry Blan)

That's interesting, Rich.  How are you using the shellac?

I finish off all my flies with shellac on the head wraps, but have yet to find a good use for it in rodbuilding.  (Peter McKean)

I mix my own shellac from dewaxed flakes and 200 proof alcohol (see: to a 1 1/2 lb cut, which is pretty thin.  The premixed stuff in the can usually still has the wax in it, which is not really wax but an impurity that will that weakens the film and will restrict varnish from adhering to it.  (The "cut"  is the ratio of the weights of dry shellac to a gallon of alcohol.  So a 1 1/2 lb. cut is the ratio of 24 oz. of dry shellac to 128 oz. of alcohol.)  The super blonde gives about the same effect as Varathane 900.  With a 1 1/2lb cut I use 4-5 coats, at least 6 hours between coats.  Darker shades will tend to mask light thread, though sometimes orange shellac can be used to help match some older colors.  Payne and Powell used it on their threads as well as some Thomases I have seen.  I suspect some older Leonards, too.

On the subject of guide foot adhesion:  Could it be that the thin thread we use is the culprit?  You have to crank back the tension on Gossamer quite a bit when wrapping, so maybe the foot needs adhesion whereas with size A you don't?  For those of you who have had guide feet pull out, what size thread was used?   (Rich Margiotta)


I am experiencing some frustration during varnishing.  I have dipped my tip section three times, and after the 3rd dip, I noticed some dark spots that seem to be under the wraps, but on top of the guide foot (not anywhere else).  Is this considered bleed through?

Here is my wrap regiment:

Wrap guides with Pearsalls.  Coat all guides with AJ's color preserver - 5 coats.  Then apply 5 coats of Varathane Diamond poly vanish over that (thinned with water).  The I dip away, also using the Diamond poly.  Lightly buff section and guides with 4X steel wool, clean off with acetone, and dip again.

This is the second time this has happened.  I thought I was not using enough CP or poly on the threads, so went to 5 coats.  Where am I going wrong?  (Louis DeVos)

Color preserving wraps is a real pain. What is happening to you happens often. The varnish is leaking down along the guide foot and soaking up into the wraps giving you the dark spots. You need to get the color preserver to penetrate deep beneath the feet by brushing it into the gap that forms under the wrap where it goes over the foot ( it is like a little tunnel). This usually works but It is hard to know until the spots show up! Also dipping the rod tends to force the varnish under the wraps. Brushing on the finish helps.

Finally, If you can possibly avoid it, don't try to color preserve your wraps.  (Doug Easton)

My experience with dipping after using CP is that the edges of the wraps are not sealed tightly and the varnish sneaks in under the wraps and discolors a little spot. Brushing the varnish on instead of dipping eliminates this problem  for me.  (Dave Norling)

The guys are right in saying that it is your CP that is causing the problem, but I think they are missing the  cure.. think of it this way that the thread is absorbent like a sponge and if it does not absorb the cp then it is open to absorbing the varnish hence bad finishes.  The cure is  first to use the right color preserver and second tobe sure that the thread is completely saturated with it.  So then it must be a thin as possible for the first coat. Then that coat has to dry.  a second coat may be a little thicker, but not much and allowed to dry.   Unless those first coats of color preserver completely saturate the thread and are allowed to dry you will have problems.  In my estimation much easier than brushing varnish on a flat of bamboo.  (Ralph Moon)

OK Ralph, could you tell us what your secret CP brew is? ;)>  (Doug Easton)

It is Roo Glue a melamine resin glue. Thins with water.  Actually I have used lacquer (thinned way down of course) and Elmer's white glue thinned way down of course all with some success.  The key is it must be thinner than water if it is to saturate the thread.  If the thread is saturated and allowed to dry .Voila no further problems.  Don't ask where to get Roo Glue as I have no idea.  Mine was given to me.  (Ralph Moon)

Try here.  (Ren Monllor)

Thanks Ralph,

Happy Thanksgiving! I have used Elmer's and it does work for me. I have only used it on tipping but it worked well. It isn't as bright a color as you get with Lacquer. I also like to use shellac. It gives several tones darker than the original thread color but it is easily thinned, dries fast and fills up wraps. I expect there might be other Melamine resin glues I might do some research.  (Doug Easton)


I am finishing my first rod and realized I did not order any color preserver. Does anyone have an idea if there is any thing I can pick up at the local hardware or art supply store for a substitute?  (Matthew French)

I use the varnish for nails, am transparent, dry fast and form one invisible film.  (Alberto Poratelli)

I thought I read/heard that de-waxed shellac works.  I have flakes, if you want them.  (Andrew Garner)

Lacquer works just fine, dries fast too.  (Chuck Irvine)

I like to use "Roo Glue" in "RooClear", it is a Melamine and Vinyl adhesive that resembles Elmer's white school glue. To use mix 50/50 with water and apply a thin coating to your wraps, let it dry overnight and repeat again. The Roo Glue company has a web site that may help you find a distributor in your area.  (Don Green)


I recently finished a Dickerson 8014 on which my wraps were done in green and orange. The wraps looked great together until i varnished them. After I varnished them they went from green and orange to dark green and brownish. Does anyone know what I could seal my wraps with to keep the color a little more true?  (Matthew French)

You need some color preserver.  (Gary Nicholson)

And a LOT of luck, especially if you dip!  (Art Port)

I find that Al's Color Rite silk thread color preserver from Angler's Workshop works the best for me. One other thing that will make it a lot easier is to varnish the blank first, let it get good and hard then wrap the guides. Put 2 or 3 coats of the color preserver on and let it dry at least 24 hours, then build up the wraps with varnish until you get them the way you want.  (John Channer)


Anyone have experience with Al's products? Color preserver and/or finish?  (John Vorndran)

I've used the CP. It takes about 6 coats to get a coat that will survive a dipping without leaking. Also make darned sure you get it up under the guide feet or you'll get a leak. My recommendation is to varnish the blank first, then wrap and apply CP, then hand varnish the wraps.  (Larry Puckett)


Where do I find a good color preserver and who makes it? I've never tried CP before and would like to an a couple or rods that I'm working on.  (Derrick Diffenderfer)

Anglers Workshop. Look for Al's Color Rite.  (Will Price)

Go here for Chris Carlin's test on various color preservers for silk.

Hope this helps.  (Bob Brockett)

Michael Sinclair is selling some really good CP.  He's up on Clark's Board all the time, and I think there's a listing in both the classifieds and the rod makers forum there.  (Mark Wendt)

Try his "New Divine Rod Co."  (Doug Easton)

Will this CP result in a problem if used over Deks Olje as a rod finish? It is my understanding that the varnish used to cover the thread will not soak through the thread and create a bond to the rod itself. Any thoughts on how it will do with this CP?  (Bill Gates)


I just finished my first coat of Al's Color Rite color preserver and was wondering if there any tips or techniques that would help achieve great looking color preserved silk wraps. (Derrick Diffenderfer)

I've had success with about 6 coats making sure to get it up into the "tunnel" formed by the guide feet.  (Larry Puckett)

I've used Al's Color Rite for about two years and a total of 20 rods and have never had a failure.  I would recommend you thoroughly mix it prior to applying.  Roll the bottle back and forth on a table or your leg for about 5 minutes prior to using, apply  5 to 6 coats, and ensure that you fill the tunnels under the guide feet as well.  (For this I use a fly bodkin).  Other than that it is pretty simple and straight forward.  I suppose someday I'll have a problem, but at this point I'll count myself lucky.  (Jim Brandt)


What would you use to keep yellow silk bright and yellow. I use MOW in a drip tube suggestions please.  (Jim Macy)

Here's the link to Chris Carlin's color preserver test.

There are, of course, also commercial CP's (Al's, U-40, Gudebrod, etc.) you may try.  Hope this helps.  (Bob Brockett)


I'm doing a restoration on a very old rod.  The wraps were a very nice light tan color.  I've selected a nice "sand" color that should work well, except the color preserver I've used for years with no problems (Aerogloss) turns the wraps transparent the second it hits em. So does my spar varnish.  First time I've had this problem.

Any suggestions for  keeping light colored wraps from disappearing?  (John Dotson)

Michael Sinclair has a product called color guard that I have seen produce very good results with White and Black Jasper.

I have used Minwax Poly Acrylic with great results but have not tried it on anything lighter than Antique Gold.  (Gary Young)


I've been fighting bleed through on color preservers for years... Well, recently, I've been working on some restorations and I stumbled onto a method of predicting bleed through with color preserver that I almost slapped myself for not figuring out years ago. Actually, on the first rod, it was quite by accident. I dropped the prepped for final varnish section in the floor. Too much dirt, dust and steel wool fibers to just wipe off, so I took it to the sink in my shop and washed it down, rinsing it with hot water to make sure I got all the junk off of it that I could.

Well, I noticed that a couple of the color preserved wraps had bleed through from the hot water, so I wrote down which wraps they were and let the rod set overnight, the water, of course, evaporated out, touched up the wraps that had water bleed through on them, then after the CP dried, rinsed with hot water again... No water bleeding through, and if hot water won't bleed through, then varnish won't bleed through.

I'm sure someone has done this somewhere before, but if they have, they've never told me about it.

By the way, one of these rods was a Divine with over 190 intermediates on it. Only had a few places to touch up, and I may have missed a second or third coat on those... I got something like Color Preserver Hypnosis, doing that many guide wraps and intermediates in one sitting!!! Regardless, the hot water trick worked and saved me a lot of certain discontent AFTER the varnish!  (Bob Nunley)

Are you wrapping over a finished blank or over bare cane or does it matter? If you don't finish the blank before you wrap are you putting on any kind of finish like Tru-Oil or a wiping varnish before you wrap?  (Frank Drummond)

When I finish, I put two thin coats of varnish on the rod.  After that cures, I sand out any problems and generally scuff up the entire thing and wrap on top of that.  After I wrap, I then put a very thin final coat over the entire thing.  I really feel like, and this is just my opinion, that CP's probably work better on bare cane.  I've seen most color preservers that I've used literally run away from varnished surfaces, so getting a tiny edge seal is a little more difficult.  But I have good luck doing it the way I do... and the water test just saves me stripping off a wrap and redoing it.  (Bob Nunley)


A friend asked me to fix and old English made cane rod; it has a variegated thread;  I got Jasper from Bellinger and I think that will come close to what is on the rod.

I figure one must use a color preserver.

Being I never used color preserver, what is a good product? What is the application process and do you varnish over it?  (Tim ???)

Mike Sinclair's "Color Guard" seems good to me. I think Bob Nunley has quite a bit of experience with it and likes it as well..  (Doug Easton)


I am sure somebody has done this, or has a better way of doing it.  I am building a rod for a career Marine and am going to use the Marine red and gold.  Silk of course.  I want the see thru look on the guide wraps (red).  I don't however want the trim wraps (gold) to wash out when finished.  Here is what I am thinking: Wrap the guides, pull off several feet of gold silk and soak it in CP, let it dry and then do the two turn trim wraps.  Worth doing or should I just wrap the red, apply spar, then wrap trim, CP, and then spar over the whole wrap?

My NCP "A" thread is a larger diameter than the silk. That would make for a ridge right in a high wear area (the edge of a wrap).  (Pete Emmel)

I recently did similar to what you are suggesting. I wrapped the guides in white silk then applied a single coat of Flexcoat thinned to a consistency of water. Apply enough (not a great deal required) to saturate the wraps, allow 10-15 minutes and then wipe off all that you can with your finger. Allow to cure and then add the trim wraps. Finish them with color preserver of choice and proceed to finish as normal.

Came out perfect, clear guide wraps with colored trim wraps at each end of the main wrap. If you are not comfortable with Flexcoat or familiar with the process see Chris Carlin's treatise on the subject here.  (Steve Shelton)

You know, a couple of years ago I made a rod with the guides wrapped and finished with a two-phase epoxy.

I did this because the blank was already quite heavily varnished and I did not want to dip any more in spar varnish.

Since then I have been  sitting at the back of busses, wearing neutral colored clothing and using the very end cubicle in public toilets lest somebody should notice me and see my shame and profound unworthiness as a human being!

I have often noticed the reference to "Flex Coat" 0n the List , but as it is not a common brand in this part of the world I just let it go by me, along with stuff like Waterlox  and Gorilla glue and others, as I  didn't know what it was.

Now, to my total amazement, I find that in fact the world is absolutely FULL of bloody "end-cubiclers" who seem to have learned to live with their shame, and who use this plastic product openly and, dare I say, proudly, and with good results.

And here was me, quite convinced that all these superb finishes we see in pictures on the List were the result of pure genius, and achieved by dint of the repeated and skillful application of repeated coats of traditional spar varnish.

Next thing I will be asked to believe that all those blue buggers in Avatar weren't real actors after all, or that Rick never actually said "Play it again, Sam".

The tinkling noise that you hear, my friends, is nothing to worry about - it is just the sound of shattering illusions. The shards may cut you, but not deeply!  (Peter McKean)

PS: When you "wipe off the excess", how much is excess and how much do you leave on?


I am preparing to put on some wraps on an old rod using original silk material (Gudebrod 2/0) and am wondering about what to use for color preservative.  (originally wrapped with Black with Antique Gold Tipping then Black Tipping).

The only color preservative I have used has been the water based Gudebrod and applied it to Nylon thread prior to wrapping an inlay on a plastic rod.  I have never had specific problems in this application but have been very leary of applying this Elmer's glue looking stuff to an entire wrap and until now, have not thought about putting it on silk.

I have found a product at Anglers workshop that may be formulated for silk "Al's silk color rite".  Has anybody used this material?  Do you apply it on the wrap in an even coat prior to varnish?  Is there a better product/technique?  (Gary Young)

You might try Mike Sinclair's Color Guard,. You can get it through his New Divine Rod Co. web site. I have had good luck with it except, as with all color preservers, you need to make sure you seal any spaces between the wraps and guides. Bob Nunley reports that you can test for leaks by wetting the rod with water. If it leaks in it will cause dark spots which will dry out in a day or two any then you can add some extra preserver to seal the leaks. It works! (Doug Easton)

I have used the Al's and it works but you have to put on more coats than what the instructions call for if you are going to dip. It's the best color preserver that I have used. With that being said, I'm getting low on the Al's and I'm going to go with a bottle of Mike Sinclair’s stuff that Doug mentioned. I have seen pics of rods that he posted on The Classic Rodmakers Forum and it definitely works. If you wonder why I'm switching from Al's when it works so well it's because the Sinclair color preserver needs less coats and will mean less work.  (Will Price)


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