GFF book review

The Graphite Fly Rod

How to Build a Modern Classic

A nicely produced DVD set (2 discs) covering in depth all aspects of building a graphite fly rod featuring Russ Gooding of Golden Witch Technologies. Very thorough and very instructive.

Author: Russ Gooding
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Russ Gooding
The Graphite Fly Rod
Tightline Productions, 2007

GFF rating: 5 out of 7

Reviewed by Martin Joergensen

Now, we all know that winter is the season for building rods. Not that you can't build rods during the rest of the year, but since much fishing is closed during the winter, it makes sense to do your indoors chores in the dark part of the year. I my part of the world, that is right now.
Winter time is also an excellent time to watch DVD's. The longer the better almost. Watching DVD's can entertain and bring memories - and educate.
This DVD-set is a combination of the latter, educating part and the first, the rod building part.

During its long running time it brings you through the whole process of building a graphite fly rod, and Russ Gooding of Golden Witch Technologies takes an approach, which will appeal to some, while others might find it a bit out of line. He uses the aesthetic of the classic bamboo rod and transfers it to a modern graphite blank.
Using the classic fittings, reel seat, agate rings and wraps that makes the rod appear more classical and "old fashioned", he manages to combine modern materials and technology with a look that a lot of people like.

Personally I think bamboo rod looks belong on a bamboo rod, but I have been persuaded to think differently on a couple of occasions - like when I fished and reviewed the Harvest rod, which looks much like bamboo, but is graphite.
Russ Gooding also does a very persuasive job. His skills and craftsmanship leads to some beautiful results, and I can't imagine anyone who wouldn't be very happy to fish with one of the rods he finishes in these DVD's.

He goes through all steps in a very thorough manner, and leaves no step, no part or material untouched. Having watched these DVD's you will be well prepared for your own rod building projects. Gooding will both touch upon the things most of us already know like finding the spine, measuring for guides etc., but there are also a few inside tips and nice little details from a man who has obviously built a ton of rods. Even though Gooding has built rods professionally, he remembers that most of his viewers will be amateurs, and doesn't forget the little tricks that helps keep the workplace clean or save materials.

Even the seasoned rod builder will learn something here, but probably also get into a virtual argument with Russ Gooding. People who know better seem to get a kick out of arguing with the person on the screen. My personal rod building experience is very limited, and I learned a lot from these DVD's, and felt like I might want to get started with the couple of blanks I have standing around somewhere.

The excellent instruction and enthusiastic approach on these DVD's will have most wanna-be rod builders going and probably stir the want-to-do-it-again in many of those who have tried it already.

The DVD is sold at a Holiday discount right now, and 30 USD for the two DVD's is a bargain. You can get it through Tightline Productions or Amazon.

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