This time last year I was speaking to my good friend and local angler Aidan Donnelly about fishing rods and fishing tackle care in general. Aidan is the ‘fishing rod guru’ who knows all there is to know about fishing rods and during our conversation he gave some excellent advice and tips on how to look after your fishing tackle, especially the fishing rod.
For many anglers, the fishing season never ends but for some the ‘traditional’ end of the game angling season still sees them take their fishing tackle and store it away until next season. Although most fishing gear will last for years if you treat it right, incorrect care and storage can shorten the life span or ruin the aesthetics of a fine rod or reel. Therefore before you just pack your tackle away the end of the season is the perfect opportunity to a take a few hours and give your tackle some TLC. You definitely won’t regret it when the new season comes around.
The fishing rod can be both precious and expensive. Every rod holds a million ‘magic’ memories from the first cast to the hooking and landing of a special fish. At the end of the season the angler should give the rod a good clean and check it over. Wash your rod with lukewarm soapy water or a recommended rod cleaning solution and dry it with a clean soft cloth. If you have any candle wax around the ferrules clean it away. If your rod has a cork handle also give it a good clean with soapy water and check it over for any damage. You may be able to repair some minor cork damage yourself using cork (a good cork from a wine bottle can do) as filler and rubbing the handle with a very very light sand paper or steel wool. Clean around the reel seat to make sure the threads are clear of dirt and grit. If you have left the plastic cover on your cork handle I would recommend that you remove it. Water can get under the plastic cover and rot the cork handle. Also the plastic cover on the handle can cause blisters on your hand from casting. Take good care of the rod’s guides (eyes) by using an old toothbrush and / or cotton earbuds, dirty guides (eyes) will have a negative impact on casting performance. Check the guides (eyes) thoroughly for any damage, such as looseness or sharp edges. Sharp edges can destroy a good fly line before you realise it. After you wash your rod make sure that you rinse it thoroughly and allow it to air dry. If you store a damp rod away in its sleeve and rod tube you will destroy the cork handle. You may wish to leave the rod tube end caps off entirely to allow the rod to “breathe” during the long months of storage.
However if you discover that your treasured fishing rod is in need of some repair work, perhaps a guide (eye) is damaged or missing or the cork handle is showing signs of wear and tear or worst or all one of the sections is damaged or broken and it is not covered by the manufacturer’s warranty do not despair. Aidan is a master craftsman who provides a top quality service in repairing, restoring and enhancing fishing rods in his spare time. Indeed Aidan’s work is comparable to the manufacturer’s finish. He previously carried out this work on behalf of Coburns Tackle Shop, Scarva Street, Banbridge. Aidan is now providing this service directly to local anglers. If you need a rod repair, restoration or enhancement work contact Aidan directly on 077 0892 0779 and he will be happy to assist you and give you a price for the work.
If you want advice and tips on taking care of other fishing tackle items please see this full report in this website’s publication page.