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Having gotten rid of all my B&Ws abd Meisers for a stack of JMR boo I'm not advocating the easy way out as I'm severely lighter in pocket and it's taken 10 years.
But we wsnt to clone a Grant rod not copy one by planing it. You could spend dozens of hours on a hand lathed rod then just have to chuck it away. And you'll probably have to do dozens to replicate the frequencies. I'm sure I'm way oversimplifying the cnc (I'm a simple guy) but why not use tech if we can to save time and health?
CNC wouldn’t save time, you’d be designing a program on a computer as opposed to just working the wood by hand. Unfortunately, your best bet is going to be finding an original. You can’t just clone a hand made item. It just doesn’t work that way. That’s the craft behind it. I guarantee, if I had the exact data, recipe and material to build one of your JMR cane rods, and I was a proficient rod maker, I would NEVER be able to build that same rod. The feel would be different. When you buy a hand made item you’re paying for that maker’s FEEL and CRAFTSMANSHIP. Because it’s unique to them and it’s not realistic to replicate. Even a master’s apprentice’s work will be considerably different than the master’s work.
 

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Wow, full speed ahead 😂! Love the interest, a lot (most) out of my league.

Seems like this is really about dampening, not vibrating, eh? Unless those Grant “Vibration” rods were used at the Scotland Symphony 😝. I haven’t read through the personal letters Grant wrote, did he coin the term “Vibration” for his rod, and if so, is this documented?

The one patent in all this only has to do with non-slipping splices. But this statement in the patent is curious with no further explanation :
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CNC wouldn’t save time, you’d be designing a program on a computer as opposed to just working the wood by hand. Unfortunately, your best bet is going to be finding an original. You can’t just clone a hand made item. It just doesn’t work that way. That’s the craft behind it. I guarantee, if I had the exact data, recipe and material to build one of your JMR cane rods, and I was a proficient rod maker, I would NEVER be able to build that same rod. The feel would be different. When you buy a hand made item you’re paying for that maker’s FEEL and CRAFTSMANSHIP. Because it’s unique to them and it’s not realistic to replicate. Even a master’s apprentice’s work will be considerably different than the master’s work.
If I wanted a maker's craftmanship, I'd go to James for a bamboo! :D I'd never try and build one myself, but Mr. Grant is no longer here and anything else is probably not worth copying.
For me what I'd want out of this is an exact copy of a real Grant, not a hand made interpretation of someone else.
Maybe I'm being naïve and thinking what CNC can do and my idea of how easily an item can be scanned or designed in a CAD system is woefully inadequate, but I'd like to investigate what's possible. Perhaps using a CAD system and taking real points along the rod then interpolating the rest. Apart from the splice, it's solid and round right?
Malcolm's video showed that greenhearts were cut out with mechanised turners surely there's a 21st century equivalent?
 

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Discussion Starter · #124 ·
Anyone with some basic wood-working skills. plus the interest and tools, could make a quality bamboo rod. Customer allegiance to a particular rod maker is of course another thing altogether. Were I were to measure to recreate another makers rod (past or present) and use similar fittings, it may well 'feel' very similar.
I have sold a few rods in my time, anyone can. But I choose more profitable ways to put food on my particular table.
In 1998 15 rod makers, some of whom I know, got together for an experiment to each make their version of the same rod taper, a light trout rod, 5 sided, then test cast and examine each others rods and report. The conclusion, published in The Best of The Planing Form book, was that it was hard to remember what the last was like after a dozen or so had been cast, and in any case casting is in itself subjective. Any differences that there were could have been put down to the quality of the bamboo itself or the glue used..or some other variable.
Basically there was not much difference between them.
So called 'hobby' makers, in my opinion, can sometimes make superior, well crafted rods as they (we) are not 'watching the clock'.

Malcolm
 

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Wow, full speed ahead 😂! Love the interest, a lot (most) out of my league.

Seems like this is really about dampening, not vibrating, eh? Unless those Grant “Vibration” rods were used at the Scotland Symphony 😝. I haven’t read through the personal letters Grant wrote, did he coin the term “Vibration” for his rod, and if so, is this documented?

The one patent in all this only has to do with non-slipping splices. But this statement in the patent is curious with no further explanation : View attachment 392451
Exactly what the text says in the quote, this seems to insinuate where lesser Greenheart rods have failed, any grain runout would cause axial instability. I had used the violin bow example because the build process would be similar. You could scan an original and gets dimensions, but it is probably easier just to map it out, mic it along the length and measure ovality as you go.

Once you have done that, sourcing the wood, would be the next step. There are brokers who specialize in exotic hardwoods, that could source it, esp. Greenheart. If you have a chance to root through it, you could find what you needed without too much trouble.

It likely wouldn't be too hard to shape by hand either. Hollow box spars for ships and wooden boats are generally assembled and shaped by hand using planes and scarf joints, normally made from Sitka spruce, another very stiff wood. A skilled ships carpenter can build a 60-foot mast that could replace an old one in a couple weeks, this is an order of magnitude more difficult than building a rod blank. Hand shaping is the way to go, then you would get a feel for the material also. I actually have a 3d prototyping shop with a number of CNC machines, routers, printers and a laser cutter. I do some side work making prototypes for product designers. You could scan an original Grant, and create a 3D model, most smartphones today can do this, but I think you would be missing something by not just taking the measurements.
 

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Hi All,
As you know i have all Alexander Grants letters regarding the rod, line and casting style, which he called the Highland Switch cast, it was a journalist at the demonstration in London who called it the Planet cast, not Alexander.
In a letter to "Jock Scott" he says he has not been able to find a tip section to match the other sections of the rod he has been building for him, he had a box with tens if not hundreds of tip sections and none would be correct for the other sections of the rod, Alexander had boxes of butt, mid and tip section in his workshop and i mean huge boxes of them, most ended up being firewood in the end.
 

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I think something like this where there's no spec and limited access to an original then it's likely to be a very iterative process.
If the item can be scanned then hand checked against the original then you can validate the model. Even better you can 3d print it :oops: and see what the result is like against the original before trying to cnc it.
Don't get me wrong I wouldn't own a cnc rod either but it will at least give you a template to work your handmades off and do a lot of test casting and not be worrying too much if it breaks on the first cast! :ROFLMAO:
 

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Lots of good points here by all. I am just trying to explain that there will be no easy way to clone or replicate an exact copy of one of Grants Rods. I am a knife maker, have been forging knives for 5+ years. I will always be a student and will always be learning, but I am a damned keen bladesmith. This conversation reminds me of something I hear all the time. The story of a beginner knife maker, who has never made a knife in their life, wants to make “the most best, sharpest, most valuable, knife ever”. Excellence isn’t something that comes about in an fast, easy way, and if Grant’s rods stand up to what’s written about them, then they are excellent. Especially in regards to tools and something that accomplished a tasks. I’m sure Grant went through quite a few goes at building his rods and his building technique before he accomplished anything he was happy with. Know what I mean?
Nick
 

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@speyghillie I look forward to your covering of this concept of vibration in your book based on Grant’s own writings.

@NeilFox007 “resonance” is what comes to my mind in your description of grain runnout issues and axial instability. We’re getting somewhere now!
 
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Hi Nick,
Do you mean a continuous taper silk line?
Stuart Tod no longer makes lines, but I am going to approach a silk maker in Yorkshire named Ian Moxon who makes lines and sells them on ebay.
He does it for pleasure and history, he's actually a lawyer, so may be up for it.
I'm thinking a 90' line rather than a full 120' line and tapered though I don't have the taper specifications. Stuart's was tapered from 4wt to 12wt over 140', whether this was an actual Grant spec or a guesstimate I don't know. If those specs like Gordon's letter above were available, it would make it easier.

Btw isn't Grant's taper spec available on the Feathers, Flies snd Phantoms website?
I was going through some of the vintage tackle I inherited from my Gramps who fished F&FO with Playfair Greenheart V rods with silk lines. He learned to Spey cast and to fish F&FO for salmon in Scotland during WW1 where he was stationed after being wounded at Ypres.

The reels he used with these rods were hefty, and made by Malloch; a 4 1/2 inch Brass and Ebonite and a 4 inch Sun & Planet multiplier, which offset the weight of these rods. I was looking for the silk lines that were originally on the reels, but unfortunately I was only able to recover a couple of bits and pieces of them and a backing line.

I recall that Gramps and my Uncles made silk tapered lines to suit these greenhearts and their cane rods, by splicing different lengths of level lines together to form their tapers. Some of these lines were made by Hardy (Corona and Harcourt) and Kingfisher among others. These tapered lines were then spliced or looped to a silk or linen running or backing line. The front taper was fixed by loop or splice to a finer tapered silk leader, and finished with a gut or mono tippet looped to the end.
I learned to spey cast with these greenhearts under Gramps tutelage, and caught my first salmon with one of these silk lines. I would describe them as a very long belly or continuous Triangle Taper style, using 5 or 6 different diameters spliced together. They performed similarly to the floating Wulff TT spey lines that I like to use with my Sharpes spliced cane Scottys. Some of the other lines were a combination TT/WF taper that could be overhead, rolled, or spey cast. Some of the lines were greased to float but most were oiled and were Hover/Intermediate sinking.
I recall casting and being able to easily shoot multiple loops of tapered line for distance and the soft zzzzzzzzz effect it made through the greenhearts snake guides.This made for very pleasant fishing, A running salmon created a melody with the line zipping out accompanied by the buzz of the Malloch’s click and pawl check.

I’m wondering if this could be a solution to obtaining a better performing taper than a DT., splicing various lengths of level silk line diameters together to create Tri Tapers to suit our various V rods .
Regards....Jim
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Looks like a funky weight forward kinda shooting line to me. But I’m not a lawyer. I don’t write like that. Sheez I’m actually not sure what he’s saying 😂.
 

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6 different compound lines with front tapers ranging from 12 feet to 22 feet depending on the fishing distance and size of the fly. Patent explains the theory of building a compound taper. Since all of that is silk line specific, it could be a good start for splicing separate pieces of silk lines into a hand-made tapered line. Just my opinion, YMMV.
 

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Wolfram Schott in his "A few remarks about silk lines" provides a complete dimensional description of one of the 6 Hedge 7-Taper Balanced Fly Lines, which must be taper Size 10: "Shooting line or backing, of 0.025" diameter; final back taper of 2' in length, tapered from 0.025" to 0.035"; reinforced holding line of 18' in length, 0.035" diameter; back taper of 3' length, tapered from 0.035" to 0.045"; belly section of 10' in length, 0.045" diameter; 5 graduated tapers from 0.045" to 0.020", 12' in length; point of 3', 0.020" diameter".
I am yet to verify if this information is exact.
 

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Sounds like a modern spey taper. I'm sure it would cast very nicely on a bamboo spey.
But for a Vibration I'm really looking forward to casting the Moxon continuous taper 40yd line with a Planet/Highland Cast without shooting line.
 

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I was going through some of the vintage tackle I inherited from my Gramps who fished F&FO with Playfair Greenheart V rods with silk lines. He learned to Spey cast and to fish F&FO for salmon in Scotland during WW1 where he was stationed after being wounded at Ypres.

The reels he used with these rods were hefty, and made by Malloch; a 4 1/2 inch Brass and Ebonite and a 4 inch Sun & Planet multiplier, which offset the weight of these rods. I was looking for the silk lines that were originally on the reels, but unfortunately I was only able to recover a couple of bits and pieces of them and a backing line.

I recall that Gramps and my Uncles made silk tapered lines to suit these greenhearts and their cane rods, by splicing different lengths of level lines together to form their tapers. Some of these lines were made by Hardy (Corona and Harcourt) and Kingfisher among others. These tapered lines were then spliced or looped to a silk or linen running or backing line. The front taper was fixed by loop or splice to a finer tapered silk leader, and finished with a gut or mono tippet looped to the end.
I learned to spey cast with these greenhearts under Gramps tutelage, and caught my first salmon with one of these silk lines. I would describe them as a very long belly or continuous Triangle Taper style, using 5 or 6 different diameters spliced together. They performed similarly to the floating Wulff TT spey lines that I like to use with my Sharpes spliced cane Scottys. Some of the other lines were a combination TT/WF taper that could be overhead, rolled, or spey cast. Some of the lines were greased to float but most were oiled and were Hover/Intermediate sinking.
I recall casting and being able to easily shoot multiple loops of tapered line for distance and the soft zzzzzzzzz effect it made through the greenhearts snake guides.This made for very pleasant fishing, A running salmon created a melody with the line zipping out accompanied by the buzz of the Malloch’s click and pawl check.

I’m wondering if this could be a solution to obtaining a better performing taper than a DT., splicing various lengths of level silk line diameters together to create Tri Tapers to suit our various V rods .
Regards....Jim View attachment 392773
Thanks Jim
Indeed it is an option to try splicing together some old silk lines to try and achieve a TT style line if Ian Moxon's line doesn't come off but I'm hopeful; I've officially commissioned him to make me (at least) one of 40 yards, tapering from about 10.5 to 4, if you assume a constant rate of slope from 12 to 4 for 50 yards (as described in Harry of Clan's document) and therefore proportionally a lighter weight.
Regarding the reels, I am currently refurbishing my Malloch brass and ebonite 4.25" salmon reel at 20oz and whilst hefty it's a mere snip compared to the beautiful but astounding 2lb of the S&P!! In the F&FO and recently acquired At the Sign of the Split Cane (thanks to you and Coch y Bonddu, Wales) that a butt heavy outfit - in fact the opposite - is not the desired configuration for a Vibration.
I found the ill matching but weight compatible Kingpin pleasurable to cast on my 12' Playfair. My Malloch may be ok, I will test it out when all the Planets align (pun intended)
Cheers
Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #139 ·
Earlier in the thread I read that the 'patent' was for 'non slip splices' of greenheart rods.
Given the tremendous leverage on the joint, I am speculating that, on any 'large' and long rod, greenheart or bamboo, the splice cannot be bound tightly enough by leather, tape or indeed non stretch kevlar string to make it not move at all.
It has been said that any method of joining rod sections will be a 'compromise'. My suspicion is that spliced joints may well 'hinge' very slightly and the amount of movement will vary depending upon which angle to the splice, the rod is being bent.

Malcolm
 

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I do not believe that the joint is supposed to be immoveable. If you have read Fine & Far Off or the other JS book then he writes that the splices shouldn't be so tight that the rod "is in a straight jacket".
I don't know the reasoning behind it, but perhaps because the greenheart material is so flexing that a tightly bound splice (and in close turns only at the ends of the wrap) it would cause a flat spot, interrupting the "self-casting" nature of the wood.
 
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