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  #1  
Old 05-28-2016, 09:28 AM
Flytyer85541 Flytyer85541 is offline
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Birch bark grips

I've been wanting to try making some grips out of birch bark for awhile now. Portugal cork is becoming a pain so I'm looking for an alternate material. Tried rattan but it isn't the easiest material to work with. Have any of you made grips from birch bark? I think I have a good understanding of the process and I do have Antti Kymalainen's artical from the volume 9 issue 2 of RodMaker magazine. I was just wondering if anyone has already done it and might not mind giving me some tips. Here is what I have so far. The bottom photo is my goal.

http://www.azflyandtie.com/flyforum/...pictureid=1902
http://www.azflyandtie.com/flyforum/...pictureid=1903

Last edited by Flytyer85541; 05-28-2016 at 09:35 AM.
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  #2  
Old 05-28-2016, 04:10 PM
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MeLikeFlyFish-FlyFishGood MeLikeFlyFish-FlyFishGood is offline
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No experince

... but that looks pretty cool! How do they feel?
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  #3  
Old 05-28-2016, 05:08 PM
Flytyer85541 Flytyer85541 is offline
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The birch bark (B4 adding sealer and tru-oil) feels very similar to cork plus birch bark is supposed to have some inherent moisture resistance as well as some anti-bacterial properties. I've never felt a birch bark grip that's been fully finished so it will also be part of the learning experience. It may end up in the fire pit. I'll have to wait and see. It's part of the reason I'm asking if anyone has any experience with them. I may be barking up the wrong tree
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Old 05-28-2016, 07:00 PM
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SAT SAT is offline
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I only have experience with cork but I say go for it. Looks pretty sweet! Looks like you are on the right track with the rings you are making. Some good quality thin wood glue and tight clamping and you should be good to go.

Looking forward to seeing the end result.
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  #5  
Old 05-28-2016, 07:42 PM
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Goduster Goduster is offline
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Hardest thing about doing them is trying to avoid tear out when shaping them. I have done 2 of them so far, and they both went in the trash. Too time consuming to me
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  #6  
Old 05-28-2016, 08:19 PM
Flytyer85541 Flytyer85541 is offline
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Goduster I was thinking tear out might be an issue once I have it on the lathe. When you had the tear out were you using lathe cutting tools or sand paper? I was thinking about a higher speed on the lathe and some very sharp tools. Sand paper might be a better option. It would take longer but there should be less tear out... I would hope. I also think the key is to get all or at least most of the "white paper like" outer skin of the bark off. The titebound III doesn't like to adhere to the thin white layer and even when dry the thin white layer still wants to separate from the underlying brown layer of the bark. In tests I've done the glued together rings break apart at this thin white layer but hold well when brown bark to brown bark is glued. It might not happen with a bamboo rod blank going through the center for support but I won't know until I get further along. This grip will be going on a 5wt blond bamboo 7.5 rod. If I can master the technique the grip should be a real nice addition to the rod.

Last edited by Flytyer85541; 05-29-2016 at 12:27 AM.
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  #7  
Old 05-29-2016, 12:23 AM
Flytyer85541 Flytyer85541 is offline
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Glued up

Was able to get a few glued and clamped up tonight.
http://www.azflyandtie.com/flyforum/...pictureid=1904
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  #8  
Old 05-29-2016, 04:04 AM
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Goduster Goduster is offline
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Preliminary shaping first. Use all carbide turning tools, and I turn on a machine lathe. You are very correct on the white layer. I feel something like rod bond will give you a much better adhesion . I just have not taken the time to really work it out with as busy as I am with just the seats, inserts and rods. Just too many irons in the fire all at once
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  #9  
Old 05-29-2016, 08:10 AM
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Mr Blur Mr Blur is offline
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a guy in georgia gave me once to use on a bamboo rod. I broke it twice while reaming to fit and decided that it wasn't worth the effort to use. performance wise does it offer any advantages? I see it largely as a cosmetic consideration or decision.
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  #10  
Old 05-29-2016, 08:35 AM
Flytyer85541 Flytyer85541 is offline
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It's supposed to be lighter in weight then cork, water resistant, anti-bacterial, has a better availability then cork, is less expensive then cork, and best of all... It's made in the U.S.A.
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