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Saltheart

Transitioning from cork tape to tapered wrap on foregrip

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I always have trouble going from the two layers of cork tape (I usually use two layers for a thicker grip) down the taper to the rod in front of the foregrip. I currentlt shape the cork tape best I can (its hard to shape across the two layers) , then I build up epoxy Over the cork tape down the taper from the rod blank to the flat part of the cork tape. and sand it to a smoother taper. Then I wrap and finish. To me its the toughest spot to do on a rod (I don't do decorative wraps at all....yet!) . Anyway , what's the right way to do it when using cork tape for the handle to get a nice smooth taper?

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Salt,

 

I sand down the cork tape to get a gentle taper into the blank. I then wrap over the taper with black electrical tape and then seal with two coats of finsh.

 

Al

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Saltheart,

 

Al's given you the good advice he always gives. In addition to electrical tape, I've used both thread and strink tubing to cover the smoothed transition from cork tape to blank. Mark

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There is (nominal) 1/8" thick available vs. the more commonly seen (nominal) 1/16" thick stuff; don't think I've ever seen any 1/4" thick cork tape, but it could be out there.

 

Salty, a double layer is the very devil to feather by sanding, because you've got a fair bit of just the adhesive film of the upper layer getting exposed on the taper and making life pretty difficult. You're pretty much on track; here's how I do it, if you want to finish off the end with thread, and I've tried just about every other possibility. You really ought to have a rod lathe of some sort and a finish drying motor for this one, but it can be done by hand.

 

Square off the ends of both layers evenly, tacking the first layer to the blank and the upper layer to the first layer with some cyanoacrylate adhesive ("crazy" type glue} to keep the cork tape from lifting. Shape the beginnings of your taper onto the cork tape, but don't attempt to feather it all the way down to the blank; just get the taper started and neatly described on the upper layer.

 

Put a neat turn or two of masking tape on the blank, about 1/2" to 5/8" in front of the cork tape, and a second band on the cork tape itself, maybe a 1/4" back from the taper you've started. Mix up a small batch of quality, 30 minute set epoxy (NOT the five minute stuff) and apply it generously to the area between the two masking tape bands, as you rotate - and continue to rotate the blank. Just keep feathering it "uphill" from the blank onto the cork tape, and keep the blank rotating until the epoxy no longer wants to sag. As it begins to kick, remove the masking the tape and let 'er cure over night. A very light bit of sanding and you've got an easy to overwrap tapered epoxy transition from blank to tape. If you're anxious about keeping that much epoxy under control, you can two-step the operation, but one is quite doable. A practice round on a scrap will do much for your confidence with this one.

 

 

[This message has been edited by Bill Klein (edited 01-17-2001).]

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Al , you said you put the electrical tape on then seal with 2 coats of finish. Do you thread wrap over the electrical tape or apply the finish right over the tape?

 

Yep , that's the problem spot Brian. Right where the adhesive backing from the top layer is stuck to the cork of the bottom layer. I'll have to check how thick the tape is. I'm not sure if its 1/8 or a 1/16 thick. I've never seen 1/4 " thick cork tape. Where can you get it?

 

OK I checked and Im using 1/16 cork tape. I guess 1 layer of 1/8 world be easier. Where can you get 1/8 th ?

 

[This message has been edited by Saltheart (edited 01-17-2001).]

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Tapering of cork tape is most easily done with a rod lathe but can also be done by hand. To avoid the problem of the glue from the second layer of cork interfering with the taper just start the second layer of cork 5/8"-3/4" back from the end of the bottom layer. This way you taper the second layer down to the first and then the first layer down to the blank. I have found the best thing to use for sanding are the mesh screens used for sanding sheetrock wall joint compound as they doesn't clog. If you don't have a lathe you can use a variable speed drill and buy a 12 ga. shotgun cleaning brush chuck the threaded end in the drill and then stuff the brush into the end of the surf blank. The brush will hold the blank tightly, place the other end on a v-block and then bribe the wife to operate the drill while you sand. My wife quit and bought me a Clemens rod wrapper a few years back.....

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To All:

 

While all the suggested methods will work, the following is the fastest and easiest....

 

 

Wrap the second layer of cork tape such that it ends 1/4-3/8 inches short of the end of the first layer. Then apply masing tape to the blank again about 1/4-3/8 inches from the first layer and another about 1/2 inch from the end of the second layer. Mix up a batch of 5 minute epoxy and use it to fill the hills and valleys, once the 5 minute epoxy starts to set you can use a small piece of cardboard to shape this into a hosel. Pull off the tape. Let dry 1 hr, sand out any bumps, then wrap with thread. Apply epoxy finish.

 

This is not only easy and fast, but, if you ever have to change the cork tape, The five minute epoxy will loose its grip if you soak the cured epoxy in water. The rod finish waterproofs the whole assembly.

 

Hppe this helps.

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