© Tapani Salmi 4/2006

There are several intelligent techniques to build the ferrule of a bamboo fly rod using the cane material without adding metal or other artificial material. I have made a ferrule using a light brass tube from car radio telescope antenna and a spliced ferrule using a shrink tube to hold the sections connected. The ferrule may also be manufactured using the cane material by making the other (tip or butt section) section thicker (swelling the diameter) and making a round or a hexaconal hole (female ferrule) to that. The other section is adjusted to fit into the hole and thus we have an elastic ferrule composed of the same material (cane) as the whole rod.

I wanted to try the cane ferrule building. I was used to make swelling butts using my nylon planing forms. I also had built several hollow rods simply by planing the strips thinner and I wanted to combine these structures to achieve the hexaconal shaped cane ferrule.

What I certainly needed was some kind of form (model, jig) to adjust the diameter of the hexaconal hole (female ferrule). Then I realized that I have several perfect tools available to adjust the hexaconal hole: ALLEN WRENCH KEY (HEX SOCKET TOOLS) of different diameters (in millimeters and inches) with diameter differences ranging from 3 mm up to 10 mm (0.1-0.4"). To the first rod I needed a hole of about 5.0 mmm (0.2") and selected thus a HEX key with diameter of 5.0 mm to the form.
To use the hex tool as a cutting tool I filed using a sharpening stone the end of the tool plain to have "sharp" cutting edges to the end of the tool.

I made the swelling of 3 mm (0.12") to the upper end of the butt section to the last 150-200 mm (7-8") and planed and filed the strips to a near to final dimensions. I wanted to have the wall thicknes about 1.5 mm (0.06") I binded the strips together and had a hexaconal hole which was still a little too small. Now I used the sharp edge hex tool to enlarge the hexaconal hole to the final diameter.

Thereafter I glued the binded strips together using epoxy glue and used a very strong binding cord to bind the glued strips together. Now again I used the sharpened hex tool to push all the extra soft glue down into the hollow part of the rod. After about one hour I repeated the same operation when the glue was still soft. Next day I had the hexaconal hole free of most extra glue.

I scraped and sanded the section as usually to remove the enamel layers, wrapped the ferrule area with a strong cord and again used the hex tool to "file" and finish the hole. Then I measured and sanded the tip section to the proper diameter. To my surprise I had a perfect fit. Actually I sanded it a little thinner, coated it with cyanoglue ("super glue") and sanded it again to the final dimensions to have a cyanoglue "impregnated" ferrule section.
I have noticed earlier that there is a tendency for the cane ferrules to swell when getting wet and moisture. I have a clothespin in my rod bag to help in unplugging of the ferrule.