Thursday, October 20, 2011

Graywolf Rods Expands Glass Offerings

I've said it before but it has been very exciting to not only see companies and rod builders continue building contemporary fiberglass fly rods but also to see innovation, new ideas, and the pushing of the envelope of what modern fiberglass fly rods can do.

I've known Shane Gray for some time now and it's been really neat to see him transition from being a bamboo builder that built on fiberglass on the side to investing the bulk of his shop time and new ideas in creating fiberglass fly rods that are only available through Graywolf Rods.  Each of the careful decisions that he's made further establishes Graywolf Rods as a premier fly rod shop.

Graywolf Rods is now offering two new rod series with the addition of the Graywolf S-Glass Series and the J. Green Yellow Glass Series which should each have pages added to the Graywolf Rods website soon.  Shane sent along a stack of photographs with information about these additions to his fly rod offerings and further explains the focus of his rod shop. 

Shane wrote...  "Up until a year ago, I was very happy making bamboo rods.  Then a day came that Cameron called to talk with me about fiberglass.  I thought to myself, and said to Cameron, that I may build a few glass rods… but bamboo is the way to go for me.  It got me figuring it couldn't help look into fiberglass a little more as well.

I had known Mike McFarland for many years, and had always loved what he did with glass, so I decided to see what ideas Mike and I could come up with.  Alas Mike proved to me that glass was a beautiful thing.  His tapers are outstanding and I am very pleased with the actions of the blanks he has offered to make for me.  I had spoken with Mark Steffen on occasion and decided that his special tapered blanks would have a home in my shop as well.  Then through Cameron, and the Fiberglass Flyrodders forum, I was introduced to a Japanese maker named Yasuyuki Kabuto.  A few of his blanks made there way to me in Michigan and another staple blank in my shop was born.

From the success that I've had with these builds I decided to search out other fiberglass series to further expand the offerings of Graywolf Rods."

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

"The new Graywolf S-Glass Series blanks are my signature blanks.  Taking in to account what I love about fiberglass:  the translucent colors, the medium/fast progressive actions, and lighter tips for an enjoyable fishing experience.  I had worked on the tapers, colors and ferrules for this new series for a while, and I think it has all paid off.  I am positive that all will be more than pleased with these new signature blanks.  I am currently offering the new signature rods in the following sizes of an 8’ five weight three piece which features white spigot ferrules and a two weight eight foot three piece which is a tip over butt ferrule.  I am planning on adding another taper to my signature blanks which will be a 7' three piece three weight.

The new yellow fiberglass rod blanks blanks will be referred to as the James Green Yellow Glass Series.  James Green makes tapers that are medium fast in action and the blanks are hand rolled, manufactured and ferruled by him as well.  I have secured an exclusive for these special tapers.  Currently James Green is building three piece blanks for Graywolf Rods in the following sizes of 7' three weight, 7' four weight, and 8' three weight.  I think many will be impressed with the medium/fast action of this new series even in these light line weights.  James Green and I are working on a couple other ideas for the future as well.

I will briefly mention that I also build on Tom Morgan blanks but due to the fact that these blanks are hard to obtain, I will only offer finished rods when I have blanks in stock.  I also plan on adding the Thomas and Thomas Heirloom blanks to my line up in the near future.

On a side note I wanted to mention that I would not be as pleased with my rods if I was not exclusively using reel seats made by my friend Joel Lemke.  Joel has spent much of his time over the past year designing and machining outstanding reel seats which are exclusive for my builds.  I don’t think I could have found a better and more talented machinist. This being said all my rods will feature only reel seats made by Mr. Lemke.

I have every intention to continue building rods on blanks from all these great makers.  I would just like to make a mark, with my own blanks and finished rods, in this wonderful world of fiberglass.  I feel the culmination of wonderful builders, makers, the Fiberglass Flyrodders forum, and someone like Cameron, has turned me into a true “Glass Geek”.  I have been very happy in the glass world and plan to continue to make classic and beautiful fly rods."

To see more of Shane's work check out the Graywolf Rods website, blog, and Facebook page as well.


Shane said...

Just brought a Tear to my eye!

George Minculete, said...

Good on you Shane and nice words there! Keep up the great work and let's see some more glass builds..and "Glass Geeks":)