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Fishing/protecting rod and guide wrappings


i have a shakespear wonderod -casting-6ft-3 piece- what can i use to coat/protect the rod/guide wrappings?    my dad would use clear nail polish.   is this still used or is there something better? thank you for your time.

Hi Tom,

No nail polish!!!

The proper fix is a two-part rod finish epoxy.  You mix the two parts thoroughly and apply them to the thread wraps with a small disposable brush.  Its a very slow curing epoxy that will take about three hours to set and about 24 hours before it loses its tack completely.  It is a rock hard surface that will flex with the rod blank.

If you have a rod building shop or a fly tying shop in the area they will probably have this.  If not, it is available on line many places.  I use Flex-Coat, but there are a lot of different ones on the market.  For small quantities, Cabelas has it available in small one-rod packets.  Clip the ends and squeeze out the A&B packets and you have the perfect amount and mix ratio.  I just looked and the pack of 6 is 2.99.  You can keep it around for later fixes or it actually works well for a lot of home projects.  Its like small quantities of bar-top finish.

In a pinch, go to the hardware store and get a good quality (non yellowing)30 minute epoxy.  Its not as flexible but its 100x better than using nail polish.

In any case you will have to rotate the rod for about 3 hours so the finish doesn't sag to one side during curing.  Prop the rod horizontally, put the finish on, and watch a football game.  Turn the blank 90 degrees  every 3-5 minutes for the first 30 minutes, 5-10 minutes for the next 30 minutes, and 10-15 minutes for the next two hours.  For us in the business, we have 3-5 RPM motors that we use to do this.  You can make one if you have an old bar-b-que rotisserie motor.

Good luck and if you have any problems, write back.  No nail polish!



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Marc Wisniewski


I can answer questions relating to all types of freshwater fishing, tackle, and tactics. I also can answer questions regarding rod building, lure making, and lure modification. I am not an expert at the value of old rods, reels, or lures.


My expertise is in Bass, Pike, Musky and the Great Lakes species. I have a lot of experience in Wisconsin and Lake Michigan in particular. With regard to Rod building, I have built custom rods since 1978. I have been building and designing lures for 35 years. I currently sell several of my lures both locally and nation wide. I have done work for several lure companies such as Mepps, Storm, Cisco Kid, and Suick. I am not an expert at the value of old rods, reels, or lures.

Wisconsin DNR Lake Michigan Forum (elected position). Friends of Lakeshore State Park, Milwaukee, WI

Two monthly columns in Midwest Outdoors Magazine, Writer of the weekly Lake Michigan Fishing Report in the Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel, The In-Fisherman Magazine(since 1986), Musky Hunter Magazine, The Badger Sportsman, Woods and Waters Magazine, The Mepps Fishing Guide, Do-It Molds website, and I have been a guest on WGN Radio (Chicago) on their Saturday Outdoor program.

I have an engineering background.

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