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Post 20 Jun 2022, 12:43 • #1 
Guide
Joined: 07/26/21
Posts: 196
Location: Central Georgia
Hi Guys! I finally finished up my Iconoglass 4wt build, my first ever rod build. It has an RL reel seat, REC ultralight guides, yli 100 for thread, and a grip I turned to roughly mimic a two digit Fenwick grip.



The rod balances very well with the heddon 310 shown, and the color scheme was built around the intention of using the heddon reel. Ive cast it with a rio creek 4wt but greatly prefer it with a cortland sylk dt4. With the sylk, it is easily the best roll casting rod Ive ever cast. Even though I have always fished small creeks almost exclusively, I never found myself roll casting. With this rod I seem to do it all the time.

I mostly fish two digit fenwicks, and I normally like those with lines on the heavier end of the spectrum. As a result, I was suprised to find that this rod is a very true 4wt in my hand. I also cant help but notice that the rod is signifigantly lighter than what Ive come to expect from vintage glass. Its fairly fast, but I never find myself needing to rush my casting stroke to keep up. I would never describe this rod as "stiff". I may eventually try it out with a DT5 to see how it feels, but it loads just great with a DT4. It is also one of the most accurate rods Ive cast based on lawn casting to targets.

A 12-14" rainbow like this one I hooked into in the first pool I fished with the rod will easily double it over, but I dont feel a lack of control. Its a light line rod but certainly no noodle.



With the dt4, I have found casting bushy traditional dries size 10-14 easy on a 7' 5x leader. The rod was not bothered by a size 8 muddler head hopper on a 3x leader. With a stout 5' leader it easily cast a pheasant rump muddler with bead chain eyes tied on a mustad 34007 size 6. I wouldnt want to cast anything with a cone or lead eyes, but then again this isnt a cannon. Its a 4wt. For typical bushy dry + light dropper trout fishing, or even streamers given a little thought, this rod is awesome.

If this is what modern glass has to offer, Im in. It certainly wont be my last iconoglass build. A heavy weight for bass pond fishing may be next.


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Post 20 Jun 2022, 13:26 • #2 
Master Guide
Joined: 11/11/13
Posts: 640
Location: US-CA
Nice looking build the green and gray looks great together. Grip turned out really well. Nice rainbow, I’m completely sold on NFC blanks/ rods I now have a combination of 6 in glass and graphite and throughly enjoy each one. Theres no better blank out there for the price. Enjoy your rod!

Lanny


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Post 20 Jun 2022, 14:13 • #3 
Guide
Joined: 07/26/21
Posts: 196
Location: Central Georgia
Thanks Lanny! when the blanks go on sale for $75, its a great deal even thought the final price comes out to closer to $125 shipped. as far as Im concerned $125 is a steal for these blanks. Im sure to build another.


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Post 20 Jun 2022, 21:08 • #4 
Guide
Joined: 02/02/16
Posts: 330
Location: Georgia
The build turned out great! As a first time rod builder in the early stages of my build, it’s encouraging that your first rod build looks so good.

I like the RL seat and the color of your wraps. The old Heddon reel is a perfect match. Glad to hear you like the NFC taper. I may need to pick up one of their blanks to build soon.


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Post 20 Jun 2022, 21:25 • #5 
Guide
Joined: 07/26/21
Posts: 196
Location: Central Georgia
Thanks Duderino. Trust me, the potato quality picture covers many flaws, especially in the silk wraps. The only part of the rod process Im intimidated to repeat is turning the grip which I did on the blank. Everything else is either very simple, or you get near infinite do-overs.

I went with silk thread because I wanted transparent wraps and I wasnt willing to buy/build a rod turner for epoxy. Since then Ive come to understand that nylon is much tougher and easier to wrap with. Just food for thought on thread choice. As I see it, there is no reason to use silk thread beyond the look. With that said, Im using silk on my troutsmiths build.

I would certainly recommend an Iconoglass blank. I wish they had a glass 3wt offering, Im sure it would be a killer. The 8'5wt would probably be a great rod for lower elevation Ga creeks, bass or trout. I certainly like my 4wt.

The RL reel seats are a bargain and Mr. Lee is great to work with, full of advice and words of encouragment. He even offered to swap out some hardware on my reel seat to better fit certain reel feet. His products and services are simply unbeatable, especially at that price point.


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Post 21 Jun 2022, 17:43 • #6 
Sport
Joined: 08/04/18
Posts: 42
Location: US-CT
Excellent build BrookieBoy, never know it was your first one. I like the Fenwick style grips and plan on using them on a couple of rods this winter.


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Post 21 Jun 2022, 17:49 • #7 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 12/31/15
Posts: 1092
Location: The Rockies
That's a fantastic build. I really like your aesthetics. I've used a few of Mr. Lee's reel seats, and I really like them. He has beautifully figured woods. I will definitely use another, as soon as I talk myself into another blank to build out.


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Post 21 Jun 2022, 22:24 • #8 
Guide
Joined: 07/26/21
Posts: 196
Location: Central Georgia
CastnHope- Thanks! By chance all of my favorite rods have had a fenwick/half wells type shape. I guess it has really grown on me.

Glacier- I really lucked out on the colors. Mr. Lee makes it hard not to use his reel seats, any time I want a slide band seat he will he my first choice for sure.


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Post 22 Jun 2022, 10:34 • #9 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 05/22/16
Posts: 1488
Location: SJC
I agree with everyone else, though I have yet to start building a rod myself. I have however used one of RL's reel seats to replace another, and love it.

Nice work !


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Post 22 Jun 2022, 14:02 • #10 
Guide
Joined: 07/22/20
Posts: 101
Location: Ancient City, Florida
Great update! I am about to start two, for the wife and I. But I let her choose her thread color and I can’t bring myself to start it :lol


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Post 22 Jun 2022, 14:51 • #11 
Guide
Joined: 07/26/21
Posts: 196
Location: Central Georgia
Oh no - fluorescent pink ?


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Post 22 Jun 2022, 18:18 • #12 
Guide
Joined: 07/22/20
Posts: 101
Location: Ancient City, Florida
Yup


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Post 29 Jun 2022, 12:34 • #13 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 07/11/14
Posts: 1596
Location: urban Colorado
thank you for the review, that is helpful. I've been thinking about one of those and it sounds like a fine rod.

Nice build and I like the Heddon on there, instant classic ;-)


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Post 01 Aug 2022, 15:23 • #14 
New Member
Joined: 06/07/22
Posts: 12
Location: Delaware, OH
That is very nice work for a first build!


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Post 07 Aug 2022, 07:28 • #15 
Master Guide
Joined: 03/09/15
Posts: 570
Location: Arkansas
Nice build. Those rods are a little fast for me but I keep looking at their site. Those prices are hard to beat. Nice reel seat. I do like a nicely paired Fenwick grip.


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Post 17 Aug 2022, 10:42 • #16 
Guide
Joined: 07/22/20
Posts: 101
Location: Ancient City, Florida
After fishing my wife’s build, I built one for myself in more subdued colors, ;). I really like this little blank. I alternate between a 4+5 trout lines depending on how fast I feel that day. I think it throws the 5 a hair better. Very light in the hand. More importantly, the better half loves her new rod.


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Post 17 Aug 2022, 11:08 • #17 
Global Moderator
Joined: 04/20/07
Posts: 8537
Location: US-ME
Well done. Hobby building can follow whatever direction someone wants. Often, people go willy-nilly from one blank brand to another, and from one length and line weight to another. There are infinite permutations. But if an early build is satisfactory, there is a lot more to be learned by sticking with that blank for another build or two after fishing the first one. That way, you learn how to bring out the best in a blank, and what is and isn't important in doing so. Cranking a variety out is fun, too, but sticking with one brand, or at least one configuration will usually yield more learning sooner, the blank or configuration being a constant, so build changes can be evaluated. Best not to rush the next "same" build either. Fish it enough to let subtle faults emerge--even simple defects in materials or methods--so they aren't repeated on the next one. A matched pair with cosmetic variations, maybe the stripping and lower guide spacing adjusted slightly to someone else's reach--great plan. Hope it works well towards the next build(s).


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Post 17 Aug 2022, 11:38 • #18 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 09/05/07
Posts: 2138
Location: West Virginia
Very pretty build, BrookieBoy. Probably should reverse the line guard on the reel.


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Post 17 Aug 2022, 16:28 • #19 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/12/16
Posts: 4037
Location: USA-CO
Quote:
...there is a lot more to be learned by sticking with that blank for another build or two after fishing the first one.


I was looking for an excuse to build another McFarland Ameriglass Classic 835-3. Thanks, whrlpool!

In seriousness, very good advice there.


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