I Can’t, Won’t, Tell You…

Because of my position as editor and publisher of the world’s most popular rod building magazine, along with being the owner and organizer of the world’s largest custom rod event, I have to be careful what I say when asked what my preferred blanks and components are. A nod towards one can be seen as an insult to another. And yes, I do get asked. Almost daily, in fact.


I built rods professionally for many years and held what I believe were very high standards, not only in my own work, but for the blanks and component parts I used. I did not build to a price point – I built to a performance level and then arrived at the required selling price, whatever that turned out to be.


These days I only build rods for myself and have no reason at all to be frugal. I enjoy good equipment and will not use anything that I feel is even marginally deficient in any aspect. I can afford the best and the best is what I buy and use.


So what blanks and components do I prefer when I build a rod for myself? I’d like to tell you, but going back to the original statement in this post, I just can’t do it. I will say this – never before in the history of custom rod building have custom builders had such a varied and myriad selection of quality blanks and components available to them. In fact, unless you’re buying from a shady character standing in an alley along a darkened street, you really can’t do too badly with any of the name brand stuff out there today.


Tom Kirkman