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  • Galling of Materials

    Wondering if I could pick the collective mind here for some assistance with a problem I've been turning over in my head.

    One of the parts that used to be found on better fly fishing rods was a metal ferrule. In most instances (except for bamboo rods) they have been replaced by rod sections that slide over each other or by a fiberglass spigot that is installed in one rod section and the opposite rod section slides on to.

    Traditional ferrule -> https://www.goldenwitch.com/product/...-ferrule-test/

    Spigot ferrule -> https://vintagerods.com/tips/spigot/spigot2.htm

    My believe is that this was a move by the manufactures over the years to make manufacturing easier - it eliminated a couple metal parts by simply modifying the pattern for the graphite or fiberglass rod blanks. Selling this to the fishermen was simply a matter of telling them it was better, since many fishermen tend to be gullible creatures that will throw money at anything they think will give them either status or increased performance. Based on my personal testing and evaluation however (and some discussions with some very experienced rod builders) I am of the opinion that a metal ferrule is in fact better, it effects the bend profile of the rod less and will weigh less than the additional fiberglass/graphite and epoxy that would have been added to eliminate the ferrule.

    So, I want to look at making my own ferrules. The first hurdle I am trying to work through is the material to make them from.

    Traditionally the best ferrules were made from nickel silver tubing that was drawn and cold formed. The drawing and cold forming had the benefit of hardening the ferrules as well as aligning any grain in the metal in the direction that the rod sections would be assembled / disassembled. Very few people can make ferrules this way any more, because of the dedicated tooling required and because NS tubing in the various sizes needed is hard to find.

    After that came machined ferrules. Should be simple, make them on a lathe from Nickel Silver bar stock. The problem is however, that the NS does not get hardened this way and remains soft, and the machine marks are perpendicular to the direction of assembly / disassembly. It works, but it's definitely a lower-quality product and NS bar stock can be hard to find in the sizes needed.

    Soldered tubing ferrules were also tried, but once again the variety of tubing sizes of NS that were needed made this difficult.

    Anodized aluminum ferrules were used for a while, but the fit was much looser and the clearance was taken up using an o-ring. Once again a lesser quality product and the o-rings would wear out over time.

    I have seen one-off ferrules made from aluminum-bronze alloys, but from what I understand that stuff is a bear to machine. I have also heard of pure stainless and pure aluminum being used, but the worry with them is that because of the tight fit of the components they are likely to gall at a certain point and either prevent the rod sections from going together or from coming apart again.

    So my question is this - what materials or strategies can I use to prevent galling? Coatings or finishes will not be practical because of the tight tolerance needed for the fit of the parts. Lubrication will not be practical because it will be forgotten by the user. Any suggestions on what to try?

  • #2
    Its been a few decades since I did any real fishing, and my equipment was very humble. But I seem to recall chrome plating was popular at the time.

    Off topic, I would like to buy some parts to re-work a rod some day. I have come across an older 5-foot solid steel rod, and I would like to make a reel seat and handle to suit modern spinning reels. Is there any suppliers online for those building rods?

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    • #3
      Nitriding on stainless. Aluminium bronze. Nitronic alloy..
      Location: Helsinki, Finland, Europe

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by nickel-city-fab View Post
        Its been a few decades since I did any real fishing, and my equipment was very humble. But I seem to recall chrome plating was popular at the time.

        Off topic, I would like to buy some parts to re-work a rod some day. I have come across an older 5-foot solid steel rod, and I would like to make a reel seat and handle to suit modern spinning reels. Is there any suppliers online for those building rods?
        You’ll want to look at www.mudhole.com for those parts. Feel free to give me a shout if you need any help.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by MattiJ View Post
          Nitriding on stainless. Aluminium bronze. Nitronic alloy..
          Thanks. I’ll look into that.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Tom S View Post

            You’ll want to look at www.mudhole.com for those parts. Feel free to give me a shout if you need any help.
            Thanks! Regarding MattiJ's post, I had no idea that stainless could be nitrided, I guess I'm going to learn something here.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Tom S View Post
              My believe is that this was a move by the manufactures over the years to make manufacturing easier - it eliminated a couple metal parts by simply modifying the pattern for the graphite or fiberglass rod blanks. Selling this to the fishermen was simply a matter of telling them it was better, since many fishermen tend to be gullible creatures that will throw money at anything they think will give them either status or increased performance. Based on my personal testing and evaluation however (and some discussions with some very experienced rod builders) I am of the opinion that a metal ferrule is in fact better, it effects the bend profile of the rod less and will weigh less than the additional fiberglass/graphite and epoxy that would have been added to eliminate the ferrule.

              So, I want to look at making my own ferrules. The first hurdle I am trying to work through is the material to make them from.
              So you think you're smarter than Sage or Winston? I like your thinking outside of the box, but you're re-inventing the wheel. I don't consider myself gullible either! A metal ferrule will make the rod heavy and un-balanced.

              Comment


              • #8
                what about anodised aluminum? and why are coatings not practical? some bake on (anti wear, teflon) coating? or elecroless nickel plate?

                if your going to make these yourself you nedd some fixture to widen the tubes to specific dimensions anyway.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I haven't done any fishing in a long time, the last was using a nice fiber glass spinning rod with carbide ferrules. I think drilling or turning involves cutting processes which will tend to bring unwanted characteristics to gall. I think you will find processes that involve drawing and forging and heat treating will induce favorable traits into the metal to avoid galling.
                  Good luck, sounds like a fun project.
                  Sarge41

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tungsten dipper View Post

                    So you think you're smarter than Sage or Winston? I like your thinking outside of the box, but you're re-inventing the wheel. I don't consider myself gullible either! A metal ferrule will make the rod heavy and un-balanced.
                    Smarter? Or driven by different motivations? Sage and Winston in many ways have created a momentum to their product lines that would prevent them from adopting anything unless it's viewed as new/innovative. That's what's led them to lead the move to super fast action broomsticks by under rating their rods. Not doing any favors to the fishermen, but it's new and innovative so that people will spend money on it. I'm approaching this more like a bamboo maker - how do I make the best components to make the best casting fly rod I can. Many would call that bamboo rod old fashioned and not useful, but they probably have never had the pleasure of casting one of those pieces of art.

                    Metal ferrules are not heavy (particularly thin-wall Nickel Silver versions) and when you factor in that I removed a good 9" of heavy fiberglass and epoxy from a blank when converting it from tip-over to metal ferrules that argument looses momentum. With a graphite rod rod it will be a closer match, but a metal ferrule strategically place can also function to slow down a fast blank, and graphite makes for a faster blank.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by dian View Post
                      what about anodised aluminum? and why are coatings not practical? some bake on (anti wear, teflon) coating? or elecroless nickel plate?

                      if your going to make these yourself you nedd some fixture to widen the tubes to specific dimensions anyway.
                      Sorry, maybe I should have explained a bit better. The ferrule relies on a friction fit between the male and female components to stay together through the casting and fighting of fish. Basically hand fit, and when properly done with a Nickel Silver ferrule it will actually form an airtight seal that will 'pop' when you separate them. My worry with something like anodizing is that I would loose that fit due to the finishing process and not be able to adjust it properly afterwards.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Tom S View Post

                        Selling this to the fishermen was simply a matter of telling them it was better, since many fishermen tend to be gullible creatures that will throw money at anything they think will give them either status or increased performance.
                        The answer is in the question.


                        Fly fishing equipment is highly stressed in use much like the the orbital correction thrusters used on communication satellites.
                        Therefore such ferrules may only be manufactured using Copper/Nickle alloys that have been normalized then cold worked to near net form. Then rough grinding of the ID and OD followed by heat treatment and tempering . Heat to the transition temp. for a minimum of 56 hours then quench in the Tears Of A Clown followed by finish grinding.
                        Collecting a sufficient volume of Clown's Tears for large scale manufacturing is the issue, the most common method is considered a War Crime by the Geneva Convention, this however does not stop fishing equipment manufacturers from doing so, they are a ruthless lot
                        Last edited by Bented; 10-17-2020, 03:03 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          electro (or chemically) polished alu hard anodised would be very smooth and durable. A good anodiser (or lots of trial and error) will get you a very precise fit. Not sure if it'll be too smooth for your application - I'd personally add a couple of o-rings sized for a slight drag. That'll definitely get you a good "pop" when you remove the section. You could also play around with surface finishes, by etching or sandblasting if you want more grip. The surface finish generally transfers through after anodising.

                          I'm not 100% sure hard anodising is practical in a home shop as it requires a chilled acid bath, but it wouldn't be too hard to set up a refridgeration unit if that was the path you wanted to take. Type 2 anodising is well within the abilities of anyone on here but it's much less durable than Type 3.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bented View Post

                            The answer is in the question.


                            Fly fishing equipment is highly stressed in use much like the the orbital correction thrusters used on communication satellites.
                            Therefore such ferrules may only be manufactured using Copper/Nickle alloys that have been normalized then cold worked to near net form. Then rough grinding of the ID and OD followed by heat treatment and tempering . Heat to the transition temp. for a minimum or 56 hours then quench in the Tears Of A Clown followed by finish grinding.
                            Collecting a sufficient volume of Clown's Tears for large scale manufacturing is the issue, the most common method is considered a War Crime by the Geneva Convention, this however does not stop fishing equipment manufacturers from doing so, they are a ruthless lot
                            Alternatively, you could use aerospace hospital grade military tactical billet -- in the olden days it was carried on the backs of seven virgins for seven years, to properly "weather" it.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by nickel-city-fab View Post

                              Alternatively, you could use aerospace hospital grade military tactical billet -- in the olden days it was carried on the backs of seven virgins for seven years, to properly "weather" it.
                              That is old tech, it is currently carried on the backs of bitter ex-wives and is properly weathered within one month. This is known as BEWF

                              If one desires to sell products to hobbyists a number of keywords must be used in advertising.

                              Billet
                              CNC machined
                              Aircraft alloy
                              Military Spec material
                              Alloy Steel (this is a Jumbo Shrimp as by definition all steel is an alloy, steel is not an element)
                              Flame Hardened
                              BEWF (bitter ex-wife finishing)
                              Edit
                              I forgot to mention Titanium and Cemented Carbide, these materials give many hobbyists wood.
                              Last edited by Bented; 10-18-2020, 10:26 AM.

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