Fine Nodeless Bamboo Fly Rods

Joel Hubscher, Maker

Why Bamboo

Why Nodeless

When you examine a culm of bamboo, you will notice it is a long tube with solid “nodes” cutting across the tube at 12”-18” intervals. As bamboo grows, the nodes provide structural support for the plants to grow to great heights.

The bamboo between the nodes is made up of 3 layers: the outer enamel, the power fibers, and the inner pith. The power fibers end at each node. When a fly rod is made with nodes, the power fibers are not continuous along the rod. They stop and start at each node. The node area is also much stiffer than the power fibers, causing irregular flexing of the bamboo strips and, eventually, the rod.

In order to eliminate these “node caused” problems, I take the time to cut out all nodes and expertly splice the pieces back together in the original order and orientation that they existed on the culm. This time consuming process means that my finished fly rods are only made of continuous power fibers. People who cast my finished rods comment that they are amazingly “smooth”. That tells me I have attained my goal of making the ultimate bamboo fly rod.


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