Sanding to Alter Action

By Tom Kirkman, (RodMaker Magazine)

Here's a question from the September/October 1998 issue of RodMaker magazine:

"I'm curious to know more about sanding the wall of a graphite blank in order to change its action. Can this be safely done and how much sanding, or thinning in actually required before you can detect a change in action?" Paul, Birmingham, AL

RodMaker Magazine

"Hold on! Don't do it! Yes you can change a blank's action by altering its wall thickness by sanding or grinding but it's far more likely that you'll weaken the wall in a critical area and cause the blank to fair. Today's modern high-modulus blanks feature much thinner walls than did blanks of just a few years ago. Most blank designers and manufacturers are engaged in an ongoing quest for the perfect balance of performance and durability. Simply put, that means that most blanks are designed with a minimum amount of material that will offer good performance while still maintaining an adequate degree of durability. There's really not much margin for error and sanding the walls of a blank will almost certainly increase the chance of, if not guarantee, a failure at some point.

I'm not saying that it can't be done, just that the average guy isn't likely to get good results in doing so. When you consider the hundreds, if not thousands, of blanks on the market today, it's hard to imagine you can't find an action pretty darn close to what you're looking for. ~ Tom Kirkman

Publishers note:

If you have any tips or techniques, send them along! Help out your fellow rodmakers! ~ Publisher, FAOL

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