Vintage Rod

Need some advice on saving a classic Diawa?

I have a vintage daiwa 5.5 foot light action rod (pistle grip), I put braided line in it and it ruind the guides (Parts to fix that are on their way) that’s not the question. It’s a vintage rod, I use it for fishing bass in light to moderate cover, I use it a lot (4 to 5 times a week about 25 hours a week of actual fishing). I’ve noticed that the tip is starting to bend permanently? Does it have one foot in the grave? Is there any hope in restoring its shape? It was my grandfathers and I don’t want to break it. My grandfather never actually used it I found it in storage in the original package. Retiring it to bobber fishing is not realistic do to the fact I can’t stand bobber fishing, due to the fact I don’t drink.

There are a couple of things that can cause the bend you are describing. One could be just the storage of the rod leaning against the wall, but with the amount of use it gets I don't think this is the problem. You can try hanging the rod from the tip and see if it will help. I do recommend storing all rods in the vertical position to prevent them from taking a permanent set.

Older rods, especially fiberglass and even early graphite rods will get softer with age due to the individual fibers breaking down and the resin that binds them together deteriorating. Can't avoid this, and the use it gets speeds up the process. Look at the rod carefully in the area of the bend a see if there is a spiral line running up the rod. This would show a de-lamination. The layers of fabric that make up the rod blank are separating. Also look for a discoloration or light colored area in that area, almost like a bruise. This shows an area where the fibers are breaking down. Either situation will cause a permanent bend and will cause a total failure at some point.

Damaged rod blanks can't and should not be repaired. I know there are some shops that will do it but they are not doing you any favors. If you brought the rod to me for repair I would check for this first, even before replacing the guides, which is no problem. If the rod has any sentimental value I would recommend an early retirement and a nice spot on the wall.

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