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Foam Grips

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"Foam" grips – whether they are sold as Hypalon, Korkalon, Celtex, or some other product line – are extruded closed-cell material. In other words, air bubbles are trapped within the foam composite material in much the same way as with "packing peanuts" used to mail articles.  The only difference in these materials is the density (or size and number of air bubbles trapped within the core material) and the composition (mixture) of the materials, which affects the "feel" or "softness" and resiliency of the products.

In making a custom rod or repairing a grip on a worn out rod, the crafter has several choices: either purchase a preformed grip from a mail-order catalog or order the "raw" material from a manufacturer. Preformed material is available in "set piece" designs and dimensions.  On custom rods I prefer to turn a block of raw material from an uncored turning square. This gives me the added advantage of being able to join dissimilar colors to create designs or inlays in the final grip, customizing it to match or contrast with the blank and the guide wraps.  Uncored material obviously provides a greater gluing surface and also allows for more intricate designs.


These blocks are available from several manufacturers, the most prominent of which is Dale Clemens Custom Tackle in Allentown, PA.  Mud Hole Custom Tackle has just introduced another   source of mulicolor, wood grain appearance, EVA foam grip material at a reasonable cost. For further information, please refer to the Links section.

This workbook shows you how these grips are made and attached to the blank.

Measure Blank Diameter

Core & Lathe Foam

Adhere to Blank

Dress It Up

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