My Grandfather’s Fly Rod


John Kolb made this short film about restoring his grandfather’s bamboo fly rod.

I completely restore my Grandfather’s bamboo King Fisher fly rod from the early 1940s. I remove the finish, re-wrap the guides, and refinish the bamboo. I then head out to a local PA stream to fish with the same rod my Grandfather used. Some of the pictures I use in the video are from 1941 although the bamboo road is from 1945 – 1947. I decided to use a song and fishing license from 1941 and his outfit from the last picture. This was a very neat project to do but also very heartbreaking as the rod tipped broke when my fly got snagged. The rod must’ve had a week spot from getting old and brittle. I was using 7x tippet which tells you how weak the tip was. I am now searching for a King Fisher fly rod from the same period to replace the tip.

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