Well it’s been a while since I posted anything, part of the reason is that I have been busy and another thing is that I have been working on migrating my web site to a new hosting company. Anyway, yesterday was my birthday, turned 62! Now that being said my wife Verna bought me a new guitar! Have I ever mentioned how much I Love that lady? Got a nice Gold Tone resonator guitar since I am trying to learn some slide guitar! What a blast! You know that those old blues guys used to drink up their wine and break off the neck of the bottle and play away! Well off on another tangent we go… so I decided I needed to make some bottleneck slides! My wife said ” just go buy one! ” well anybody can do that I said! If’n you’re gonna play the blues you gotta make one… well one woulda’ been enough but those of you who know me know that if one is good more is better … anyway my new resonator should be here this week… can’t wait, I’m already driving my instructor crazy! If one guitar is good … well I just have 4! Could be worse…
So what’s new in the J. E. Arguello Fly Rod world you ask? Well as you all know I gotten into quads, the one I posted just before the Denver Flyfishing show was snatched up by the second guy that cast it! Also my Agate stripping guide business is very busy, I take it most makers are liking what I have to offer and I am continually adding stuff to that! Also Verna has started helping me with this so it is now a partnership! Seems that this is the only way we are gonna be able to keep up!
I have always loved to fish small streams with the proper gear for them. It has come to be my belief that many get frustrated fishing them and give up because they are tired of getting all hung up in the overhanging brush and trees with those 9 ft rods they are trying to fish them with. Well as many of you know I have designed a taper that I love in a 6 ft version. These rods open up a new world of fishing these small streams and many times you can spend the whole day on your favorite stretch of water and not see anyone else! Now that being said I have also come to realize how specialized these rods are and many people are quite reluctant to buy a rod they can’t use on bigger waters! So I came up with the idea of collaborating with a couple of well known fiberglass blank makers to design a small (6- 6 1/2 ft.) fiberglass version of the rods I love! I should be able to offer these at a moderate price. More to come on this as we are getting close!
So for now that’s about it, lots going on… time to get back to the bench, got some bamboo rods to deliver!
Guitar lesson tonight!
Well as promised I have completed a quad for the first rod of the year! I was really wanting to get this done for the Denver Flyfishing show. Well here it is, this one is done in my more traditional colors, take a look and see what you think! It’s a 7 ft. for a 4 wt.
So come on down to the Denver Flyfishing show starting tomorrow, Jan. 4th 2013 and cast this thing, then you can really tell if you like it or not!
Thanks for looking
Well, I won’t bore you all with the details but the company that I worked for bought me out 3 months early! I am now officially a full time rod builder! This is exiting and has only been 2 weeks but I have had the time to take care of a bunch of those projects that have been on the back burner!
So what’s new… well I am trying to get ready for the flyfishing show in Denver on January 4th! Hope to have a couple of rods maybe even a quad! And a handfull of my new Agate Stripping Guides, I have now added size 9 to my offering! I have these in Red, Amber solid colors as well as some really nice, transparent banded/mottled ones, these are really nice!
And new from the R&D department of the J.E. Arguello Rod Co…. I had a customer ask me if I had ever taken a carbide insert from an existing guide and mount it in a low profile frame! Well I have to say that I had never done this! But like I have always said I am always up for a challenge! So… well a picture is worth a thousand words!
Well whadda you think? Not bad if I do say so myself!
I am really excited to have the time to do what I truely love. There is more to come as I have a few more Irons in the fire! Keep in touch to see what’s new.
Joe E. Arguello
We all have had to deal with those customers that are extremely particular, well I have been blessed with some very good customers! Here’s one that comes to mind!
Since I started back in 1991 the bar has been raised to such a high level that it is sometimes quite nerve racking to deliver a rod! We as builders scrutinize every inch of our rods and I know like myself you all make sure to do the very best that you can before sending that rod out! Customers no longer view our masterpieces as simple fishing tools! I always cringe when I see someone put on their readers to inspect my work. Then there are guys like the one in this picture! I’m happy to report that he said …after a lot of hums and wells… “this is really nice!”
Makes you feel good after an inspection like that!
On to the next one!
Well I just got an email from a customer who is looking for an Agate Stripping Guide in a size 12 with a black Agate! Well I don’t have any black agates and in the course of our email communications he mentioned that he was working on a Sage graphite rod!… Well… I remembered that I have a whole bunch of the original Sage type stripping guides, the ones that they used back until a few years ago! These were chromed and had a ceramic insert, I beleive they were from Hopkins and Holloway. So anyway I thought I would let my customer know I had them and then the thought came to me that he was wishing for a nickle silver frame… no … you really can’t … well there’s the challange! Let’s see if we can cut the ceramic ring out and rebuild it… we can make it better… stronger… lower profile… we have the technology! Oh sorry I’m getting carried away here! Well long story short here is what I came up with, like they say a picture is worth a thousand words!
From the R&D department of the J. E. Arguello Rod Company!
Well what do you think?
Well as I have been saying for quite some time I have found the need to raise my prices! I have posted the new prices on my price page. I will be offering my rods with Snake Brand guides or with all in house made components as an option. There will be a slight increase in price to offset the added labor involved in making the snakes. You will notice that the on line order form has been removed from my site as there seems to be some technical difficulties on the server end that I can not control. As always I can be reached by email at email@example.com I always answer my emails promptly. You can also call me at: 303-859-8405 All rod orders taken before the 1st of the year will be charged at the 2012 prices.
I have been able to keep up with my Agate Stripping guide orders and look forward to continue providing these to all who want them.
Last but not least I will be adding Quads soon!
Well as some of you know I initially stated that all I had was red/amber/brown rings to make my stripping guides with, many of you have been very happy with what I have been able to provide. I am happy to announce that I have been working with my supplier and also working on getting another supplier to be able to provide a range of colors and styles of Agate Stripping guides. As you may know there are many suppliers of gem stones in various shapes, but agate rings have not ever been used in jewelry so they have to special order them, this requires an up front deposit as they do not want to be stuck with agate rings that are so specialized. I will continue to work on getting the finest agates I can find.
William Harms requested that I make a low profile guide and use the lighter wire for the frame on my #10s, we worked together and came up with a very low profile guide that looks very lightweight, very nice! Anyway, here is a picture of some of the rings that I now have to offer (8s and 10s), this was an order to see what we could come up with and I liked them so much that I have ordered another batch, these are some beautiful agate rings and make for some striking Agate Stripping Guides! These are offered along with what I have been providing to date. The second picture is a comparison of the regular guide and a low profile guide, the low profile guide can be made with the regular wire or the lighter wire as desired!
As always please let me know if I can assist you.
When you click on this image you can click stop slideshow at the bottom left corner to see more of the detail on some of the rings.
Banded Agate Rings
Regular and Low Profile ultra lite
I am happy to announce that I have decided that it is time for me to retire from my day job as an Operations Manager at a data center and go into my rod building full time. This decision did not come easy to me as the security of a good job is not easy to leave. That being said I have been spending more and more of my free time in the shop as things have progressively gotten busier! It has become very hard to keep up with my rod orders and now that I have started selling my hand made agate stripping guides… well it is time. As some of you know I also make Damascus knives and I have not even had time to think about those! So…
Between now and the end of the year I will be transitioning into becoming a full time builder of fine bamboo fly rods and all the other custom items that I make. This is very exciting as I am always torn when I have to leave the shop to meet my other responsibilities (day job) this should give me more time to get to some of those projects that I have had to put off and to take more orders. I am also considering teaching some classes if time permits.
I am now taking rod orders for 2013, if you look at my price list you will notice that I have changed them… what I have done is include some to the options that were upgrades! These options are Agate Stripping guides, trim wraps, and blackened hardware, these three options were an up charge of $150 and are now a savings to you! This pricing will remain in effect until the first of the year. I am now making most of the components that I use on my fly rods, and I will be changing my prices in 2013 to reflect the added labor that is necessary in order to do this. Order today don’t miss out on these prices! Please be aware that you rarely see my rods on the secondary market! I do not claim to have made as many rods as some other builders, but I do have a couple of hundred out there! My customers buy my rods and keep them!
Last but not least I will be adding Quads to my bamboo fly rod list, I have always been fascinated in Quad construction but have not had the time to get into them, I have acquired a set of forms and my quads will be hand planed in the same fashion as my hex rods.
I want to express my gratitude to all of my customers over the years, you have made it possible for me to continue to perfect my craft and I am always happy to make you a fine bamboo fly rod that you will cherish. I look forward to hearing from you.
Joe E. Arguello
Maker of fine bamboo fly rods… and other stuff!
Well as I said last time I was off fishing, it was Saturday morning and I needed to do a bit of soul searching! So off I went half-cocked, didn’t really know where exactly I was going. I drove up through Loveland, CO and up into the Big Thompson canyon, figured I would stop when the mood hit me! Well I ended up all the way up in Estes Park and still didn’t find the right place for the day. Since I was there I decided to call my friend Frank Drummond, “Wanna go up into the Park for a couple of hours?” I asked. “Sure, swing on by” he said. Well when I got there it was already 9:00 AM and the road into Bear Lake was already closed so that was out! Where we gonna fish today? Let’s go fish the meadow part of Fall River! So off we went. The flow is way down and we figured it would be a challenge, small flies and long tippets! I picked out a parachute BWO in a size 20 to start! Seemed like a good choice since it looked like it wanted to cloud up and it was a bit cool! The water was gin clear and real low. This ain’t gonna be easy! Well a guy’s gotta work on his skills once in a while even if you get skunked! I remember when I first started fly fishing, didn’t have a clue what I was doing so catching a fish was not an easy task and it was always easier to just put away that new fangled cheap fly rod with the miss-matched level fly line and pick up the ultra light spinning rod! Now we can catch a fish!… Well I realized that I had better tough it out and started leaving the ultra lite at home to force myself to either learn to use a fly rod or go fishless! Best thing I ever did for myself! Then I got to the point where it was always easier to put on a strike indicator and a beadhead. Now we can catch a fish!… Well I remembered my old lesson and gave away all my nymphs! Better learn to dry fly fish or go fishless! This is simply what I wanted to learn, I will be the first to admit I am not the best fishing partner as I can be a real snob! But I have become pretty good and when people tell me “you catch more fish with nymphs” well I suppose that may be true but I catch enough fish …and in the way that I like to fish. OK enough of that! We could see fish rising in the distance, the trick was to make a long cast putting the fly just upstream of the fish and not line them in the process! And get a decent drift without drag! This can be a challenge, but really it’s easier when the water is as calm as it was here! Much more challenging when you are fighting faster flow with those currents that go in several directions within the distance of your cast! Well it wasn’t long that we spotted a rising fish that looked like he wanted to play! I must have cast at that fish 6 times without putting him down! Just a bit short on the first one, that’s OK gotta get the range down without lining him! Next cast, not bad, he looked at the fly! Well I finally got one just above him with the right drift and he came up and ate the fly! This is just too much fun, just the way I see it in my mind’s eye when I am sitting at my desk dreaming about fishing! Oh yes believe me that happens… more often now than it used too! It’s a good place to go when the rat race is getting to you! Let’s call it my ‘happy place’… I was talking to a lawyer friend of mine and he told me “You know Joe, when the stress of the job gets to me I always remember that time when you and I were walking up both sides of the Encampment fishing dry flies and just catching a bunch of fish…that is my ‘happy place’ makes life just seem not so bad” I really liked that idea and have incorporated it into my life as well! So upstream we went, we kept going around each other and at times fished together, which really meant one of us was simply watching the other and enjoying the day! You notice that there is no mention of any kind of competition here? Not important who caught more or bigger fish! Just enjoying the day! That is what a good day of fishing with a good friend is all about…well at least for me! Did I mention that I may not be the best fishing partner? Too snobish! So we caught a few fish and all in all had a great time for about 3 hours, just about the limit for me. I don’t do the marathon all day on the river type fishing, getting to hard on an old fella! Besides that I mentioned to Frank that my thoughts were changing from fish and fishing to Cheesy Lee’s! Ah yes a ‘Fourteener’ (one of the items on their menu) Frank agreed that Cheesy Lee’s sounded pretty good right about now! So we walked back to Frank’s jeep and got our gear off and put away. We talked about the days adventure in the way that you would have a corporate meeting when writing a business plan, leaving nothing undiscussed, anylizing every cast and bend in the river! Our stategy was flawless! But like all meetings you need to move on to the next topic on the itinetary… Pizza !!!!!!!!!! We got to Estas Park and found our way to Cheesy Lee’s, what a great place! The owner asked “well how’d you guys do?” OK we said, caught a few fish, had a great time, now we are hungry… how about a ‘Fourteener’ and a couple of soft drinks? “Coming right up!” Well you know he had to come and sit with us at the table… he’s just too nice a guy and besides that he wanted a bit more detail on the day, whether he admited it or not! So we sat and talked about the day of fishing, and moved on to our passion for bamboo fly rods, dry flies, etc. And then here comes the eagerly anticipated ‘forteener’! What a way to end a great day of fishing with a good friend!
The answer to whether I should retire the first of the year still has not come to me! Kinda didn’t really come to mind at the time!
Here’s some pics, thank you Frank for taking the time to man the camera!
Click on any photo to start the slide show, or you can choose ‘stop slideshow’ at the bottom of any pic.