Ferrule Care on your Bamboo Fly Rods

Regarding Ferrule Care on your Bamboo Fly Rods, for years I have heard that you should never apply anything in the form of a lubricant to the Nickel Silver Ferrules on your Bamboo Fly Rod.  I was told any form of lubricant collects dust and grit and can scar the metal.

Well, I have become a convert.  I have done a lot of research and have found that many makers and builders (some quite well known) use beeswax or soap (lightly applied) to the male ferrules on their fly rod.  I have tried Ivory Bar Soap (99.9% Pure, of course) and have been very impressed.  The ferrules slide on great, pop well, and are easier to remove.

Certainly you should clean the soap off at the end of each day’s fishing, but a very light application of Ivory Soap (that’s what I use) smoothed on the male ferrule and any excess wiped off truly facilitates the smooth seating of the ferrule.  Thus far I have seen no problems at all from this type ferrule care.  An additional advantage of using soap as opposed to something else (beeswax for example) is that soap comes off cleanly with water.

Another thing I have done (and continue to do) is carry a small piece of 0000 Steel Wool with me on fishing trips.  Sometimes is seems the Nickel Silver on my fly rod oxidizes and no longer fits.  A few twirls of the bamboo rod while lightly holding the steel wool on your male ferrule is usually sufficient to knock off any oxidation.  You don’t want to do this unless necessary, however, because if the ferrule is ever turned down too much, you have a problem.