Steelhead Fishing Rod Building Components

Steelhead Fishing Rod Building Components
Steelhead fishing rods use the same components as most standard rods. Steelhead rod designs are for either single or double-handed use and have the ability to cast long, heavy lines. Built on a blank, the rods absorb the shock of large, hard-fighting fish. Spey rods are ideal for fly-fishing on large rivers and single-grip 7 and 8-weight rods effectively bring in fish on small and medium sized rivers.

Guides and Thread

Fishing rods begin with a blank with components added throughout the building process. Guides come in different sizes for different rods, and styles vary. The tip top is the first guide installed and controls the line as it leaves the rod. Below the tip top, the maker installs several guides along the blank that are either round or snake guides. Round guides are commonly on spin and bait-casting rods and the lowest guide on a fly rod. Snake guides are on fly rods. The guides attach by wrapping thread around the blank and coating the thread with epoxy.


The grip on a steelhead rod can be several different materials. Cork is the standard and preferred grip for many anglers Cork grips come preformed or custom built by bonding cork rings with glue. Foam grips are on high-quality rods. Some anglers prefer the foam because it is lighter than cork and has a soft feel when handled.

Hook Keeper

Not every rod has a hook keeper but the component is a practical feature on steelhead rods. The hook keeper is a small metal loop attached just above the handle of the rod. It allows anglers to secure hooks while transporting the rod and prevents damage to the grip from embedded hooks.

Reel Seat

The reel seat uses a threaded metal tube to secure the reel to the rod. Reel seats compose the bottom of single-handed rods and attach between the two grips on double-handed rods. The center column of a reel seat is metal, plastic or wood. Makers often use wood for a stylish finish.


Varnish and epoxy are not technically components but finish the rod for glossy look. Different colors and thread-wrapping patterns combine to create the look of the rod.

Article Written By Zach Lazzari

Zach Lazzari is an outdoor writing specialist. He has experience in website writing as well as standard newspaper writing. He wrote an outdoor column for the Silver World in Lake City, Colo., and articles for Lazzari is currently completing his bachelor's degree online through Arizona State University and lives in southwest Montana.

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