Gusa Dragon Jig Stick-Newbie Help

Discussion in 'Rod Building' started by Go Deep, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. Go Deep

    Go Deep Member

    I've been jigging for the past 3-4 yrs in the GOM using mostly custom built Seeker and a Zenaq Monster (and for a very short time a JM500M) sticks with good success on AJ's, Cuda, BF and YF. I want to start building my own sticks and this forum seems to have the folks that can help me out. Let me state up front, I know very little about rod building!

    I purchased a Gusa Dragon Blank last fall and finally got tired of sitting around looking at the blank standing naked in the corner! The Dragon specs are (6 ft tall, .154 tip/#10 and a .628 dia butt rated for 50 - 100lb with a slow action). I will probably put a Tiburon SST 8/50 reel on it with upgraded drags (25lb+) using 80lb spectra.

    I have a couple of questions:

    Reel seat - how much larger in diameter should the reel seat be from the blank diameter? I was looking at the ALPS triangle seats, which size do I need, i was thinking the size 16 (ID .630) but is this too small? Is it better to go bigger and just fill w/ tape and epoxy? Should I just step to the next size available which I believe is a jump to a size 20 (ID .748) or find a different model reel seat in size 18. I do understand the reel seat will be located 10" above the butt where the blank diameter will be smaller (I need a set of calipers to measure it!), hence my thought that the size 16 would work. Comments?

    Guides - I was looking at the ALPS XN guide w/ zirconium ring. My thoughts on sizes were 25, 20, 16, 16, 12, 12, 12 and a 10/10 tip. Any suggestions?

    Gimbal - Since the Dragon has a small diam butt, I was thinking an AMTAK AG1 with and ID of .75 which is the smallest aluminum gimbal I could locate while surfing the net?

    Thread sizes - what size do I need for wrapping the guides? This will be a working stick so I will keep things simple but strong.

    I will probably go with Hypalon for the grips as I fish 90% of the time out of my own boat, a 10" rear and a 10" fore grip.

    Acid Style -any more difficult than standard for my first build?

    I was also going to purchase the Flex Coat Small Business Start-Up kit to get me going, if there is something better out there, I'm all ears. Also was going to purchase the custom rod building DVD's by Doc Ski.

    Any other suggestions, please feel free to chime in!

    Thank you,
  2. Sea Crappie

    Sea Crappie Senior Member

    Congrats on attempting to build your own rod.

    On the reel seat, I'd call someone like Mark at C&M Custom Tackle Rod Building Supplies who is an ALPS dealer and ask him which size fits your Tib. Typically, you'd want the reel seat to have the smallest ID that fits both your reel and rod. However, if it's significantly larger it shouldn't be a problem if you use the appropriate arbors and epoxy.

    I've never used ALPS guides. The standard jigging/popping guide is the Fuji MNSG or ICMNSG (color being the only difference). You want your tip to be the same size as your smallest running guide. You'll also need to learn how to perform a static deflection test to properly locate the guides.

    A gimbal is just like a reel seat, it'll have arbors no matter what, so the ID is not critical, use an aluminum one.

    For thread I normally go A-A-A or A-A-D

    I don't know how you plan to jig with this rod, but a 10" rear grip seems awfully short to me. 12"-14" is closer to normal on a jigging rod.

    There's nothing particularly difficult about an acid wrapped rod as long as you have the right information on how to do it (and there are many approaches).

    Doc's vids are killer, I'd advise anyone new to building heavy rods buy a copy.

  3. paul708

    paul708 Site Sponsor

    i just did a DRAGON with TITANIUM ROLLER GUIDES, aftco ars2 blue seat and blue gimbal. put a slick butt on it.
    we were just here playing with it;)
    weighs nothing:D

    if i was using rings i would try 20-12 HNSG, and see how they look
    for sure acid wrap
    gudebrod thread, most sizes will work
    the c and d thread size may be easier for you first build
    i am not a "thread art" guy so just plain wraps

    i am hoping to send this to the west coast rod show next week. for the AA booth
    the rod is now featured on the AA site. look for "rods using AA guides":D

    if you need nore help feel free to call or PM

    Attached Files:

  4. JerseyBrian

    JerseyBrian Senior Member

    I was just over Paul's house playing with this rod and I must say it's a work of art. Light as a feather. I'm telling you right now it might be lighter than my 3 piece St. Croix Tidemaster Heavy action spinning rod cuz even with the metal reel seat, you feel like you can do baton twirls with it lol. But once you see the action of the rod and that perfect bend, you know it can tame a few cows.
  5. Go Deep

    Go Deep Member

    Thanks for the inputs, i was looking at ordering from C&M tackle before I had made this post! I was needing some direction after looking at all the different options that are out there!

    I will use this rod as dual purpose outfit for trolling,live bait bottom fishing and jigging; hence the shorter butt than many of the jigging rods currently have. With the gimbal, 10" grip and distance to the reel seat is about 14" which suits me fine. I've tried the long rear grip and I am not comfortable fishing in that manner. I also use playaction sports belts which sit much higher on my waist than the braid belt which gets broken out only a few times a year. The play action belt actually adds an inch or two due to its 360 degree gimbal.

    The Dragon blank looks like it is going to be awesome for pulling fish away from structure and I'll be able hold it all day!

    I'm sure I'll have more questions as I collect the parts and start glueing things together!

    Thanks again,
  6. txseadog

    txseadog Moderator

    Could of other things.

    I would suggest of not going any smaller that an size 22 seat to handle a larger reel (30 or 50) just use drywall tape and rod-bond for the bushings. Also, try get the gimbal from the same manufacturer as the reel seat so you have less chance of the colors being different.
  7. Go Deep

    Go Deep Member

    txseadog, thank for your input. The Tiburon 8/50 is more like a 3/0 size reel, or in other terms more like a 16 vs a 30. I have a Tib 30/80 and that reel is a brute for its size! I will go for a larger reel seat for a little more strength.

    Thank you all! Ed
  8. paul708

    paul708 Site Sponsor

    we were playing with the Wahoo JR sunday:D
    the dragon was there we just didnt lift with it

    Attached Files:

  9. JerseyBrian

    JerseyBrian Senior Member

    the dragon was there we just didnt lift with it
    Next time ;) But you can be the one to lift with it. I don't want to be liable for anything lol.
  10. ambermax

    ambermax Member

    I got dragon blank thinking at tuna (yellow fin) jigging... because I read "slow" action, but I find the blank very stiff...

    it is useful only in long jerk?

    how much can I cut it, at least, if I want a not too long rod?
  11. paul708

    paul708 Site Sponsor

    the dragon is a beast.
    i use it full size
    its my 6' rod
    i have a 5' and 5'6",OTI
    the 6' DRAGON and 7' and 8'WAHOO and wahoo JR
    cutting will void the warranty
    i might take 6" off butt if i wanted shorter
    But then you are looking at someting like a OTI 600 blank without cutting,and maybe cheaper
  12. Bellyups

    Bellyups Senior Member

    How is the build coming along?