Find out the easy way to shape custom EVA grips for your next fishing rod.
Rod Building’s 5 Steps for Shaping EVA Grips
When it comes to rod building, shaping grips is one of the easiest and most rewarding ways to customize your fishing rod. Since the grip is shaped by you and for you, it’s a great way to increase your performance and comfort on the water.
Learn how to shape your EVA grips:
1. Start with Basic EVA Grip
To start, take a basic EVA Grip and attach it to a lathe.
Some rod builders like to cut the EVA grip down to fit before shaping it, but most beginners should save this step for the end to account for any mistakes.
Although accidents aren’t common while shaping grips, anything can happen, so leaving some extra wiggle room will help preserve your project.
2. Remove More Material with Sanding Screen
Next, you will want to remove material to take the width of the grip down to your liking.
Using Sanding Screen, take off more material in the beginning to save you more time and effort by the end.
Take off a decent amount of EVA foam until you are comfortable with the width and ready to begin fine-tuning the shape.
3. Use File to Shape Down EVA
Once you have the majority of excess material removed from the EVA, take a Rod Building File and use it to shape the further shape the EVA.
There are many options for grip shape, so do some research on what will work best for you and your style of fishing before you start shaping the grip.
Whether it’s a full wells or a fore grip, check the shape as you file it down to make sure you like the result.
4. Sand EVA for Smooth Texture
After you’ve removed a little more material and added the shape to the EVA grip, it’s time to take care of its rough exterior.
Using Sand Paper ranging between 80 and 320-grit, smooth the texture of the EVA grip to your comfort.
We recommend stopping at 320-grit sand paper because EVA tends to look less appealing with any higher grit sand paper.
5. Trim EVA Grip to Fit
Once satisfied with the shape and texture, use something with a flat edge such as the side of a file to trim the grip’s length to fit your fishing rod.
If you are more experienced making grips, this will likely be your first step, but most beginners will want to do this last. Saving this step for the end helps keep any mistakes from ruining the entire grip.
With your custom grip shaped to fit the contours of your hand, mount it on your handle assembly and see how much fun fishing with comfort can be!