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How to Wrap the Olive Branch Custom Thread Technique

Learn how to wrap the olive branch thread wrapping technique to add the perfect custom rod building flare to your fishing rod’s guide wraps, trim bands, decorations, and more!

10 Steps to Wrap the Custom Olive Branch

The olive branch thread wrapping technique is a popular way to dress up thread wraps on your custom fishing rod.

Not only is the olive branch relatively easy to wrap, it’s a thread wrap that looks just fancy enough to take a rod a step further without adding any significant time to your build. into custom category. Of course performance is always a huge deal, but many rod builders and customers alike are also interested in a rod that’s unique and eye-catching.

Originally developed by Jim Trelikes, the olive branch truly adds the perfect custom pop to any thread wrap. From guide wraps and trim bands, to decal accents and other decorations, all thread work can benefit from a well place olive branch.

Learn how to wrap the olive branch with the following 10 steps and watch the video tutorial at the bottom

1. Choose Primary and Accent Thread Colors

First step, pick out your primary wrapping thread and accent thread color.

Popular options often match darker colored threads with lighter accent colors or vice versa. Metallic Thread is also a great choice to get the extra pop on contrast from olive branches.

Considering how many colors and styles of thread are available in ProWrap Thread, the only limits for your olive branch wrap is your own imagination.

2. Place Rod Blank in HWS-1 Hand Wrapper

Next, position your rod blank in the HWS-1 Hand Wrapper with the section you intend to wrap aligned in the middle of the wrapper.

The HWS-1 uses an orange tension rod to maintain the thread wrap as you go, but make sure it is either pointed at your chest or at the rod blank.

If the tension rod is pointing towards the ceiling, your wrap will be too loose. On the other hand, if the tension rod is pointing down too far, the wrap will be too tight and risk damaging the surface of the rod blank.

3. Start the Thread Wrap on the Rod

For the third step, begin your thread wrap!

TIP: If you’ve never wrapped a guide before, you can find a quick demo here: Wrapping Guides on a Fishing Rod

4. Slide Accent Thread Under Running Thread

Once you have wrapped close to where you want the olive branch, slide the accent thread under running thread so it is secure.

Then, lock it down with 4-5 more wraps of the running thread over the accent thread.

5. Trim Off First Thread Tag

With the accent thread locked down, trim off the first tag end with a razor blade. To trim off the tag end, lay the razor blade flat against the wrap with the blade facing the thread tag.

Next, pull the thread tag towards the blade in order to cut it flush with the thread wrap.

It’s good practice to have multiple fresh razor blades handy as they will cut the thread better and more precise than dull, used blades.

You can get razor blades in Packs of 10 or Packs of 100 at Mud Hole.

6. Twist the Accent Thread Around the Running Thread

With the accent thread locked in place, you can begin twisting it around the running thread as you wrap it.

By winding the accent thread over and back underneath the running thread, you will create the olive branch design.

7. Space Each Branch to Your Liking

Continue wrapping the accent thread around the running thread in this pattern, but make sure to equally space out each twist for the better finished product.

8. Lock Down Accent Thread

Once you have the olive branch complete, burnish the thread to remove gaps and lock down the accent thread with 4-5 wraps of the running thread.

Then, trim off the second tag end of the accent thread flush with the thread wrap.

9. Finish Off the Thread Wrap

End the thread wrap by sliding a loop under the running thread—locking it down with 4-5 more wraps of the running thread—and then while maintaining tension, slip that running thread up through the loop and use the loop to pull the running thread back underneath the wrap to lock it in place.

TIP: For beginners, use a different color thread for the loop to keep from getting confused.

10. Trim Final Tag and Add Epoxy Finish

Just trim off the final tag end and you’re ready to add epoxy finish!

Check out the video tutorial below to see all of the olive branch steps in action…

Olive Branch Thread Wrap Video Tutorial






Wrap Wednesday’s are a great resource for new and experienced rod builders because they make the instructions fast and simple. That way, you can start customizing your thread wraps in no time!

Click this link for more thread tutorials—Wrap Wednesday: Custom Thread Wraps

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