Only the finest components are used in the fabrication of a McKellip rod. Starting with the bamboo. Each culm is selected for its straightness, heft, and fiber density. If it doesn't measure up to my standards, it doesn't get used. The last thing I want to do is waste my time building a blank that will end up as a reject, as well as waste my time in its fabrication. All flaws that can be detected during the splitting process such as water marks, gouges, leaf nodes, worm holes and the like, are rejected and put in the fire starter pile. Anything that comes up during the building process that is of a negative nature is promptly addressed and dealt with.
I use Bailey Woods Super Swiss ferrules, carbaloy stripper guides, the finest snake and tip top guides available , the finest grade cork available, nickel silver winding checks from Bailey Woods or Struble, nickel silver pocketed butt caps and custom made nickel silver sliding bands from REC, Kanagawa and Pearsall's silk thread for guide wraps, Heritage brass caps engraved with my logo and its collar with matching bottom caps for rod tubes from REC, powder coated rod tubes from REC, custom made rod bags made of ultrasuede with the rod information label sewn on, custom made reel seats of my own design, custom made full length wood handles, custom made stacked leather handles, and lastly, I make sure that the rod identifying label that is glued on the rod tube will never come off by applying a thick coat of epoxy over it while it turns in a rod turner. I use tung oil based varnish to fill the wraps as well as to dip the rod for final finishing.