Mounting The Reel Seat

Mounting The Reel Seat

Incredibly important to the fishing rod's final performance, mounting the reel seat is an easy process when you follow the instructions provided below.

The Reel Seat's Purpose

Securing the reel to the rod blank, the reel seat is an integral part in the ultimate performance of your custom fishing rod.

Reel seats brace the reel to the blank, usually using either locking metal rings or sliding bands. These bracing mechanisms tighten down over the reel foot to fasten it in place.

Often, reel seats have a larger inside diameter than the outside diameter of the fishing rod blank itself. Considering you will need to build up the blank to securely fit the reel seat, we will need to add an arbor.


Although it is a simple concept and construction, reel seat arbors serve a very important role in rod building. Arbors work by building up material around the rod blank so that the reel seat is centered accurately. In addition to centering the reel seat, arbors bolster the reel seat's bond to the rod blank by displacing the empty space between the inside diameter of the reel seat and the outside diameter of the rod blank.


In the world of rod building, there are as many arbor opinions as there are arbor materials. From masking tape and dry wall mesh tape to pre-made graphite, arbors can be made of many different materials, but the function is much more important than the material.

Making a masking tape arbor is the cheapest option, but it also works just as well as any other potential arbor material. Considering masking tape is readily available and works great as an arbor, we will consider it our default arbor material moving forward.

Make tape arbors easier than ever with CRB's 3-Roll Tape Dispenser.

Instructions To Build An Arbor

Starting roughly ½ an inch up from the rear grip, begin wrapping the masking tape around the rod blank.


Continue wrapping tape until the reel seat slides tightly over the arbor. Then, make another arbor about ½ an inch down from the top of the reel seat.

Once the reel seat slides over both arbors, remove the reel seat and add an equal sized arbor in between the previous two.

Steps To Install Reel Seat

With each arbor accurately completed to snugly fit the reel seat, apply epoxy glue thoroughly in-between and over the arbors.


Remember, you can always wipe off the extra glue with denatured alcohol, so don't be afraid to apply an ample amount of epoxy to ensure the strongest bond possible.

Next, slide the reel seat over the arbors. While sliding the reel seat over the arbors, turn it 360 degrees to make sure the glue completely adheres to both the reel seat and the rod blank.

Finally, double check that the reel seat hoods line up according to the spine mark. If it lines up, you're ready to mount your reel!

Check out Mud Hole Custom Tackle for all of your rod building resources!

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