For a number of reasons I was unable to do any rod making or urushi lacquering for most of last month and November but I have just started a new project, overhauling one of the tanago rods I made last year. First I am shaping a new tip for the rod, this time made out of baleen, which will be more flexible and have a different action compared to the sanded-down bamboo tip it has at the moment. In part this is due to the size of the tanago on Lake Teganuma. In the photo the baleen tip is the one at the very front; since this is the first base layer of urushi lacquer it still looks a little bumpy but the surface will smooth out with progressive layers. It also will be straightened over a fire when all the lacquering is complete, as baleen absorbs moisture even quicker than bamboo (in the Age of Sail hygrometer dial indicators were often made from baleen taken from the northern right whale) and will warp a lot during the lacquering process as you can see here. Next, I am going to put some red lacquer on the grip of the rod, and then finally ring all the wrapped parts of the rod with a different colour.