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doobie

First attempt at homemade cork floats.

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As some might know, I had a fishing float made up of some dowel with a foam indicator as my main float rig.  It did it's job very well although sometimes a tangle would occur which was always easy to undo.  However, after re-spooling my reel with lighter mono, I kept getting more and more tangles - some to the point of cutting the line and re-rigging.

I decided to try something else and didn't really want to buy the stand shop float.  So a bit of look around on Google I saw a guy make some cork floats that looked quite good.   Problem was I didn't have any wine corks except 'champagne' corks courtesy of the missus.

Being the cheap skate person I am lol, I FB'd my neighborhood for some and received a few - and free :D 

Problem was that the rest of the materials for the way I wanted to make the floats was a bit expensive :(  But if I want to make more then the cheaper each one will become, plus the satisfaction of making my own.

Here's what I did ....

First - drilled holes through the cork and with some wood glue put a 6mm piece of dowel through it and let dry overnight.

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Second - put a couple bits of wood together with a hole to place the dowel to keep in place whilst sanding.

I used 60 grit at first and down to 120 grit to get a smooth finish.  This one is a champagne cork.

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A few different shapes and was also careful on a few not take away the wine 'emblem' on the cork so to give a bit of a different look.

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Then I cut some safety pins keeping the end ring part that will help attach a bit of weight for buoyancy and leader.   I originally used some standard sewing cotton (black) but felt it may not hold overtime, so used some braid on the rest.   Put some wood glue over it all to strengthen and let dry overnight.

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The fifth step was to give some primer to the ends ready for some enamel paint.  I used Gesso craft priming paint and let that dry for 3 hours.

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Then the other end and again let dry for 3 hours.

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Then some black gloss enamel paint on the bottom of the float.  Two coats given and will give a little extra to the braid/ring.

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The eighth step was giving two coating with a vibrant yellow enamel.

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Not too bad bad so far and could left without further painting, but decided to add a little decoration before giving three coats of Spar Marine vanish, by dipping the floats straight into the tin.  Let them dry well and light sand before next coating.  Pat the bottom tips to soak up the excess drips.

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Turned out reasonably ok for my first effort although a little 'rough around the edges' lol

Took a bit of time and few dollars but 🤷‍♂️

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Try some bamboo skewers (shaslick skewers).  They are thinner and lighter than dowel. Usually very cheap at Coles/Woolworths

If you want to go really light go to a craft shop and get styrene foam balls.  They are dirt cheap. Hot glue the skewers in to position.

After you bind the eyes/swivels/whatever in place, seal with the hot glue. (wood glue may not be waterproof)..

 

'a course...... you seem to have enuff floats now......... maybe just go fishing!!

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5 minutes ago, dmck said:

Try some bamboo skewers (shaslick skewers).  They are thinner and lighter than dowel. Usually very cheap at Coles/Woolworths

If you want to go really light go to a craft shop and get styrene foam balls.  They are dirt cheap. Hot glue the skewers in to position.

After you bind the eyes/swivels/whatever in place, seal with the hot glue. (wood glue may not be waterproof)..

 

'a course...... you seem to have enuff floats now......... maybe just go fishing!!

I did think about using the skewers and foam and would be very light.

That would be ok casting with the wind (if any) but into it wouldn't be too successful. 

However might do some anyway for a second choice when needed.

Hot glue is good but the Stux epoxy glue is even better and waterproof.

And I will go fishing ;) :D 

Thanks for the ideas dmck :91_thumbsup:

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Well done Doobie, love to see people have a go, it's good fun and even better when you catch a fish on your OWN gear. When I make floats with cork and I do sometimes as they have built in casting weight. I try to use the reconstituted cork (Cork particleboard) if you like. It sands down better, you don't get lumps flying off.... the hardest bit as you have discovered is too get a reliable source of good corks from someone who's NOT an alcoholic!!! Champagne corks do seem to be the best...

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41 minutes ago, FLOATMAN said:

Well done Doobie, love to see people have a go, it's good fun and even better when you catch a fish on your OWN gear. When I make floats with cork and I do sometimes as they have built in casting weight. I try to use the reconstituted cork (Cork particleboard) if you like. It sands down better, you don't get lumps flying off.... the hardest bit as you have discovered is too get a reliable source of good corks from someone who's NOT an alcoholic!!! Champagne corks do seem to be the best...

Thanks Floatman and I'm hoping for that satisfaction - I'm sure it will happen.

The corks I were given seemed to sand down quite well but not sure if they were reconstructed cork or not - not small lumps seemed to have flown off, so maybe they were reconstructed ones.

I can get plenty of the Champagne ones and at least the Champer bottles have not become all screw tops yet lol.

My issue at the moment though is attaching a small weight.

I can attach a small sinker with a bit of wire through the middle and hooking onto the ring at the bottom of the float.  But in doing so, it restricts the plastic tubing I'm thinking of attaching to the floats bottom shaft (to thread the main line through). And have a biro pen spring for berley down the line.

My 2nd choice is to have no small ball sinker (but still the plastic tubing) and have a shop purchased small berley spring down the line.

Both will give buoyancy to the float.

Or ... attach the small ball sinker to float ring and have a running main line (with a stopper) say through an attached swivel.

How would you do it or what do you do?

 

23 minutes ago, dmck said:

I'll try to remember to collect my wifes corks for you blokes....  A months collection should supply you for a couple of years.....

Sounds like my wife :D 

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They look slick Doobie

WHen you mention problems with tangles and light line it struck a chord with me.

I had very similar problems when trying to cast really heavy floats on light tackle.

I found that casting in a large loopy arc and 85% power really help get rid of tangles - this sort of cast wasnt possible on my light bream outfit so I started casting with 14lb pound braid and a snapper stick - that sorted it out.

The overhead cast kept everything in alignment and sorted out my issues.

This may not be relevant to your rigs but I thought it would be worth mentioning - the loopy cast at nearly full power was the answer to my problems

114.jpg

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54 minutes ago, yellow door 1 said:

They look slick Doobie

WHen you mention problems with tangles and light line it struck a chord with me.

I had very similar problems when trying to cast really heavy floats on light tackle.

I found that casting in a large loopy arc and 85% power really help get rid of tangles - this sort of cast wasnt possible on my light bream outfit so I started casting with 14lb pound braid and a snapper stick - that sorted it out.

The overhead cast kept everything in alignment and sorted out my issues.

This may not be relevant to your rigs but I thought it would be worth mentioning - the loopy cast at nearly full power was the answer to my problems

114.jpg

Pretty drawing Yellow Door :D 

Yeah, that could have helped but it just seemed to be a random big tangle.   Previous to changing to a lighter line there was an odd very small tangle that usually came undone with a jerk of the rod.   But the lighter line caused big issues.

Went to Bunnings today to get some clear tubing to hold line on float.  Tubing was either too small to fit on shaft or too big which would slip off.

Purchased some electrical cable and took the wiring out - line still slips through too easily, so looks like I'll need to put a couple of half hitches of line to the shaft to hold on.

Not my preferred way, but it will work.

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