Bamboo Tips - Contraptions - Rod Wrappers

< Home < Contraptions < Rod Wrappers

Here are some pictures and/or drawings of rod wrappers from various makers.  If the name of the submitter is underlined, you can go to the submitter’s web site.


Brian Smith’s Rod Wrapper

Brian Smith’s Rod Wrapper 01

Brian Smith’s Rod Wrapper 02

Brian Smith’s Rod Wrapper 03

Brian Smith’s Rod Wrapper 04


Jim Harris’s Rod Wrapper

Jim Harris’s Rod Wrapper 01

Jim Harris’s Rod Wrapper 02

Jim Harris’s Rod Wrapper 03

For lack of a better name, I call this a "flywheel" rod wrapper. The moving components can be scavenged from an old bicycle or even purchased new at a bicycle shop. You'll need common tools a hacksaw and access to a gas or electric welder.

The hollow part, that the rod goes through, is the part of the bicycle frame that the handle bar gooseneck fits into and the front forks attach to. Bike shops call it the head set. I found that leaving a part of the frame attached to the head set outer metal tube simplified the construction process. This attached section of the frame acts as an upright to hold the head set tube in proper position. These photos show a wrapper made from a girls bike. A boys bike can also be used. You'll have to decide for yourself how best to configure yours with the materials you have at hand. Getting the flywheel and the small sprocket attached to the hollow threaded tube (which turns inside the headset) is kind of tricky because there is not enough of the tubes threads protruding to hold all the necessary stuff. Stuff being the 1/4" aluminum flywheel, 5/16 plastic spacer, small sprocket, washers and lock nut. An extra 3/4" to 1" is needed. You will find it necessary to shorten the outer tube which holds the outer bearing races. This will give you the added room you will need. First remove the races and then cut the outer tube with a hacksaw, then reassemble the bearing races. This all sounds like madness but once you have the parts in your hand you will understand.

The part of the bike that forms the wrappers hand crank is called the 'crank set.' Its the part of the bike that your feet rotate. Leave a short section of the frame attached to outer tube of this part also. This extra section of frame can be welded directly to the head set or on the tube which holds the head set in place. Keep in mind, before you weld, that the sprockets must be kept in planer alignment so that the chain will run freely. The distance between the headset and the crank set is not critical. Just make sure the sprockets have room to turn without hitting each other.

Bicycles are configured in various ways so again you will have to use some ingenuity to figure out how to attach the sprockets and the position of the cranking arm. On mine I simply cut one side of the crank completely off and left enough of the other side to make a hand crank. The chain will have to be shortened to size. If you don't have a chain breaker, the guys at the local bike shop can do this for you. It is very important that you attach everything to a solid/heavy base so that the vibration of the unbalanced flywheel is not a factor. In this case a 1 inch steel plate is used to hold everything solid. The flywheel is purposefully unbalanced with a counter weight so that the position of the thread tensioner and feeder arm/tip top, will stop and hold between 10 and 1 O’Clock when the crank lever is released. This holds the best thread position for performing the various other tasks.

This is not a complicated project. If you worked on your bikes as a kid, with a little free thinking, you can make this contraption. I'll be happy to answer any questions you may have about making or using this rod wrapper.


Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 01

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 02

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 03

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 04

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 05

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 06

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 07

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 08

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 09

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 10

Tony Spezio’s Rod Wrapper 11


Marcelo Calviello Rod Wrapper

Marcelo Calviello Rod Wrapper


Adam Vigil’s Motorized Rod Wrapper

Adam Vigil’s Motorized Rod Wrapper 01

Adam Vigil’s Motorized Rod Wrapper 02

Adam Vigil’s Motorized Rod Wrapper 03

Adam Vigil’s Motorized Rod Wrapper 04


Scott Bahn’s Rod Wrapper

Scott Bahn’s Rod Wrapper 01

Scott Bahn’s Rod Wrapper 02

Scott Bahn’s Rod Wrapper 03


Site Design by: Talsma Web Creations

Tips Home - What's New - Tips - Articles - Tutorials - Contraptions - Contributors - Search Site - Contact Us - Taper Archives
Christmas Missives - Chat Room - Photo Galleries - Line Conversions - The Journey - Extreme Rodmaking - Rodmaker's Pictures - Donate - Store