It takes between 15-25 hours to build each custom net. Starting with an idea for handle length, and hoop shape, each net is carefully crafted to meet the specifications of the new owner. Contrasting strips of wood are cut and dimensioned thin to be able to bend around a form - sometimes strips close to 0.010" thick at 4 to 7 feet long are used! Lots (and I do mean lots!!) of clamps are used to laminate each strip with waterproof adhesive to the handle.
The nets are flattened using a sharp block plane and drum sander, then hours of shaping and sanding are put in to perfect the look and feel. Any mistakes here will be very apparent in the final product after finishing! I primarily use hand tools to shape the handle until it feels natural in the hand.
To finish the nets, I use danish oil for the first few coats. Very thin coats are applied until the wood stops "drinking," then more coats of a thicker oil-varnish finish are applied to build up a perfect protective barrier - much like a rifle stock finish. Typically, between 8 and 12 coats are applied to create a durable water barrier, and glossy shine that show the depth of the wood figure. A final wax polish is applied to give the net a silky smooth feel.
After the finishing process, the net bag is sewn on. I use fish and hook friendly rubber net bags in either black or clear.
Depending on net size, a paracord lanyard can be tied to the end of the handle. It's a rewarding process that I enjoy on many different levels. Each new net is uniquely different from the last!