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I have an H3 8wt that was one of the first 10 produced that I got as a 16th birthday present but after 3 years of being my go to stick, the cork has typical discoloration and I was wondering if it would be possible to sand the cork back to new/like new condition. I already have sandpaper from 150 grit to 3000 grit. I would really love to keep the rod for a long time as the blank is in great condition as are the guides/epoxy. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
 

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I have an H3 8wt that was one of the first 10 produced that I got as a 16th birthday present but after 3 years of being my go to stick, the cork has typical discoloration and I was wondering if it would be possible to sand the cork back to new/like new condition. I already have sandpaper from 150 grit to 3000 grit. I would really love to keep the rod for a long time as the blank is in great condition as are the guides/epoxy. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
First,try wiping it down w/ rubbing alcohol.
 

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Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.

thank me later ;)
 

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Ezee Peeze. Just take a Scotch brite scouring pad and some good dish soap like Dawn. Soap the pad, wet the cork and scrub away. It'll come back like new. No need to sand.
What Zika said, works like a champ done it many of times. After it’s clean You could apply some U-40 cork sealer to protect it in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks everyone. I really didn't want to sand it so I appreciate all of the responses. :)
 

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I've rubbed the cork grips with a damp microfiber cloth and firm pressure with good results.
 

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Ezee Peeze. Just take a Scotch brite scouring pad and some good dish soap like Dawn. Soap the pad, wet the cork and scrub away. It'll come back like new. No need to sand.
Ditto, except I use the "blue" colored "Scotch Brite" pad instead of the green for the 1st go around because it's less abrasive. I'll do this under mildly hot water to help break up the oils and grime from your hands. I've even added a little "Comet" or "Bar Keeper's Friend" to the Dawn dish washing concentrated liquid soap to give it a little more umpf the 2nd go around with the blue pad, if the 1st round didn't get it cleaned good enough, before I break out the green pad (on a 3rd try). But I mostly get it the 1st time.

So Chops, after doing that, rinse really good with warm water and allow it to dry over night to check how it did. It's should typically take care of it and almost get it to near new with the 1st round, without doing any sanding (or microsanding) and will not break down the cork.
 

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Clean very lightly with a Magic Eraser...fill any gaps or cracks gaps with Elmer's wood filler as needed...sand smooth again, very lightly...then apply a liberal coat of U-40 cork sealer...done...
 
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