I believe Kojiro Murata is a child of Garrison, but his rods also contain some of Payne’s genes. His model “Natural Free 704” is the first model he designed in his career. Its base model is Garrison’s “201,” but is still Murata’s best-selling rod. It has a strong taste of Garrison but with glass-like varnishing. I will be beaten to death by many Payne lovers right away if I let the cat out of the bag, saying, “More beautiful than Payne.” So I will not say it!
But even if I shut my mouth about his art-like varnishing, his unique and exquisite design is so stunning that once seen, your eyes will be glued to it.
He uses the thinnest Japanese natural embroidery silk thread for wrapping. Even if you brought your eyes close to his rod, it would be difficult to find the bump of thread on the shaft. It looks like it is painted on the shaft. When you move your eyes down to the grip, you will find a beautifully coated wooden check that is another signature of a Murata rod.
“I was lucky enough to have gotten very much support from friends and acquaintances when I started the business. I never could become a bamboo rod maker if they had not helped me. Now I am just returning what I got 40 years ago to the next generations. I will not hide anything. I’ll answer any question I can.”
*This article was extracted from “Mostly Bamboo” by courtesy of the author.