I was visiting my local fly shop dropping off some rods and Billy was excited to show me a new reel from one of the big guys, made in USA and priced a sneeze away from $1000.00. I have to say it was a good looking reel other than being a odd size, how many people need a 6-7 wt trout reel for a grand? Anyway, I digress, "Ah Bill, the reel foot is crooked", "What do you mean crooked" he replied , "Crooked as in not straight" I said. So this reel has four screws anchoring the reel foot and it was crooked, not a little, a lot. This is not easy to do in CNC reels, how it got shipped out I will never know, I saw it in the first few seconds.
My Dad who was a pretty smart guy taught me early in life that even the pros make mistakes, they are just better at fixing them. This has always stuck with me so when you are building a rod and something goes wrong don't have a mini meltdown. Stand back and see what the options are. Often it is a few steps back and a little extra time and the rod can be fixed and no one will know except you and that is okay, after all it is only a fishing rod. I know I am often my worst critic and I look at some older rods that I "rejected" as first line and to be honest they are absolutely fine, I was just being too hard on myself. So take heart even the Big Guys make mistakes and send out defective reels. As long as you fix the problem to every ones satisfaction, you are fine. Heck, even FORD and GM have recalls