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During the drawing of optical fibers, the maintenance of a uniform fiber diameter is a difficult task. Parameters affecting the diameter variations are the temperature and viscosity distributions within the neck‐down region, the neck‐down shape, and the fiber drawing tension. A physical model is presented that predicts the neck shape and temperature distribution within the neck‐down region during the drawing of a high silica rod into a fiber. The model is formulated by an iterative technique to obtain solutions from the coupled equations of momentum and energy for given fiber‐drawing conditions. It is demonstrated that the predicted values of the viscosity, neck shape, and drawing tension agree well with those of measured values.