Alright, I know everybody is going to laugh, but I fish almost exclusively with a 9' 7/8 wt telescopic rod. It's a Shakespeare travel fly rod that I bought from the UK because they aren't available in the US. I got into the telescopic rod thing because I'm in the Navy and we have so little personal storage space aboard ships. I always took a rod with me on deployments just in case we ever got to have a "fish call" on the ship, or got to fish in foreign countries. I've been brand loyal to Shakespeare because I have caught loads of fish on that rod, and it has never failed me. Anyway, I'm on shore duty now and have lots of space here at the house. I'm looking to upgrade to a "normal" fly rod. One thing I do know is that Shakespeare's fly rods sold in the US are of significantly lower quality (plastic and foam versus metal and cork in the handle and real seat areas). So the question is, should I buy a UK version of a 9' 8 wt two or three piece Shakespeare, or is there a good quality, relatively inexpensive rod in the US market I can get?
For a comparison, check out Shakespeare Fishing Tackle UK
and Shakespeare Fishing Tackle US
Different product lines with different quality for sure.