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Old 01-04-2013, 08:02 AM
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Default Re: Broken Sage rod ..

Sage is a great company and Xi3 a first rate saltwater rod. Warranty and service quality, however, don't help much when you are away from home and, in destinations like the Bahamas, there are no fly shops. You must have back up gear wherever you fish but especially in tropical flats destinations. Forget how strong bonefish are...mangroves, salt and skiffs (not to mention pick up trucks) are stronger.

Now, I have been bonefishing for a long time and have a penchant for experimenting with rods and reels to begin with. I travel with a 6" diameter case which for me (my wife often accompanies me bonefishing so...) contains: 1 #7, 2 or 3 #8, 1 #9 and possibly a #10 for permit and/or barracuda. And, if I have 3 8-weights with me I will have 3 reels too + extra lines. Of the 3 #8's I might bring I don't really think of them as back-ups but rather as alternates with varying characteristics...a big gun from the bow of the skiff dealing with wind and distance like your Xi3 or, my current preference, Loomis NRX, a little gentler but fully capable wading rod like a Scott S4s and perhaps a close quarter in the mangrove lagoons #8 such as the Scott 8'8" Heliply. I also have a new 8.5-weight powerhouse for really tough conditions, Hardy's Proaxis. All these rods are mounted with different tropical lines to suit their personalities and intended applications. You don't have to spend a fortune on bonefish rods, there are several good ones in the mid-price range. Rajeff Sports ECHO3 is a terrific rod at $350, lesser known but up and coming Rise Fly Fishing (out of Montauk, NY where they know something about tough salt water conditions) Level Series rods at about $300 are a great value and fine rod, and for even less, TFO.BVK a little less sophisticated but very acceptable at $250.

Meanwhile, get your Xi3 back to Sage as advised so it can be returned to new-like condition and, next time you carry it rigged in the bed of a pick up, wrap a towel around it.
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