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Old 05-08-2011, 10:40 PM
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Default Need help picking my new Avid

I bought a St Croix Avid 9' 6wt a while back for throwing streamers and nymphs on windy days. While it's a great rod, it doesn't perform any better then my 5 wt. My lfs is going to let me return it for another Avid model and I could use some help as I am split between two rods.

My fishing consists primarily of small to medium trout streams and spring creeks in NM with no brush but the potential for windy days. Several times a year I make it back to ID for all size streams where the small streams are usually brushy. My wife goes fishing alot with me so I have the luxury of buying rods that have duplicate or overlapping purposes. Currently I own

9' 5wt Scott A3 (my rod)
9' 5wt Sage Vantage (her rod)
7'6" Scott SAS (broken, was my brushy stream rod)
8'3" Sage SLT (my primary NM stream rod)

I am torn between the Avid 7'9" 3wt and a 8'6" 4 wt. The 3wt would replace my SAS as a brushy strem rod and would be the wife's when I am using the SLT...or vice versa. The 4wt would be my windy day backup to the SLT and for days when the 5wt seems like overkill (small flies, short distance).

Thoughts? Anyone own either rod?
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:47 AM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

It's just my opinion, but I love the Avid, but not for throwing streamers or on windy days. The action is just too slow. But, that is how I feel about it. I have a 5wt Avid that I have for dries only. I went with a faster rod for streamers (I also use a intermediate sink-tip line). I've found that on a medium sized river, my 7wt is actually better than the 5wt at throwing medium sized streamers.

Again, I live the action of the Avid's (I've had 3 over the past few years), but I hardly see it as a all around rod...just my opinion.
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:08 AM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

Axle27 - I feel the same way. Great slow action but i wouldn't buy anything larger then 8'6" 5wt and that would only be for dries. Thus, I am leaning towards the 7'9" 3wt strictly for dries and tiny, tiny nymphs.
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

When I think of windy days, I think of putting away the 4 wt rods; especially the slower action 4 wt rods. Personally I would go with a 7', not the 7'9. It would be nearly a duplicate of your Sage SLT, what...6 " shorter, small slow action rod, nearly the same thing. I love a 7'3 wt, it really lets you unleash it in small spaces. You can actually make a casting stroke when you are surrounded by brush. I've cast several 7' 3wts and they have all handled well, I'm sure the Avid would also.

I'm not trying to change your mind, but you asked for thoughts. IMO 7'9 is still pretty long for small brushy streams. This was my formula when I set out to get rods to cover everything: I got a 7ft 3wt, 8ft 4wt, and 9ft 5wt. I can fish anything from 6ft wide brush creeks, to the Yellowstone River with these three trout rods. I'd feel way oversized in alot of the places I fish if I was trying to use a 7'9" rod. And you wont be losing much with the 7' rod; it will still put 35-40 ft out there if you need to.
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Old 05-09-2011, 01:13 PM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

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Originally Posted by ausablebrown View Post
When I think of windy days, I think of putting away the 4 wt rods; especially the slower action 4 wt rods. Personally I would go with a 7', not the 7'9. It would be nearly a duplicate of your Sage SLT, what...6 " shorter, small slow action rod, nearly the same thing. I love a 7'3 wt, it really lets you unleash it in small spaces. You can actually make a casting stroke when you are surrounded by brush. I've cast several 7' 3wts and they have all handled well, I'm sure the Avid would also.

I'm not trying to change your mind, but you asked for thoughts. IMO 7'9 is still pretty long for small brushy streams. This was my formula when I set out to get rods to cover everything: I got a 7ft 3wt, 8ft 4wt, and 9ft 5wt. I can fish anything from 6ft wide brush creeks, to the Yellowstone River with these three trout rods. I'd feel way oversized in alot of the places I fish if I was trying to use a 7'9" rod. And you wont be losing much with the 7' rod; it will still put 35-40 ft out there if you need to.
Thanks ausablebrown, you bring up some good points that I had no considered. I pondered my choices some more and I have ruled out the 8'6" 4wt weight as it is too slow for even moderately windy days and doesn't offer anything over my SLT. That leaves the 7'9" ... or the 7' 3wt you suggested.

You are correct, the 7'9" would be a duplicate of the SLT but here's what I am thinking: All the "brushy" streams (and there are not that many of them) I have fished I got away with my 7'6" 4wt just fine. Another 3 inches wouldn't hurt but my 8'3" is just too long. I can afford to have duplicate rods because I often times take folks with me fishing who just own a 9' 5wt or no rod at all.

I strongly considered the 7' but a few things held me back. Being a 2 piece rod (my 7'6" was too) the tube is pretty long and a pain in the arse to strap to a boat on float trips. If it was a 3 or 4 piece I would give it a whirl. The second thing I thought was that I really struggled with my casting my 7'6" rod. Slingshot and bow "n" arrow casting I could pull off okay, but normal casting with no brush to worry about..well, I was all over the place. Seems anything under 8ft gives me fits. If I went 7 ft or shorter it would be limited to strictly super in tight work...which I don't see much off. For that kind of stuff I think I would want to go glass....a much more expensive investment.

Maybe I should consider selling the Avid out right and finding a 7 ft 3wt 3 or 4 piece?
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:27 PM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

I was going to buy a 7'9" Avid 3wt (IPC) because it was 40% off, but t was a noodle. I really wanted it, as I liked my 9' 5wt Avid, but a noodle is a noodle. Dropping down to 7' might tighten the action up a bit, regardless of the line weight. My 7' 4wt bamboo rod throws very tight loops, and does well in wind. When it arrived two years ago, my wife was casting it like a pro from the start. Dave Hughes wrote a book on small stream fishing, and he likes short 5 and 6 wt rods for that situation. He had a bunch of good reasons for liking the heavier line weights, and John Geirach says that he prefers to use at least a 5wt for small streams as well. I have a few 7'6" 4wt's, but prefer the faster rods. The faster rods toss line easier for me, and throw tighter loops. Maybe a Sage Flight, St. Croix Legend Ultra, or maybe St. Croix makes a 7'6" 5wt. Best to try before buying, unless you buy from a store that excepts returns.
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:46 PM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

I didn't feel that it was a noodle (Sage VT2...now that's a noodle), more like a true moderate action. You may have picked up a dud...or more likely could be due to the fact that I prefer med-fast rods where you are more a fast action guy. In fact I think my SLT is a hair too fast for a 3wt. I considered 4wt's...but 3's are just too much fun!
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:59 PM
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If you want to stick with a six weight for streamers, check out the echo rods by tim rajeff. I have an echo 2 saltwater version, similar in price to an avid and it has a lot more backbone than my avid does. I think they discontinued the echo 2 but his entire line is fantastic.
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:01 AM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

Quote:
Originally Posted by fireroad View Post
I didn't feel that it was a noodle (Sage VT2...now that's a noodle), more like a true moderate action. You may have picked up a dud...or more likely could be due to the fact that I prefer med-fast rods where you are more a fast action guy. In fact I think my SLT is a hair too fast for a 3wt. I considered 4wt's...but 3's are just too much fun!
my vt2 479-4 is absolutley not a noodle. i would rate it as a medium fast rod. now my winston vapor, thats a fast one for sure.

casey
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:27 AM
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Default Re: Need help picking my new Avid

Not going to comment on the Avid, but whatever you do, keep that 8'3" 3 weight SLT. As much as I fish 5 and 6 weights, my 8'3" 3 weight SLT is my favorite rod in my quiver.

Dennis
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