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Old 06-15-2011, 11:12 PM
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Default New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

It appears that the Yellowstone Angler shootout series is nearing the release of a new 2011, 8 weight shootout. An ad has been posted on the site for quite some time in anticipation of the release. Personally, I'm looking forward to it, despite the usual reservations, knowing full well that the caldron of controversy is about to boil over. There will be winners and losers, and someone always gets offended!

I'm taking predictions before the results are posted. Would Yellowstone Angler ruin the mojo / juju they created by giving the Hardy Zenith 20/20 across the board on the 5 weight shootout by not following suit with the Hardy ProAxis saltwater rods? Do I hear a B3X anyone????

Will the Sage Xi3 or Loomis NRX win, or will the St. Croix Legend Elite continue to show that you don't have to spend 700-800 dollars to get a quality saltwater rod with the latest nano-resin technology?

Will Yellowstone Angler continue to unnecessarily insult the Scott fly rod company, and will they continue to keep it "apples to apples" by only using one kind of line on rods that may require standard or half line sizes heavier? Will they actually test cast the rods on WATER this time, or will they upgrade from the hard wood gym floor to the local bocce ball court, since the weather is so nice this time of year?

Ahh who cares, right? We'll be here to discuss it anyway.

Just for the record, I'm predicting a Hardy ProAxis, SageXi3, Loomis NRX, and St. Croix Legend Elite top 4 with the usual and unnecessary insults directed at the Scott Fly Rod Company. They're just bitter they had to pay for the test rods like the rest of us!

Does anyone have any predictions or reasons why one rod brand will or should rise above the rest? Let’s discuss our own Fly Fishing Forum 8 weight shootout before we are told what we should buy!

Last edited by chicagojohn; 06-15-2011 at 11:45 PM.
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Old 06-16-2011, 06:34 AM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

As I've said before- this is marketing b.s. For Yellowstone Anglers. All the rod lines are ones he carries. Gymnasium casting just doesn't cut it.
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Old 06-16-2011, 10:09 AM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

In the past, the test used Bonefish taper lines to get consistent results. This might be fine and dandy if one wants results for using the rod for Bonefish, but it will be worthless for the guy targeting Steelhead, Silver Salmon, Striped Bass, Baby Tarpon, Redfish, or other species. An 8 weight rod becomes more of a specialized tool than a generalized piece of equipment.

For example, I found that certain rods perform better with certain lines. The ProAxis performed best with most floating tapers. The TCX and S4S really shined with shooting heads. I really like the BVK with a short head bass line.

For more conclusive results, go test the rods for yourselves.

Dennis
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Old 06-16-2011, 06:41 PM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

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Originally Posted by MoscaPescador View Post
In the past, the test used Bonefish taper lines to get consistent results. This might be fine and dandy if one wants results for using the rod for Bonefish, but it will be worthless for the guy targeting Steelhead, Silver Salmon, Striped Bass, Baby Tarpon, Redfish, or other species. An 8 weight rod becomes more of a specialized tool than a generalized piece of equipment.

For example, I found that certain rods perform better with certain lines. The ProAxis performed best with most floating tapers. The TCX and S4S really shined with shooting heads. I really like the BVK with a short head bass line.

For more conclusive results, go test the rods for yourselves.

Dennis
Exactly- some of my points in the previous G. Anderson thread from months ago.
Most rods prefer certain lines. you just have to fine the line that wakes up the rod.
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Old 06-16-2011, 07:38 PM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

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Originally Posted by MoscaPescador View Post
The TCX and S4S really shined with shooting heads. Dennis
I couldn't get anything special for distance out of a 9 wt. S4S with with a Bonefish WF9F line; in the end I preferred the Sage Xi3 (and I went with money in my pocket ready to love the S4S!)

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Old 06-16-2011, 07:50 PM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

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I couldn't get anything special for distance out of a 9 wt. S4S with with a Bonefish WF9F line; in the end I preferred the Sage Xi3 (and I went with money in my pocket ready to love the S4S!)

Pocono


Any quick feedback on the Xi3 9wt? What plans do you have for the 9 weight? How drastic are the improvements over the Xi2?
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Old 06-17-2011, 02:28 PM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

The one thing that is good about Anderson's tests is he weights them to the applications he uses them for and he's plain about that. With the 9-5 comparison, he's clearly looking for great big water trout five weights. With the 9-8 he's looking for a SW flats rod that can handle some heavy duty. If those aren't your applications for those rods, then so be it. But most of those rods are bought with those kind of duties in mind. While a guy may buy an 9-8 for largemouth or Steelhead, their are far more of them bought for Bonefish flats fishing, and a lot of those applications cross over. Their isn't much difference for instance between a good striper, bonefish, or steelhead line. They all have to deliver flies at distance many times in the wind. It's the same with the rods. I had a friend that bought a high end 9-8 rod and claimed it was a great "calm day" bonefish rod. Well that's fine if you want a rod for those rare days, but the same rod can't pick up a 200 grain head throwing streamers? That is the real specialized tool. A good 9-8 for Bonefish in all conditions will be a good 9-8 weight for just about everything.
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Old 06-17-2011, 07:35 PM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

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Originally Posted by chicagojohn View Post
Any quick feedback on the Xi3 9wt? What plans do you have for the 9 weight? How drastic are the improvements over the Xi2?
It's a very different rod.

The Xi2 feels extremely stiff, and a little life-less, compared to the Xi3. I had an Xi2 before the Xi3; traded the 2 for the 3. I cast them side-by-side and the feel; at least for me, was much, much better with the 3; better distance and, most importantly, better accuracy. Clearly not as stiff and stick-like; just a much easier rod to cast.

I fish it for Bones and Stripers; WFF line, mostly, for the Bones and 350 gm sink tip for the Stripers. The Xi3 is better for me with both of those set-ups.

But, my favorite Striper rod is Scott's A3; 9'0" 9 wt. I know; nowhere near comparable in terms of build, action and price; and hence, they shouldn't be comparable in terms of performance..............but, they are; at least for me.

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Old 06-17-2011, 08:28 PM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

Thanks for the review.

I have heard consistent high praise regarding the Xi3. The blank itself is beautifully finished. I have been entertaining the idea of a 9 weight saltwater rod for bonefish, permit, and large freshwater monsters, but I didn't want something that would lack subtlety for bonefish presentations. Granted, it isn’t going to be the 8 foot, 9 inch, five weight that Sage offers, but it is nice to hear that it is versatile enough to go from bonefish to stripers and a heavy sinking line. Ultimately, I’d compare it to the Loomis NRX, St. Croix Legend Elite, and Hardy ProAxis. Any usable technical information I can glean from the 8 weight shootout is helpful. In the end, my decision has to be what I can cast and feel comfortable with. It sounds like saving for the Xi3 would be better than finding the Xi2 on discount.

I wonder how the Scott A3 would compare if included in the shootout…..that may be too many rods for Yellowstone Angler to have to purchase from Scott! At $335 you can buy two for the price of one of the Loomis, Sage, or Hardy Rods and still have money to burn. The thing I like about Scott Rods is that even their entry level rods like the A3 have nice reel seats and hardware. The Scott G2 is probably my favorite rod I do not own. It looks nice and has a great feel. Even the new Orvis Superfine Touch rods seem to have copied the look of the Scott G2. Personally, I haven’t been able to break away from Winston green in my trout rods.

I’m up in the air as far as a saltwater rod is concerned. I would not rule out looking at a Winston B3X (if they didn’t skip the 9 weight) and B2MX for saltwater purposes, but saltwater is a totally different animal. For my purposes, strength (without feeling super stiff) and versatility are my two main points of interest when purchasing a saltwater rod. It seems like the Sage, Loomis, Hardy, and St. Croix certainly bring those two qualities to the table.

Last edited by chicagojohn; 06-17-2011 at 09:27 PM.
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Old 06-18-2011, 06:31 AM
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Default Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion

The A3 is a very different action rod than the others that you've mentioned. It's more of a medium fast blank; which for me is a good thing when I'm chucking "prarie dog"-sized flies at Stripers into a continuous breeze.

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