The North American Fly Fishing Forum


Go Back   The North American Fly Fishing Forum > Tackle Talk > Fly Rods

Fly Rods Post any comments or questions regarding fly rods...

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 01-13-2008, 01:53 PM
craigy's Avatar
New Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2
craigy is on a distinguished road
Default ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

I'm wanting to fill a hole in my rod arsenal. Here's my situation...

9' 6wt. XP Sage
9' 5wt. SLT Sage
(8'6" 4wt. Z-Axis or ZXL Sage)
7'6" 4wt. Elder Honey Creek bamboo
8'3" 3wt. SPL Sage

I want a 4wt. that has better wind penetration, more distance, and a better ability to cast weighted flies. The Elder is great for small streams as is the SPL, but there is a big gap between those two and the 5wt. SLT.

My concern with the ZXL is that it will be too close to the bamboo rod and still leave a gap between it and the 5wt. Then again, the Z-Axis 4wt. might be too stiff for small tippets or not fishable on small streams.

I have cast the ZXL and the Z-axis in 9' 5wt. Both are great rods, but I'm not sure how that translates to the decision I'm trying to make on the 8'6" 4wt.

I'd appreciate anyone's thoughts on this decision. Especially if you have experience with either of the 4wt. rods.

Thanks,
Craig Y
Wichita, KS
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 01-28-2008, 11:06 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 11
markwaldin is on a distinguished road
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

I build custom fly rods and have built both of the ZXL and the Z-Axis. By your description you are not going to be happy with the ZXL but I think the Z-Axis would fit you well. I tune every rod I build which includes photographing the flexed rods. I compared the Z-Axis to the ZXL as well as a few other rods. The ZXL is definitely a medium taper rod. The Z-Axis is pretty fast but from what I can see it is a bit slower than other fast rods. For example it looks slower than a St Croix Elite.

I have a happy customers with the Z-Axis. And remember that the line is carrying the fly. I wouldn't be too worried about the fly weight not being able to carry the cast. Also, if you are looking at getting some more spring action on a shorter cast you can always push the line weight up one notch when you need to.

Last thing is that the custom rods I build are all 100% satisfaction guaranteed. So, if you got it and it just didn't cut it for you, you could return it.

Mark Waldin
Custom Fly Rod
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 01-29-2008, 08:20 AM
BigCliff's Avatar
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: South Texas
Posts: 4,313
BigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant future
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

The last review I read of a ZXL actually said that it felt nearly as powerful as the Z-axis, just not as stiff. That one was comparing 9' 5wts though.

I'd look at it this way, if you want your 4wt to have an action more like your 6, get the Z-axis. If you want it to be more like your 5, get the ZXL. Of course a 4 and a 6 are going to feel very different in terms of swing weight, etc, but I think you know what I mean.

Me? I'd get a Scott E2.
__________________
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-..._1276302_n.jpg

I'd rather hunt fish than bait deer any day.
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 02-10-2008, 10:36 PM
GRN's Avatar
GRN GRN is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 287
GRN will become famous soon enough
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

I work for a Sage dealer, get my Sage rods at a Pro discount, wanted many of the same things in an 8'6" 4wt you are looking for, and found one that nothing has yet to begin to rival in my experience... BIIx (and would have paid retail for it if I didn't have a buddy in a Winston shop). The Z-Axis is kinda close, but the tip collapses when you really give it the business and it doesn't have nearly the 'touch' in close. I just sold my 5wt Z-Axis after only 10 days fishing it, tip drove me nuts.

TL's~
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 02-10-2008, 11:02 PM
Joni's Avatar  
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 4,568
Joni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

And my dream rod for 2008 is the ZXL in a 8'6" 5wt.
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 02-10-2008, 11:33 PM
GRN's Avatar
GRN GRN is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 287
GRN will become famous soon enough
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joni View Post
And my dream rod for 2008 is the ZXL in a 8'6" 5wt.
I hear ya... losing sleep over what to use my pro form for... at least I found the answer to my NEED for a super short 3wt without using one of my two precious choices on the 363-3 TXL
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 02-11-2008, 09:49 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 412
burk48237 is just really niceburk48237 is just really niceburk48237 is just really niceburk48237 is just really nice
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

Can I ask a sincere question. Isn't there a reason we have different weight fly lines? The OP asked for a 4 weight that would provide "better wind penetration, more distance, and better ability to cast weighted flies". Correct me if I'm wrong but that's what I own a six weight for. A four weight is a dry fly, small nymph with indicator, light tippet rod. True four weights aren't made to do the things the OP described. And ANY rod that will do those thing will be a lousy dry fly rod in technical presentation, the things a four weight is suppose to do.

I know we have lots of choices, but with lines that run a 1/2 to 3/4 size heavier with radicle distance tapers, and rods that say "four" on the label but have less flex then a conventional six weight aren't we blurring the lines a bit? I owned a 8'6" 5 rod from a very well known company years ago, it was great casting rod, it would throw across the parking lot, it could handle bass bugs, but it wouldn't protect a light tippet or lay a small dry fly down soft in close. In other words it was a six. Since then I have had the opportunity to fish some great five weights and I own more then a few. Now I know the difference.

Part of the problem is the dealers and fly shop employees. When I was FTD, I can't tell you how many dealers were testing five weights, by double hauling. I can't think of a Trout stream in the state of MI where you need to double haul with a five weight. And their isn't a trout stream in the world where most fisherman can make a credible dry fly presentation at 60'.

I understand the line blurring a little with a six weight, to some a six weight is for throwing big dries out west, to some it is a light flats rod. But a four for weighted flies in the wind. I just think we forget the basics some times.
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 02-11-2008, 10:47 AM
Joni's Avatar  
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 4,568
Joni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond reputeJoni has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

I can't speak for the poster in KS, but here in the Rocky Mountains, a 5wt is the normal and YES 60' Dry fly casts is normal. In fact on portions of the Green and the Snake, it is the difference in catching and not.
I would say that at least 80% of the FF out here use 4wt's. A little more delicate, but enough back bone for a 20+" fish. In fact that is probably why I have more 4wts than anything else. I only have a F&F and a 10' 5wt is why I would want the Sage 8'6" and the ZXL because it is a perfect action for me.

If I say I am casting weighted bugs, I am referring to nymphs like Haresears, bead head Prince and Copper Johns and an occasional #10 woolly and even my One Once will do that (SLOW DOWN). A little quicker tip for windy days and so forth, hence, a large supply of 4wts. In fact I have a TYPE II for my 4wt.

I won't say six weight is not a great choice, I have plenty of those and it is my go to rod for sections of the Madison that have large Brown and (sorry) Whites.
Even the power plants in IF are famous for 36" brown, you bet your A$$ I use a six there,
but the poster was asking about four weight, and I have said it before and I will say it again.....You can never have too many 4 weights LOL


Burk, I would like to hear more about some Cortland lines that are great for this style fishing in the SMALL sizes....I also have a 2wt I love to put to the test.
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 02-11-2008, 11:48 AM
BigCliff's Avatar
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: South Texas
Posts: 4,313
BigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant futureBigCliff has a brilliant future
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

This i will partially disagree with-
Quote:
A four weight is a dry fly, small nymph with indicator, light tippet rod. True four weights aren't made to do the things the OP described. And ANY rod that will do those thing will be a lousy dry fly rod in technical presentation, the things a four weight is suppose to do.
I cast multiple shot, two nymphs and an indicator with my slowish (Sage 490 LL/VPS Light) all the time. And I'd put it neck and neck with a Scott G for a technical dry fly rod. But, my point of agreement is that it won't work well with that nymphing rig at much of a distance, and that is indeed what a 6 or 7 weight is for. (then again, fishing a heavy nymphing rig well at a long distance is tough no matter what)

I throw size 6 Clousers with it too. Just gotta know how to swing the bat!
__________________
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-..._1276302_n.jpg

I'd rather hunt fish than bait deer any day.
Reply With Quote
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 02-11-2008, 01:27 PM
GRN's Avatar
GRN GRN is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 287
GRN will become famous soon enough
Default Re: ZXL vs. Z-Axis in 8'6" 4 wt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by burk48237 View Post
Can I ask a sincere question. Isn't there a reason we have different weight fly lines? The OP asked for a 4 weight that would provide "better wind penetration, more distance, and better ability to cast weighted flies". Correct me if I'm wrong but that's what I own a six weight for. A four weight is a dry fly, small nymph with indicator, light tippet rod. True four weights aren't made to do the things the OP described. And ANY rod that will do those thing will be a lousy dry fly rod in technical presentation, the things a four weight is suppose to do.
I disagree, beside the OP clearly has a good 6wt that fills that requirement as you describe it, and it seems he would like to expand upon the availability of his approach to such situations. If you don't have any suggestions specifically regarding his query, why post? My 8'6" for 4 BIIx will rise to such occasions, clearly not as well as my 690-4 SLT, but well enough that it's a better all around rod to carry into situations where I may have to fish everything from #18 dries, to weighted nymphs and buggers, to dropper rigs if it comes to that. YMMV.

TL's~
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
new member flyfishfever Mid-Atlantic Area 3 01-05-2008 05:39 PM
wader manufacturers InsideSeam General Discussion 16 10-17-2007 12:29 PM
Hello to all fisterfam Member Introductions 1 04-23-2007 12:43 PM













All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:03 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
2005-2014 The North American Fly Fishing Forum. All rights reserved.