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Old 12-11-2014, 07:47 AM
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Default Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

As recently mentioned in a different thread, we have all noticed that most of the rod makers are adding and dropping new rod models on a quite frequent basis. I understand the marketing aspect of this. A "new" rod for everyone to buy whether you need it or not.

I have not been at this long, but I am already very skeptical they could possible put in adequate time ensuring that all sizes and lengths are properly tested before they try to sell me one. I understand that sometimes the new model is merely receiving a styling and pricing update, but in other cases, lesser rods are hitting the street and replacing a beloved rod. It seems like risky business if you are trying to grow new customers loyal to your brand.

I love the innovation, but I don't care to be their R&D department for new expensive rods. I am drawn towards rods that have been on the streams for at least a few years.
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Old 12-11-2014, 08:28 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

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Originally Posted by ia_trouter View Post
I am drawn towards rods that have been on the streams for at least a few years.
There's a simple solution.

Buy "last year's" model, often on closeout at a big discount. If it was great 'last year', it's still great this year.

Lots of things besides rods work like that. Last year's computers, cameras, TVs, washing machines, cars are all available for a fraction of the cost of this year's.
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Old 12-11-2014, 08:39 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

Your presumption is that a "new" rod is built up from scratch. In so many products the only thing new is cosmetics. I'd suspect there's scant observable difference in some new rods.

As plecain stated, this presents a great opportunity to us . . . closeout sales!
How many of us scored Zeniths at half price because of a change to the reel seat?

What some see as a bad thing, I see as the driving force of my new acquisitions . . .
Never pay retail!!
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Old 12-11-2014, 09:26 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

New cosmetics, Orvis's Superfine Carbon for example, aside, material technology is accelerating in "new and improved". Rod makers are incessantly experimenting and when "lighter and stronger" is a genuine opportunity their creative side dominates their marketing side and a new series emerges. Regarding the "testing" aspect...there are within each rod company many willing field test individuals and, commonly, the designer or sales staff have friends who they respect as anglers and/or guides to whom they send prototypes for evaluation.

There are some exceptions but predominantly I sincerely believe subsequent rod series from reputable makers almost always represent improved performance and angling experience. When Sage discontinued XP, a hew and cry went out so loudly they had to do an additional production run; but Z-Axis, its replacement, was a better rod as is ONE over Z-Axis. Does not mean last years model won't catch fish any more than last years camera won't take images...but the new one will likely be faster, have more mega pixels and superior auto focus... Is that for marketing or enhanced photographic opportunity?
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Old 12-11-2014, 09:54 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

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There are some exceptions but predominantly I sincerely believe subsequent rod series from reputable makers almost always represent improved performance and angling experience......
I accept that statement as fact as it applies to Sage, Loomis etc. A few rod makers on the low-mid end do not have my confidence in this regard. A lot of half price models at the liquidators, and I'm not reading too much excitement about them here. I do enjoy getting my equipment on sale, but quickly learned $125 rods that had an MSRP of $300 last year during it's very brief product cycle may not be the deal I once thought they were. Good chance it might not be a $300 rod in reality. Just my opinion.
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Old 12-11-2014, 09:56 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

Another point that I learned this past summer (from a senior Orvis exec who was in fish camp the same week that I was) is that the aerospace industry represents most of the demand for the carbon-fiber materials that blanks are made from. When a materials supplier tweaks their carbon-fiber product in response to aerospace needs, the product that a rodmaker was previously using for their blanks may be discontinued, which in turn requires the rodmaker to design a new series of rods around the new material.
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Old 12-11-2014, 10:36 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

Kind of a 'Yes and No,' or should that be 'Know?' I have rods that are close to 60 years old that work just fine, I have one across from me that has yet to see water.

Which is the better?
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Old 12-11-2014, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

It is clearly true that materials developed for the huge aerospace/military supply industries are not even considering fly rod or sports equipment at large in their production decisions. And, even within the sports industry, a company like Pure Fishing acquired the exclusive sporting goods rights to 3M's nano silica resin system (used by their Hardy brand) forcing G.Loomis and St.Croix, just to name two, to look to new sources. Loomis has a good supply of material but is confident they have something even better on the horizon...undoubtedly a "new and improved" rod series will emerge at some point.

And, yes, I was specifically referring to Sage, Loomis, Scott, T&T and Orvis...not off-shore sourced , mass produced, re-branded, big catalog rods. A big box brand selling a rod for $300 retail and turning around and offering it on sale for $89.99 is still making money on it because it cost them nothing to develop and little to import. With apologies, these rods are not "bargains" they are...., see the add on the right side of this page.
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Old 12-11-2014, 03:28 PM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

I hate the frequent changes in rod models, it drives me nuts. I'd much prefer a system like cars, the Honda Accord is around for 20+ years but you can drive a 1995 model or 2015 model, you basically know what you get and what improvements are added over the years. Would work for rods too....

Tom
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Old 12-11-2014, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: Are rodmakers changing their product lines a little too often?

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I hate the frequent changes in rod models, it drives me nuts. I'd much prefer a system like cars, the Honda Accord is around for 20+ years but you can drive a 1995 model or 2015 model, you basically know what you get and what improvements are added over the years. Would work for rods too....

Tom
Hear you Tom. My Jeep Liberty is a 2002, purchased 11-11-2001. About 123K on the odometer if memory serves. Think Jim Jones' Cherryooeekeee is the same vintage. Both motors tick over with the key in the slot. Well there is a battery short some place in mine that needs to be found/fixed.

Car could darned near drive it self to Montana. Took car into WallyWorld last week and 'I probably should have the oil changed.' Young man looked at the windshield sticker 'Last time you had this car serviced was in December of 2011' (three thousand miles before the next recommended oil change) "You don't drive very much do you Mr. Evans?"

At 72 I had to agree; where's to go? Looking forward to Montana in the Spring. Bitterroot river. Might just stop by and say hi to the 'Ex.' Probably not.

Would appear not.
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