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Old 10-26-2005, 03:53 AM
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Question slow,medium ,fast med/fast etc etc please explain

Hi all searching for flyfishin info and came across this site ,love it. Doug Macnair 's "the fly cast: concepts& comments .........couldn,t hit print fast enough, If i can't find the book in hard copy then e book will do . O'k back to topic got interested in fly fishin a few years back with a few days at casting school ..then moved to the west coast all of my nieghbors are salt water salmon fishermen so it.s been 3 years of mooching for salmon now don''t get me wrong it's been fun but this old country boy loves the wilderness . I picked up a great deal on float tube waders etcetc and now am longing to buy a good 5wt 9 ft rod to replace the cheap martin trophy /yard sale special i've heard that a good rod makes a lot of differance in inproving cast presentation and fighting 2 shops to choice from... outfitter store carries only sage rods and islander reels and the huge fly shop carries orvis .g-loomis,scott,powell ,temple fork outfitters and rl winston and many reels .I want to buy a good rod and not waste money upgrading ...trout 1 to 5lbs bass up to 4 lbs small lakes fast rivers ..lots of nymph and buggers, chrominids i'm leaning toward the sage FLi 590-2 not sure on tip speed , is a fast tip/rod for exp casters only shoud i seek a slower rod from the chioces above / what does all this rod speed translate to in casting styles thanks for the help ..eric
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Old 10-26-2005, 08:48 AM
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Default Re: slow,medium ,fast med/fast etc etc please explain

The "speed" descriptions of rod action refer to either how deeply the rod bends during the casting stroke, or how quickly the rod returns to a straight line after being bent. These two things often coincide, but there are some exceptions, I'll cover those later.

A rod described as "fast" generally bends in only the top 1/4 to 1/3 on a normal casting stroke. (35' or so) A "medium" action rod will bend down to the middle third, and a "slow" rod will bend deeply, sometimes even enough to be felt in the cork grip. A medium-fast rod will bend slightly more than 1/3 of the way down on this stroke, and most current fly rods fall into this category. The exceptions are a few rods on the market that bend like a medium action rod but snap back to a straight position very quickly. Some would call that a fast action rod for that reason, but most would describe it as a medium-fast rod that "generates tremendous line speed" or something like that. Winston's old BL5 rods fell into that category.

As far as what's best for you, its hard to say, but a medium fast rod is a safe bet. It is generally easier to learn on a slow-medium rod, but that rod will be frustrating when you are wanting to cast long distances on stillwaters. Long casts absolutely can be made with slower action rods, but its not the ideal tool for the job. A Fast/Tip action rod is generally viewed as a more expert caster's rod due to the fact that it's lack of flex makes it less forgiving to imperfections in casting timing. There is also a better chance that your casting stroke won't be suited to a rod at one end of the action spectrum. If you get a medium fast rod and decide you want a slower rod for small streams and such, you can then get one of those and keep the faster rod for lakes, driftboats, and other situations where you need to make longer casts or cast big stuff.

One of the most popular beginner rods out there is the TFO pro series. They are a medium fast action and both the price and warranty is outstanding. ECHO makes a fantastic 9' 5wt as well, and The Full Creel would be happy to set you up with one of those. If you do go with that Sage FLi, i would recommend getting the four piece version so you can take it on a plane should you get a chance to fly to Colorado or Arkansas to fish. If it were me, I would look seriously at Scott's new E2 series as well. I think the price is about the same as the FLi.

The best option of all is to go to that shop that stocks lots of rod brands and cast a few different ones. Nothing I have said here is worth nearly as much as doing that and figuring out what best suits you. You'll be happiest by far with the rod that feels the best to you, no matter the price.

Oh yeah, get a really good fly line too. Nothing can mess up a great rod faster than a crappy line. All the manufacturers of great lines also make lines that are cheap as well. I don't mean inexpensive, I mean cheap and all that implies.

By the way, I have nothing against Sage rods. I've got one and would love to have more. I'm just one of those who always fights for the underdog, and Sage has been atop the heap for quite some time.

Also, see if that shop has any Sage VPS rods left. I think Sage is discontinuing them and that would be a great medium fast rod to start out with. Its based on their RPS blank and the RPS is widely viewed as the rod that put Sage on top of the heap. I think Doug McNair has a RPS that he loves like a family pet as well.
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Old 10-26-2005, 01:59 PM
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Default Re: slow,medium ,fast med/fast etc etc please explain

Hey thanks Cliff........ havn't seen the quote feature so I'll short phase.... you mentioned cheap line ruins good rods was this meant as in defeats the rod's casting quality / or is abrasive to finish and guides . tks Eric
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Old 10-26-2005, 04:54 PM
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Default Re: slow,medium ,fast med/fast etc etc please explain

I was referring to the action of the rod and how the line slides throught the guides. (slickness, not being abrasive) Lower quality lines also tend to coil up and not float all that well.

I doubt there are any fly lines on the market that are abrasive enough to damage the guides on a rod straight out of the box. I added that "straight out of the box" clarification because it is very possible that a line cast on asphalt, pavement, or even sand could pick up grit that could damage the guides on a rod.
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Old 10-27-2005, 10:33 AM
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Default Re: slow,medium ,fast med/fast etc etc please explain

Fishin Fever,

You may also want to check out the newer Sage Launch series of rods. They are Sage's addition to the "just starting guy" who may not want to spend $300 to $500 dollars for a rod. I believe they start around $165-$170. I've read several articles on them & each one was very positive. When I started serious fly fishing in Michigan a few years back I started out by buying a Scott Voyager 9' 5wt. It is still one of my favorite all around fly rods. Shop around, look online, there are great buys out there sometimes it just takes some hunting.

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