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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 12-29-2008, 03:05 AM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

I wasn't expecting controversy over this. I think a lot of potential beginners forget about fly fishing when they hear that they need to spend a lot. I don't think it has to be a rich person's sport, especially if some of us help out with some free advice on how to save money. If you have a particular cheap rod you hate, it would be helpful to mention the rod model and the problem you had.

A used rod can be cheaper, but would a newbie notice if it had a small crack in a ferrule or on the blank where a fly or split shot hit it while casting, especially in an EBay photo. The rod may be ready to break apart and a newbie would be out some money. I have some used ones that I like, but I needed to mention the possible pitfalls of getting a used one.

Getting new ones on sale or closeouts is a great way to go. If Three Forks go on sale, that would be even better for instance.

Making a rod is one more huge step for a newbie in addition to learning all the other skills required. To follow that logic, the beginner should save some money by tying flies too. Why make it so hard when a Cabela Three Forks can be bought for $50 and so many folks are happy with it. Happy is what we are all after.

I have a Cabela Traditional and they are $60 and I own 19 other rods up to a $400 Sage. I haven't measured it, but let's say my Sage can cast 10% farther and is 20% lighter. I don't think that makes it even twice as good, but that is a hard number to come up with. Maybe it is 10 times as good, whatever that means, but the Tradition is good enough that I use it more often than my Sage and don't even think twice about it. If my Tradition gets stolen or lost. I'm only out $60. That's a real plus.

I made this thread, because there are a lot of cheap rods out there and I want everyone to know if these are bargains or bad rods. The money isn't lost on a cheap, nice rod since it can be used as a backup or lent to a friend later in someone's fishing career. All we need to find the bargains is for some brave people to come forward and say they used a nice, cheap rod and now we know. Cheap, crumby rods can also be weeded out with this thread.

If you look back to the early greats like Joe Brooks, I'm sure that the best rods of their era were real pieces of **** compared to a Three Forks graphite rod and they seemed to learn easily enough on fiberglass or bamboo and have a good time. I don't think people would learn to drive more easily with a Ferrari than with a Chevy. Only a Ferrari salesman would suggest that. Later, a driver might want to get one when the driver gets some knowledge of what it feels like to drive, but it's not a practical suggestion for a beginner and I don't think it's practical for a budget minded person to start off fly fishing with a Z-Axis. It happens to be my choice for best feel at the fly shows. Once a newbie gets some skill they are likely going to purchase some other favorite rod that they like the feel of for their individual needs. That's why there are so many models of rods for sale.
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Old 12-29-2008, 05:06 AM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

LOL you get controversy with any thing now days. But to answer your ? I have fished cabelas three forks and my son still uses one of these in a 5 wt and we like them. No they arent a sage or winston, but I have casted a couple 200 rods that were dogs also. I wish i could think of the name of it, I had a cortland that I bought at Kmart 8 years or so ago payed 4o bucks for it and could cast 90 to 100 foot allday with it.
Yes better made rods cast better and last longer(normaly), but if your at
the local gas station and your wife is a nurses aid then you just are not gonna be able to spend 150-200 on a rod, 100 for a reel, and 60 or more for a good line, back in those days I spent more on a good line then the rods I used, a good line can make alot of diffrence.
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Old 12-30-2008, 03:40 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

Let's march on through this thread then. If any more rod models under $60 (in 2008/9) are out there with either good or bad reviews from users, let's bring them out in the open to let others know if they are bargains or not.

Three Forks for $50 seems to be getting good marks so far, but there must be some users out there of other models. Please let us know if you were happy or not with them.

PS - Casting distance comparisons are probably not as important as whether it broke easily or fell apart and obviously the price. To compare casting distance, we would need a machine like the one used for golf club driving distance testing. My understanding is that long distance casting rod blanks are not built to fight fish anyway and would break too easily so are best limited to casting tournaments. I think this is one reason that the expensive rods have such good guarantees because they are close to the minimum strength limits required to catch fish. I know of one Z-Axis that broke while fighting a one pound trout. It got repaired for free of course after $30 in postage. I should mention that I would like to have a Z-Axis anyway as I would like to have a Ferrari.
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Old 12-30-2008, 03:58 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

I only have three (3) rods and still consider myself a "newb". BUT, I've paid a little more than $60 for two of them (the third was over a hundred, but discounted).

They were used rods, both in fine condition. They are fishable as I've caught 3-4lb rainbows on both.

The only $60 rod that is "new" is a LaCrosse Axis II. It's a 7'-0" 2wt and comes with tube. I'm considering this. I'm alot like jaybug. If it gets damaged, so be it. If it were a much more expensive Sage or Winston or something else and it got damaged/stolen, I'd go bananas.

Aside from this, I was on another forum and someone was selling a 7'-0", 2wt Cabelas Clear Creek for $65. I let it go. I might regret it later, but I doubt it.

On my "budget", I try to make my money go as far as it can go. I have no problem walking away from a deal for a Winston that probably is a good deal. I just don't have the wherewithal to do it.

There are plenty of places to get used or discounted rods, if you know where to look.
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Old 12-30-2008, 04:01 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

There were 3 or 4 votes for the Scientific Anglers rods
A better rod then the 3 Forks in my opinion
Cheap too

$25 for a 4 piece

Scientific Anglers 2 - Pc. 9 - Ft. 5# Fly Rod, Fly Fishing, Scientific Anglers, Scientific Anglers Fly Fishing Trout Salmon Graphite Rod at Sportsman's Guide

$50 for the kit

Scientific Anglers 2 - Pc. 9' 5/6 - Lb. Weight Rod / Reel Combo, Fly Fishing, Scientific Anglers, Scientific Anglers Break Down Breakdown Fishing Rod Reel Combo Fly at Sportsman's Guide
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Old 12-30-2008, 04:09 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

Jaybug,

This is a great idea for a thread, and I agree that there are cheap rods out there worth owning. However, I think what some of the other posters are trying to say is that there is often a big difference between a 120-160 dollar rod and a 40-60 dollar rod. That difference often makes it easier to learn to cast and more enjoyable/likely to return to fly fishing. 40-60 dollar rods are GENERALLY not well engineered pieces of fishing equipment, but sticks of graphite thrown together with little thought given to taper, line weights, componentry, feel, etc. Whereas a 140 dollar rod is often a rod that has been built very well and is easy to cast.

To use your car analogy, the 40-60 dollar rods are often (not always, remember, I like my 3 forks!) the Gremlins/Yugos of the fly fishing world. The 140 dollar rods are the 5 year old Hondas, and the Ferrari you mentioned would be the 700 dollar Sage. I myself would much rather learn to drive and own the 5 year old Honda than the Yugo. Know what I mean?

Like I said earlier, there are always exceptions to the rule, and that is where this thread comes in (like you said!). Let's find out what the good cheap ones are!
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Old 12-30-2008, 04:10 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

My first rod was a SA 100 dollar combo deal that I still own today. I took that rod out this past fall and thought it performed well. Good stick.
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Old 12-30-2008, 04:27 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

All the rods mentioned would be great.

John
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:01 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

Excellent responses. Has anyone experienced a Pflueger Purist, Martin, Berkley, Ugly Stik, Okuma or Tica fly rods for under $60? They can't all be good.

PS - I'm in 2 fly clubs now and I have a passion for helping the beginners get equipped and out on the water as fast as possible. Cost is one impediment to many of them. I hope I am giving them some help to counterbalance the typical fly shop advice. Probably the cheapest rod that you might have recommended by a shop is a Sage Launch ($200 on sale) or some top brand entry rod. Your responses here can really help. I picked $60 for the upper limit because I have a Cabela Tradition that cost $60 and it's a great rod, but I don't have experience with a lot of the other cheap rods. I have a $400 Sage and I think my Tradition is 95% as good as the Sage. That's subjective of course. The main reason I have 2 Sages and a lot of my other rods is that I'm curious about how good they are.

I'd like to be advising beginners to consider other models of fly rods and not only Traditions. Now I can mention Scientific Angler and the Three Forks and others also. Actually, I'll just refer them to this thread since I sometimes quickly read through and they might find some nuggets I missed.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:47 PM
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Default Re: What's the Best Fly Rod under $60 New? - your input wanted

Now, here's other avenues to check out. Some rods that run the full price spectrum. And a lot under $60

Fly Rods / Fishing Rods / Cases - Save 35-70% on Famous Name Brands

Fly Depot - Quarrow Golden King 2-Piece Fly Rod
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