I second that.
If a fly shop like Anderson's is going to have these shootouts and publish the results, then maybe they shouldtake the time to find out what reel balances out each rod, and what line makes each rod dance. It's not like they're super busy at this time of year.
George performed what's known as a one parameter test; he varied only one parameter; the rod. The other three key parameters; the reel, the line, and the environment he held as constant as he could.
Is a one parameter test the perfect experiment; no it's not. But if you like the new version of the Ross Evolution, if you're not strongly opposed to GPX line and if you feel that you can gather some useful information from casting not performed on the water, then the outcome of George's shootout can provide you with some reasonable information; at least information that you can put to the test yourself.
I don't find George's test to be offensive. Would I use it to run right out and purchase a new rod; no. But, would I use it to go out and test a series of rods; I certainly think so.
Not trying to be overly argumentative, but I don't see why reasonable information has to be bashed so thoroughly. What's your favorite 5 wt., by the way?
Exactamundo, this test was to compare rods which is the variable, the line and reel are the constant. Testing different reels and different lines would take a lot of time and too many variables would have to be considered.
The test IS what it IS...a comparison between rods. Like someone said the Hardy won (using GPX line and a Ross reel testing in a gym). Take it with a grain of salt. PLUS you could take a set of 5 other guys with different experiences and would come up with an entirely different outcome.
BTW anyone notice the Orvis Access is stated LIGHTER then the Helios??
I think they mixed those weights up and maybe the Helios would have gotten a higher score.
I test casted a new Hardy Zenith 9'0" 5 wt. rod at the Somerset, NJ Fly Fishing show the week before last and it's an impressive stick. Feels like a 3 wt. in the hand, but puts line out there at a distance like a Z-Axis; perhaps better. The one that I tested was lined with Sharkskin.
I went looking to find fault with the rod; but I wasn't successful in doing that. Of the rods that I saw make their way to the casting pool, I'll bet that 60% of them were Hardy Zeniths. Everyone at the Hardy/Greys booth looked particularly pleased and they didn't have many rods left on the display wall on the last day (Sunday), which is when I went to the show (on the contrary, GLoomis had a ton of NRX's left; despite Steve Rajeff being at their booth).
I've ordered one through my local fly shop; should have it by mid-February. I'm trading in my Z-Axis for it.
More rods? I was going to go to the Somerset show hoping to run into you, but buying can be infectious, so I'd probably have to push my car home. For all of the skepticism about Anderson's test, your comments seem to verify their conclusions.
Frank, we don't live far apart. I'd be happy to send you the Zenith when it arrives (once we hit ice-out up here in this "fridge" that we're living in now - I just shoveled another 5 inches out of our driveway this AM around 5:00AM - and it's still snowing hard!). Give it a try, see what you think about it.
I'm not saying that the Zenith is better than any of the other rods in George's test; or other rods that weren't in his test, I'm just saying that for my casting style, lined out with Sharkskin, it's the easiest casting 5 wt. that I've ever had the pleasure to take to the water (in this case; the casting pool). So, it's my personal choice.
Exactamundo, this test was to compare rods which is the variable, the line and reel are the constant...
The test IS what it IS...a comparison between rods. Like someone said the Hardy won (using GPX line and a Ross reel testing in a gym). Take it with a grain of salt.
The problem is that they tested five weight rods but did not use a true five weight line. That right there skewed the results to favor rods that were NOT true to their rated line weight.
It is sort of like testing all sorts of cars using regular unleaded gas when some of those cars specify premium.
I'll probably go to the Valley Forge show, but that's going to be further for you than the Somerset show....I think. Joe Humphreys is being dusted off (that's just about how they describe it ), and will be at Valley Forge. I lived around the corner from the convention center until 2006, and haven't been there since. You're offer is too generous!
It's 2011, and rods are expected to be able to run on premium. Seriously, the younger Anderson commented that the BIIIX would have performed much better with a true 5wt line. He said it was "the" dry fly rod. I've gone back to using SA's Mastery Trout for drys and small nymphs, but use GPX for heavier nymphs, streamers, and big drys like a Madame X. They stated their reasons for using GPX, and George Anderson is well-known for his nymphing.
BTW...I don't recall Winston being listed as attending the Somerset show, and it's a biggie. They have a brand new rod, and decide not to send a rep? I suppose they could rely on dealers to showcase Winston rods, but that's not something I would count on. They should thank Anderson for the free advertising.
I looked at the Show's website, and Winston seems to be a no-show in every city..... They have several new rods out, and George Anderson probably gave them more positive exposure than anything being done at Winston. There is a Winston shop nearby, and they'll be at the Valley Forge show. Whether or not they'll want the masses to handle their Winston stock is questionable. They aren't real keen on that sort of thing.