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Old 06-18-2013, 08:47 AM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

I completely agree with all of your responses. I bought for my first fly rod, an Orvis Clearwater combo series, it comes with the large arbor reel. I fish alot of small streams and rivers so I went with the 4wt. I love the rod but as I am really getting into the sport i was thinking about the history and that is when i starting thinking of Bamboo. At this point I have very little casting experience so I don't think I could tell the difference between rods. I also love to work with wood and I know that in time i will tackle trying to make my own Bamboo rod. Do most fly shops allow you to test drive their rods? I am curious to try a Bamboo rod and glass rod. I think that I will be making a few phone calls this morning. I love this Forum, very helpful and informative.
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:52 AM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

I don't think of them as Bamboo, Glass, Graphite/fiber

I only care about the action, and how they cast/fish for me. Like "half fast" said, it's supposed to be fun, whatever you enjoy.. use that

I don't think you can say all bamboo are like xxx or all graphite are like yyy or glass is like zzz - depends on what the builder of that rod was going for

I have at least one of all of them.. some I never use
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:53 AM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

Another thought, you really have to try different bamboo rods to find an action and weight that you like. Some of the softer "wet fly" rods flex right down to the grip and are very slow. They do a wet fly type swing cast very well but you may not like them for tossing small dry flies. Others are very light in the hand and have a fairly fast tip action. The latter seem to be more difficult to find but are available. In any event, the feel and action of bamboo rods varies a lot and you really need to cast a number of them to determine your preference.
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Old 06-18-2013, 01:08 PM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

I would say bamboo rods are worth it if you like that style, people say they are slow to cast; well I disagree because I fished several bamboo rods that shot line out better than most graphite rods. You will need to cast several different bamboo rods to suite your style and feel before purchasing one. I started building bamboo rods back in September and donít see myself going back to graphite rods any time soon. I have a good friend who has been teaching me the art of building bamboo rods and what a blast, nothing like building a rod and fishing it. All I can say once you purchase and fish your first bamboo rod youíre hooked.
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Old 06-18-2013, 01:59 PM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

While I fish mostly fiberglass rods, I also use bamboo and graphite. I own three bamboo fly rods and like all of them. None cost me much. One I redid from an old beater rod, one I paid $350.00 for ( well worth a rod redone by Michael Sinclair), and the other I got for a pittance. All three fish really well for me. The fellow who gave you his opinion was blowing smoke. I'd forget what he said because his bias was so narrow. I prefer the open-minded approach.
Bamboo rods cost so much because of the labor involved. They are beautiful. Check out rods from Oyster Rods or Miyuki Bamboo Fly Rods. Wow! Would love to have one of those exquisite pieces of fishing art. Are they worth it? Yes.
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Old 06-18-2013, 02:57 PM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

My disclaimer here is that I fish graphite rods and have not yet delved into glass or boo. Both of the latter intrigue me, but I have not gone there yet.

Now that I have that out of the way...

There has to be a logical reason why so many anglers prefer to fish boo or glass rods. Boo rods are still very much desirable and many of the manufacturers who have been putting out graphite rods for years are now re-discovering the need to produce glass rods. Both have a cult-like following of anglers who prefer a slow smooth casting stroke. If that's what you are seeking go for it.

You should fish with whatever you can afford to purchase and with whatever it is that's going to provide you with utmost pleasure on the stream.
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Old 06-18-2013, 03:46 PM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

The "old" versus "new" technology seems to come up in almost every pursuit. I build custom furniture. I use old tech (handplanes from the 1800's) and new tech (planer, jointer, table saw, etc.) Is one technology better than the other? Depends on the situation. A handplane gives me a nicer finish than the planer; but the planer sizes the wood a lot faster. So, I use both. I also handcut dovetails. Slow but I like the slight difference you can see, and the knowledge that it takes a lot of practice. The people I sell to seem to like those qualities.

I primarily fish with fiberglass; I just love the feel. I only started fly fishing a few years ago and just didn't feel comfortable with most of the graphite rods I tried. Bought an old Fenwick and decided glass was where I wanted to go. Do I care that most of my rods are 40-50 years old? No. I do get a kick out of the looks I sometimes get--especially with the handpainted (to look like bamboo) Heddon.

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Old 06-18-2013, 04:47 PM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by akruss View Post
Another thought, you really have to try different bamboo rods to find an action and weight that you like. Some of the softer "wet fly" rods flex right down to the grip and are very slow. They do a wet fly type swing cast very well but you may not like them for tossing small dry flies. Others are very light in the hand and have a fairly fast tip action. The latter seem to be more difficult to find but are available. In any event, the feel and action of bamboo rods varies a lot and you really need to cast a number of them to determine your preference.
I feel this same advice applies to any rod whether graphite, glass, or bamboo! No matter the material, if you try enough rods you will find what you like. Then you might be surprised by what you really have to spend. Your most expensive rod could very well be a graphite and not a bamboo!
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Old 06-19-2013, 11:06 AM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

Old vs New Technology is compete BS... Rarely are new taper designs made... Most that are successful and still used today were done on bamboo rods... Then in the 50s came along fiberglass... Which made for a more durable rod than bamboo... Then if you look at all the old ads of the new "space age technology" of graphite... And it's easy to understand why graphite won... Slick advertising and catch phrases that made the new anglers go "omg I need that" because that's what we all do... Now you see Fiberglass really making it's comeback... Why? Because overall it's superior to graphite imho... It's probably the strongest material to make a rod out of bar none

But back to bamboo... Bamboo is nice... Recently I got to cast this really really nice bamboo rod.. Think it was a Loyd(?)... So effortless of a cast... It was mind blowing... granted I had to wait you know about 5-10 seconds on my back cast before with a little flick of my wrist I shot 40'+ of line without blinking an eye... Bamboo is for the fly fisherman that's not really thinking about fishing... They are impressed and in awe of the time and devotion that was put into some of these bamboo rods... Another is being more connected as you're using less unnatural materials... Fishing with grass just feels more in tune with your surroundings than whipping around a long piece of plastic... But overall I think someone who fishing bamboo would have a hard time telling you why he fishes it... Just like he'll have a hard time explaining to you why he fishes day in and day out... The answers are there... But they cannot be explained... You just have to try it
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Old 01-05-2014, 11:44 AM
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Default Re: Bamboo Rods! Are they worth it?

It is about personal preference. You can purchase some excellence hand made in the US bamboo fly rods for less than a new Sage. The bamboo rods can be made similar to graphite rods in terms of action. They can be made lighter by hollowing the the pith on the inside of the rods. I am also starting to make bamboo fly rods. It is a lot of man hours to make it, but to me it is cool to fish with a rod I helped to make or know the builder spent around 40+ hours making. I fish 70% with bamboo! I have different bamboo rods with different actions. It is not about old technology or new. Look at the new slow action Sage rod and the resurgence of fiberglass rods. Bamboo rods can last a long time



I can give you references for excellent bamboo builders, or point you in the right direction for used bamboo rods. Let me know if I can help at all.
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