Ok so I'm an avid saltwater fisherman. I own a boat but I also fish a lot from shores, bays, jetties, and wade fish as well. I have dozens of performance spinning and conventional reels but I am looking to buy my first fly setup.
I will explain what I am wanting to do with these setups and also the rods/reels that I have found so far in my research. I would like some input on if I am going down the right path.
First off I will explain what I want to do. I live in the panhandle of Florida and often take my boat out 15 miles or more into the gulf of mexico. On spinning setups I regularly catch 2 and 3 foot chicken dolphin and ever so often some larger ones. While I'm out there fishing for them I will often catch bonita as well which put up a heck of a fight on medium spinning equipment and I'm sure they would be a blast on a fly rod. With that said my trips offshore are usually only about 15 - 20 times a year. Aside from that most of my fishing is done near shore or in the bay. In the bay I would be targeting reds, flounder, and specks. I fish the bays and beach a couple times a week.
So in all honesty I'm looking for a setup that can mostly tame trout but handle something as mean as bonita. I would also like to add that ever so often when I go jigging at the bridge span there are schools of AJs on the surface.... I wouldn't mind throwing a fly at them but I don't want to upsize my purchase based on that.
Price range has a lot to do with it as well. I think I want to stay in the under $220ish for a reel and under 250 for a rod...
I don't know if I should go 7-8wt range, 8-9wt range, or 9-10 range... or higher. I won't want the weight or mass of the setup to wear me out either if I'm out there casting for 5 hours at a time.
The reels I'm looking at so far are:
Sage 2210 9-10wt
Sage 2280 7-8wt
Allen Kraken model 3 7-9wt ==> (Most favorite pick so far based off looks
... the green/blue model is sexy)
Allen Kraken model 4 9-11wt
Allen Alpha 111 model 3 7-9wt
Allen Alpha 111 model 4 9-11wt
The rods I've researched so far seem limited in styles filtered at that price range. The only real value I see is from temple fork. I'm also not shy of buying a blank and making my own rod but I don't know that much about fly rods so I fear I would buy the wrong blank.
(all 8, 9, or 10wt 9ft depending on the reel)
TFO Clouser => I'm leaning on this one so far
TFO Lefty Kreh Pro Series II (I want a fighting butt but don't know if I need or want the long fighting butt)
TFO Lefty Kreh Signature Series II
TFO TFR series -comes in a 8wt or 10wt. Described as having alot of lift.... I'm assuming that means it's as stiff as a beefstick.
Any advice I would gladly take. Like I said I'm just starting out. I don't want to sink $1000 in it yet as I don't know if I will like it but I also don't want a walmart or cabelas special either. I need a light enough setup for 4 to 5 hour sessions that can handle strong line peeling fish but that's not overkill for catching 15inch trout in the bay. I also am the type of fisherman that drools over sexy looking reels. There seems to be a lot of sexy fly reels but I just don't want to make the mistake of that misleading me into a purchase that I wouldn't be happy with.
Also any input on line brands would be helpful as well. I would probably want to start off with a floating line and have some sinking tip line to change to if needed. I don't know anything about any of the brands or what to even look for. I think backing wise I will first use 30, 40, 50, or 65 lb fins braid since I have several large spools of it collecting dust in my garage.
Thanks in advance for any input.