Again I'd like to say thanks to all who helped me in my casting thread from before. I have gotten considerably better through videos, reading, and practice!
I live on Cape Cod, in Orleans but go to school in Western MA. I have a crappy (read: cheap, not crappie as in the fish) Bass Pro Shop 8wt. outfit I bought for cheap since I've just gotten into the sport. I would like to pick up a 5 or 6 wt. outfit for trout around school, and a heavier duty saltwater outfit for home. I'll be targeting bass, blues, false albacore, and bonito from shore and boat.
I've read alot online and in books, but there are just so many rods and reels out there its hard to narrow it down to a few choices, especially without being able to physically see or try any of them.
That being said, my friend who has been fly fishing far longer than I recommended a 10 wt. G.Loomis CrossCurrent GLX and a Tibor Riptide reel, and to go 1 line size up, so 11 wt. line.
I have also looked at Colton rods and reels out of Pennsylvania, they seem to be very well priced.
What about lines? Sinking or sink tip or floating? Would it be in my best interest to buy spare spools and load one with each type of line?
I would like to not spend outrageous amounts of money, but if there is one outfit I would really like to spend the money on for a quality setup, it would be this one.
Not a bad thing to say about that setup except for the price . As far as lines go I use and Intermidiate in up to 15 feet of water, a sinking line if more that 15ft or in rough surf. The only time I even consider a floating line is if I'm throwing a popper or a crease fly but to be honest with you I think I've used mine twice. This is really a matter of preference though, not a rule. An intermidiate line would probably be a good place to start since you can strip fast enough to keep it on top or wait long enough for it to sink as far as you want.
Pricey yes, but is it worth it for that high end of gear? Will I notice a big difference if I go with that G.Loomis/Tibor setup over say, one of the Colton 10 wt. Tradewinds rods and 10 wt. reels shown here;
They claim all the reels are built for saltwater use, although I'm not sure what that necessarily means (sealed drag?).
And, the rods include an extra tip section, fighting butt, cloth rod bag, and rod tube.
Does anyone have experience with these rods? Although I really do like the recoil guides on the Loomis, are they practical, or is it just a gimmick? When is there actually that much strain placed on the guides? I've been spin fishing for a long time and even a 30+ lb. Striper never caused a problem with guides, although I suppose a fly rod bends alot more than a surf rod.
It's all in the feel, the best thing to do is walk into a decent flyshop and actually try a few demo rods. Most of the mid to high end rods have a fast action, takes a little getting used to but they generate much more line speed which equals more distance. I own a Thomas and Thomas 9wt that I love, I recently won a TFO TiCrX 9 wt in a raffle. Now while I admit that T&T builds an amazing rod and it does outperform the TFO in my opinion, the real question is, is it worth the extra $$$? $750 vs $250 is a big spread and the TFO is actually a pretty impressive rod and has a lifetime, no fault warranty. So test a few out and decide from there.
As for the reel, all aluminum, mid arbor, decent drag if you need more, palm it
P.S. I think the recoil guides are more for that dreaded bump into the doorway, or hitting a boat rail than fighting a fish
Reels advertised as "SW reels" mostly refers to corrosion resistance. Drags can be **** or excellent.
The Loomis and Tibor are both excellent pieces of equipment, but obviously very pricey. The Tibor is an excellent reel and I have several as well as some older Pates. The Riptide will last a lifetime and has an exceptionally smooth drag that will stand up to very tough fish including tarpon and small tuna... These are the types of fish where you would notice a difference between reels, and a Tibor, Charleton Mako etc. earn their price tag. Stripers and blues and most other NE fish you're likely to meet won't test the equipment to the same extent unless you plan to chase school bluefin, or mahi offshore, with the possible exception of false albies. If you are planning to fish in the Keys for 100+ tarpon, chase roosters in Baja etc. then a high quality reel becomes very important. This combination will be something that you can grow into as your abilities and fishing horizons expand, and you'll be able to pass the reel along to your grand kids. Rods by then will be made out of some exotic compound of plutonium and jelly donuts or something and likely won't age as well as the reel.
I haven't tried the Colton rods and reels yet, but know others that have and are very happy with them here in the NE for stripers, blues, bonito and albies. Personally I think that they represent a very good value based on what I've heard about them. Because they're sold direct it's hard to get your hands on them to try out, but also because they're sold direct, they're able to pass along a significant savings since there is no retail markup.
I've spoken to Bob Filger (the owner) a few times and he seems like a stand up guy, and I'd bet you could arrange to try out an outfit and send it back if you weren't happy with it. He could also recommend lines for the rod-- probably an 11 weight triangle taper if you wanted a floater, and 10's for sinkers or intermediate SA or Rio.
For what it's worth, many folks have started out with a TFO rod and Teton Tioga reel for NE SW and have done very well. But now that Teton seems to be having difficulty (they've apparently suspended operations while they search for a buyer) it's apparent there is some risk to picking companies and their "lifetime" guarantee's. (You might find a Teton Tioga at a significant discount, though not in the same league as a Tibor or even a Colton, it's perfectly fine for bass and blues.)
As for what line to get, it'll depend on where and how you fish and an extra spool (or reel!!) would be a good idea. For one all around line an intermediate is great for stripping deceivers, clousers, bunker flies etc. and getting to different depths depending on how long you wait before beginning the retrieve. But if i had two lines, for fishing from shore, I'd probably go with a floater (easier to mend in current when drifting flies like flatwings, crabs and shrimp,fishing crease flies, for waking stuff like snake flies at night, and fine for stripping flies over sand beaches and around rocks) and a fast sinktip to reach deeper, get down in rips and holes and still be able to mend line with the floating portion. If you do a lot of fishing from a boat I'd go with a floater or intermediate (toss up) and full length fast sink.
Good luck, let us know what you end up with.