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  1. #11

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    For now, I am going to stick with 9s and 10s. When I asked the guide about the fishery he said, "permit. no tarpon!" Ha. I think this is supposed to be a very focused trip. No bonefish, no tarpon.

    Also, you are talking 10 wt Salt HD with a 10 wt Flats Pro correct?

    While I like the RIO permit on the Method I can see where a lighter line would tighten up the loops even more. I had an 8 wt Method with a RIO Bonefish and that had the tightest loops of any rod I have cast. With that being said, I know gotchas/crazy charlies and distance shots are not the name of the game for this upcoming trip.

  2. #12

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    I cast and wrote about testing S HD#8 at Edison. It was loaded by Sage with #8 Flats Pro. I anticipated it was going to feel too heavy but I was wrong. Apparently the new rod favors the heavier line. Conversely, X #8 (which I also tried Flats Pro on) much preferred RIO Bonefish. Method might too. I fish Gold on my M #6. You could go out at pre-dawn and jump tarpon with the S HD#10 no problem.

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  4. #13

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    Well guys...I splurged. Almost want to keep it at that.

  5. #14

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    Quote Originally Posted by brokeoff View Post
    Well guys...I splurged. Almost want to keep it at that.
    Nice try! Spill the beans!

  6. #15

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    The answer is at the bottom if you don't want to schlep through my drawn out thought process on picking up the new rod.

    So, because this is my first time buying a new new rod I decided I should go try all of my options to find the perfect one. In my head, I already thought I would leave with a 9 wt Exocett and either put an 8 wt Rio Permit or Cortland/Monic true to weight line on it.

    At the shop I mentioned that I had a 9 wt Method and wanted another 9 wt for in close. The first rod they pulled off the rack was the old Sage Salt. In my head I knew I just wouldn't jump for the old one since Sage quickly turned around and released the Salt HD. I confessed my vanity and asked if we could pull out everything.

    It seemed to me that the guy at the shop was an Orvis guy. His first option was the H3F which I didn't cast and shot down for possibly being too limited to in close. Then he brought out the H3D. Great rod but I wanted to try them all. He brought out:

    Sage Salt - didn't spend much time here. Wanted to move on to the Salt HD. Since I have owned the Xi3 (9wt) and Salt (11wt) I didn't feel like this had as much potential as a flats rod.

    Orvis H3D - I'm not an Orvis guy. Branding wise I think they seem a little...stale...no offense to anyone. Oh yeah, the rod...UNREAL. While the shop guy watched me test cast it I was laying out precise and accurate casts over and over. Plenty of feel in close compared to the Method and I had good control of my loops. I new I really didn't want to want this rod but the performance was undeniable...the rod was easy to cast and very accurate. On a side note, what's with the giant white label and the robotic looking reel seat?

    Scott Meridian - I made a half dozen casts and put this one away. It did not fit my casting stroke or I can't cast the Meridian. I'm totally okay with that either way. On a side note, good looking rod.

    T & T Exocett - I tried this one a few times but it wasn't able to perform with the RIO Permit 9 wt line. Big open loops, trouble controlling my back cast, precise but issues with accuracy in those conditions. I tried to force it and realized without the right line I wouldn't be taking it home. Side note, when spending horrible amounts of money on fly rods they should be finished like the Exocett. After comparing all the reel seats and wraps to the Exocett I can now fully appreciate what guys mean when they say, "craftsmanship."

    Sage Salt HD - It didn't feel great from the start. It casted fine but I had to try and make it work. It didn't feel great so I put it right down. I knew I wanted the rod to just jump out at me.

    Loomis Asquith - I almost didn't want to like this one. It has a silly name and a pretentious price tag. The first few casts I spent feeling the different in action like I had done with the other rods. I was watching my loops and where/when the rod flexed at certain points during the cast. After a few casts it's accuracy was up their with the H3D. What I noticed was that this rod responded very well to small corrections, most made by my wrist, that often times would lead to a blown cast in another rod. The tip was soft enough so I was able to hit a 25 ft target fairly easily (frankly, I think most shots in this close are completed using timing/intuition/experience rather than feel). I was able to cast the best loops with the rod, especially keeping a high tight loop on the back cast, and felt it it would probably excel best in a broad range of flats fishing conditions. Side note, it is an unattractive rod (surprised how ugly the reel seat is...and do we need more forest green flats rods? thought we learned our lesson 9 wt NRX!). I like companies that are moving toward matte finishes.

    Clutch Archipelago 10 wt - Since I was doing very well with the H3D the shop guy brought out the Clutch in a 10 wt that fished best with a 9 wt line. Accuracy was on par with the H3D. One of the better looking rods. It wasn't as good in close as the Asquith. I enjoyed it but felt a little skeptical of the newer company.

    So, I tested all the rods 3 times each (took about 2 hours).

    Went with the Asquith. Two honorable mentions were the very accurate Orvis H3D and the Clutch Archipelago. I'm almost embarrassed to have such an expensive rod but it's one of my only vices these days. It was a joy to cast and I think the best way to justify the cost is to keep improving my casting skills to enable me to extract all of it's potential.

    Speaking of potential, after the guys packed up I threw the Method just to compare while everything was still fresh. There is a reason they finished Method in Magma Red...


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  8. #16

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    Good for you! As they said in the show Parks and Recreation, sometimes you just have to ďtreat yo-self!Ē

    I saw an Asquith at Orlando Outfitters. I didnít want to handle a rod of that cost that I had no intention to buy, simply out of respect for their inventory. But, I wish I had looked it over a little closer.

    Completely agree with you about cosmetics. I dislike the green tones in my X. Itís virtually unnoticeable most of the time, but itís pretty obvious in the pounding sun of a salt flat. I love the look of the Salt HD!

    I accidentally won an auction for a brand new Method 5 weight. Donít need it, but the price was right. May end up returning it. However, if Method HD happens this summer, Iíll own it in either 8 or 10 weight or both.

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  10. #17

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    I'm surprised you did not include Sage X, one of the better in-close casting flats rods. Now, G.Loomis has never received many accolades for being pretty, that is T&T's arena. Steve Rajeff designed rod are casters, as good as they get. You did great selecting Asquith, congratulations. I did meet with Clutch's, Lee Janick, at Edison and cast one of his trout rods but not Archipelago, I wish I had. I did cast H3#8D and thought it very good but among today's stellar group of flats rods, an also ran.

  11. #18

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    Quote Originally Posted by sweetandsalt View Post
    I'm surprised you did not include Sage X, one of the better in-close casting flats rods. Now, G.Loomis has never received many accolades for being pretty, that is T&T's arena. Steve Rajeff designed rod are casters, as good as they get. You did great selecting Asquith, congratulations. I did meet with Clutch's, Lee Janick, at Edison and cast one of his trout rods but not Archipelago, I wish I had. I did cast H3#8D and thought it very good but among today's stellar group of flats rods, an also ran.
    That probably would have been a good idea. I'd like to test the NRX, Winston Whatever, and the X. One reason I might have shied away from the X is that it replaced the One. I have a the One in 6 wt and never really dialed it in. I know lots of flats guys down south really liked the One in a 9 wt.

    What did you mean about the H3D?

  12. #19

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    Quote Originally Posted by brokeoff View Post
    That probably would have been a good idea. I'd like to test the NRX, Winston Whatever, and the X. One reason I might have shied away from the X is that it replaced the One. I have a the One in 6 wt and never really dialed it in. I know lots of flats guys down south really liked the One in a 9 wt.

    What did you mean about the H3D?
    I believe he means it was good, but didnít stand out like the cream of the crop.

  13. #20

    Default Re: Understanding Rod Taper/Design and My Quiver

    ONE and X are quite different in my opinion. My favorite ONEs are the trout sizes. I don't own but have fished a guides ONE#9 and it is not for me. X#8 though is exceptional. H3D is fine and maybe better than fine but kind of vanilla but could be cross tested against X and Exocett. But I have not fished it only test pond casting. S HD is a powerhouse. Asquith #8 is a lot like NRX only lighter and better and NRX remains at or near the top in pure performance.

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