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Thread: New Introduction

  1. Default New Introduction

    Hi to all…
    My name is Benny Rhoads, and I live in Orange, Texas. I spent my early years in Northwest Pennsylvania. I still maintain a Hunting Camp my grandfather built back in the mid 1900’s. It is on the Allegheny River not far from the small town of Tionesta. I deer hunt there in the winter and fish and chill out there in the summer. The camp is within about an hour’s drive of some of the most beautiful trout streams in that part of the country. There are plenty of walleye’s and Small Mouth Bass to be taken in the rivers and creeks, if you take the time.

    I am not exactly new to Fly Fishing, but I am new to most of the equipment and fixtures found in the Fly Fishing Fraternity these days. My Dad started me Fly Fishing back in the 50’s. I recently retired from E. I. DuPont after 36 years in the Nylon industry. I have time now to get back into Fly Fishing, but I am amazed at most of the new equipment that is out there. I still have 2 of my Dad’s Shakespeare split bamboo rods with both tips and cloth cases. One was built in ’35, and the other in ’36. They both have the dirt and fish slime my Dad put on them prior to 1966. I hope to pass these on to my Gransson some day when he appreciates what they are.

    My own fiberglass rods were built prior to 1970, and they don’t have any recommended line weight data on them either. I am surprised I caught anything at all with them, after seeing all the high tech “Balancing” of equipment that goes on now. If there was tapered leader back them, I didn’t know about it. We would just clip off about 6’ of line from our best spinning rig, insert a barbed eyelet into the hollow fly line, and tie on the leader. It was crude, but I caught my weight several times over in Bass, bream, and walleyes with those rigs. Do they still make those barbed eyelet connectors now? If so, I don’t see anyone advertising them or hear of anyone using them.

    My favorite bait then was a yellow popper, and a home tied sponge spider tied on behind the popper with about 2’ of leader…Bass on the bug and Bream/Rock Bass on the spider. The spider was made from a slice of green DuPont sponge my Mother kept under the sink for cleaning. I could take about a ½ “ slice off of one end, and tie a dozen or more spiders, and she never knew. For legs, I saved the thin green rubber bands that came with the newspaper…they were just right. I read on some web site in the last few days about someone that is taking credit for inventing the sponge spider tying technique….I hate to bust his bubble, but me and my brother were doing in back in the late 50’s and early 60’s.

    I am trying to get back into Bass and Bream fishing here in Texas in the lakes and Bayou’s. I am an hour south of Toledo Bend lake, and have a trip planned for next week. I will be using the popper and spider rig again, and I’m curious if it will still work. I will be asking a bunch of questions in the near future, and I hope to make some new friends and pick-up on some of the fresh equipment, and techniques.

    Flying with the Wind,


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: New Introduction

    Hey Benny, welcome to the board---- you'll fit right in here. A lot of folks still fish the old glass rods and it's neat that you'll pass along the boo to your grandson one day.

    As far as those barbed eyelets, they're a thing of the past-- most folks just nail knot a tapered leader to the fly line, and some fly lines come with loops for loop to loop connections to the leader.

    As far as the sponge spiders and poppers go--- fish don't tend to read up on all the latest technology, so you should be all set.

    Modern fly line ratings use numbers (6 weight for example), but in the olden days, fly lines used a letter designation, so you may see a bunch of letters on the blank of your old glass rods above the grip. Here's a link for converting from old letter codes to new fly lines if you want to replace the line at some point: Fly line conversion to old-style letter

    Again, welcome aboard.


  3. Default Re: New Introduction

    BENNY!!! Welcome. Another Glasser...right on!
    You know what they say about GLASS:

    It's all about the bend.

  4. Default Re: New Introduction

    Hi Mark...
    Thanks for the welcome...In regards to the symbol for the line on the reels I have now...I have no idea what the letter designation would be. One is what is now called the WF, the other is a double taper...Thinner on each end, fat in the middle...About your handle...I was involved in falconry years ago, and was wondering if there is any connection?

    Hi Joni...
    Thanks too for the "Glass" welcome...My Dad had a sportings goods store when we lived in PA. and the Wonderod had just been introduced when I was old enough to remember. I have seen him show a customer how good they were by taking the tip, and pulling it around and touching the end of the handle with it to show how strong it was....

    I think you're from Utah...
    I have traveled all over Utah...I have been involved with a racing team at the Salt Flats for quite a few years, and always spent alot of time in the southeast corner between Blanding, and the Moab area...I can't get enough of it.

    Fly with the wind...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: New Introduction

    Hey Benny-

    About the handle- I was opening an online account many years ago for the first time and looking for a suitable name, when i saw a pair hurtle by my office window in the World Trade Center in NYC.

    There were several pairs that had been reintroduced into the "wild" in lower Manhattan by Cornell U-- including on tops of the Brooklyn Bridge and a building on Wall Street.

    They'd often hunt in the afternoon and terrorize the local pigeon populations.

    Anyway, the name kind of stuck so I've been using it ever since.


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