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  1. Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    These rods have specific lines made just for those rods. I don't know if one can compare it with standard rod/wt ratings.
    I could not believe the power those rods generate. I casted one on a really windy day (it was so windy I refused to even try at first) and the guy put on this huge fly (I thought it was ridiculous) and I just have to say that I was amazed. It should have been called "The fly cannon" and CCW permit should be required

  2. Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    Quote Originally Posted by sesro1978 View Post

    Is a 9' 5-wt. a suitable small-mouth bass fly rod? Specifically I'm thinking about the Sage ZXL 9' 5-wt. I've mainly been trout fishing but haven't really considered bass on a fly rod... Anyway, would this be a decent rod for smallies?

    Probably OK for smallmouth bass...... in the shallow summer water. That's what I started with this year, a 9' 5wt Sage FLi but I found that in a big river like the Susquehanna a 5wt is too small.
    I purchased a 9' 8wt Clearwater and I'm very happy with that.
    The Sage Bass rods are neat, but only 7'11". I like a 9'er to cast better ..... just me! Even trout fishing I don't like a 8'er. A 8.5' or a 9' seems to work better for me.
    Also I must say that the smallmouth bass have declined so I have been mainly catching channel cats, so the 8wt is needed.
    Rockbass, fallfish, sunfish and little bass are a blast with a 5wt.
    I take them both with me every time I go fishing.

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  3. #13

    Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    The only reason these rods are 7'11" is so they fit under the bass tournament regulations. They cast farther than my 10' z-axis and more acurate. They are soft enough to toss a popper with pinpoint accuracy yet strong enough to pull in a 50" northern or muskie.
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  4. Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    If you look up the weight of the lines for the Sage BASS, they are roughly a 9 and an 11. If you really think you need to be throwing a 5" Clouser for 12-15" smallies, get your facts straight. You can catch all smallies on smaller flies, and catch MORE smallies, thus having more fun. I seldom fish for anything with any heavier rod than a 3wt, 5 is THE HEAVIEST I will fish. I refuse to buy into the party line that you have to fish an 8wt for bass, 5wt for trout/panfish, and you have to use a 9' rod. If you are using 10# leaders for bass, an 8wt is OVERKILL. You can fish that same leader on a 5wt and actually land the fish faster using proper fishfighting techniques. Likewise, 6x on a 5wt is OVERKILL.

    Suggested rod weights and tippet ratings
    000-weight to 1-weight - 12X to 7X
    1- to 2-weight ----- 6X to 4X
    3- to 4-weight ----- 3X to 2X
    5- to 7-weight ----- 1X to 0X

    Suggested rod weights, tippet X-ratings, and fly sizes
    5-7 weight 0X .011 inches 12.0 pounds size-4 to size-6
    5-7 weight 1X .010 inches 10 pounds size-4 to size-8
    3-4 weight 2X .009 inches 9 pounds size-4 to size-10
    3-4 weight 3X .008 inches 7.5 pounds size-6 to size-12
    1-2 weight 4X .007 inches 5.5 pounds size-6 to size-14
    1-2 weight 5X .006 inches 4 pounds size-14 to size-20
    1-2 weight 6X .005 inches 2.5 pounds size-18 to size-26
    0 weight 5X-7X .006-.004 inches 4-1.2 pounds size-20 to size-28
    0 weight 6X-8X .005-.003 inches 2.1-1.0 pounds size-20 to size-28
    00 weight 7X-11X .004-.001 inches 1.2-.4 pounds size-26 to size-32
    000 weight 8X-12X .003-.0009 inches 1.0-.3 pounds size-28 to size-32

    These recommendations are taken from the gentleman who knows more about rod usage, and design function than anyone else I have seen. They can be seen in their entirity at Fly rods that protect your tippets by Bill Byrd . I adjusted the pound test ratings based upon what I have here at home as far as my own leaders and tippet spools.

    My recommendation is to cast one first to see if you like the broomstick casting action first. To call that rod soft is like saying that McCain is kind of old.

  5. #15

    Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    Thanks for the clarification on the large and smallmouth Bass rods. 9 and 11 weight rods, eh? No wonder they get so much praise as being powerful.

    I'm a big fan of ultralight tackle and rarely bring anything heavier than a 3wt for trout, but I've found that bass hold more to the rule of "bigger fish eat bigger flies" than trout do. For casting the bigger flies, for getting big distance easier, and for casting weighted flies, I often use a 6wt. It has a soft enough tip that it doesn't feel too heavy for a 12" smallmouth, but has just enough line weight to cast bigger, weighted flies without much sloppiness. Ever try casting a clouser more than 15 feet in front of you with a 3wt rod? It's possible, but IMO, is not the most enjoyable experience there is... Heck, it's actually more fun to tie something like that onto an ultralight spinning rod than a 3wt fly rod, at least you can get distance casting a clouser minnow with the spinning rod (blasphemey, I know ).

    All I'm saying is, ultralight is great fun when you can get away with it, but the heavier line weight really helps for casting bigger flies to target bigger bass. True you will catch more fish with smaller flies, but they will mostly be little fish. Just as an example of when that would be problematic: Some of the warmwater lakes I fish are highly overfished. There are very few fish larger than 10", even fewer that are larger than 16", but very many sub-catchable fish smaller than 3-4". Using a smaller hook would technically allow you to catch the smaller fish, but it's not really that fun to catch fingerlings, IMO. They put up virtually no fight, even with a 00wt rod, and just result in me having to haul them in, unhook them, and then re-cast if I have any hopes for catching a big fish
    The other flies, n., pl.
    1. dry flies, nymphs, emergers, terrestrials, streamers, etc.
    2. What I use when a black #10 woolly bugger isn't catching.

  6. Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    Quote Originally Posted by sesro1978 View Post

    Is a 9' 5-wt. a suitable small-mouth bass fly rod? Specifically I'm thinking about the Sage ZXL 9' 5-wt. I've mainly been trout fishing but haven't really considered bass on a fly rod... Anyway, would this be a decent rod for smallies?



    "If people don't occasionally walk away from you shaking their heads, you're doing something wrong." John Gierach

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Central Florida

    Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    Hi sesro1978,

    I like Joe's answer the best.

    Here are my thoughts about a good rod for small mouth. The ZXL is a soft action action rod and I think better suited for dry fly fishing. If I was going to buy a ZXL for Smallmouth I might want to go with a 6wt. Another rod that might give you a better balance for Smallmouth would be the Z-Axis. It may be better at casting weighted flies or flies with a lot of wind resistance. Again I might go with a 6wt.


  8. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Monroe, Michigan

    Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    I fish smallies on my home waters with my 5 wt all the time. What really should determine your choice is the flys you will be fishing. Large deer hair poppers or mice aren't going to fish well on your 5. If you're fishing buggers or shiner patterns or foam poppers your 5 will be fine.


  9. #19

    Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    A five wt is fine if you are using small flies. I have an 8wt for large heavy flies though.
    As long as I get a bite, I don't want to leave!

  10. Default Re: Suitable Bass Fly Rod?

    Honestly I have a reign five wieght that will throw everything and the kitchen sink easily. The secret a rio outbound in a five weight.

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