Does eBay hurt our friendly neighborhood flyshops? [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Does eBay hurt our friendly neighborhood flyshops?


juro
01-22-2005, 09:52 AM
I am concerned about the number of 'newbie' questions we hear on this and other boards lately, although in one sense it's good to hear more folks are getting into flyfishing. It also means people are getting into it without the critical relationship with others who have dedicated much of their life to the sport and can offer great advice and assistance - the fly shop pro.

It's great to find something cheap from another angler, a swap meet or garage sale mentality, but when it becomes a replacement for supporting those who have really given us a lot of wisdom through our angling pursuits I start to wonder if we are doing a great disservice. The guys at shops I've known have been the difference between success and aimless pursuit. Over time, I have been able to give advice and pass the torch.

eBay and even the big catalog corporations undermine the whole concept of the precious resource we have called the 'flyshop'.

When I pull into a town, finding a flyshop is like finding a goldmine. Even when I am not there to fish, I find a lot of joy in stopping in and talking about the fishing. But when I am in town to fish, the shop is a crucial part of the experience and also important to my success. A spool of tippet, a locally time-tested fly, or a hint to an outsider on where the big fish live.

I for one would forfeit any percentage of savings for online purchase to uphold the great institution of the fly shop. I hope eBay doesn't force my favorite flyshops around the world to struggle, and I will make purchases at the fly show this weekend, next weekend and through the season to support the shops.

Eddie
01-22-2005, 01:13 PM
it helps shops unload gear they can't sell by anonimously selling gear below msrp. it helps by expanding their markets and unloading the cheap stuff insomeone elses region.
I think that it hurts by encouraging people (especially new folks) to overlook value in the search for the lowest price. I think it hurts because, ultimately, the bigger shops can survive selling below msrp on ebay, but the little shops will die off (low volume and little proffit). I predict that we are in the golden years right now in flyfishing gear. When the proffits are good (enough), small companies thrive and make great stuff. Big companies can make good stuff at great prices, and everyone wants to "grow the sport" and provide good service. Most people don't have to drive more than forty minutes to have acsess to two good shops.
This won't last forever. The lock on msrp will eventually crack, and offshore knock off rods made imported for 17 dollars will take away all incentives. I suspect that it won't be long untill only cities and destinations will have shops, and everyone else will have to shop Cabelas (Beans, Orvis etc.) and ebay. Tackle shops will have a few rods and reels, but will take little intrest in fly gear. That will be a sad day. doooom and glooom.

Moose
01-22-2005, 08:42 PM
I buy on E Bay when I find a collectible, an item that is no longer available (out of production) or, for instance, bulk old lines I intend to chop up anyways. There is no doubt the flyshops are of greater value to the flyfisher, but E Bay is a good source for hard to find stuff.

bluegillbob
01-25-2005, 05:34 PM
I live in eastern NC, and flyshops are rare. I buy my leaders, poppers, flies and streamers at Wal-Mart for one simple reason: no flyshops within 100 miles!

Yes, I have flyfishing stuff from BPS. My BPS outfits will catch all the LM bass, bluegills, and crappies I care to flyrod for!

I have no gripes against people buying their gear from Cabelas, BPS, or even online places. The important thing is that people are flyfishing.

As for the "big box" stores selling $50/$100/$150 flyrods...they are doing it. Not everyone can afford to drop $400 on one flyrod from a flyshop.

Flyshops will continue to thrive as long as they sell quality products at a reasonable price.

Eddie
01-25-2005, 06:02 PM
"Flyshops will continue to thrive as long as they sell quality products at a reasonable price."
I can think of more than a few that are hardly thriving and bend over backwards for their customers. The fact that there isn't a flyshop within 100 miles of you speaks to the challenges that face flyshops.
For anglers that don't have a local flyshop, of course they will have to make due with mail order and the internet. I hope that folks that read and participate on the Forum will give our sponsors a try. Their prices are no more than BPS, and they help keep the FlyFishing Forum going. Tell 'em you saw them on the Forum.

brooklynangler
01-25-2005, 06:17 PM
With markups as they are in fly fishing retail, people are reacting to this and using ebay. I REFUSE to pay $50-60+ for a fly line. Won't do it, ever. Everybody has lines in the sand that they won't cross. When you still want to fish, you use ebay or get really familiar with the "bargain bins" at various online fly shops (and your local shop).

Most importantly, many (me included) use ebay to get the things that the local fly shop does not sell--- and that can be a lot of things as well as collectibles.

I might also add that with the advent of the awesome info sharing medium that is the internet, one can find a great deal about fishing by using a forum such as this as opposed to getting the "ya gonna buy sumthin" smirk from the guys at the flyshop (I have a list of a half dozen that I've visited in my years who do this and double that who make you feel great just for walking in their door.)

Eddie
01-25-2005, 07:42 PM
Collectables asside, there is little that a local shop can't get for a customer.
As for the "mark up"... anyone who thinks that flyshops would be able to survive with any less are mistaken.
People who don't value what a good shop has to offer, or don't have one close by, will shop on ebay. I see this trend growing. It is a shame.

nickcsus
01-25-2005, 08:05 PM
This a terrific thread...and frankly one that has generated more than a little guilt on my part. I only recently started fly fishing but have used ebay to get a sense of the market for older material. I am blessed with three outstanding fly shops in a 10 mile area here in Sacramento--Kiene's, American Flyfishing, and Fly Fishing Specialities. I frequent them all, making purchases on items big and small and welcoming their advice. It seems to me that ebay helps to feed that addiction we all have for one more rod or just another reel. I intend to buy a new rod this spring and I will do it thru one of my local shops because it won't be available on ebay for some time to come. Given the prices on rods, I get the sense that the shops are doing far better margins on leaders, flies, and lines. The other thing that has made ebay viable is the practice of lifetime and unconditional warranties on items. This makes used equipment far less of a risk. Interesting discussion!

Nick in Sacramento

Eddie
01-25-2005, 09:35 PM
Nick, you are lucky to have so many excellent shops around you (and so close to great fishing....sigh).
As for the warrenties: used or marked down gear is not officially covered by any mfg. They are mostly pretty cool and let it slide, but don't expect it.

teflon_jones
01-28-2005, 09:00 AM
I buy a good amount of stuff on eBay. My latest round of purchases:
float tube
waders
wading boots
casting rod

My local shop doesn't sell float tubes, and the second two things they don't carry, , especially due to my size (6'4, 260 pds, 15 sz foot). So eBay was my way to special order them, but at a discount. But would I honestly have purchased these things there if they were available? Probably not! I had a limit on what I could spend for everything, and buying at full retail would have prevented me from doing this. I'm already over my limit!

I visit the shop often (Bear's Den) and buy a decent amount of stuff from them. Last spring I spent $1000 there in one day on a new rod, reel, and a bunch of other stuff. So I think I do my part to support them.

The fly fishing things I bought last year off eBay:
a bunch of bonefish flies
a few striped bass flies
an WF-8-I fly line

Bear's den didn't have the bonefish flies, or the striped bass flies in that pattern. As for the line, I wanted to try it out but didn't want to spend the $60 retail on it. So it cost me $25 ($30?) with shipping for a $60 line. Also, I simply didn't have $60 to spend on the line at the time!

I'll continue to support my local fly shop as best I can, but it comes down to simple economics sometimes. If there's something I want, and I have $XX to spend on it, and the fly shop wants $XXX for it, then I'll try and get it somewhere else for $XX. eBay is the best place out there for this.

Steve_sullivan
01-29-2005, 03:03 AM
With markups as they are in fly fishing retail, people are reacting to this and using ebay. I REFUSE to pay $50-60+ for a fly line. Won't do it, ever. Everybody has lines in the sand that they won't cross. When you still want to fish, you use ebay or get really familiar with the "bargain bins" at various online fly shops (and your local shop).

Most importantly, many (me included) use ebay to get the things that the local fly shop does not sell--- and that can be a lot of things as well as collectibles.

I might also add that with the advent of the awesome info sharing medium that is the internet, one can find a great deal about fishing by using a forum such as this as opposed to getting the "ya gonna buy sumthin" smirk from the guys at the flyshop (I have a list of a half dozen that I've visited in my years who do this and double that who make you feel great just for walking in their door.)


I have a line in the sand as well. Saw <???> gremlin split shot at walmart for a buck, the local fly shop wanted over $2.50. If walmart sells it for $1 I expect to pay $1.50 to $2.00 for it at a fly shop, but over $2.50 is just too much.

PS: kiene's fly shop in sac has orvis clearwater waders on clearance for $50. Preety good deal for a back up pair of waders.

Eddie
01-29-2005, 10:07 AM
I find WalMart to be the most depressing place. It really is a distilation of everything that is wrong with this country. I guesse my line in the sand is that I am willing to pay and extra $1.50 here and there to never have to go into WalMart.
Like most Americans, I unfortunately find my self shopping there:frown:

JusBones
01-29-2005, 10:55 AM
My observations, having once worked in a fly shop. First, it is, by far, the place for folks just starting out....new to fly fishing. Most starters need to be "questioned"
as to what type of fishing do the like ? Steelhead ? Trout ? Saltwater ? and so on.
At that point, the salesperson can narrow down what they need....and then determine the budget of the buyer. Some new folks have no problem droping say,
$ 1,000 or more on a bonefish rig.....good stuff.....others ....go the lower end of the spectrum....which is fine....there are some great rods out there these days that dont require a second mortgage....The second group comprises experienced anglers.....know what they want (usually) and because they have some knowledge of what they are in the market for, come prepared with a bucket full
of $$$. Group 3 sees the reel they want in a catalog....with postage paid and no sales tax.....they come to "handle" the product...say thanks, go home and order via internet or telephone...Rod and reel (high end) makers do not allow "discounting" of "outfits"....most shops will throw in a free line and backing to sweeten the deal...but then again, I have witnessed out and out discounting...
I say .....let the shops discount the big name gear...thus staying competitive with the postage paid/no sales tax catalog sources...hope this made sense.

JusBones
01-29-2005, 11:08 AM
Perhaps it is not E-Bay or catalog sources that is contributing to the demise of the local fly shops....perhaps its the manf's....I suspect the volume of sales of a major catalog/internet gear provider far outstrips the sales volume of some poor guy trying to make a living running a shop....I say the "Big Boys"....we know who they are, should allow out and out discounting of the high and low end gear....just a thought........

bluegillbob
01-29-2005, 01:04 PM
Flyshops vs. Walmart, Cabelas, BPS, Orvis, E-Bay, Online shopping, etc...

I'm not putting anyone down, but people will shop where they want to, due to selection, prices, and convienence.

Speaking of online shopping, blueflycafe.com sells flies far cheaper than Wal-Mart. If I get more flies, I'll probably take this route. Why spend more than you have to? Besides, the selection is far greater.

I imagine that many flyshops will have "starter outfits" for $250-$300. My starter outfit ran $110...and I am still using it.

Do flyshop owners shop at specialty stores?

Here's a thought...price a baby stroller at Wal-Mart, than price one at a baby "specialty store." Compare both items. Both will work fine, but you will pay much more for the stroller in the "specialty" store.

My sis lived in Germany when she was in the USAF. She went to a specialty store to get a stroller. Years ago, she bought a stroller. How much? $400. You can't buy a single stroller for $400 at Wal-Mart...not even the best one they sell.

My other sis bought a car seat in a specialty store. $300 for a car seat. Just as safe as the Wal-Mart car seats.

Fly shops will thrive if the owners will continue to sell products at comparable prices. Increase prices, and the consumer will shop elsewhere.

bluegillbob
01-29-2005, 01:14 PM
Perhaps it is not E-Bay or catalog sources that is contributing to the demise of the local fly shops....perhaps its the manf's....I suspect the volume of sales of a major catalog/internet gear provider far outstrips the sales volume of some poor guy trying to make a living running a shop....I say the "Big Boys"....we know who they are, should allow out and out discounting of the high and low end gear....just a thought........


Bones,

Bass Pro Shops had a few big sales a few weeks ago. They were selling CV2 flyrods ($150) for $75. BPS was also selling their Classic combo in 4wt for $9.00! I paid $175 for the same outfit last year. I would've bought another 4wt, but I have 2 outfits in 4wt. The reels that came with the Classic combos are machined aluminum.

Besides, the same folks that work at BPS are flyrodders as well. I have test cast their rods, and have examined different reels there.

I never would've known the physical differences bewteen a cast reel and a machined reel. Who taught me? A BPS employee that works at the White River Fly Shop at BPS.

Flyshop employees aren't the only ones that know flyfishing. I have never visited a Cabela's, but I'm willing that their staff is knowledgeable about flyfishing too.

How many flyshops can discuss mountain trout and saltwater fishing at the same flyshop? BPS can, because I have discussed both topics there. How many flyshops carry saltwater gear, as well as freshwater gear at the same location? I'm talking rods, reels, leaders, flies, streamers, and poppers. I'm talking 2wt to 12wt outfits.

Spend $2000 at a Cabela's or a BPS. Spend $2000 at a flyshop. You will not be able to buy the same amount of equipment at the specialty store.

BPS and Cabela's have casting seminars and fly tying seminars as well.

Eddie
01-29-2005, 02:37 PM
"Fly shops will thrive if the owners will continue to sell products at comparable prices." Hmmm, I'm not sure that is true. There are not many flyshops in the country that I would call "thriving", and their prices are the SAME as BPS and Cabelas. I don't think that any flyshop (any retail shop period!) could survive keeping up with ebay and WalMart. I suppose the good news is that Walmart will never be a complete shop, and will never offer anything but the lowest quality stuff (except for the dinsmor tin).
I have been to the main Cabelas and a few Bass Pro shops. I would say that the sales staff were good folks, but not in the league of the staff at the better flyShops. Cabelas and Bass Pro honor the MSRP, so I'm not sure how you would save much $ there over a specialty shop (unless you were shopping for clothes).
As far as stock, a flyshop can order almost anything. The same can not be said for Orvis, LLBean, BPS, Cabelas, KitteryTrading post and most of the other big shops. When the preseason comes in, they have the stuff, when they are out, you have to wait for the next big shipment. That is IF they ever stocked it in the first place. Good luck trying to get a something a little uncomon (say a bottle of Muscilin) from any of the above.
Having done quite a bit of baby shopping, I can say that you get what you pay for. The more expensive stuff tends to be easier to clean, works better and lasts for more than a couple of kids. The nice stuff we have "inherited" from friends and family bears this out. The cheap stuff goes off to the landfill.
You get what you pay for with flyfishing stuff as well. Quality, service and information come at a price. If someone can't aford or doesn't want or need what a flyshop has to offer, that's fair enough. A guys gotta do what a guys gotta do. I just don't want people thinking that you don't get what you pay for at a specialty flyshop. That is just not true.

Smolt
01-29-2005, 05:15 PM
One of the things that the Wal-Marts of the world are big enough to do is beat the daylights out of their suppliers when it comes to the price at which the big retailer buys. GOOGLE "Vlasic pickles" for the story of its financial woes as an example of the danger of dealing with a Wal-Mart. When all the little guys are driven out of the market and all that are left are the big guys, watch what happens to prices. It has already happened with banking and gasoline. It will take awhile on the retail level, but the younger people on the board should keep this in the back of their collective minds.

I don't blame the Sages, Simms, and Patagonias of the world for not wanting their tradenames degraded by unabashed discounting. Unfortunately, the state of the law today makes the choice for them an all-or-nothing proposition -- if they want to maintain their high-end image, they have to cut off discounters. Maybe that's one of the reasons Sage, for one, changes rod lines as often as it does. Its discontinued lines can be discounted without ruining the image.

Just my ramblings on a cold Saturday afternoon.

peter-s-c
01-29-2005, 06:45 PM
We're talking about buying on ebay, but what about the flip side? Selling on ebay and using that coin to buy something at the local shop? Done that more than once. ebay creates sales volume and cashflow within the industry that a smart flyshop will exploit and the less than smart flyshop will not. ebay and the Internet is a retail fact of life. The small flyshop can make a bundle off of ebay sales if they're willing to try.

Case in point -- most people having collected a bunch of rods, find the incremental purchase of additional rods to be progressively more difficult. There's only so many you can use and even the most ardent gearwhore starts thinking of disposal to acquire something new. This "turbulence" in our rod collections can be exploited by the local flyshop by accepting trade-ins from the non-internet, non-ebay savvy local buyer, in return for new merchandise. The trade-ins are then ebayed outside of the shop's marketing area. In this way, the owner continually spurs the purchase of new gear from his shop and offloads the used gear outside of his market area so that it won't hurt his future local sales of new gear. He can even offer consignment sales (which are actually ebay sales) so that his customers can acquire the cash to buy new from his store. This sort of strategy brings in cash from both outside and within his marketing area without the deleterious effects of used sales within his area.

Any store owner who doesn't exploit ebay and Internet sales is cutting their own throat. It is up to the store owner to adapt to market realities. It never works the other way around.

Eddie
01-29-2005, 09:32 PM
"The small flyshop can make a bundle off of ebay sales if they're willing to try. "
Peter, do you know of any flyshops that are "make a bundle" selling used gear on the net? Shops that sell off unsold stuff at the end of the season are doing so at such a small margin, it is a survival tactic to pay for the next pre-season. That kind of end of the season sale works in clothing retail because of the good margins AND volume. Not so for the small shop. However, if you know of some shops that are making alot of money doing this, I would like to hear more.
Also, the major mfg's hold all shops to msrp not to enhance their image, but to protect the small flyshops that are vital in growing the industry and promoting the brands.
Smolt, you are right on about WalMart. Pitty the towns that lose their local pharmacy when Walmart comes around, and then can't get certain FDA aproved birth control pills because Walmart refusess to sell them.

bluegillbob
01-30-2005, 12:15 AM
Eddie,

Speaking of comparing prices, I compared the prices of 2 different stores. One was Wal-Mart, and the other was The Great Outdoor Provision Company. The GOPC specializes in camping, kayaking, and flyrodding gear.

I compared the same exact flyline that both stores sold. Wal-Mart: $9.00...GOPC : $25.00. The same line was almost 3 times the price. Same exact flyline.

Flies/Poppers/Streamers. I have bought all 3 at Wal-Mart. They are durable, and reasonably priced. They are hand tied as well. Are flyshop flies any better? I doubt it.

I have noticed something about the "specialty stores." Very few that I have visited have a wide price range. For example, flyrodding reels. The lowest price one cost $150. Line? Try $25. Flies? Try $2 for one fly. $6 for one leader.

The salesperson was intent on making a sale. Which rod did the person think I was interested in? The $600 one. I wasn't.

From what I have heard, flyshops are not allowed to discount their rods without permission from the manufacturer. It sounds like to me that the manufacturer is running the show. It is an agreement between the manufacturer and the flyshop owner.

You said "a flyshop can order anything." I want to be able to buy when I step in the store. BPS and Wal-Mart have what I need.

You find fault with Wal-Mart. Sam Walton built his retail empire from one store. Hard work and determination. What's wrong with Wal-Mart?

Target. I do not support Target, because that is a French owned company. They do not support our troops, and do not promote "Toys for Tots."

Do you shop at Lowes or Home Depot? Or would you rather shop at some "mom and pop" hardware store? As long as I have a selection to shose from, availability, and reasonable prices, I'll go to any of these 3 stores.

Lawsuits. There was a "mom and pop" drug store in a city. A Wal-Mart was built in the same city. The small drug store went to court and sued Wal-Mart over lower prescription prices. The judge dismissed the case. The drug store wanted Wal-mart to raise it's prices to be less competitive. I believe in capitalism, and I'm glad the judge threw out the case.

There are specialty hunting stores nearby. I have bought firearms as well as other items from them. I have seen the same identical box of shot gun shells sell for $12 when Wal-Mart sells them for $5. If I can find the same item, or similar one at a lower price, I'm going there.

One thing I admire about BPS. They have a "no hassle return policy." I returned a flyrod combo, and was no hassle.

I did a comparison of that "specialty" store (Great Outdoor Provision Co.) vs. Bass Pro Shop. BPS sold $40 - $600 reels. BPS sold $50-$500 flyrods. BPS had a much greater selection of everything.

If flyshops had the availability, selection, location, and prices similar to Wal-Mart and BPS, I would patronize them. My equipment works fine, and I can't complain.

JimW
01-30-2005, 09:55 AM
Target. I do not support Target, because that is a French owned company. They do not support our troops, and do not promote "Toys for Tots."

Bluegillbob, In case you hadn't noticed it would appear the French and well let's see, most of the other members of NATO were correct, based on the premise that we invaded Iraq to protect ourselves from the WMD. I know that's been spun several different times. I support our troops, they're just doing their job, unfortunately their boss is a jackass, not their fault.

Is Target owned by the French government? I may be misinformed but I don't believe that the corprate officers of Target are making decisions regarding foreign policy for France.

Your other points are valid - I as everyone have been forced to shop the big box stores and I even get some fishing gear at Wal-mart, the hours are certainly better than a flyshop but that doesn't ammount to much.

Just yesterday I hit Smitty's just for a few items, he didn't have any yak hair so I went to Baymen outfitters. Dave had some yak and as it turned out I hit the tail end of his 50% off sale, I don't know if the prices were better than wally world because they don't carry the stuff.

I guess I'd rather shop the locals because I know where the money is going and I like the people who own and work at the shops. BPS and Cabelas are just call centers in the sky, I must admit I do enjoy browsing the catalog but I find the shops are competitive with the shops on like merchandise. Don't forget to factor in the shipping charges.

Smolt
01-30-2005, 11:07 AM
bluegillbob,

Target Corportion is a U.S. discount chain originated (as the "Hudson Stores") and still headquartered in Minnesota. It is not a French company.

The Target Foundation has been around since at least 1946 and, if you would look at the Target website to get the facts rather than rant about the French, was "a founding member of the "Five Percent Club," a landmark movement encouraging U.S. corporations to commit five percent of federally taxable income to support community nonprofits." Target not only supports local charities, it is and has been a strong supporter of U.S. troops, see the VFWs comments in that regard at, http://www.vfw.org/news/target.htm

Bluegillbob, you are certainly entitled to your opinions, but don't try to pass them off as facts. Take some time to investigate a little before you start ranting about things you obviously know nothing about.

CK

bluegillbob
01-30-2005, 01:08 PM
"Bluegillbob, In case you hadn't noticed it would appear the French and well let's see, most of the other members of NATO were correct, based on the premise that we invaded Iraq to protect ourselves from the WMD. I know that's been spun several different times. I support our troops, they're just doing their job, unfortunately their boss is a jackass, not their fault."



"I guess I'd rather shop the locals because I know where the money is going and I like the people who own and work at the shops. BPS and Cabelas are just call centers in the sky, I must admit I do enjoy browsing the catalog but I find the shops are competitive with the shops on like merchandise. Don't forget to factor in the shipping charges."

Jim,

We are all entitled to our opinions, but I respect Bush over Clinton. I may not agree with everything Bush is doing, but I feel he fares better than Clinton. Bill Clinton disgraced the presidency to the point that my nephews were hearing jokes told about him while they were in elementary school.

I don't believe that "BPS and Cabelas are just call centers in the sky." I haven't visited a Cabela's yet. I have enjoyed my visits at the BPS in Charlotte, NC. I have yet to shop at a store that specializes in hunting, fishing, camping, and most anything outdoors as a BPS. Trucks, boats, atv's as well. They even have a golf shop there. I spent 3.5 hrs the first time at BPS and did not see the whole store...it's that big!

Most people associate flyfishing as an "elitiest" pastime. I'm glad there are stores like Cabela's and BPS that sell nice equipment at reasonable prices. I have a BPS flyrod combo called the "Hobbs Creek." The rod has a walnut wooden seat, aluminum hardware, and is nicely built. I know this rod can cast as well as other more expensive rods because I have cast the others as an honest comparison. Granted, a Sage XP is a better casting rod, but then again, I could buy a fleet of Hobbs Creeks for the price of one single XP.

Smolt,

Thank you for correcting me on Target. If I'm wrong, I'm wrong. I still enjoy shopping at Wal-Mart. Target has minimal fishing selection, and carries no firearms/ammunition. Plenty of hunting/fishing stuff at Wal-Mart.

You mentioned that the Simms, Patagonia, and Sage do not discount their products to degrade their reputation. Sage has noticed that their lower priced rods ( I believe the DS2 series) were not selling as expected, due to rod actions prefered by the buying public. Sage dropped the DS2 series, and introduced the Launch (med.fast) and FLi (fast action) series.

There will be loyal brand name consumers. These folks will continue to purchase products from certain manufacturers. Look at Harley Davidson. All of their products are priced higher than the competition. A Harley is not a superior motorcycle (when compared to the competition). I have ridden Japanese cruisers as well as Harleys. People will continue to pay those higher prices for Harley products (motorcycles, accesories, clothes, etc) because Harley knows that the loyal customers will keep on buying their products. As long as the customers keep paying those prices, Harley has no need to change their marketing strategy.

Yes, I believe in the saying "you get what you pay for." I also believe that you can pay too much. I do not buy for the name either. If I bought a $600 Sage flyrod, I would buy it because I liked it, not because of the name.

As long as people will buy expensive products like Cadillacs, Sage, Patagonias, and Harley Davidsons, they will continue to produce them. I am not badgering those companies nor the people that are buying them. All I am saying is that there are quality products that are produced at reasonable prices.

Eddie
01-30-2005, 02:30 PM
this topic was origionally about ebay and whether or not the small local flyshops might be hurt by folks shopping on ebay. At the heart of Juro's question was the issue of cost vs value. They are NOT the same thing. If it is worth the money to you, it's worth it. If one can't afford more, one gets what they can.
Bass Pro and Cabellas came into the mix, but since they do not discount, I think that they are not relevant to the discussion. They are just giant outdoors stores with flyfishing departments the size of most flyshops. They play by the rules established by the mfgs and honor msrp. The inexpensive private label Korean stuff could hardly be called an excellent deal when the 40 dollar reel was brought into the country for 2 dollars and the 180 dollar fly rod cost them less than 17 bucks. A good deal for someone. Not worth it to me.
Walmart would'nt be relevant to the discussion because their entire fly fishing department could fit in a gym locker...except that WalMart highlights the discussion of cost vs. value. Walmart is cheap to be sure, but every sale at Walmart takes away from the smaller shops that serve and support the the community. Walmart bikes are assembled so poorly, that it is sickening. Better hope the local bike shop can stay in bussiness to help out when everything comes loose. The pharmacy at Walmart is inexpensive enough to drive out the local pharmacy, but better hope that no one you love needs the morning after pill, cause WallyWorld don't sell it. Anyone at Walmart know how to opperate a camera? Why are Levis exclusively made in China...thanks Walmart.
As for France...their soldiers are risking their necks in Afganistan helping to find Ossama Bin Ladden and crush al queda. They deserve our thanks and respect for this.
Clinton messed up. Who says he didn't? Bush's blunders will go down in history. We will be paying for his costly and halfbaked war in Iraq for the rest of our lives. No one would have commited to this insane war just to liberate the Iraqis. Well...except for Bush and his NeoCon mentors. As long as their kids don't have to pay the price...
This high lights the cost vs. value discussion. Not worth it to me.

bluegillbob
01-31-2005, 03:13 AM
Eddie,

BPS and Cabela's actually discount their products. If you don't believe me, go to their websites and look around. When either opens a new store, there are bargains throughout. BPS and Cabela's sell their brands as well as other name brands of flyfishing gear. Either store is usually having a sale quite often.

TFO rods. Nice from what I hear. They used to be sold exclusively by flyshops, but Cabela's and BPS carry the entire lineup. Why is that? It's simple...Cabela's and BPS are a business, just like the flyshop. You cannot survive if you cannot generate a profit. Sure, flyshops generate additional income with guiding trips and the like, but the bottom line for any business is the ability to generate a profit. BPS and Cabela's know that those TFO rods are popular, and they know they can sell plenty of them. I see it as fair competition. Nothing illegal or immoral about it.

Here's a story about my friend's family. They own a chain of private dry cleaners throughout the city I live near. My friend's dad built his business one store at a time. They pretty much have the dry cleaning market for the entire city. If someone decided to open up a dry cleaning business, my friend's father would offer to buy the business out right there. If they refused to be bought out, my friend's father would lower his prices, and eventually the smaller guy would lose his business. My friend's father did not break any laws, act immoral, or unethical. He had a large customer base, and tactfully defended his territory. This is similar to the Wal-Mart pharmacy discussion.

Speaking of the Wal-Mart pharmacy, there are plenty of "mom and pop" pharmacies left in my city. Our supermarkets have pharmacies as well. If Wal-Mart is such a threat, I propose this question: Why are Wal-Green stores being built at such a astronomical rate? We have Wal-Green stores being built next to CVS Pharmacies.

Wal-Mart bikes. My mother bought a single speed bicycle at a "bike shop." She paid $300...and the bike has no fenders. The same basic bike at Wal-Mart: $80 (with no fenders either). Her bike is no better than the other...I compared both.

Our Wal-Mart supports our community. The employees are local citizens. When I shop at my local Wal-Mart, my money is used to produce paychecks for the employees, which in turn the money is spent at the local economy (grocery stores, gas stations, banks).

Wal-Mart doesn't sell the "after morning pill." That is their perogative. Wal-Mart does not sell PlayBoy magazine either. Wal-Mart could probably sell either product, and make millions doing it. I respect Wal-Mart for refusing to sell either. You may not realize it, but Wal-Mart has an image to project; it isn't all about profits, as these 2 products have shown.

You ask why Levi's are made exclusively in China? I see 2 reasons : Levi can produce their product at a cheaper cost, and American workers (especially unions) demand higher wages, and they price themselves out of employment. It's sad to see our companies relocating their factories to save on labor. Then again, labor unions become stubborn and refuse to cooperate. Some unions believe they control a manufacturing plant; the management has the authority to relocate the plant...I've seen it happen. "Be American Buy American." Buying a product made in American doesn't make you any better an American. Honda builds cars and motorcycles in America. Those Honda's are just as American as a Harley Davidson. Same with Mercedes Benz.

You label BPS products as "inexpensive private label Korean stuff." Tell you what. I'll gladly let you dissasemble my BPS CV2 flyreel. You dissasemble your "expensive American reel" and compare them. My reel is machined; if I dropped it, it would get nicked up...but would'nt crack in half. My gears are metal...my reel has a one way bearing assembly, and the reel has a nice gunsmoke finish. My drag is adjustable as well. I paid $120 (only $9 less than an Orvis Battenkill reel)..more than alot of "inexpensive" reels out there.

Let's discuss cost. Sure, my BPS stuff isn't "high dollar." It's no supposed to be. Let's talk about those Sage, Winston, Thomas and Thomas, and Orvis Flyrods. How much do you think a $600 Sage costs to produce? I'll say about $40 (for the materials, my estimate may be too high). The other cost is the labor, R&D, advertising (huge costs), and the "lifetime warranty." Sure, most manufacturers are charging money to honor the warranty. Even those "lesser priced" TFO rods charge $25 each time you send them back (from the $90 to the $249 models). I may purchase a TFO rod in the future; I'll cast one before I decide.

The Iraqi liberation. I believe that is only part of our involvement. We are finishing what Bush Sr started. The terrorist attacked us with no provocation. Clinton didn't reinforce our policies, and "W" took over. I still believe the majority is about the oil. Our country depends on it . Just to exist, our country needs 40,000 barrels/hour...and I'm not talking production. Sure, we have our reserves, but it's "self preservation." If another country is willing to sell their natural resource to us, I'm for it. No other country is looking out for us.

Yes, we are rebuilding Iraq. We rebuilt Germany, England, and Japan as well. Remember, Japan and Germany were our enemies during WW2. We not only rebuilt Japan, but we rewrote their constitution. They attacked us.

juro
01-31-2005, 07:42 AM
I had no idea that this topic had such strong economic and political undertones! ;)

Here are my opinions, for what they're worth:

I think bluegillbob could have more succintly summarized his reply as "no, I want my stuff cheap , period". That's your right. I feel that way about a lot of things in life.

Others say "I draw a line in the sand". That's cool, a compromise recognizing the value of engaging with area shops and pros yet managing spending for certain items. Unavoidable really in this day and age.

Some others still said "The value of having fly shops in my neighborhood exceeds the value of the savings I could get anonymously on-line". That group would include me, for sure.

Knowledge is the real asset in angling, and that does not come from eBay or catalogs, just the tools and toys but the practical knowledge is not in the catalog so you obtain it somewhere else, like here.

It has most to do with the type of angling one plans to do. Fishing complex hatches in the Catskills would get me to visit a local shop for local expertise and flies. Chasing native steelhead in Washington, Oregon or British Columbia or Atlantic salmon in Europe or the Canadian Maritimes? Best done with input from the savvy anglers at the flyshop for sure. Spey casting - learn on your own with a mail-order rod? Please use the pond first not the best pools ;) Trying a bonefishing trip on your own... who gives you the best advice - the island natives or your neighborhood flyshop? Need some tides and wading information to fish the bayside striper flats? Don't do it without checking into the situation for safety's sake.

I guess some fisheries don't really need to preserve this relationship, but clearly others do. Boy I would hate to fish in a world where that essential element, the friendly neighborhood flyshop, is missing.

.02


BTW - Although this thread has gone awry, let's leave it all intact yet proceed within the bounds of the real intent of the discussion from this point forward to avoid having to "lock" this thread.

So few threads have been locked in many thousands, so let's uphold the anglers honor and cooperate to keep this discussion focused on the key topic.

thanks

Eddie
01-31-2005, 12:17 PM
"I still believe the majority is about the oil. Our country depends on it . Just to exist, our country needs 40,000 barrels/hour...and I'm not talking production. Sure, we have our reserves, but it's "self preservation."

bluegill, we all have our rights to opinion, and I think that you and I disagree on almost everything (except that maybe it might be fun to catch fish on a fly rod). But please tell me that you are not advocating killing hundreds of thousands of people and spending hundreds of billions of dollars and crippling over 10,000 Americans, and getting more than a thousand loyal soldiers killed in order to STEAL ANOTHER SOVERGN NATIONS OIL.
Juro, I know that this is off topic, but as long as people play nice, I assume that this discussion is ok. We are talking about some pretty fundimental values here, and I can't help but wonder if this "winner take all" mentality is what is both driving the flyshops and this country under.

BuffOutFlyShop
01-31-2005, 12:38 PM
When a wal-mart comes in to town they put out 100 small stores out of business, that was paying taxes and creating jobs. How can any community put up with this putting people out of work. We used to have alot of small shops in our area and now sadly there are none left, now if i want anything, iam forced to go to the big box stores, where they are poorly staffed and have nobody i can talk to when i ask questions. This makesme sick!!!. I have always gone to the local store and supported it and will continue to go, When they are gone, where will you go then to see any new products and cast them or see them first hand. With some people it is a price only issue, but it comes at what price? They cannot help with local knowledge ex. stream conditions,patterns and advise on where to go and tech tips on equipment.

zugbugz
01-31-2005, 09:17 PM
I read with interest all the varied answers to Juro's original topic and thought I'd add my two cents. As one who buys and sells on ebay, buys at local fly shops (I'm fortunate, there are quite a few in the Phoenix AZ area!) and who occasionally buys from BPS, Cabelas and other internet distributors, I think the answer is in one sweet word...NO! Someone mentioned competition (and protecting one's business interests) in this thread - well my friend that is what it is all about in business - but is ebay unfair in that the big guns can't make it go away? No, because ebay for the most part is a venue to get rid of excess wares that can't be sold locally for the price desired (a great service IMHO). Many of the fly rods, etc sold on ebay were already purchased at one of those high-end fly shops, so that's not hurting anything. Also, all businesses, including those on ebay, share one common thread - they must make a profit to survive! The local shops will do that by doing the research to find out what the locals in their area want! If they want high end, expensive stuff, that's what they should sell! If the locals want the low end, go that direction...when I want to see a Sage TCR, I don't go to Wal Mart (but I might go to ebay if I've already cast it; and therein I think lies your question)! But if I want some bass lures I sure do! If I want to buy two spare spools for my fly reel and they cost $120 each locally(plus tax), what's wrong with me looking on ebay and buying slightly used or even new ones there? Ebay fills a need and as long as that need exists, it will continue to thrive...it's the same for the local fly shops! One final note, yes it can be argued businesses who sell their new wares on ebay are taking business away from other areas - but in that regard, ebay is an equal opportunity employer. Any person or business with a computer and business savvy stands on equal ground...capitalism at its finest! :biggrin:

Zugbugz - Arizona

bluegillbob
01-31-2005, 11:02 PM
Here are my opinions, for what they're worth:

I think bluegillbob could have more succintly summarized his reply as "no, I want my stuff cheap , period".


"It has most to do with the type of angling one plans to do."

"I guess some fisheries don't really need to preserve this relationship, but clearly others do. Boy I would hate to fish in a world where that essential element, the friendly neighborhood flyshop, is missing."


Juro,

I never said my stuff was "cheap." My "stuff" may not have the name "Sage, Patagonia, or Winston," but my "stuff" works for me. I never said I dislike the "high end" stuff. The expensive stuff is nice, but is the price worth it? Yes and no. If a $100 outfit does the same thing as a $1000 outfit, then what is the difference? About $900, if you ask me.

I'll answer your second quote. I live in NC. It's been 25 yrs since I've lived and fished in NY state. I've never caught a northern pike, smallmouth bass, or yellow perch on a flyrod, but I have caught plenty on spincast and spinning gear. I know the type of lures and baits that those fish prefer. I can take my preferred poppers, streamers, and flies, and catch those fish on a flyrod. I won't ask for any advice. If for example I were to fish saltwater, I'd ask for advice...I have no prior experience with saltwater.

You would hate to fish in a world without flyshops. Welcome to my world, brother. I am entering my fifth season. I've taught myself to cast a flyrod. I've learned to decide which poppers/streamers/flies to fish with. I've learned thru trial and error, using these forums, reading, and asking lots of questions.

Flyshops. If I were to purchase anything from a flyshop, it would be online. The "real " flyshops are several hours away. The closest places I have test cast any flyrods were in Raleigh; The Great Outdoor Provision Company and an Orvis store. Neither store qualifies as a "real" flyshop. I refuse to buy a flyrod without casting it first.

If you wanted advice from the locals, you visited those "mom and pop" convienant stores located near the water. Yes they are around here and located far from the city. I have seen bass poppers for sale at those places. Granted, those people know very little about flyfishing (because it isn't popular here) but they will talk about the local water.

I learned to cast a flyrod on my lawn. I stayed away from the water because I didn't want to embarrass myself. Ponds are off limits to practice...too many nice bass to waste your practice casts on!

Flyshops sound nice, and I bet there are some nice folks that work there. I make do without them, because there are none here. I live in a world filled with 80 mph bassboats, baitcast rigs, and bass tournaments. When the game warden checks my license, he pulls his boat besides me, because I'm the only one wading at the lake.

There is a Specialty outdoors store about 30 miles from here. They have flyrods, reels, flies, and line. I know more about flyfishing then the sales people do. I know this because I read, ask questions, and study flyfishing. I have spoken to the staff. All they do is sell the gear. I do not get advice here, because I have asked for advice, and had shrugged shoulders given to me for an answer.

bluegillbob
01-31-2005, 11:50 PM
"I still believe the majority is about the oil. Our country depends on it . Just to exist, our country needs 40,000 barrels/hour...and I'm not talking production. Sure, we have our reserves, but it's "self preservation."

bluegill, we all have our rights to opinion, and I think that you and I disagree on almost everything (except that maybe it might be fun to catch fish on a fly rod). But please tell me that you are not advocating killing hundreds of thousands of people and spending hundreds of billions of dollars and crippling over 10,000 Americans, and getting more than a thousand loyal soldiers killed in order to STEAL ANOTHER SOVERGN NATIONS OIL.
Juro, I know that this is off topic, but as long as people play nice, I assume that this discussion is ok. We are talking about some pretty fundimental values here, and I can't help but wonder if this "winner take all" mentality is what is both driving the flyshops and this country under.


Eddie,

We do not "steal another sovergn nations oil." We buy foreign oil. Saddam invaded Kuwait back in '91 to take over another country by greed.

War. People will die. As a consequence of war, innocent people die. We minimize collateral damage with our planning and "smart bombs."

Prior to our invasions, we gave plenty of warning that we were initiating military action. Innocent people had opoportunities to leave the areas to be attacked.

OK, suppose we allowed Saddam to dominate other nations. He controls the oil reserves in the Persian Gulf, and regulates the prices. Are you going to complain when gas costs $10/gal? Oil is used in the manufacturing sector as well. Prices would've climbed as well.

As for our troops dying/wounded. No, I don't like it. Our Armed Forces are totally voluntary. Nobody is drafted, and nobody is forced to join up. I served in the USAF, and I was aware that I could've been killed while on duty.

I'm glad that we took the fight to them. Would I want the terrorist over here? No. I'm glad Bush didn't seek permission from the UN (which is nothing than a "paper tiger") before we went to Irag. We even gave Saddam plenty of opportunities to avert war, and settle it peaceably.

If the terrorist came over here, I'm ready to defend my country.

You discussed this "winner take all" mentality is what is both driving the flyshops and the country under." Our country may have our share of problems, but I'd rather live here than any other country on our planet.

I don't know for certain, but those "Big Box" stores (BPS, Cabela's, etc) may be helping more people with flyfishing. I'm grateful that other businesses are promoting flyfishing. If every flyshop on our planet dissappered, flyfishing would still survive, and thrive as well. I am grateful that I have mail order catalogs, as well as access to the websites they provide. I am a living testament. I have never been in a "real" flyshop; the closest I have has been to one online. I flyfish, I have fun, and I catch fish. I share my love of flyfishing with others. All I need to make my flyrodding transformation complete is to purchase a inflatable pontoon boat...I would draw attention in my fishing areas!

The important topic we are missing is enjoying, as well as pursuing flyfishing. We are doing nothing but causing division in our flyrodding ranks. "Big Box vs Flyshop." $20 Wal-Mart flyrod combo vs $1000 combo. "E-Bay vs Flyshop." We need to be encouraging each other, instead of adopting a "holier than thou" attitude. I am grateful to live in a country where I am free to choose. :)

Eddie
02-01-2005, 12:00 AM
Bluegill, if there was ever a guy that deserved to have a good flyshop close by, it would be you. It sounds like you are in some remote outpost (where flyfishing is unheard of). I think you would like it if there was a real flyshop in your neck of the woods. Oh well, thank goodness for BassPro shop and the FlyFishing Forum.

juro
02-01-2005, 12:05 AM
Bob,

I see your point. You buy the gear you need and want by the means available to you, as we all would.

I was thrown off by all the other stuff being discussed but I now see that the issue is there are not enough flyshops where you live!

http://www.flyfishingforum.com/flytalk4/images/icons/icon4.gif Thanks everyone for grinding your political axes elsewhere, unless the political, cultural, ethical or economical topics have something directly to do with environmental issues, fisheries regulations, or preservation of wild things in wild places we won't use our bandwidth here for such issues regardless of how important they might be to someone.

bluegillbob
02-01-2005, 09:46 PM
Hi Eddie and Juro,

No hard feelings here. I can't help but be humored by the "some remote outpost" where I live. I live about 5 miles from Goldsboro, NC. I live right under the flight pattern of Seymour Johnson AFB. The population of Goldsboro is about 70,000 or so. When I lived in Alaska, the nearest town was Fairbanks!

A flyshop in this county would be nice, but it'll never happen...flyfishing is not popular here, and probably never will. Flyrods are like Humvees here...you will see one on occasion, but they are usually passing thru the area. :frown:

I'm probably the only "die hard flyrodder" in my county...I'm probably the only person that flyfishes in this county! I need to catch a nice bass and send the pic to the newspaper so my face, my fish, and my flyrod will be seen throughout eastern NC! :)

Talk to you guys soon!

Eddie
02-02-2005, 08:46 AM
The "romote outpost" was kind of a joke. A metaphore (or something like that). I think that once people get bored with winching in bass after bass on ugly plastic lures, flyfishing might start to look like fun. By the way, do you know why flyfishing is banned in the BASS tourneys?

bluegillbob
02-03-2005, 11:39 AM
Hi Eddie,

I think the reason flyfishing is banned from B.A.S.S. tournaments has to do with the rod lenght.

There are some baitcasting rods measuring 7' out there.

nmbrowncom
02-05-2005, 08:06 AM
rediculously high pricing from the manufacturers, lifetime guarantees, cheap/good quality imports, manufacturers minimum quantity purchase requirements for shops, and constant new hyped products (often of dubious improvement) by the manufacturers which relegate the shop's current inventory obsolete, have done far more to hurt the fly shop industry than ebay or the biggies in my view. shop owners are stuck with last year's models which they must drastically disount, and they still have to purchase an inventory of the new ones which are more often hype than real improvement. and then they have to compete with good quality imports at one third the price and 90% as good.and, i'll never understand why a name brand single action fly reel costs $500 or more while a far more highly complex and technically far more advanced spin reel is a third the price or why 25 yards of tippet costs $4 and a hundred yards of leader material/line costs the same or less. lifetime warranties eliminates purchase of replacement parts and a trip to the fly shop where a customer may purchase something else. all these factors contribute to high pricing and thus a huge market for reasonable cost alternatives.the result is that we are witnessing not only the demise of the local fly shop but the demise of the premium fly rod and reel manufacturers as well.

JimW
02-05-2005, 09:28 AM
I have bought a few items on E-bay, I guess it's good for bargain hunting but I find it too disorganized for efficient shopping. I still like the shops best but after mulling over the Fishing topics in this thread I hit some online stores. Well I've got to say they've really come along as far as the depth of merchandise and the displays. It's good to be able to check out all the new gear that the fly shop can't afford to stock, since the big players seem to have access to just about all product lines now. I guess the source of my disdain for Cabelas is that reel I got from the bargain bin that just didn't hold up. I bought cheap and got what I paid for. Maybe it's time to give them another chance. I will still support the local flyshops but for clothing and gear the shops don't carry, best price wins. I will not buy a rod online since the shops afford me the opportunity to cast before I buy.

I really don't have an opinion on the question 'Does E-bay hurt the flyshops' I guess it serves a purpose and I really wonder how much it takes away from flyshops or large online stores. I guess E-bay may be a benefit to the flyshops if the use it to capture the low price market or extend their effective territory beyond a 50 mile radius. I suppose you could liken it to 'do yard sales hurt wal-mart?'

Eddie
02-05-2005, 12:14 PM
"i'll never understand why a name brand single action fly reel costs $500 or more while a far more highly complex and technically far more advanced spin reel is a third the price"
It might be hard to understand, but I think tht it has to do with volume. Fly fising is a very small market. I doubt that the whole flyfishing industry grosses much more than 500 million dollars. In many other industries, there are companies that gross that by themselves. I suspect that spinning reels sales alone surpass that. So the market is small in a bussines sense. Not much money to be made. I doubt that there are more than a few people getting "rich" in the flyfishing industry. Most are getting by and many are slowly going broke. A typical flyshop owner might pay himself sixty grand a year and when he retires, sells his bussines for the cost of the inventory and fixtures. Hardly a big payoff for someone that works his tail off to try and build a bussiness and pass on his love for fly fishing. So people work hard to make a modest income. How can anyone begrudge them?
Spinning reels may have more parts, but so does a bean bag. When you compare the quality of the most expensive spinning reels to the most expensive fly reels, there is no comparison. The $500+ Shimano Stella is plastic, painted and cast. There is not a single part on that reel that is finished as nicely as the parts on an Abel or Tibor. The one way bearing (pehaps the single most expensive componant on the Steela) is the same that one could find on many hundred dollar fly reels. The VanStaal spinning reel is finished every bit as nice as the nicest flyreel, but their engineering was copied and flawed. And it probably doesn't have many more "parts" than a nice fly reel. So, I think that when comparing apples to apples, Small volume fly reel compare very well to the larger volume spinning reels.
Because of the higher margins and the possibility of making a modest income, we the consumers are the winners. I suspect that we can choose from over fifty different brands of fly reels. How many companies making spinning reels can you think of? Maybe eleven? It will be a sad day when only eleven companies (six of which will be the big hard tackle mfgs.) make fly reels.
The good news is that anyone who wants to flyfish can make a few bucks, ofr ask his/her parents for the gear and go out and do it. You can get an outfit from a fly shop for around a hundred dollars. Flyfishing is available to ANYONE who has the desire and time to take it up. If they have a local flyshop, all the better. If they don't...that's too bad.

Eddie
02-05-2005, 12:26 PM
Jim, I think that at the heart of the qestion is, "Does Discounting hut the local flyshops". The answer is yes. MSRP was instituted to creat an atmosphere where the smaller shops could compete with the bigger shops. That is why there are so many small shops serving small and large comunities all over the country.
I don't have a problem with people trying to get a good deal, get the best stuff that they can afford etc. We all do. I'm mostly just reacting to this impression (not from you or anyone on the Forum) that somehow people are getting ripped off just because thay don't want to pay top dollar for the most expensive stuff. That's life. Not everyone drives a BMW or a Corvette. No one complains that they have a line in the sand, and they refuse to buy a Ferrari because it has less parts than a Suburban.

nmbrowncom
02-05-2005, 01:05 PM
eddie, while i somewhat agree with your analysis regarding economy of scale, i am hard pressed to agree that a fly reel even begins to approach the engineering and technical sophistication of a spin reel,or a bait caster for that matter. but your main point is a solid one i think. shimano for example is a multi national mega billion dollar conglomorate. try to call for help like i did to old florida reels a couple of months ago when i was in florida. the owners answered the phone and invited me to their factory where they spent 2 hours shooting the breeze with me and then promptly set me up with one of their guides on their pro staff for a day on the water.i had never met nor spoken to them before. the point is that fly fishing is intimate, a fraternity of sorts.. and it is at least in part because of the and fishing fanatics who are in the business.they are fishing first and business second. while that comraderrie and "home town" feel is one of the aspects that we find so appealing and thus draws us to the sport, paradoxically it is that lack of business savvy that hampers the small fly shop owner or rod or reel manufacturer to adequately compete thus giving rise to those who are all about business: walmart, ebay, bps, etc. sad thing is, we are likely witnessing whay happened 30 years agor in the soft drink industry. the real good and unique small local bottlers who were seriously into the best product, got wiped out in the face of coke and pepsi. clothing, shoes, camerqas all went the same way and now they are only a nostalgic memory.

Eddie
02-05-2005, 01:44 PM
your story about going to the Old Florida International Head Quarters ;) sums up Juro's point in a nut shell. The kind of attention you got with those folks is the opposite of the experience associated with "discounting". The time they spent with you is part of the value. It has little to do with complexity or technical sophistication.
I have a friend from Brazil, and she told me that Ford MoCo just finished a new plant in her home town. She say that they can assemble a car in 45 minutes. I wonder how long it takes to make an Old Florida reel? Probably about the same amount of time.
I don't think that lack of bussines savy is at the heart of the problem, but I will say that if the owners had any, they would invest in any other venture. There is simply not that much money to be made in fly fishing. Period.
I think you can see the true value that your OF reel represents. I think that most of the flyfishing industry is no different.

nmbrowncom
02-05-2005, 04:34 PM
amen-but without real changes in the way manufacturers and fly shops do business their days are numbered, and we will all be worse for it..

flysully
02-05-2005, 08:38 PM
I think all the above posts have hit it right on the line. We all would like to deal exclusively with our local fly/fishing shops. If they aren't allowed to discount rods and reels and lines like we can find online, they are going to lose out, despite what we customers feel about loyalty which goes just "so far". It's unfortunate that our shops many times only get walk ins who come to "feel out a rod or reel" and they go buy it online. The manufacturers have to get a clue about this and let the shops offer a discounted price. This goes on with home appliances, cars, clothing, etc. It needs to happen with the fishing industry as well. What ever happened to the competitive pricing arena as far as the fishing industry goes? How are they allowed to continue as they are doing? If they make no change, and we allow them to make no change, then we have no alternative but to go discount online. A discounted rod or reel plus no tax and sometimes free shipping? I mean you'd have to be in a cloud not to realize the savings, correct? The gear has the same mfr. warrantee whether purchased online or in a shop so I feel it's up to the flyshops to make the mfrs. understand that unless they're given more leeway in selling their gear, they just can't meet their shop quota. Maybe the shops should tell the mfrs. that they just don't want to carry their line anymore since they're too rigid about their pricing. Maybe that would open their eyes! Anyone else have any comments, pro or con, about this?

Eddie
02-06-2005, 12:30 AM
Sully, I'm not sure you understand what's going on when you say: "The manufacturers have to get a clue about this and let the shops offer a discounted price."
The manufactrers enforce (barely) msrp to HELP the small fly shops. Discounting requires volume to make up for the lower profit. That volume potential does not exist in flyfishing. If they allowed discounting, only a few shops in big cities and shops with big advertising budgets and internet/catalog sales would survive. Add to that some of the big box sports shops and that would be about it. The manufacturers recognize that the small shops do more to "grow the sport" and promote their products than other options. Believe me, alot of thought has gone into this. Remember the manufacturer makes the same amount of money regardless of how much the rod sells for.
"This goes on with home appliances, cars, clothing, etc. It needs to happen with the fishing industry as well."
First off, appliances, cars, clothing, ect. are purchased by every one in the world. The volume is huge. It's not like that with flyfishing. How often do you meet a new person, and they are flyfishermen too (what a nice surprise :) ). How often do you meet someone new, and they have a car, or clothes. I think you can see my point. There is a limit to how big the market can get. Like I said, you could give fly gear away, and I doubt that many more people would take up fly fishing. The cost of gear is not the limmiting factor in the equasion. As far as it "needing to happen in fishing as well", it already has with convetional tackle. It would be a sad day when you go to a tackle shop to buy a flyrod, and their entire stock is in a dusty barrel. When discounting finally takes over the industry, the "flyfishing department" that will replace most local flyshops, will look like the flyfishing section at Walmart. Why do you think that WallyWorld doesn't give a square inch more floor space to flyfishing gear. It isn't worth it to them or anyone into disounting and making money.
"The gear has the same mfr. warrantee whether purchased online or in a shop".
That is not exactly a true statement. Officially, the rod has to be sold by an authorized vendor. A discounter on ebay (or Sierra Trading Post for that matter) technically invalidates the warrenty. Most manufacturers are cool about it. Maybe not forever. I know that Sage records the serial #'s and keeps track of which shop gets what. It would not be hard for them to reject invalid warrenty claims.
"unless they're given more leeway in selling their gear, they just can't meet their shop quota".
Shops meet their "quotas" or minimums by discounting, but you need to understand, when a shop discounts or gives away a fly line or what ever, they are making less money in a game where there's not much to begin with. Most shops that discount are probably barely making it (unless they have huge volume...that shop does not exist).
Sully, I'm not picking on you, just trying to help out.
I think that fly fishing is more affordable than it has ever been. I think that flyfishermen have more and better choices than they ever had befor. I think that information is easier to come by, via books, magazines, the internet and shops. I think that there are more fly shops right now than ever. These are good time as far as the periferals are concerned. Too bad the fishing resources are not as good as they once were. Can't have it all I guese.

nmbrowncom
02-06-2005, 08:40 AM
first of all eddie, required price fixing (msrp) is illegal. it's supposed to be "manufacturers SUGGESTED retail price".why is it that the koreans can produce a relatively comparable rod and sell it wholesale for less than $25? costs in korea are less but not nearly that much. fact is, the big name companies do not want to or don't know how to compete with low pricing. they only know how to compete with each other. so, they pass on their problem to the fly shop owner who is stuck with msrp while the consumers go to ebay , cabelas, and bps. price increases required by idiotic policies such as lifetime warranties (no matter how it is broken) further reduces trips to the fly shop. additionally, fly fishing had long been viewed as a sport that caters to the elite, smug and rich. while the sport has completely changed in that regard, many of the manufacturers and suppliers in the industry have built their businesses on the notion that their product is for the privelidged or is otherwise prestigeous and thus justify the high cost which is needed because they have operated their business with that outdated belief system. cheaper imports have burst that bubble. the manufacturers are trying to hold on and either do not know how or are so locked in that they can't change. so they fix prices and change their product line in the hope that their elite name will keep the consumers paying their price. the fly shop owners have to discount the older product line and make way for the new.unabe to challange the manufacturers requirements, they are getting creamed by the likes of TFO and a host of other good quality low priced imports that are massed marketed, or sold by retailers on line. it is kind of like what happened to the airline industry.in the face of deregulation which brought cheap air fair, the old guard hung on to their elite status and eventually perished.the few that survived are on life support and have give up on prestige in the face of the discount start ups.

Eddie
02-06-2005, 10:38 AM
I think you might be right about price fixing being illegal. Why is it that NO ONE has challenged this? Well, firstly it is not worth anyone time's. Asside from some disgruntled angler, who cares. Maybe Elliot Spitzer can look into it after he is finished cleaning up corruption in the finance and insurance industry. This adherence has been instituted by the industry because they think it is good for the sport and the industry.
Since you mentioned it, Cabellas and Bass Pro Shop are NOT discounters. They sell the same gear at the same prices as every one. Really, compare the prices.
"additionally, fly fishing had long been viewed as a sport that caters to the elite, smug and rich. while the sport has completely changed in that regard, many of the manufacturers and suppliers in the industry have built their businesses on the notion that their product is for the privelidged or is otherwise prestigeous and thus justify the high cost which is needed because they have operated their business with that outdated belief system."
WOW. I think we have gotten to the bottom of some people's fundimental issue. Some seem to be really hung up on class issues that just don't exist. This is America, and if a child wants to go fishing, all he or she needs is and adult that has a little knowlege, time and a lot of patience. If and adult wants to go fly fishing, all he needs to do is scrape together a couple of days pay and buy a fly fishing rig. Fly fishing gear is MORE afforable than it ever has been. Companies like Eagle Claw, Fenwick, Lamiglass and Berkley have long offered affordable equipment. Now some folks are bringing in rods from offshore (with ripped off tapers, manufacturing techniques developed by American comanies, second rate components and cheap labor) that perform pretty good. What a great deal. You can get that gear from flyshops all over the country. It's not as good as top quality gear, but pretty good and good for the money. So what is the problem? Is it that some people want the BEST gear, but don't want to pay the premium? Have they bought into the hype, and think that they NEED the premium gear? I'm afraid that in life, the best is always expensive. Always has been, and always will be. Fortunately there is gear for every budget, and it is the angler, not the expensive/cheap gear that catches the fish.

nmbrowncom
02-06-2005, 11:10 AM
and the automobile will never replace the horse and buggy. eddie no offense but your arguments while expressed well are are not based in the reality of the situation. cabellas, bps and others have their own products which are very competitive in quality with the best of the brand names and in most cases better than the brand name second and lower premiums. and they sell for 1/4 the price. premium brands are sold on ebay at discount. isn't it odd that the premium fly rods for example cost 3 to 4 times what an import costs and is likely only 10% better? and the import is better than the premium rod manufacturer's next line of rods which are twice the price. the problem is not the price of quality. there is more quality today than ever before. the problem is quality at a reasonble price. cabela's,bps,ebay and the TFO's of the marketplace provide that. the old line taditionals do not. and the fly shop is the loser. whether you like it or not , flyfishing is still to some degree associated with elitism or snobism by a vast amount of those who fish bait or lures. they figured out a long time ago that there is no reason why a premium rod or reel ought to cost the average person a weeks pay. the notion that the consumer should pay the price to the fly shop for the manufacturers folly is quite unrealistic. i can't think of any time that has ever happened. and it won't in this instance either. if the manufacturers do not change, the fly shop will go the way of the travel agency.

Eddie
02-06-2005, 01:42 PM
no offense taken. Many of your observations are correct, but your understanding of the situation is clearly not based on experience with the industry. No one is disputing that things are changing. No one is disputing that better gear is getting cheaper (this is a trend that has been going on for as long as I have been fishing it is nothing new. TFO did not invent this.). What we are talking about is the value of the local specialty fly shop (I will include BPS as they are NOT discounters, and have pretty good fly departments). TFO sees the value of the flyshop, which is why they have worked so hard to get into them. Is it worth it to pay extra to benefit from what they have to offer? If you think that they can survive on 20-30% margins, you do not understand retail and what it takes to stay in bussines. So what we talking about is: Does the local flyshop provide enough value to justify the 10-18% more that you have to pay to keep them in bussines? Many consumers don't think so, which is a valid opinion, but you can't have your cake and eat it too. Sorry.
" isn't it odd that the premium fly rods for example cost 3 to 4 times what an import costs and is likely only 10% better? "
How can you quantify that? Have you cast a hundred or so rods and measured their performance? At the top of any product line whether it is cars or cameras or clothes or stereos or guns or bikes or boats or what ever, you pay a lot more for smaller and smaller gains. I will say that if you can't tell the difference between the the expensive stuff and the cheaper stuff, I can understand why you wouldn't want to pay more. The good news is you don't have to. If you think that the expensive stuff should be cheaper, I wish for a lot of things too. Why can't they sell a BMW M5 for the same price as Dodge 500. Both can seat five and get up to highway speeds.

juro
02-06-2005, 02:04 PM
This discussion proves that we are in the midst of an evolutionary, if not revolutionary phase in fly fishing gear economics.

There is a lot to think about for sure, but at the risk of over-simplification I ask because I would hate to live in a world without flyshops, and the economics of the business is changing rapidly because of that mystical connectivity that lies beyond our keyboards and displays.

I hope we as a united consumer base can reach some kind of consensus that preserves the rich cultural aspects of the centuries of flyfishing heritage we all enjoy today. Much of the cultural beauty of fly angling is forever manifest in the beams and floorboards of lodges, counters of fly shops, and in the faded teak rails of scuffed boat decks steered by weathered faces of savvy men of the sea. These treasures lay testament to our heritage like scratches on the bottoms of driftboats on bright northwest rivers, or the coral grit that does not come out of the flats boots from year to year.

The internet giveth, but I just hope it does not taketh away.

.02

Juro

nmbrowncom
02-07-2005, 06:07 AM
ditto and AMEN juro. as eddie so ably points out, it's not simple stuff. as we all are saying, we do not want it to vanish.

Spock
02-07-2005, 09:27 AM
tfo rods are getting alot of att. lately, because of the price. let me tell you why some many shops are going with them, it is because if you dont sell there product they will buy it back or trade it in for something that sells, that way there product doesnt go on e-bay to get discounted. they have done this to protect themselves form e-bay. winston came out with the ibis rod and now it is made in china and people are saying they wont buy it because it isnt made in the usa. we cannot afford to send all of our money out of this country, yes us goods cost more but it is keeping a roof over someones head,feeding there children and helping the economy. it time we stop sending our jobs and money away and start thinking what made this country so great private business support them

JDJones
02-07-2005, 03:52 PM
I haven't even finished reading the first page of this two page thread. And already I'm fed up with it! This is supposed to be a fly fishing forum. Not a politcal forum!

Get off your soap boxes guys. We all have places we prefer not to do business with due to their polices. Whether politcal or whatever, whether true or perceived. But this is not the place to vent about it.

This thread was supposed to be about whether or not E-Bay hurt the local fly shops. PERIOD! And I will reserve my comments on that subject until such time I do not have to wade through all this other BULLS*^T

wayne
02-07-2005, 06:29 PM
Well, I guess for my first post here I will jump in over my head. I bust my rear section at work and want to enjoy some quality time with my kids. I choose to get a break where I can. If by getting a break on the price of gear means that I can spend a little more time on the water then so be it. There are obviously times that I go to the fly shop but when purchasing a rod or reel, fifty bucks (or more) in my pocket means that I do what I have to do. I must also say that I have seen some of those Wal-Mart specials catching more fish than the guy with the designer outfit. Just one working mans opinion.

Eddie
02-07-2005, 09:33 PM
thanks for your possitive contribution towards the thread :roll:
Wayne, I think that you have highlighted how fortunate fly anglers in the US are. There is fishable gear for every budget. A guys gotta do what a guys gotta do. I don't think that anyone has a problem with that. There's no law that says anyone has to buy anything from a flyshop.
Maybe it would be constructive if people posted what flyshops do that is special. How do they contribute to your fishing experience. On the negative side, how do they detract from it?
On the + side: I have learned quite a bit from the local shops all over the country. I've gotten advice on where to fish, what flies to use, where to get good food, how to spend less money, casting pointers, borrowed videos, tying tips (took a class), tried out tons of gear (on stream demos and test casting in lots), borrowed gear while having mine fixed, gotten repairs (for free and for $), made some friends, gotten some good deals, and I have gotten a pay check. I could go on and on.
On the - side: I have gotten some attitude from some jerks and I have been fired
:eek:

Adrian
02-08-2005, 10:31 AM
Wow - I need to spend more time looking at the Gear Section threads :lildevl:

I love fly shops. When I go into one to buy something, I always (and I mean always) end up spending a lot more than I intended. Fishing in general, flyfishing in particular are extremely "tactile" sports. I love to be able to pick up a rod or real or take all the bucktails out of their plastic wrappers and pick out the ones that are going to work best for me at the flytying vice. I guess that makes me the perfect market segment for local fly shop's commercial viability. The last thing I bought on eBay was a bunch of rechargable batteries. My wife picked up a couple of excellent original oil paintings.

I don't know all the demographics of the flyfishing industry but the laws of economics and commerce still apply. Its comes down to delivering profitable value. There are economies of scale to be overcome - a handful of eager buyers (like me) probably won't keep the lights on at the local fly store.

When I think of the fly shops that look successful, they all sell merchandise other than flyfishing gear. They have found a formula that brings buyers other than die-hard flyfishermen through the doors. Most shops offer some sort of clothing line but presentation is everything; I've seen things laid out like an up market store where the ladies (and controllers of the household budget) can enjoy shopping. I've also seen nice gear strung up haphazard on a clothes line gathering dust that will probably end up on the bargain rail at the end of the season. Looking at what the major players have done, Cabellas has taken their formula to the extreme. Orvis has a lot more stores. Both have big mail-order outlets and both do non-fishing related products. Both enjoy economies of scale. Orvis seems to have a big store in all major cities (I've shopped in New York, Boston, San Francisco, London...). In each case the formula is the same, presumably because it works. I walk past aisles of high-end clothing, nice coffee table stuff, old-world country sports paraphernalia and the ubiquitous gundog beds before I get to the fly fishing gear. But if I had my wife with me she'd be happy ;) A lot of non-flyfishing folk spend a lot of money in those stores..

eBay and the major retailers have "changed the game". It happens in every industry. Some individual retail stores have responded with a formula that enables them to stay in touch with the flyfishing community through a profitable enterprise. They will always get my support.

Roop
02-08-2005, 10:49 AM
This is a silly argument.

When was the last time anyone walked in to a dealership to buy a car, asked how much & wrote them a check?

Anyone ever buy anything on sale, at any kind of store? Shame on you :tsk_tsk:

I support my local shops where & when I can but, the increase in my annual gear purchases vs. the increase in the size of my family (decrease in available funds)dictates that major items have to bought at the best price possible.

Isn't that free enterprise?

Dble Haul
02-08-2005, 12:49 PM
I can't believe I've read all four pages of this..... :Eyecrazy:

Flyshops vs. ebay.....do what you have to do, what's comfortable for you, and what will not compromise your principles.

I too loathe the political content when it appears in threads on Flytalk. I also don't understand the suggestion of a "holier than thou" attitude. Where in this thread has that been shown?

Guess it's time for warmer weather and fishing. :roll:

OC
02-08-2005, 02:55 PM
Boy I just read 4 pages too! It's been fun and always good for Flytalk in my opinion.

Does 4 or 5 times the cost justify the 10% improvement in a fly rod? Depends what religion you are. To some religions that really is 10% for other religions it is 1000%.
Too cast a 6 wt Fenwick $120 rod using 7X tippett or a 6wt Winston using 7X tippet on the Henery's Fork for those in the religious know there is truely a 1000% difference. If you have not had to cast 7x into the wind to a fish that you get one cast to then you couldn't understand. So for us snobs who have spent 40 plus years fly fishing the $800 fly rod is a cheap buy, the 120 rod is no longer a buying item. If the chance comes up buy that rod on e-bay or at your local fly shop.
I'm just glad my taste buds only understand 14 dollar bottles of wine instead of 120 dollar bottles. But if I win Mega bucks I would start understanding the 120 dollar bottle because it is going to evenually with practise taste a whole lot better than the 14 dollar bottle. :wink:

nmbrowncom
02-08-2005, 06:00 PM
well, if that one in a thousand casts is what your after then at $8000 a rod and a 1000 years of experience is not enough. as old PT said, there's one born every minute. interested in the best bridge? i know some folks who'd love to sell it to you.

MJC
02-08-2005, 06:39 PM
When you are ready to buy that two hander I have one here that I'm saving just for you. The price for the unwashed is $150.00 but because I want you to have a truly religious experience, right before you get here I will change the price to $1000.00.
However you will not be able to have a complete shopping trip at the Red Shed as there are no dog beds, eagle figerines with flyrods in their talons or fur trimmed bikini underpants, emblazoned with the logo of the Red Shed. :whoa: :eek:

OC
02-08-2005, 07:12 PM
But MJC this other guy got one for $ 8,000. And besides is that $150 rod worth a $1000 dollars. You know there is one born every minute. I guess I must be one of them EH!

Looking forward to seeing you and the family this summer.

nmbrowncom
02-08-2005, 07:39 PM
BINGO- AMEN-HALLELUJAH

teflon_jones
02-08-2005, 09:24 PM
I honestly think that a lot of fly fisherman are fishing snobs. <putting on Army helmet and flak jacket>. How does this relate to this thread? Well, because they somehow feel they need to spend a lot on their gear. If they don't, somehow they're not as good as somebody else. So by buying it on eBay, they're not truly fly fishermen because they cared about how much they spend on something. Or, that they'll be looked down on by other fly fishing snobs. Fly fishing is about more than catching fish, or casting, or being outside, etc to a lot of people. For instance, whenever I see a thread about lightweight reel (3 or 4 wt) recommendations, invariably a lot of the replies recommend reels that are a lot of $$$. What really gets me is how many of the original posters say they have, oh let's say $100 to spend, and then a bunch of people recommend a reel that's more. :confused: Not only that, but there's not a person out there that can tell me that an expensive reel in that size is going to help you catch any more fish than a cheapo reel. When it comes to big reels for the salt, of course they help. But a 3 or 4 wt?

My point is that while eBay will certainly hurt fly shops, in the end there are going to be a lot of these snobs that will only buy at a fly shop.

I'm not calling anybody a snob, or trying to be a jerk, I'm just trying to use a word that clearly conveys my point as simply as possible! :)

Dble Haul
02-08-2005, 09:47 PM
You're confusing snobbery with insecurity.

If someone buys something that's expensive because he or she is worried what other people think, that is a complete lack of security in oneself. Who really cares how much money is spent?

Your example has little if anything to do with snobbery. Perhaps your conviction that someone who spends more money is a snob makes you one as well (tongue in cheek of course, but you get my point).

Eddie
02-08-2005, 10:37 PM
"I honestly think that a lot of fly fisherman are fishing snobs. <putting on Army helmet and flak jacket>. How does this relate to this thread? Well, because they somehow feel they need to spend a lot on their gear. If they don't, somehow they're not as good as somebody else. So by buying it on eBay, they're not truly fly fishermen because they cared about how much they spend on something. Or, that they'll be looked down on by other fly fishing snobs. Fly fishing is about more than catching fish, or casting, or being outside, etc to a lot of people."

Teflon, I love it when people pretend to know what others are thinking. :rolleyes:
Here's a theory of equal validity: People who assume that others are snobs, based only on material possesions, are insecure, and afraid that others are looking down on them. :wink: I don't know any "snobs" that flyfish, but I get along pretty well with most folks.
Everyone looks for deals. Why should someone feel guilty about that? I don't think that anyone is pointing the finger at anyone. I think that some on this thread are only pointing out that discounting might cost more than money.
Two strangers chat at a pull out on a trout stream. One guy has a seven hudred dollar rod and a Lexus, the other has an sixtynine dollar rod and a rusted out Escort. It would seem that on the surface that the two might not have anything in common. Only someone that can't see beneath the surface would miss the obviouse: they both love to flyfish. I recomend anti-polarized social glasses. :smokin:

bluegillbob
02-08-2005, 11:21 PM
Initially, flyfishing turned me off. When I started looking at flyfishing magazines, I was bombarded with $600 rods, $400 reels, and $65 flyline. I saw nothing but expensive waders, flyrods, reels, and other gear that was expensive. Those magazines projected the image of wealthy people pursuing fish with their chosen gear.

Yes, I was under the impression that flyfishing was reserved to people that could afford such equipment. I have only seen one Cabela's advertisement in a flyfishing magazine. Bass Pro Shops? No advertisements.

Thomas and Thomas, as well as the other "high end" manufacturers will always be around, just like Jaguar and Lincoln; there will always be the "wealthy" class of consumers, and they will continue to purchase those products.

Another reason that the "high end" manufacturers will continue to stay in business is simple : customer loyalty. Some consumers will deliberately save $600 for a Sage. Harley Davidson has a loyal customer base...Harley doesn't have to discount their motorcycles because they know that the customer will pay those exceedinly high prices that Harley Davidson commands.

My 2 current flyrod outfits are from BPS's "White River Fly Shop." Sure, they may be made overseas, but they are quality outfits. One of the reels is cast aluminum, while the other is machined aluminum.

I have cast those $600 rods and $300 reels as well. My stuff casts just as well in many cases; I say that because I factor skill in the equation. The only expensive rod that impressed me was the Sage XP; it was nice, but is it worth $600? Yes and no. Winston rods don't impress me; I have even cast the Boron IIx, and my BPS 270 rod outperforms that rod.

It bothers me when people defend an expensive rod against a lesser priced rod without casting the lesser priced rod in question. Before someone criticizes the lower priced product, I wish they would take the opportunity to cast it, then make a judgement.

As for E-Bay hurting the flyshops? People will spend their money where they will get a better deal. I have never been to a flyshop; there are no flyshops near me.

If I decided to purchase a "high end" flyrod or flyreel, I will not pay full retail. In my heart of hearts, I think they are overpriced. The majority of the price of those products is derived from advertising, and reputation. Take a $600 flyrod for example...for the materials, the cost is probably $40 or $50. Some people think they are afforded the "privilege" of owning such a rod, should they purchase such an item. This way of thinking is no different when it comes to luxury boats, houses, and automobiles.

That reminds me...some people will drop $300 or more on a reel to catch 12" mountain trout. A $40 reel will do the same thing.

chromer
02-08-2005, 11:33 PM
Some folks fish for bargains. Some fish because of their passion for their sport.

I am proud to call myself a serious angler. The price of good flyfishing gear doesn't bother me, since I see reels that are still working 100 yrs old. Life's too short to fish with cheap gear. In fact, it makes me feel good to earn it.

The cheap stuff made today won't last 5 yrs, maybe 10. I'll take the very best that I can afford, and if I can't afford the best I will work my way up until I own it.

And don't call me a snob, I for one care very much about my friends, teachers and suppliers of goods and want more shops wherever I go to fish. I need the community, I love the culture. Whos the snob here?

If you don't care about the shops, take up garage sales instead. More room on my river :lildevl:

OC
02-08-2005, 11:43 PM
I don't know maybe NM and teflon are right. But the guy that has more money than he knows what to do with has been fly fishing for 3 month in his entire life who has an 800 dollar rod and can't cast a dam is a fool. What a waste of a beautiful rod that was ment for something else. But where I think Tef and MN are missing the point is I don't think they know a damn about what a beautiful fly rod can do and what it means to it's owner who know how to use it. That owner can feel things that a less experienced person couldn't even think of understanding. Those people are not snobs because they own rods that cost that much. You know out here I bet I fish with or closely know 75 to 100 fly fishermen and even many more in Montana and all most all of them own 5 or 6 or more fly rods worth over 600 dollars and not one of them are any more a snob than the guy with a hundred dollar rod. And most of these guys live pay check to pay check, work lousy jobs so they can fish more.

But the point of this thread is things like e-bay will they kill fly shops and the answer is no. I hope many go under and the real ones make it. Shops like MJC's out in Idaho or Blue Ribbon in West Yellowstone will make it because they give a service that complements not only lesser priced rods and reels but the insurance that an expensive rod will be what it is suposed to be.

You better believe that there are more than you think that fish expensive equipment for the right reason. And those who beleive that those with expensive rods are snobs better do a little traveling around the country to Montana Spring Creeks, to the PNW and fish steelhead, to Scotland for Salmon and so on and so on. You won't find any snobs in my camp and if you come in uninvited and tell any of us we are suckers or snobs for having the best equipment, first thing we will do is have a good laugh at your expense and then we will kick your ass from one end of camp to the other just for something to do. The only snobs I know in fly fishing anymore are the 100 dollar guys that are lousy fly fishermen and who think that anyone with better equipment then them must be snobs. And by the way not everyone with a 100 dollar rod is a lousy fly fisherman or woman but I can see there are some who are clueless.

Dave17
02-09-2005, 12:12 AM
Wow! The subject of this thread needs to be changed to Pandora's Box! :lildevl:

I don't know which point of view is correct (Ebay or locals) because there is so much grey area. I can only speak of personal experience and I think I've earned a quick post after putting in an hour to read all of this :lildevl:

Background: I've been fishing for almost fifteen years and did not have a mentor to get me started.

What I did have was my local guy who coached me every step of the way (he put up with a 12 year old with way to many questions) so I follow one simple rule when I buy gear. Take care of people that show a willingness to take care of me and don't get taken.

Quick example:
I have a big trip coming up and I want to have a top quality outfit (price and quality are correlated in my opinion, had a lot of low quality reels melt off rods after a season or two in the salt, but I digress) so this is what I do.

Leaving brand names and prices out of it I break out my budget this way (roughly):

Rod 40%
Reel 50%
Line, flies, leaders misc 10%

Can't pay retail for all of this so I simply break it up. I get the rod from my guy, he's earned it. The reel from Ebay, to cut away at the total cost of the package, I've earned it. Everything else comes from the local guy at my destination. If he takes care of me I'll take care of him.

That's it for me and as far as I know everyone is happy. Not on a soap box here, everyone needs to do what you have to do but this works for me.

I'll drop Ebay out of the equation if someone has a Tibor Everglade they want to part with......... :lildevl: :lildevl:

Dave

juro
02-09-2005, 12:34 AM
Thanks all for responding.

In conclusion, I think many value the specialty stores we know and love as friendly neighborhood fly shops, and others do not.

It turned out to be more of a personal opinion poll than anything else, but that doesn't matter, it made us think about what's at stake.

Now back to fishing! (Is it April yet?) :)

nmbrowncom
02-09-2005, 06:33 AM
no one said the cheap import is as good as the top of the line. rather what was said was that it is 90% as good at a fraction of the price and as good or better than most of the top name's second tier rods and are less expensive. while i may not have been fly fishing for 40 years, i am working effortlessly at being an arrogant snob. does that count? juro, we're just starting to have some fun, don't be a killjoy.

OC
02-09-2005, 10:31 AM
That's exactly what I have issue with is that a cheap rod is 90 % as good as an expensive rod. It may feel that way to you but to many that is not the case. For many who specialize in the more difficult types of fly fishing such as fishing the Henery's fork or casting a two hander all day with a custom made heavy sink tip for steelhead or Atlantic Salmon many times that expensive rod is made just for that certain type of fishing. Winston makes great rods that fit the delicate casts of the Henery's fork, slow soft action rods that lets a person who knows how to cast it put far more perfect casts to a rising trout that is totally aware that he is being sought after. CND makes a great two handed rod at an affordable price to throw a heavy sinktip but they are not in the what I would call a cheap catagory. It is very hard to spend the day on the Henery's Fork with a cheap rod not designed for that type of fishing and enjoy yourself. You will easily become frustrated and that takes a lot of the fun out of it. The same would apply if you had an expensive fast action rod and tried using 7x tippett with it. 7x tippett and fast or even medium action rods is not such a fun thing, it can be done but why if you can some how afford a rod that is designed to fish small tippetts and size 24 dry flies and yet easily make an accurate dead on 55 foot cast.

I have bought one expensive rod on e-bay and I would never have done it if a friend didn't do the entire pony show for me. When I buy a rod it's a mariage for life and I want to make sure it's going to be in my will to my grand kids. I love the courtship of going to talk with someone like MJC who really knows the rod and what it can do and talk with him for as long as it takes to convince me it is the right rod. For that privalege I will pay the extra 300 dollars instead of waiting around for that type of rod to come up on e-bay and then have to jump through hoops if it comes to you and it's not in perfect shape or it's not what you really want. Like I said before there are many thousands of Fly fishermen around the world who want specialized rods for thier fishing needs and who want the religious ritual of going to thier favorite fly shop to buy that rod. Not all fly shops are created equal and the good ones will be around when e-bay has turned into the next newest fad on the internet.

Also I do not endorse Winston Rods. That company has changed over the years is now owned by a corp. I will give my business to the smaller companies some who advertise here on flytalk. They are companies whos owners understand what you are looking for and who will spend the time with you and the rod he builds for you to make sure you do get exactly what you are looking for. These rods my friend are not 10% better than a Cabelas rod they are 1000 times better in every way. Keep working hard at becoming a snob like the rest of us and you will get to understand where I am coming from. Or just enjoy fishing cheaper rods if they do everything you want them to do.

Eddie
02-09-2005, 10:56 AM
"I don't know which point of view is correct (Ebay or locals) because there is so much grey area. "
There is no CORRECT point of view. It is only a matter of values an knowing what you are paying for.

Again, why 10%? Maybe the premium rods are only 2% better? It's kind of irrelivant, because once you have found a premium rod that fits you style, you'll never go back. Maybe that rod just isn't for you. I am willing to bet anything that both NM and Teflon will one day own premium gear, so I suspect that one day it WILL be worth it.

sean
02-09-2005, 12:21 PM
One small point I am not seeing here is that ebay for the large part sells used gear that most likely was once bought at a fly shop. I am willing to bet that guy that is selling his rod on ebay is going to turn around and pump more money into a shop. To me Ebay is mainly a used marketplace. They have little effect on brand new equipment sales which is what shops do. Shops and ebay are serving two separate purposes IMHO.

-sean

teflon_jones
02-09-2005, 02:34 PM
You're confusing snobbery with insecurity.

If someone buys something that's expensive because he or she is worried what other people think, that is a complete lack of security in oneself. Who really cares how much money is spent?

Your example has little if anything to do with snobbery. Perhaps your conviction that someone who spends more money is a snob makes you one as well (tongue in cheek of course, but you get my point).

The word I chose really had little to do with the point I think I did get across, which is that regardless of the presence of eBay or other discount sellers, there will always be people who will go to fly shops and spend the money and not look for a discount because they're "insecure", to use your word. I used snob. I don't think either word completely describes such a person, nor do I think both together describe them. Maybe they're just rich, or have a spending problem? :)

I think there are SOME people who deliberately spend more on equipment that are snobs. On the whole, fly fishermen (even some of the snobs ;) ) are some of the nicest people I've ever met. And yes, I'm a snob, I only like to fish for native brook trout, not stocked crap! ;)

Teflon, I love it when people pretend to know what others are thinking.
Here's a theory of equal validity: People who assume that others are snobs, based only on material possesions, are insecure, and afraid that others are looking down on them. I don't know any "snobs" that flyfish, but I get along pretty well with most folks.
I'm not pretending to know what anybody is thinking. Just go look at any fishing forum's tackle section where somebody sets a price limit for an item they're looking for. I guarantee you'll find responses that totally ignore this and recommend a product out of their price range. Maybe "snob" isn't the right word, but I couldn't think of another word to describe this behavior. Why can't some people recommend a $35 reel? Or a sub-$100 rod? If you've never met a flyfishing snob, then you haven't met enough fly fishermen. They're out there for sure! :)

But where I think Tef and MN are missing the point is I don't think they know a damn about what a beautiful fly rod can do and what it means to it's owner who know how to use it.
I know very well what a beautiful fly rod can do, I own three of them (a 4, 6, and 8 wt. That's not my point at all. My point is that some people seem to have the need to pay full price for equipment to satisfy something inside themselves, so they will buy these expensive rods from a fly shop no matter if they can get them at a discount elsewhere. Personally, I paid full price for one of mine at a fly shop, got one on sale from an Orvis store, and got one as a gift from my father.

fcch
02-09-2005, 03:28 PM
Scott,

(I'm late in thread, so I hope I'm not redundant).

Also could point out, that regardless of the $$ factor (or savings elsewhere than a full price retailer (shop), society today wants instant gratifaction. Many can't wait the 48 hours to get their new baby (be it a car, rod, reel, camera).

The act of putting down the cash, but walking out with the product is a big part of "non-e-bay" clients.

My 0.02$ (and hey 0.02$ canadian is starting to be worth something ;) )

OC
02-09-2005, 03:34 PM
Teflon,

First off I have not spotted many of the guys who buy just because it's expensive since Reagan was president. Maybe now that GW is president they are coming back in the red states. And just to be fair when Clinton was president rods had a much different use, Right Monica!

Juro asked how e-bay effected fly shops. I believe it does not and will not effect the really good shops. Why? Just because like you said in your last post,"People seem to have the need to pay full price for equipment to satisfy something inside themselves, so they will buy these expensive rods from a fly shop no matter if they can get them at a discount elsewhere." You are exactly right but I fear from reading your posts that you don't have the reasons right. Most people buy at full price because they want to be loyal to the local fly shop where the owner is more than a merchant, he has become a trusted friend and will fully back up his product.
Also for many going out and buying a truely beautiful fly rod is a ritual and the time taken testing out behind the shop, talking with the owner about fishing or even the good looking gal that just left the shop is important beyond what some can imagine. Too many that extra 200 or 300 dollars is worth every dollar and part of the ledgend that rod will develope over the years with it's owner. Remember this is not going out and buying a new washing machine it purchasing a sacred item to the true fly fisherman be he rich or saves like crazy working many extra hours overtime to do so. He knows the value of what the good flyshop offers for the extra price.

Dble Haul
02-09-2005, 03:42 PM
Teflon-

With all due respect, if somebody does something because they are worried about what other people think, that is insecurity. Plain and simple. I can't think of a more appropriate word.

I think that Eddie and I have pointed this out quite clearly. You seem to be wanting to call a horse a zebra, when in fact it really is nothing more than a horse.

Not that there's anything wrong with zebras.... :wink:

Eddie
02-09-2005, 05:31 PM
Sean, good point, but the discussion seems to be about discounting. I think you are right that folks selling used gear are probably going to spend the money at a shop. But, I suspect that lots of lightly used stuff on ebay are pro deals stuff guides and shop employees are selling at a handsom proffit. I would never buy fly gear on ebay for more than 50% off. Paying more would be a rip off. Having said that, I don't think that the prices on ebay are that good.

Eddie
02-09-2005, 05:42 PM
"Initially, flyfishing turned me off. When I started looking at flyfishing magazines, I was bombarded with $600 rods, $400 reels, and $65 flyline. I saw nothing but expensive waders, flyrods, reels, and other gear that was expensive. Those magazines projected the image of wealthy people pursuing fish with their chosen gear.
Yes, I was under the impression that flyfishing was reserved to people that could afford such equipment."

Bluegill, you bring up a good point. Advertising can really mess people up. It is a sophiticated form of brain washing to get people to buy things. I suspect that there are people who think that if they drink a certain beer, hot chicks will fall all over them. If they drive a certain car, they will never be stuck in traffic and the sun will always be shining. If they take a pill, "the mood will be right". If they smoke cigarettes, they wil be macho. And on and on. You thought that flyfishing was only for rich people, and then you woke up. I wish the rest of the country would wake up. Advertising generally sucks. "Ooooh...Go Daddy". :roll:

nmbrowncom
02-09-2005, 07:16 PM
oc,you're last thread got me thinking. i would consider myself an intermediate level fly fisherman and caster. as such i can discern the differences between good rods and great rods,and the best type of rod for a specific river/fishing condition. however, i also think that i am somewhat typical of many: that is, i am reasonably proficient and can descern a rod that is very good and works best for my casting style, and i can afford the high priced stuff. consequently i generally buy top of the line rods. but i am not sure that i can discern the best rod for a particular job as you discussed. while i agree with your point that there is no substitute for the "best" tool for the job, the ability to know what the "best" tool is, is in itself a demonstration of a very high level of proficeincy. and most fishermen are not even close to that level. consequently the fly shop as high level mentor is something that few even know that they can benefit from. frankly it is only over the past couple of years and out of my friendship with juro that i began to appreciate what i consider the finer aspects of the sport. very few of my friends do.and they shop price or name brand and not for expertise. and it IS the level of expertise that the fly shop has to offer that is valuable. if what i am saying is at all on the money then it begs the question as to why the fly shops have not organised into a trade association to promote their value in a way that reaches the fly fishing public.. and if they have, theyre doing a lousy job.

MJC
02-09-2005, 07:40 PM
there are people who think that if they drink a certain beer, hot chicks will fall all over them.

Hell, I tried that and it don't work!

bluegillbob
02-09-2005, 10:28 PM
Thank you Eddie. You noticed that advertising tries to change people's thinking.

Here's my view : purchase whatever flygear you want (or afford)! Do not expect higher priced equipment to compensate for the lack of flyfishing skills!

Does it really matter whether your friend is casting a $1000 stick or a $100 one?

Yes, as I learn about flyfishing, I am starting to discern the differences between "quality" and "cheap." Quality comes in many different price ranges, but cheap stays on the very bottom rung of the ladder. My equipment is proof that you don't need to spend excessive amounts of money to have "quality" gear.

I generally fish lakes and ponds for LM bass, bluegills, and crappies. Sometimes the occasional large shiner gets hooked. My flyfishing is simple, and doesn't require technical techniques either.

For my type of fishing, a $100 flyrod will do everything a $600 will do. A $50 flyreel will do everything a $400 one will too! That $600 rod will look nicer and feel lighter, though.

The two advantages that I see in a high end flyrod : 1) Nice cork, and 2) Lighter rod weight. Will a nicer looking/lighter rod catch anymore fish? Some people like the looks of a certain rod, and purchase it. Nothing wrong with that.

Someday I may own those $600 rods. Would I snub a fellow flyrodder who uses a lesser priced rod? Absolutely not. My current flygear is a higher quality than what most flyrodders use in this local area (I've met 3 in the last 5 yrs). I'm friendly, and I offer to let them cast my flyrods to show them what a lighter/better performing rod is capable of. Sometimes we switch and fish with the other person's flyrods.

In my eyes, more expensive gear does not equate to snobbery. Some people decide to save for the rod they want, or some people like the looks of a certain reel. I paid $120 for a nice 4wt reel. That reel is more than I'll ever need for a 4wt (strong drag, machined reel/spool), but I liked it, and I enjoy it totally. My other 4wt is just as capable, and only costs $40.

Instead of sneering and putting others down because of their chosen equipment (whether it is expensive or economical), let's stick together against the "real" enemy (PETA, and the other radical organizations).

I live in a world filled with bass boats, baitcast rods, and LM bass. I rarely meet a fellow flyrodder ( I fish public lakes as well as private ponds). It doesn't matter whether you flyfish with a $100 combo or a $1000 combo. The important thing is that you are out there flyfishing.

flytyer
02-10-2005, 04:19 AM
When I started fly fishing way back in 1958 at age 5, my father (who also taught me how to fly fish was a railroad engineer, hardly the most highly paid job in the world) bought me a well used rod at a garage sale for about $5.00 and a very cheap reel (a Southbend that sold for around $4.00 then). I didn't care, I finally had a fly rod and reel to fish with.

This rod and cheap reel served me well until age 9 (it was 1962) when dad bought me a Skakespeare fiberglass "Wonder Rod" for $35.00 and a Martin 67A reel (the reel was about $12.00). I used this rod until I was 16 (it was 1969) and bought myself a Fenwick Fenglass rod for the princely sum of $75.00 with money from replanting reclaimed stip mines in Pennsylvania for $1.50/hr. I was more than happy to spend the money for that then high-priced rod because it cast rings around my wonder rod. I also sprung for a Phlueger Medallist reel and a Cortland 444 line.

After college, I got a Fenwick graphite blank and built a rod for a total cost of about $130.00 instead of the factory built price of $185.00. This was in 1976. And since then I've saved in order to buy the rods I wanted, regardless of price. If it meant I spent a year saving to get the rod, I did it and was more than happy to spend $570.00 to get what I wanted with the performance I was looking for.

Then I discovered the world of 2-hand (spey) rods in 1992 and bought my first one. I now pay $75.00 each for spey lines for each of my four 2-hand rods and I've paid up to nealy $800.00 for a rod not because of its price, but rather because of its performance. I've bought my kids decent equipment from the get-go so they were able to use decent stuff right away. My two teen sons started fly fishing when they were 4 years old. They each have a single hand 5 wt 9' rod for trout and a 13' spey rod for steelhead. My wife also fly fishes and she has good stuff too. We are not rich folks by any stretch; however, I'd rather buy the equipment I want and prefer regarless of cost than to settle for cheaper rods that don't perform as well.

I suppose what I'm really trying to say is that I've never considered fly fishing to be elitist. As can be seen from this post, I have had very modest (cheap really) equipment and have been buying the higher end, higher priced stuff ever since I had my first job because I was able to feel the difference in performance. Does everyone need to buy the high-end? Of course not! Should everyone buy their kids good medium-quality, medium-priced rods? Nope again.

As Bluegilbob put it so well, "It doesn't matter if you fish with $100.00 combos or $1,000.00 combos. The important thing is that you are out there flyfishing"

OC
02-10-2005, 10:45 AM
NM,

In Hingham where you live high school hockey is king and fly fishing on the salt has really only been around for 20 years or so. Those who buy a rod for price or name brand are part of local eveolution and developing a tradition that may take generations to mature. But go to europe where spey has been king for hundreds of years, the Pacific Northwest where fly fishing for steelhead started it's infancy even before Haig Brown or West Yellowstone Montana where 90% of trout fishing is done with a fly rod and one will find so many fisher persons who expect expertise not only from their own ability and equipment but from those they buy that equipment from. And yes the equipment for those types of fishing in the three places I mentioned as well as plenty of other places is specialized on the most part. First one must get to that point in your fishing evolution to understand that prossess. It is far easier to do so when you constantly fish around so many good and great fly fisher people. Just look on the spey pages and see all the talk about rods for Skagit type casting, rods that you can cast for hours with little wear and tear on your body and mind, reels to holds long fat bellied lines and heavy sinktips. And the internet only deals with a small group of fly fishermen, there are thousand more in those areas of tradition who are good fishermen who use their local fly shops to discuss what they are looking for in the specialized equipment needed to do the job at a top performance rate. Even out your way where guys like Roop fish for the biggest of game fish must constantly research the best equipment in order to tackle such monsters of the deep. They want the best rod and reel which usually cost lots of money so the chance of failure is less. not because of the money it costs but because of the money to manufacture such a rod. So yes in many places around the world where special equipment is needed fly shops do capitalize on their expertise. I believe I draged you over railroad cars and down secret paths a couple of years ago to fish a perfect steelhead run. When you have to make efforts like that and a thousand cast to get one fish you want the the best equipment suited to do the job or else your winter becomes a long dreary and a sore shoulderd masterpiece.

Why would anyone who often fishes the Henery's Fork want a fast action rod to fish a river where rods have been developed locally and over many years to fish the rivers famous difficulty. One can fish it with a fast action rod but if a person is far enough along in his evolution he will start to ask himself questions about the equipment he is using and can it be fished better using other equipment. That fisherman will ask questions not only to other local fishermen but to the shops that support those rivers and those shops won't and don't last long if they can not be of service. That's why I say a good fly shop deals mostly in upper end gear, know what they are talking about and will be needed even with e-bay around. If your starting out new or fishing like bluegillbob then you will always do best with Wallmart or Cabelas and you would be crazy to buy 800 dollar rods.

bluegillbob,

I hope no one on flytalk has ever looked down on your fishing with the gear you fish with. I have never seen that here and I can insure you most fly fishermen are not that way anywhere in the world. But I'm going to tell you that if you were to fish for Atlantic Salmon on the Spey River in Scotland your Gillie might suggest that you upgrade that gear of yours. Not to be a snob or put down your equipment but in order for you to enjoy the experience more and to help make it a more rewarding fishing trip. I love the type of fishing you do out your way and miss it, If I'm ever out your way I'll look you up and maybe you can take me to some of your favorite spots. Same goes for you if you come out to the NW, look me up, ask nmbrown, I'm a pretty entertaining guide to guests of the NW.

wayne
02-10-2005, 11:26 AM
Is it possible that e-bay or discount stores have helped the local fly shops?

I am sure that many people have gotten started through one of these venues and then moved on to buying through fly shops. Just a thought....

chromer
02-10-2005, 12:17 PM
We could speculate all day logn but this has to come from the horses mouth. why not stop in and ask them how they feel about ebay and those giant catalogs selling online? I stop to chew the fat at shops all the time. What I hear is not promisng for their future, could be they are just blameing it on that.

teflon_jones
02-10-2005, 01:25 PM
OC,
I do agree with you about the ritual of purchasing equipment, and the idea of supporting local shops, and I hope that's why most people who buy expensive rods at full price do so. Personally, one of the reasons I like to support my local shop, Bear's Den, is because Scott is a great guy and I like talking to him whenever I go in there. I'm paying for the experience too. I think this is one reason that local shops will never die. I will always buy my tying materials from my local shop. You need to be able to hold things like that in your hand.

Dble Haul,
I definitely agree that the correct word for what you were talking about is "insecure", but it doesn't adequately express the concept I was trying to get across. :) I guess I've just run into too many Sage-buying, Simms-wearing, got-a-vest-with-18000-accessories-that-I'll-never-use-on-$20-retractors, net that cost more than my house fly fishermen in the last couple of years. (BTW, I'm not categorizing all Sage or Simms owners, just using examples of some of the most expensive and well-known equipment.) :)

In the end though, I hope that all of these people buy their equipment from the local shop because I want to see them stay in business!

Tod D
02-10-2005, 01:27 PM
The wheels of progress roll on…

eBay presents a challenge to the local fly shop – no question. How that shop responds in large part dictates whether it flourishes or dies.

That being said, we all have choices. How we exercise them has implications – some profound, some subtle. For example, I live in a small town south of Boston. We like to think we’re quaint: beautiful seashore, quiet streets, no big box stores. However, just beyond our town borders lurk Walmart, Target, Lowe’s, and HD. Every Christmas, our paper runs editorials urging us to shop and buy local, and support our town’s businesses. Now, those that know me know I absolutely pride myself on finding fishing bargains. And I mean BARGAINS. However, every year (not just at Christmas) I make sure that I spend some money locally. Two basic reasons. First, I can find unique gifts that I wouldn’t find elsewhere. Second, it’s nice to know that my purchase went to my next-door neighbor who owns the shop… That’s not to suggest I don’t shop at everyone of those big boxes, or on eBay, Sierra Trading Post, etc. I do. Like Roop, I’ve a bunch of little ones and while I love it, the Bay State ain’t cheap. But it's a balance and sometimes I'll trade a monetary gain for a psychic/social one.

I live within spitting distance of two terrific shops: Smitty’s, and Baymen Outfitters. I frequent and buy from both regularly (probably too regularly for my wife’s tastes…). I certainly don’t buy everything from them, but I’d definitely be poorer – if not monetarily at least socially – if they weren’t there. Smitty taught me how to build a rod, Percy showed me how to tie his killer crab pattern. On Thursday nights 15-25 people will gather at Baymen’s to tie flies lie about fish they’ve caught, and waste away a few hours. Over the years, through those Thursday nights I’ve befriended numerous others who share my passion for flyfishing. I may not appreciate or envision what lies ahead, but I don’t imagine eBay replicating that anytime soon.

nmbrowncom
02-10-2005, 06:48 PM
OC, good memory. yes, it was me that you schlepped over the railroad tracks.and i have since refused to eat farm raised fish as a result of what i learned that day. as some of the others who posted from south of boston have said, we have some very good fly shops in our area. ironicallly, it is just the opposite of the situatuion referred to earlier in a post from north carolina. while there are walmarts and ebay of course, we do not have bps nor cabellas nor gander shop or whatever the hell its name is. other than llbean which is 150 miles away, we have no giant discounters. i have to agree that i have learned mostly from either the guys i've met at the fly shop or from those working at them. plus, it is my "hang out". the value of that---priceless.

Eddie
02-10-2005, 08:24 PM
So here's a request that I have made before: Please buy something from one of our sponsors. They really do keep the lights on here, and they have faith that by sponsoring the FlyFishing Forum (helping us out) that we will support them. Mention that you appreciate that they are sponsors here. Your gonna buy some stuff this year, so some of it may as well come from a sponsoring shop.
If you don't have a shop close by, consider one of them your local shop. Thankyou.

Hundreds of people have viewed this thread, so it must be interesting. That's alot of buying power.

OC
02-10-2005, 08:56 PM
NM,
Climbed over that railroad car just last week took three steps and down I went. I'm getting old.

Hey Eddie I can't find the sponsors page anymore.

bluegillbob
02-10-2005, 09:48 PM
OC,

You're cool in my book. I realize that most flyrodders are not snobbish, but nice folks. Someone else started the "snob" topic; it wasn't me.

Thanks for the invite to fish the NW. I realize that my gear willl handle smaller fish, though...Much smaller fish!

I used to live in Michigan, and I fished for salmon. I used to catch kings, and I remember one important thing: you need a strong drag to slow them down! I used spinning gear, and my reels had a strong drag, and steel gears to boot! I used one pc. rods because the 1 pc was stronger than a multi piece rod!

Big fish on a flyrod? Yes, you need a sturdy reel with lots of capacity and a strong drag. Flyrod? Well built to handle the stress of a large, powerful fish.

Give me a shout when you travel down here in eastern NC. You are more than welcome to bring your Spey rods! I've entertained the idea of flybassing with a Spey rod! I would'nt have to walk around the ponds and lakes so much!

Spey fishing sounds cool! I've never seen one for sale here in NC. If I did buy one, I'd probably be the only one toting one in my part of the state! Who knows? I just may buy a Spey for bluegill and LM bass fishing! I'd stick out like a sore thumb...but I'd be a happy sore thumb! If I bought one, it would probably be online...no flyshops near me. The "real" flyshops are near the mountains...I live closer to the coast. Then again, nobody uses a Spey rod for small mountain trout!

Are those Spey rods easy to cast? I understand they are roll cast alot due to the trees that cover the banks of the rivers up there. I have no obstructions where I fish.

Tod D
02-10-2005, 11:11 PM
Totally hijacking this thread...

Bluegillbob - if you're in eastern NC and anywhere near the coast, you've got to try your hand in the salt! My dad grew up in Morehead City/Swansboro and use to fish - spin & fly - all over. Reds, sharks, false albacore - you name it, he'd catch it. Last time we fished down there was spring '95 and we absolutely hammered reds in a nice marsh just south of Swansboro. Good times.

bluegillbob
02-10-2005, 11:53 PM
Hi Tod!

Ever hear of Goldsboro? I live 5 mi. south of Goldsboro. I flyfish a few ponds around Goldsboro, and hit Buckhorn Lake around Wilson.

Honestly, I've been here 20 yrs and never fished the salt! My friend hits the piers and surf fishes when the spots are running.

Another friend has a ranch house and 100 acres on the Intercoastal Waterway. I've been invited plenty of times, but never went. His place sounds like a good place to flyfish!

I'm sure that saltwater fishing is a blast. The fish that I would like to catch from the ocean are big boys...the hammerhead sharks and tuna!

Isn't saltwater rough on fishing tackle?

Small world. Ever hear of Springfield, Mass? I lived with my grandmother at Chicopee; my dad was stationed in Thailand during Vietnam, and my family stayed with her.

MJC
02-11-2005, 12:44 AM
OC, You're cool in my book.

Now there is a statement I can agree with!!!

nmbrowncom
02-11-2005, 06:01 AM
bluegill, take oc up on it. he is a lot of fun and knows a thing or two. could learn a bit as well.wouldn't hurt to brush up on railroading though.are you near the davidson river and the adjacent state park? oc, when are you going to get your lazy ass over to this neck of the woods. striper season is only three and a half months off, and we have a very interesting railroad bridge over the cape cod canal that i am sure would make you feel right at home.

OC
02-11-2005, 09:59 AM
bluegillbob,

Go fish the salt this summer at your friends house you will have a ball. Just wash your equipment off after every use.

NM,
I'm going to be on the cape at the end of June to get married. Have plans to fish with some of the boys already and I'm looking forward to the entire trip.

Ya I remember that bridge real well. As a young teenager my dad or mom would drop me off just before dark and pick me up next morning. Oh those wonderful nights under the dim lights, swirls of big fish in the dark, fish running line off the old Penn Jigmaster. Going up to the crowded smoke filled dinner at 2AM for something to eat. Local fishermen telling lies to the non fishermen who just closed down the bars. Some would lie about catching 40 pounders and some would lie about catching nothing at all and yet you fished just 50 feet away from that guy and listened to his line sing and then the thunk of the heavy club and a fish draged up the bank. That was in the early 60's, the end of the truely glory days of fishing the Cape Cod Canal. No specialized equipment in those days, Penn casting reel and a long heavy surf rod. I still remember how sore my right thumb was after many long casts.

bluegillbob
02-11-2005, 12:36 PM
NM,

The Davidson River must be in the mountains. The only river nearby is the Neuse, and that is a place full of gar and catfish!

Tod D
02-11-2005, 03:50 PM
Bluegillbob - sent you a pm.

nmbrowncom
02-11-2005, 05:06 PM
oc, glad your making the fishing trip. but it's a long way to come just to get married. i get it, you had to promise to marry her in order to fish the tail end of the striper migration. smart deal-it's worth it. if you got free time give me a shout. boston harbor will likely be booming then. she can wait. bluegill- you're right, the davidson is in the smokies between greenville sc and ashville nc.