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Great Lakes Steelhead & Salmon Amazing "Inland ocean" fisheries

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Topic Review (Newest First)
02-15-2005 09:43 AM
Originally Posted by Spock

I'll pass along the advice, "Lighten up."
Oh don't worry, I've already decided to do just that. I've also decided that it's not worth the effort to get in these discussions. If somebody wants to pay a premium price for a middle-of-the-road rod, why should I care? Nobody appointed me the protector of other people's wallets. Hell, I have enough trouble with my own.

So, enjoy your rod.

BTW, the next time you ask for opinions, trying being more upfront about your agenda. I for one, don't like being played for a sucker.
02-15-2005 07:48 AM
Spock peter-s-c

I'll pass along the advice, "Lighten up."
02-14-2005 11:36 PM
Originally Posted by FKrow

My impression is that you have a particular style of casting and demand any rod you cast must match your individual style. Everything rod that does not is poorly designed?

Fred Krow

Interesting conclusion, especially considering that I have a classic UK-style rod currently on route, a trouter being built, and I've just ordered a slow, Loomis Kispiox Skagit rod. When these arrive, I'll have traditional, Scandinavian, Skagit, and overhead rods in my arsenal. My Scandinavian casting is OK, the Skagit casting is coming along nicely, my overhead isn't bad, and the traditional is a work-in-progress. Please tell me which one of these I'm not supposed to like.

Let me try explain my POV with an example.

Imagine you have received a two-handed rod for testing. It has no identifying marks or cosmetics. As rods go, it's pretty mediocre and you know that. You attend a clave with a large group of anglers with the intent of having all of them try and comment on the rod. To half the group, you tell them that this is a prototype rod about to go into production. It's made by a famous rod company using the latest super-dooper graphite and exotic tapers. To the other half, you inform them that it is a first attempt at a two-hander by a company better known for making cheap bait rods sold at department stores.

Remember that this is a mediocre rod. How many of the first group will say something bad about it? How many in the second group will say anything good about it? Probably the number of people in the first group with something bad to say will be roughly the same as the number in the second group with something good to say. That's the power of marketing; the power of image. We're all susceptible to it; we've all been victimized by it.

The message I was trying to get across to Mr. Spock was to look beyond the marketing hype. Instead, his ultimate choice -- a Sage and a Windcutter -- is damn near a spey cliché. Obviously, he was determined to buy a Sage from the get-go and he was looking for support for his pre-determined choice. He was in effect, wasting our time with his question as his mind appeared to be already made up. By and large, he didn't get much support for his choice but he bought the rod anyway. It's his choice of course. It's his money after all, and I truly hope he is happy with it. I would not wish him ill luck just because he didn't take our advice.

and my comment to Juro was strictly TIC -- just giving him the needle -- as my ample use of smilies should've indicated to you.

and as somebody recently said to me so I'll pass along the advice, "Lighten up."
02-14-2005 08:46 PM
FKrow peter-s-c,

My impression is that you have a particular style of casting and demand any rod you cast must match your individual style. Everything rod that does not is poorly designed?

Fred Krow
02-14-2005 03:12 PM
Originally Posted by juro
I can see how some folks would not like the action of the 7136, however it's like a temperamental woman. You can fight her to act the way you want, or you can give in and act the way it wants. If you gave in, she had a sweet heart.
or you could opt for divorce At least with spey divorce, you get cash back via ebay.

Actually, I can read that sentence as -- "I spent big $$$$s on a crappy rod but because I busted my gut to buy it, I'd better learn to love it." (Of course, I've never done that . . . . )

About our Mr. Spock -- well, a Sage and a Windcutter -- that's a surprise. Kinda like bread and butter, eh?
02-14-2005 02:52 PM

i did pick his brain about lines also, he picked the windcutter as my best choice. when you are looking to buy anything do you take one person's advice or do you get more from other sources, thanks again all that replied you all have helped out alot
02-14-2005 11:51 AM
Iam looking at getting into this and would like to know what kind of rod,reel, and line to use for great lakes steelhead. I like sage rods and ross reels, so this might help you guys out.

what kind of line should i use as iam going to use sink tips to fish the surf and over hand cast.
Not that I find anything wrong with your choice, had you stated the intended use upfront I at least would have suggested something different. I guess we should have ask more questions, as I thought you were talking about spey casting or some variation thereof.

The Windcutter Versi Tip is one of the most versatile lines around. You can pull the center section for overhead and should decide to spey cast you still have a great line for that.

Not to be a "smarty pants" but when you had your spey casting instructor cornered for a rod recommendation why didn't you pick his brain for a line choice?
02-14-2005 08:38 AM
Two Handed Rod Choice

8126-3 sage is my choice after talking to our spey casting instructor here in buffalo, he asked me what i wanted to do with it and guided me to this choice after picking his brain. first off i want to thank all that replied and gave my so much info. now what kind of line should i use as iam going to use sink tips to fish the surf and over hand cast.
02-12-2005 06:21 PM
Muckle Salmon

I will keep it simple. To my mind Sage has yet to beat the RPL.
02-12-2005 03:33 PM
peter-s-c Just so we're all on the same page, I've owned a number of Sage single handers and loved them all: RP896, RP789, RP490, LL389, LL586, LL590, RPL686, and SP490. Being a Sage fanatic, I lusted after their two-handers, but I was very disappointed with them once I got my hands on a few.

Having bought the St. Croix and built the Lamiglas before trying the Sage two-handers, I had a different frame of reference to someone who only had a Sage.
02-12-2005 10:07 AM
Originally Posted by juro
As I wasted time with sub-standard rods of lesser price as a young fool, the day finally came when I bought an RPL. WOW

Now tell me folks, was that a rod or was that a rod! Whether 4wt or 10wt, that rod was the perfect marriage of flex, power and durability. It had soul, and balls too. I still have a few of them and with all the newfangled stuff out there I put a line on them and say WOW still.
I still think my RPL 8100 2pc is the smoothest, sweetest casting salmon/steelhead single-hander out there. I can cast it all day, day after day and never get tired. So scared something might happen to mine, I bought another used as a backup. And if either of these break, I'll have Kerry Burkheimer make me something as close as he can.
02-12-2005 08:54 AM
juro I am not directing this at anyone else's post, but it's meant to express where I am with Sage rods. I've had a great experience with Sage rods throughout my flyfishing years and am proud to have their support as a sponsor on the Forum. Sage rods have been a critical part of my flyfishing experience. As I wasted time with sub-standard rods of lesser price as a young fool, the day finally came when I bought an RPL. WOW

Now tell me folks, was that a rod or was that a rod! Whether 4wt or 10wt, that rod was the perfect marriage of flex, power and durability. It had soul, and balls too. I still have a few of them and with all the newfangled stuff out there I put a line on them and say WOW still. Funny how I try all of the new whizbang singlehanders at all the shows and they just don't seem to give me the love that my old RPL's do. They might have more power, be lighter, be prettier, etc - but that casting soul is hard to duplicate. Maybe it's just me, and I need to get modern but there were lots of happy campers during the RPL days across the whole range of line weights.

Then came the RPLXi, which at first was harder to tune into, but once you took that 5pc 8wt out onto a bonefish flat for the day... WOW. Then after using them for years in a 9wt for striper, the castability is as automatic as could be when a fish cruised in from an unexpected angle -or- when the wind kicked up from the wrong side and you had to cast backwards. Eventually got that love again.

With spey, like many I was weaned on lesser quality rods with overhead tapers until I bought the 10150-4 and the 7136-4 mostly with meal allowances from a contract position where I starved myself for the 27.50 per day, some days eating a snickers bar for dinner to get closer to the goal. It was worth it. I eventually hopped onto the 8126-3 euro as well, rumored to be designed by Goran Anderson. I went through the entire gamut of two-handed rods for fishing the beach and this was clearly the best at the time for the job, not to mention it was among the best Scandinavian fishing tools and well ahead of it's time.

These two rods were very different but I came to love them both. I fished the 9140-4 for a while as well but it was not mine so had a short fling with it, all before a CND touched my hands.

I caught a lot of winter fish on the Sage 10wt and a lot of summer fish on the 7wt, I even lost a good number of big winter fish on the 7wt when I shouldn't have been using it. The big rod covered the Skagit, Skykomish, Hoh, and other big rivers in winter conditions, and the 7136 did a fine job of putting flies over steelhead through the summer and fall.

I can see how some folks would not like the action of the 7136, however it's like a temperamental woman. You can fight her to act the way you want, or you can give in and act the way it wants. If you gave in, she had a sweet heart. Well I eventually fell in love and had a hard time putting her down when the river rose and the big natives came to town. As fate would have it, I would hook up and get thoroughly spanked by these big Cascade or Olympic peninsula fish because of my love for her. It was hard, but I eventually started to fish the right rod in winter.

The 10150 would put a 15ft sinktip past the main chute on the Chapel run on the Skagit with a flick. It would tame a 25# Hoh buck, if I could only hook one With the right lines, it could overhead cast almost as far as Kush could snake roll, on a good day (for me that is). It was a cannon and has been bent hard by some big winter fish in it's day.

Today we are blessed with so many good choices as the Spey phenomenon blossoms on the flyfishing scene. But let's not forget that Sage really ignited this fire with the 7136, 9140, and 10150's. So in a sense, they are a part of the new tradition, a north american rennaissance of spey.

Spey, although just a fraction of the overall industry, is probably the biggest growth area in FF. With Loomis, Loop, T&T, and of course CND also in the scene the choices have grown from the old brownie days. Who knows what the situation will be tomorrow - but for today there are lots of choices, rapid evolution, and the winners are us. Enjoy the ride as they say.
02-12-2005 08:16 AM
peter-s-c Dan

I suppose my first problem with Sages came from their use of "Traditional" to describe their soft rods. I don't consider that action to be traditional at all, unless of course, you're referring to a PNW tradition. I think that in the minds of most people, Sage is trying to evoke a connection to Scottish two-handers. A bogus connection as far as I’m concerned.

I've owned two rods (both Lamiglas) that I would consider traditional in action. Very full flexing, slow recovery, but also smoothly progressive. Both these rods were powerful for their line class and supported a wide range of lines -- a characteristic of progressive rods. In contrast, the old 7136 seemed to fold over in the mid-section. In fact all of the soft Sages I've casted, except for the latest IIIe versions, seemed to have this soft middle perched on a semi-stiff butt. A characteristic suited for the short head style of casting in the PNW but hardly in the same class as what we would think of as a traditional UK-style rod designed to lift and cast long lengths of line. Some people are successfully using these rods like UK-style rods, by dropping down in line weights so that the spongy middle is not overwhelmed. This is hardly an endorsement of these rods as being “traditional”.

So this is the sore point for me -- these rods are suited for the fishing style they were designed for, but Sage marketing portrays them as something they're most definitely not. If these rods carried the label of a less well-known company, they'd be roundly criticised outside of their home turf if they were portrayed in this manner. I suppose I’d be far less critical of them had they not been marketed in this way.

My second concern involves the linkage of casting skill with these rods. This is just a suspicion on my part, not backed up by much evidence – however, we know that a lot of beginners start out with these rods because of the allure of the Sage name. I’ve seen a couple of guys flog these rods using over-weight short heads and a lot of arm strength to flop out casts. These guys haven’t had the opportunity to learn proper casting technique on a rod that loads conventionally. When I tried my first 7136 around ’97 or early ‘98, I was a rank beginner spey caster with a Lamiglas and a St. Croix, and I couldn’t feel the load on the 7136 so I was just flopping it around. To try and get the feel for it, I went overhead and discovered that I couldn’t get it to behave there either despite being able to spey and overhead cast both of my other rods with somewhat decent proficiency for a beginner. Today I wonder how my casting progression would’ve gone (ignoring my shoulder issues of a few years back) had I owned the 7136 instead of the other two rods.

I've ordered the Kispiox as a winter GL rod for basically the same reasons as why you’d like the 7136 for these waters, and it should do quite a nice job in our smaller tribs. To Loomis’ credit, they’re marketing these rods appropriately and they’re not trying to delude the angler into thinking they’re something they’re not. There isn’t a whole lot of difference between a Kispiox and a 7136 yet I’ll buy the former and roundly condemn the latter. An inconsistency on my part? Not when I add the marketing behaviour of these two companies to my buying decision.
02-11-2005 07:31 PM
7136 brownie

my 7136 is the older softer version. It is a very soft noodle that is a blast to fish with. I do not launch huge casts off this rod. I would say it is effective out to 80 feet or so. In the hands of a better caster it could probably fish farther.
I tried a mastery spey 8/9 on it but that was overkill. Now I'm fishing the Midspey 6/7 w tips. This line is a great match for this rod. The only comment I would have is that the type VIII tip is actually an 8 wt. Thus it is a tad too heavy and you can feel it when you cast. This is the line I use for summer fishing. If I was back home in Ont I would consider using a windcutter as I would be fishing more tips.
Although this rod is soft, don't think it has no guts. Last winter I brought some nice winter runs to hand and this summer it subdued a surprise spring that attacted my fly while fishing summer runs.
From my understanding the 7136 was not designed as a shooting head rod. It came out well before that. It is a rod designed for light dry line fishing. The 7136 green (2001) and the following lt brown model were of the same action just a different colour.
When fishing my rod with a midspey I cast in a traditional style using both my upper and lower hands (probably using too much upper hand but I'm working on that). I use a mix of casts: single, double, circle, and spiral speys.
One of my friends Mark McAneeley is a guide here in BC. He was pictured holding a 26lb steelie in the last issue of Flyfisherman. The fish was caught by Lani Waller using Mark's 7136. Mark has the newer 7136 and he was using an Airflow line. He says the newer 7136 launches the Airflow Delta(can't remember the weight).
Like MJC I own a 9140 green that I built. I really like this rod. An 8/9 midspey fishes well on it. This winter I've been using an 8/9/10 windcutter modified to Ed Ward's instructions to create a Skagit line. I have been blown away by the way this outfit fishes. I can only imagine the new GLoomis rods matched up to proper Skagit lines! The 9140 will do it all from summer to winter. Again like the 7136 it is a softer rod. The 9150 is a completely different beast that is much faster. While still considered slow by many it is much faster than most traditional sages. When it comes to big water I love my 9150 but I can see few uses for this rod on the GLs besides the Niagra.
My point is not that Sage rods are the best out there. There are lots of great rods and lots that are cheaper. Just don't rule the Sages out. If I was moving back to Ontario tomorrow my rod of choice would be my 7136. I really wish Sage hadn't discontinued them.

02-11-2005 02:27 PM
MJC I also like the traditional Sages. While I don't have any experience with the 7136 (I do have one for sale in my experienced rod rack), I have fished a lot with the much maligned Sage 9140. This is a greenie and I can cast it better and farther then any rod I've ever fished, I think even better then my much beloved CND Expert 1409 which I really, really, really like. For me the line that makes both the 9140 and the Expert 1409 sing is a Delta 7/8. I am doing normal spey casting (or at least my "wham/bam" version of it) using mostly the Circle C and the Double Spey casts and flies up to 1/0 (mostly #2s). To me both of these 14' rods are a joy to cast and fish.
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