I absolutely love cane rods. For general trout fishing, the shorter cane sticks in the 7 to 8 foot mark are the finest fishing instruments created.
My first cane rod was built in a rodmakers class that Ralph Moon put together here in SLC. It is based on a 7'6" Leonard taper. Since building and finishing that rod, I have not fished another for trout since, upwards of 5 years. In addition, I now fish it with a DT4 silk line.
I have two new cane rods arriving this month for steelhead fishing. One is a 12' spey rod rated for a 6wt line, the other is an 8 3/4 foot 8wt blank made by Joe Perrigo. Can't wait to fish either!
As a side note, you might want to look at Joe Perrigo. His work is excellent and his finished rod prices are about half of what you are thinking. Look him up on the web under Genessee Valley rods, sorry I don't have the address handy.
Fishing cane for steelhead is more of mindset, accept the limitations when compared to graphite, and enjoy the rythym. This new spey rod is actually really light for wood, a touch under 12 ounces and will perform just as well as my other 6 weight 2-handers as far as distance is concerned. Next rod is going to be a heavy weight in the 13 to 14 foot range for a 9 weight for salmon fishing in Quebec. I was able to find a builder that would make a blank, I enjoy the whole finishing process with silk thread and varnish, in the $800 range.