Triet, thanks for reminding us by allowing us to click on that older thread on spirals.
Spiral wrap dialog certainly brings out the negatives. Recently on a west coast board I shared what I had learned designing and building using the AA Roller Company's spiral roller guides. A poster thought my info was "SPAM". To each their own opinion. What can I say, I wore bell bottom dungarees with patch pockets when they were out of fashion.
It would be easy to just ignore questions about the spiral wrapped rods. However, when someone asks a question I have to believe it is an honest question that deserves an answer.
I wrapped a blank with the guides on top of the blank and then wrapped a set of guides on the same blank in the spiral fashion. The spine is used in the proper fashion for a conventional reel rod. The reel has 2 sets of line, one for each set of guides. The butt end rests on a revolving cone so the rod is free to seek its own position under load. I let viewers pull on each line to see exactly what the rod will do. When the line going thru the guides on top of the blank is pulled, the rod rotates either to the right or left till the reel is under the rod. This is because the line going thru the guides is above the center line of the blank and torque is created under load. When the person pulls on the line going thru the spiral guides the rod remains in position with the reel up. If you force the reel to a side and release your grip it will always go back to being on top. I bring this demo to shows and demonstrate it. Most fishermen will understand what is happening but will not fish with such a rod. It looks funny.
So why do I fish spiral rods? What keeps a conventional rod in position while under the load of a fighting fish is my hand. The rod is trying to turn but my hand won't let it. The same thing happens when a gimbal is used. Ever wonder why you hand is tired after a full day of fighting fish? It has been fighting the torque/twisting of the rod.
While fighting a fish, have you noticed the tip of the rod twisting to one side or another? Your hand/gimbal is preventing the butt from turning but the tip is thinner and free to move. This twisting is caused by the torque generated. On thicker tipped rods you might not notice this as reading but believe me it is happening internally.
This generated torque is also felt on the guides and the reel seat. On a well made rod the effects will not be readily visable. But what about a rod that is not build well? Let's see, maybe a loose reel seat, a guide that moves to the side and loosens up.
Some say you can't cast well with a spiral wrapped rod. Yes, you can. Others have proved it, over hand and under hand casting.
But it looks funny!!! Yes it does. So what???
It usually takes an extra guide to static deflect a spiral rod properly. Yes, that makes it a bit more expensive but really not much.
But, it looks funny!!! Yes, it does!!! So what???
I have had men in their 40's order 2 identical rods, one for them and one for their father. Theirs is conventionally wrapped and the rod for their father is spiral wrapped. Why, because the father has arthritis in his hands or something similar. The son knows it is good for his father but doesn't want his the same way.
Gosh, they are funny looking rods. I couldn't fish a rod like that in front of my friends on a party boat! I hear that all the time.
The first rod I spiral wrapped was a Calstar GX7, a great blank. After I static deflected for guide location, I placed 1 TURN of 1/2" masking tape around each guide foot, that's ALL!!! Then I fished for 4 consecutive days, on the Shinnecock Star over the Shinnecock Reef for porgys and sea bass. I used 6 and 8 oz sinkers in 75-85" of water. During that time I hooked and boated many fine fish. At the end of the 4 days/trips, not one guide came off or even moved. Try that with a conventional wrapped rod. That test made a me a big time believer.
Recently I was asked by the designer and owners of the AA Roller Co. to build a stand up tuna rod to be tested by a LI fisherman, Dick Meirowitz. The blank was a Seeker CTSF 55 XXXH blank and the spiral rollers that the AA Roller Co manufacturers. Dick took this rod and other rods for a 17 day long range trip on the EXCELL out of San Diego. We all wanted to see Dick catch large tuna with these rollers. You will see them referred to as "ACID ROLLERS! Some people felt the large tuna would cause the transition guides, first 2 above the reel, to twist out of position and even some guides might be ripped off the rod. Well, the concept passed with flying colors. Dick's largeast yellow fin tuna was a beautiful 259 #'er. You should see the sickles on that fish. You can see pics and read about the debate by reading the ALL Coast Tackle web and also the noreast site, Ask the Pros and Fishing rods forum.
After I laid out the guides on the Seeker blank, I taped them in place once again using 1 turn of 1/2" masking tape. We used the reel Dick would use on the trip. The line was run thru the guides and I pulled against 50#s of drag. I did this several times, pulling line off the reel, and the guides stayed in place. I asked Dick how many #s of drag the reel could produce. He said about 70 #s. I said lets go for it. Wearing a leather glove and wrapping about 8 turns of line around my hand, I stood still and let Dick use the rod and reel. Finally, line started to pull off the reel. Guess what??? The guides were still on the rod and in the exact position that I had taped them. Now, I wish I had video taped this test to show it was not SPAM!
So someone will say, big deal and so what??? That tells me there is so little stress on the components when placed properly on a spiral wrapped rod. Some day I will find the correct tool to measure the amount of pressure applied to the guides. Then I will post that for everyone to digest.
Yes, rods built like this are not for everyone. That is fine, I have no problem with that. I do have a problem with folks that bad mouth the concept but are not willing to test a rod wrapped this way. If you just say it is not for me, that is fine. If you test a spiral wrapped rod and say I don't see much difference, that is fine also. Let's face reality. You have $20,000 in offshore rods and reels that do the job. I don't blame someone for not wanting to buy new rods.
I have 2 spiral wrapped stand up rods headed to Florida next week. One has ring guides and the other has acid rollers. These are 2 of my demo rods for fishermen to test. This way you can see for yourself what the commotion is all about. If interested in testing a demo rod all you have to do is ask. It is a test, that's all. There is not a hi pressure sales pitch that goes with it.
For a test drive or to ask questions all you have to do is call me in the shop at 631-567-8049. Oh, yes, I do expect you to return the rods, ha!
For the fishermen that wanted info on the spiral wrapped rods I hope my post satisfies your quest for knowledge.
This system can be used on all types of rods.
I think my next spiral wrapped rod will be a stand up short stroker, about 4'8", bent butt, with roller guides. I want to use the AA Roller guides. It could be an interesting design.
Yes, they do look funny BUT they fight fish wonderfully and are a pleasure to fish.
Capt Neil Faulkner