abaus3

First Saltwater Rod - 8wt or 9wt?

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JC,

 

I like a Rio Permit 8 wt on my Hardy Zephrus 9 wt.  I have heard about guys liking the Cortland flats taper on the Zephrus as well, I believe that’s true to wt.  I also like a Rio Bonefish 9 wt on my 9 wt Method which is a half heavy.  For longer casts I think the SA Bonefish might do better, I think that’s true to weight.  On my 8 wt Hardy I’m practicing over the winter with an 8 wt cold water TT that is true to weight.

 

Those are just a few options.  In general I’m anywhere from true to wt to a half heavy.  I just got a Grand Slam and I’ll be experimenting with that this year.  It is for my 9 wt but I am of the opinion, as of now, that instead of using a short heavy head on a 9 wt I should just jump to a 10 wt rod with a true to weight line.  I think the various lines give some versatility, but if I’m on a skiff with half the saltwater quiver, I’ll just pick up the 10 wt.

 

 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

One rod will never be enough for most of us.

 

Decisions on which rods (plural) to buy should be based, on the toughest and lightest situations that you want to fish comfortably with.  If I were forced to only own two rods for salt, I think I could do fine with just a 7 (or 8) and a 9 (or 10).  From rods I currently own, I would pick:

 

7 wt Redington CPS, 9 wt CPS (both rods are extra fast and can throw 1- 2 line weights up, prefer 1/2 to one weight up)

 

or

 

8 wt Powell Tiboron, 10wt Redington TSF (both older rods and true rated, can throw one down one up but prefer the rated line)

Edited by Killiefish

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1 hour ago, JonC said:

Brokeoff,

I’m wondering what true to weight lines people are using, what I hear about favored lines is that they’re pretty much all overweight.

JC

JC

 

Over lining or using an overweight fly line seems to be the norm these days.

 

I get the feeling that this would still be the case even when rods were pretty true to their rating.

 

Each to their own.

 

mike

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2 hours ago, BrokeOff said:

JC,

 

I like a Rio Permit 8 wt on my Hardy Zephrus 9 wt.  I have heard about guys liking the Cortland flats taper on the Zephrus as well, I believe that’s true to wt.  I also like a Rio Bonefish 9 wt on my 9 wt Method which is a half heavy.  For longer casts I think the SA Bonefish might do better, I think that’s true to weight.  On my 8 wt Hardy I’m practicing over the winter with an 8 wt cold water TT that is true to weight.

 

Those are just a few options.  In general I’m anywhere from true to wt to a half heavy.  I just got a Grand Slam and I’ll be experimenting with that this year.  It is for my 9 wt but I am of the opinion, as of now, that instead of using a short heavy head on a 9 wt I should just jump to a 10 wt rod with a true to weight line.  I think the various lines give some versatility, but if I’m on a skiff with half the saltwater quiver, I’ll just pick up the 10 wt.

 

 

These lines you’re mentioning have long heads and though they may be true to weight at 30’ thats not what you’d habitually carry outside the tip when casting, which would be more like 40’+, I prefer a shorter head that weighs about what the extended long head comes in at (about a size up) because it will carry a bigger fly, is quicker to get in the air, and is better at short shots. I firmly believe that most of the rods built today are designed to work properly with an overweight line and that is supported by the fact that a great many of the lines marketed by the rod companies are overweight. Long head lines are great if you need distance and they facilitate throwing very tight loops because they’re thinner and have less wind resistance, but for purely practical reasons, I don’t think they’re necessarily the best choice.

JC

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16 mins ago, JonC said:

These lines you’re mentioning have long heads and though they may be true to weight at 30’ thats not what you’d habitually carry outside the tip when casting, which would be more like 40’+, I prefer a shorter head that weighs about what the extended long head comes in at (about a size up) because it will carry a bigger fly, is quicker to get in the air, and is better at short shots. I firmly believe that most of the rods built today are designed to work properly with an overweight line and that is supported by the fact that a great many of the lines marketed by the rod companies are overweight. Long head lines are great if you need distance and they facilitate throwing very tight loops because they’re thinner and have less wind resistance, but for purely practical reasons, I don’t think they’re necessarily the best choice.

JC

 

JC,

 

You are a BTT guy right?  I like those lines and have them in 8/9/10.

 

Are you saying because I carry anything from 10’ to 50’ out of the tip that the AFFTA standards don’t apply?  If that is the case then what do they even mean?  When the standards came out over one billion years ago I think they were using double taper lines and plenty of people made long casts.

 

Also, the Rio Permit a line wt under casts fine with 20 - 30 ft out.  I mean, I practice with just the leader out sometimes and have caught fish with less that ten ft of line out.

 

You are certainly right that different head lengths and tapers are better for specific things.  In general I’m trying to settle on lines that are good at mid range then I try to improve my technique to add distance and on the other end improve my technique to add accuracy in close.

 

Jon, I have a feeling we are about to go around in circles...

 

 

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Hawaii bones are large and also getting scarce (some locals like make them into fish balls).  Also Hawaii has serious winds, except on rare days or early in the a.m.   Also, sharp coral and deep holes in some areas.  I'd be looking into a fast and strong 9wt for HI.  On the other hand some people are fishing them with fast, stiff two hand (switch) rods like the Sage TCRs and TCXs.   Blind casting for bones in some areas (because of low vis and wind) versus sight fishing on flats makes a difference in what rods and/or lines might work best.  But having said that, as a first rod, an 8wt is pretty useful.

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1 hour ago, bonefishdick said:

I wonder what the consensus opinion would be for Bonefish in KW and Hawaii, I’m going with 8 wt.

 

I’m going to be honest.  Fishing and 8 wt in Hawaii right now sounds really appealing...

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Brokeoff,

Yes I’m a BTT guy, I try to keep things as simple as possible, use a line that’s versatile and don’t spend time switching. 

Yeah, I think AFFTA line standards have been made meaningless because nobody is adhering to them, rods are more powerful than they were few years ago and the proliferation of lines that are overweight is a reaction. This applies mostly to SW stuff, but there are a lot of trout lines now that are overweight too. Part of it is that rods are moving more and more to tip (fast) action, and people with less ability  buy rods that exceed their skills so they need more weight to make them bend, but still a lot of the rods are simply more powerful than the number would suggest. The result is total confusion, which makes it very challenging to find the optimal combination of rod and line especially for the neophyte.

JC

 

 

Edited by JonC

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I've gone the opposite way of BFD on the 8 vs. 9 choice, interestingly, which of course means you should definitely follow his advice, not mine based on his skill set and success ratio!

 

But ... I fished 8 weight for stripers almost all the time for 15 years, and Dick is right about their ability to land big fish - my PB striper was a 42" that I landed on an 8 weight, no problem.

 

Bonefishing in the Bahamas I fished an 8 weight 99% of the time.

 

About 10 years ago I found myself using the 9 more because of easier casting (for me) in the wind.  And then about 5 years back I started throwing  bigger flies for stripers and used a 10 most of the time, except when in really windy conditions, at which point I'd pull out the one-piece 11 weight I built, which I love with really big (10" & up flies).

 

You asked for one rod - reading this thread I'd concur with those who said get 2, a 8 and a 10.

 

Then you will need a 7 of course, and a 9.  Probably an 11.  Then you'll need back up rods in each weight.  Then you'll see how fun it is to catch small stripers and bones when it's not blowing on 8 weight glass rods.

 

:-) $$$$$$

 

 

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7 hours ago, abaus3 said:

Any suggestions on budget 9wt rods? Say around/under $300?

This could open up a whole can of worms, everybody has rod makers that they cater too so expect a lot of answers with different recommendations.

 

I don't know what particular action it is that you prefer, myself I prefer a rod with just a bit softer action with a bit more flex through the rod.

 

My 9 wt rod is a Orvis Access and I think it was the best rod Orvis made unfortunately it is discontinued. I believe the rod that would be the replacement would be the Recon which is outside your budget. They just did over the Clearwater which I hear is getting good reviews and within your budget.

 

To address your specific question I would recommend the TFO Mangrove, I have the 8 wt, my friend uses the 9 wt. It would be right at the top of you budget. I love this rod because it very much has the same type of action as my Access which was why I mentioned that rod in the beginning. 

 

This is a great rod and I am on my second one because I wore out the cork on my first and broke the tip when I snagged a guy  on a bike with balloon tires when he was bombing down the beach. Fortunately TFO has a great warranty and I had a new one in 10 days. ( something to keep in mind )

 

I think you would like the 9wt a lot. Just for grins this is a 38 inch Snook that I took last year on my 8wt. I have taken them up to 43 inches. A Snook this size is like a Striper of the same size but on steroids.

 

P1100301.JPG.0b0af3aa513a35b0057d66bbac9918ba.JPG

 

I think this one was 43

 

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One thought on rod choice that was recently being reviewed by a shop employee while I was picking out tying materials. Consider the warranty but also the service. If you break a TFO they have one of the fastest turnaround times of all the manufacturers. Location can impact this too. If you live on the East coast but have to ship your rod to WA then you add a few days going and coming. This may never be a factor but I know people who break rods regularly and this is a factor down the road.

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Echo's are nice as well with a great warranty. The 3 S is great though about $350 new, I picked 2 8wts up in the auction site for $200 each new.  The Ion XL I have not tried but Killie has - may check with him on his thoughts.

 

 

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