horsefly

TFO Tactical Surf Rod

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Greatest customer service in the industry plus top flight rods. They’re FlyRods and SurfRods are widely praised. Not as well noticed are the light tackle conventional and spinning offerings. On several occasions I had a warrantee Rod back to me in six days total.

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From a visual standpoint it looks like they switched from low rider guides to a K guide layout (which I’d much rather have) from the original TFO and the butt of the rod appears to have a fish scale styled shrink wrap on the grip  (I don’t know if that’s textured or just for looks). 
 

I will tell you this. When I worked for Red Top Sporting Goods 1-2 days a week for a few summers these were the rods they made the biggest margins on by an absolute country mile (65-70%) and therefore tried to push them out the door as often as possible. They were also the only rod/manufacturer in the entire shop (and they carry just about every popular brand) where if you purchased a TFO surf rod, and you broke it within one year of that purchase you could simply come in and exchange it for another one right off the shelf. Some people thought that was great, but I did not. Certainly a plus for a newer angler. 

 

They also mislabeled their 10’6 2-6oz rod as a 2-8 oz rod for over a year before correcting it which caused tons of problems. I owned an 11’ 3-8 and it was simply too fast and hated throwing the bottom end of its rating. It was by far the most commonly broken and returned rod for any customer fishing the canal. Now that could simply be the case for a number of reasons such as the sheer amount of these rods that were being used due to their price point, the fact they were extremely fast and unforgiving, the extremely unique (and suspect) warranty that makes you wonder the cost of manufacturing/quality control etc., or the fact that the owners made it a point to employees to push these out the doors (of which I never took part in). I’m a Firefighter/Paramedic that worked there on my days off to just be around fishing and help fisherman out. 


Some guys really liked their TFO rods and it certainly wasn’t all bad by any stretch, but full disclosure this is literally what Red Top’s rod builder/rod repair guy Stan’s workbench looked like every single day during June, July, and August....covered in broken TFOs.
 

These new rods may be better, they certainly have features that I like more than the old ones.....but just keep it in mind. And for those guys who have had nothing but great luck with them, I hope they continue to serve you well. 

76EC43CC-BEEE-4204-BC6F-F1BB87FE7085.jpeg

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Just now, Evil-Bay said:

I still have my original 9' and 10'6" rods when they 1st came out.  They still work great and im so glad i never traded them in for the new ones.

 

Do you not like the new ones for some reason? The only change I noticed between gen 1 & 2 was a switch to identical but fuji branded guides. I thought the achilles heel of the gen 1's were the fragile guide inserts. I was told the new gen 3's have redesigned the blank slightly and that may have to do with the switch to K frame guides. I haven't heard any feedback on the newest version yet, but I will say, I generally prefer the K guides (especially on shorter lengths).

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Nothing wrong with the new version, just not a fan of that electric blue color.  Never liked to stand out of a crowd....   Plus I'm old fashioned, if it ain't broke, leave it alone!  Plus plus, I never had an issue with the guides and I do like the low rider guides.

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