Entry level light rods

yuhina

Tropical member
#1
As summer is approaching there are more opportunities for those light sticks...

I was wondering what is your ideal entry level (under $350) light spey (6weight or below) choice?

I have 2 entry level rods I am really impressed, simply impressed by the performance of those rods not only their friendly price tags.

1) LL Bean Silver Ghost 8 weight (5 weight in spey rating) 11'. This rod is quick, light and fun to fish. I have been using this stick for trout fishing for few months and had a blast with it. Light and responsive. really impressed with this rod. Several lines I like, 320 Rio Scandi short, 350 skagit short

2) TFO DeerCreek 13' 6/7 this rod is such a joy to cast, light and well balanced feel - the hallmark action of MKS series. (Thanks Mike and Bob for the great design!) the lines I like 360 grain Rage. Good control and very "relax" when fish this rod...
 

Panhandle

Active Member
#2
Loop multi 12/7

One of the best rods I've ever cast. Too bad its no longer being produced. If you can get your hands one, grab it.
 

fredaevans

Active Member
#4
Not going to put 'My Dog into this fight,' the question I'd pose back is what are you fishing for (fish/weight/typical water flows), when/where. As odd as it may seem (probably not) in a given stream flow of 500 extra/less cfs' may require a rod change - up or down (fish dependent).
But I have too many rods.
:>)
 

Salmo_g

Well-Known Member
#6
I did an experiment a few years ago to see if there was a cheap Spey rod possibility, so there might be better buys currently. I bought a Forecast (made by Rainshadow) blank and kit. It's 11' 6" for a 6/7 wt for about $100. Of course you have to "roll" your own, but that's plenty easy for anyone who's not all thumbs. It's a bit of a fast action rod, but easy enough to cast. I use a 6 wt short belly line or a 400 gr Skagit head on it with good casting and fish catching results. I liked it well enough that I bought a second kit for back up. I really like it for small brushy winter run streams where I constantly whack alder limbs with the tip section - still haven't broken one. But it also gets some summer time service too. The main thing about building one up from a kit is that both the rear and fore grips are too long and need to be trimmed back. Anyone contemplating building one contact me for dimensions.

Sg
 

McNasty

Canyon Lurker
#7
ll beans a good choice, i have a streamlight ultra in 7/8 and even though iv'e not cast many other rods to campare it to its very nice IMO. ive been told by multiple spey guys who use them as a backup that they usually end up putting their high end rods away to fish their streamlight because they like it more. i think theyr around $200
 

yuhina

Tropical member
#10
I agree! Echo rod is definitely a great buy regarding to it's performance!

I had the Decho 5122 for a while and love the soft regressive "Dredger"action a lot. But this little rod is a little bit lack of fighting power to my targeted species... so I have to pass it to a friend. Still miss it though... one day I will buy another 5122 for sure!

Just for the record, I really think Decho 7130 is an amazing all around stick!
 

yuhina

Tropical member
#11
Loop multi 12/7

One of the best rods I've ever cast. Too bad its no longer being produced. If you can get your hands one, grab it.
Adam,

Good call... Multi 7120 is a great rod. I used this rod for few weeks and really like it. A typical strong action scandinavian type of stick, not as crispy as the Guildeline LeCie series. But deep flex enough to sling 500 skagit head with easy. The only minor complain I have about this rod is it is a bit "boring" to fight fish on this rod.
 

Greg Holt

Active Member
#12
Salmo_g nailed it with the Forecast 1166 6/7, but I think it's discontinued as of 6 months ago. If any of you come across a blank, you'd be smart to grab it--it's close to perfect for small to medium brushy rivers with fish to 15 pounds as a target, but can reach 100 feet when necessary. It's very versatile, very affordable, very durable (but I rat-holed a spare blank anyway)--I can't imagine a better short rod for the money. Always a touch of sadness when a potential classic is discontinued for the sake of change.

He's also right about the grips needing to be shorter--I built mine with Batson's switch grips (stock) and got the result I was looking for, and their smaller diameter suits the rod as well or better than cut-down spey grips. It has become my default rod from June thruough November.
Greg
 

yuhina

Tropical member
#13
Forecast definitely makes some good blanks... I have built some of their single handed rod in the past, but never have a chance to use their two handed blanks... It is good to know they do well in this field too.
 

Salmo_g

Well-Known Member
#14
Yuhina,

In that series of Forecast Spey blanks, it was the 11' 6" one that shines. The longer heavier line blanks build fishable rods too, but each longer one was increasingly a dog, relative to other far superior rods in the marketplace.

If the Forecast is no longer available, a price increase to the upgraded graphite in the Buleah blank in the same length and line weight is really nice. But it's not so low end.

Forecast introduced a new line of Spey blanks 2 or 3 years ago, but I have no experience with them. Haven't heard of how good they are.

Sg
 

yuhina

Tropical member
#15
Sg,

Thanks for the information! Great to know this, my friend is just asking me about building some short rods for surf fishing. I have cast the Beulah platinum series and was really impressed by the feel of those rods... 7132... however, as you mentioned, their blanks are not in the entry level.

Mark