So it begins...

Noob - Chapter Two
Took my new (1st and only) spey rod out to the field along side the house. Can't get to water yet but still jonesing to try and throw the thing.
Initial observation, don't bring your Lab and two Newfs along for the ride. Anything airborne (even if it is just a piece of yarn tied to a leader) is fair game for the Lab and any running Lab is obviously just a chew toy for the Newfs. Back to the house with them.
Didn't take very long (a couple of so-called casts) for me to realize that I am in a rarefied air here. I need some serious instruction to be able to coax this beast into a minimal semblance of performance. And in the videos you guys make it look so effortless. I certainly feel the potential there but with the exception of one cast I felt like the Spey Police would show up at any minute and seize the rod for the desecration I was doing it. I can recognize a big learning curve when I see one.
Second of my questions (there isn't a limit is there because before this is a done deal I will have plenty?). Are you really taping the sections of the rod together? Is that a personal affectation or something that anyone with any intelligence does? Doesn't it affect the rod's performance? What kind of tape? How wide? Just one wrap?
I have no problem confessing ignorance and I always bow to superior intellects.
Thanks for any help.

Evan Virnoche

i glued my ferrules together way stiffer load, i also removed the bottom 3 guides to help accomdate shooting more running line


Active Member
I never tape rods, some do that on camping trips when you keep your rod together and strung up after a float. I just wax the shit out of my ferrules and have not had a separation.
In the main part of my fishing *Fall and Winter* I keep 2 of my rods taped together with clear 3M **One full turn on the female ferrule then start the spiral wrap ending with one full turn on the male end (about 4 turns)** no reason other than I can hop in and be into the fish in about 15-20 minutes from my home. Having rod racks and a place to store a assembled 13+ is the only reason I keep them taped. If I did not have the room or transportation for them I would be taking them apart. Like Darthmonkey said "Wax the shit out of my ferrules" is another great choice if you don't want to tape. As long as you keep an eye on the ferrules and check those throughout the day to see if they are still snug then you will be fine.
In regards to your casting just remember that these two-handed set ups all but require the line to be anchored to the water in some degree. I am a beginner too but find that it's much easier to make progress on the water!

Playing devil's advocate, you can tie "grass leaders" that give you a bit of resistance when practicing on land. Just tie a bunch of 6-8in mono pieces together (leave about an inch on each tag end) until it reaches 10-15 ft in length. The resistance from the leader on the grass should (kind of) simulate the adhesion of the line to the water.
I don't know whether taping ferrules vs. not taping has ever been proved by objective testing. In fact, it would be an interesting problem to design and carry out such a testing procedure. In the meanwhile, results are vague and anecdotal, like sunscreen vs. skin cancer. Here's my fragment of data: I always tape, and have never split a ferrule in about 17 years.

It's faster and easier to tape than to think about it. Use standard electrical tape; make a spiral wrap from about one inch above to one inch below each ferrule joint. Reuse tape 6-8 times, until the ends no longer stick to the rod. Between uses, just wind the piece of tape around the blank, near the ferrule.

About learning to spey cast: You didn't mention your line, and good fit between line and spey rod is essential, and tricky to achieve with spey tackle. For a self-teaching beginner, it's hard to know whether your outfit is working with you or against you.

James Mello

Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"
Long belly lines will often torque lines much harder than short belly lines. Snake rolls are especially good at twisting and loosening rod ferrules. I used to not tape until I threw an XLT out along with the entire rod tip. How it didn't explode is beyond me, but I was lucky.

In short, it's cheap insurance, allows you to put the ferrules together without having to *jam* them together, avoids putting wax on the ferrules which attracts grit and keeps things from flying apart.


beads are NOT flies and snagging is just ghetto
remember your fierst attempt at casting a single hander? wasnt pretty, and getting just 20 feet of line and leader to straighten out took lots of practice, right ? yep, you're mostly starting from scratch again. i've heard some well known instructors and guides say that its often easier for people that have no single handed muscle memory. i think 30 years of sh casting stiil makes speycasting harder for me too. hopefully you find joy in learning something new !


Active Member
My first two-hander was from a PNW manufacturer. I called him about taping and he told me there was no need because the fit was tight. Guy was right, my biggest problem with that rod and the two I have bought after that is getting them apart at the end of the day. It can start out pretty cool in the morning over here and be damn warm by the end of the day and it was tough to get them apart. A buddy had me use his wax and I use it on all of my rods now, both single and two hand. Have never had any separation, and I can get them apart at the end of the day. I wipe them down at the end of the day to get the dirt off and apply a little bit more the next day.


Active Member
I definitely agreed with the feedback on practicing in water. Find somewhere shin to knee deep and play around.

As for taping, it's been at least ten years since I gave up on taping, waxing ferrules, etc. and have seen no negative impact. I'm not sure why I ever did it in the first place other than I thought I was supposed to.
Thanks for all the input guys.
I guess like in all things, everyone has an opinion and it isn't until after the fact that we have definitive answers. The rod is a Sage 8136-4. I have four other Sage rods and have never had an issue with any of them coming apart (hence my surprise when I first heard about taping). I can see both issues (losing a section or cracking ferrule). I have always operated out of the "expect the best, prepare for the worst" camp so I guess I will tape, at least for the the foreseeable future.
Thanks again for the input.