Need new seven weight

Discussion in 'Rod Building' started by Wayne Kohan, Apr 13, 2006.

  1. Wayne Kohan

    Wayne Kohan fish-ician

    I think I need a new 7 weight rod, as I own a 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 8 weight. My life seems somehow unbalanced. I'm thinking I would likely get the most use out of this rod doing some nymphing for steelhead. I currently use my 8 wt for that, a 9 foot Orvis (older model, I believe the RM series.) In any case I'm thinking of making a 10 footer, to help with the line mending that goes with nymphing. I wonder if any of you have experience with ten footers, and what your opinion might be on casting and using one. I'm thinking it should be no big change over a 9 foot rod, but I've been known to be wrong a few times in my life.

    Anyway, I've been looking at several blanks over the internet and have narrowed it down to about 15 choices. I've been looking at blanks in the $150- 300 range. Cheaper is better of course, if the blank is as good. My current favorite rods that I own are a St Croix Legend Ultra and a Sage VPS that I built.

    I'm leaning toward the St Croix SC IV (the Legend Ultra) again, or maybe the Sage VT2 (which is the new replacement for the VPS.) I was wondering about the Sage SLT as well, as it weighs by far the least of any blanks I looked at. The VT2 comes in only 9 1/2 foot though. I was also looking at the Gatti blanks and wonder if any have experience with them. Also has anyone had any experience with the Talon rods or blanks?

    I certainly would welcome any comments anyone would have on any other ideas you might have in regard to a rod for this purpose. Also I might want to use this rod for bass and the stately carp.

    Thanks for your input.

  2. Ron Eagle Elk

    Ron Eagle Elk Active Member

    Darn, Wayne. Wish you would have posted this a week ago. I just gave away a 7 wgt with all the hardware. All that needed to be done was wrap the guides.

  3. James Mello

    James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

    Gatti makes a nice casting blank, but if you're nymphing, I think your asking for a world of hurt. The feel and nice lightness of the Gatti's come at a price, and at this point they have the reputation of being very "fragile". Considering the price of a Gatti blank, I'd say that it's a bad choice for a steelhead rod that you plan on nymphing with.

    The VPS isn't a bad choice overall though. Considering that it's been phased out by Sage, you may be able to find it cheap. A vendor you may not have though of is CTS - Ask Ron at AATF about them, I think they're about as pimp as you can get. I've seen them, cast them, and love them. So far I can't justify the cost, but that's the only impediment. You'll have to wait a bit for them to roll the blank for you, but they are within the price range you're talking about.
  4. FlyShopKristin

    FlyShopKristin Going Online

    Agreed - Gatti makes a sweet rod, but I wouldn't choose a Gatti blank if your intent is nymphing. CTS would be a great option - some of the Rainshadow models would fit your budget/need too. Rainshadow is a local company - and the RX7+ and RX8+ models are US made, if that's a consideration for you.
  5. Wayne Kohan

    Wayne Kohan fish-ician

    I've seen some of the VPS blanks on sale, but none are longer than 9 foot. I'm thinking I would like at least 9 1/2 foot. I'm thinking if I'm doing a lot of nymphing that a super fast rod such as the Sage XP may not be such a good choice, as I would want my loops to stay somewhat open during casting.

    What is CTS? I'm not familiar with that company. I have used a Rainshadow spey blank to build a small spey rod. Now if I can learn to cast it well. (Practice!)

    Am I thinking right about getting a longer rod for this type of fishing? It seems it would be easier to mend long distances. Of course it would also be heavier to fish with all day. That's why I was leaning toward the Sage line as they seem to have about the lightest weight blanks. I was thinking of Loomis but I can't find any blanks over 9 foot.

  6. James Mello

    James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

    CTS is a pretty cool company out of New Zealand. The do some pretty damn good work for a lot of spey guys, and have a great overseas reputation.

    As for Rainshadow, that is also a reasonably good choice too. I don't know if the RX8+ comes in anything but 9 foot though.

    Another option for a 9'6" or the 10' range would be something from Dan Craft. I've got a couple of FT's that I've built and I'm working on a new Sig V right now, and it's pretty good stuff. It's also a tad cheaper than most others, without sacrificing anything in quality.

    But overall with the price range you're talking about, I'd give CTS a serious thought....
  7. kenai

    kenai New Member

    kristen's got it right! RAINSHADOW! i fish a 10' 6wt, really like it a lot. that extra
    foot makes the mending a lot easier. i spend all summer in alaska and i always take a lot of rods and i always end up fishing the r-shadow the most, i'm building
    a 10 wt right now for this summer, gonna try those alaskan kings on a fly rod and it's a r-shadow too. great blanks--fisheye--
  8. Derek Day

    Derek Day Rockyday

    I just bought a 10'6'' 7 wt. rainshadow online from custom tackle supply (they were the only place that I could find a 10'6'' that wasn't pushing $200), and if price is an issue--under $60 for the blank was nice. I haven't gotten or built it yet, so I can't really comment on quality, but I'm sure others might know. I plan to make it a switch rod with 3''-4'' rear handle for roll/spey casting and nymphing for big trout/steelhead. Also, you might want to take a look at mieser blanks.
  9. Mike Ediger

    Mike Ediger Active Member

    I am certainly not an expert, but I too have a St Croix LU, and a Sage VPS, but always seem to go for my Dan Craft rods. I use my Sig V exclusively for lighter stuff and my FT for heavier. The FT doesn't feel like the LU or VPS, but I only mentioned those because you have them as well.
    I made my FT with great hardware for $200 total. I would strongly consider it if I were you.
  10. riverdog

    riverdog Member

    I second (or third) the suggestion to go with a Dan Craft blank. They are outstanding blanks, and an absolute bargain. Dan is a great guy, and every time I think I know what I am going to build and how I am going to build it, when I call to place my order with Dan, I learn something from him that ends up improving the rod. He is great with follow-up questions, and he really knows which blanks are good for which applications, which guides will work best, etc.

    I am currently building a Signature V 9'6" 6-weight. My Gatti 6 weight broke when I fell on it on some rocks, and I just called Dan and told him what I wanted the rod to do, and feel like, and he steered me away from what I thought I wanted, and made me feel like I made the right choice. I test cast the rod with the guides taped on two nights ago, and I KNOW I made the right choice.

    My advice: Call Dan at 541-782-4404 and tell him what you are thinking of building and what you want to use it for, and you'll probably end up talking to him about rods and fishing for 1/2 hour.

    Good wraps,

  11. I echo what's been said here about Rainshadow. It's a great product at a very reasonable price. I've built three rods on RX7 blanks, including a 10' 6wt. The extra length of the ten footer does aid mending, and I haven't really noticed the extra weight. I have no qualms when it comes to putting a resonable strain on that rod. I've also built a 10 footer 8wt on a four piece SCV. I love the lightness, responsiveness, and sensitivity of that rod, but it's pricey and maybe a bit too delicate for heavy nymphing. Haven't tried Dan Craft, so I can't comment except to say that I've heard good things about his offerings. Good luck with whatever blank you choose.
  12. In_too_deep

    In_too_deep Member

    I've built and own the RX7+, RX8+, and several Dan Craft FT's. The slower action on the Rainshadows are sometimes better for fishing, but for casting I much prefer the FT's. And nothing sets the hook like a FT when you have a bunch of slack line to take up. You won't go wrong with any of these blanks, it does come down to personal preferences.
  13. Wayne Kohan

    Wayne Kohan fish-ician

    I finally called Dan Craft today and spoke with him. I've been waiting for his web site to come up, but it still hasn't yet. I ended up ordering a 10 ft 7 wt FT.

    Now it's time to decide on all the components.....

    Thanks for the help all.

  14. Mike Ediger

    Mike Ediger Active Member

    Great choice! :thumb: I am sure you will love the rod. I haven't casted that one, and it took me a little while to really learn to feel my FT load, and I don't think I come even close to utilizing the full potential of the rod, but I love mine.

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