Switch conversion experiment

Discussion in 'Rod Building' started by Southsound, Jan 12, 2011.

  1. Southsound

    Southsound Steve Cole - Nisqually and Adjacent Environs

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    OK... I can't really help myself sometimes when it comes to dinking with rods. Recently I got my hands on an older San Francisco era Scott PowR-Ply two piece 8 weight 9.5 footer that had been a custom build for the original owner. I didn't invest much so thought I would give it a facelift ala switch casting.

    It had funky old components and adownlocking reel seat. I removed that seat, replacing it with a Gatti saltwater uplocking seat, built a lower grip, extended the upper grip for two handed casting and replaced all of the guides on the lower section. I am about to do the epoxy for the guides then I need to explore lines. For overhand casting I figure a SA Steelhead WF8F will do just fine but for Skagit and/or Scandi, I need some suggestions. I have heard from others that these kinds of conversions does not necessarily make the rod a "true" switch rod - that taper and actions are specific to switch casting but with the plethora of various lines out there now geared to two handed casting, I can't help but believe that I can find a good match for this rod. Any constructive thoughts would be really appreciated...

    Thanks

    Steve Cole
     
  2. Bert Kinghorn

    Bert Kinghorn Formerly "nextcast"

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    At 9ft-6in, I wonder if you would ever need to engage a bottom hand for casting? That rod should easily do any Spey or overhead cast you want to make single-handed.
     
  3. Southsound

    Southsound Steve Cole - Nisqually and Adjacent Environs

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    Thanks for that constructive comment?

    Anyway, as the title states - this is experimental for me. I took to heart the comments by Bob Meiser when he describes his "909" series of two handed rods which as the name suggests are 9 ft 9 in long... here, in summary, are the parts of that description that I was intrigued by (my emphasis added):

    "The short two handed fly rod is a multi-dimensional tool....
    They have delivery potentials for both fresh and salt water environments. When married to the correct line systems; they are effective for both two handed over head and anchor point Spey deliveries, and can be used for pursuing literally any game fish that will come to the fly… All with the great advantage of allowing this diversity while utilizing minimal graphite, and minimal expended energy.

    The flex and power of the 909 rods are far different then typical single hand fly rods. They are short two handed rods that are designed specifically to eliminate the physical burden of single hand double haul delivery … And especially to aide anglers in repetitious search casting with extreme shooting heads and big bugs."

    The blank I am converting, while a PowR-Ply blank, has a surprising amount of authority and is stiffer than the Scott g-series blanks for lighter lines. With the lower grip, the newly configured Scott PowR-Ply blank has an overall length of 9 feet 11 inches, a couple of inches longer than the Meiser 909.

    I wanted to explore the casting advantages that Mr. Meiser mentions and with a total outlay of under $100 so far, I figure this is a great way to do it.

    Anyway, still would appreciate thoughts on how best to line this beast for two handed casting...

    Thanks

    Steve Cole
     
  4. Porter

    Porter Active Member

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  5. Southsound

    Southsound Steve Cole - Nisqually and Adjacent Environs

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    Thanks... any thoughts on grainage that might be a fit? I was considering something in the 300 to 320 grain range.

    Steve
     
  6. socallies23

    socallies23 Member

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    Maybe try between 380-410 range and if your running t-8 or heavier to t-18 see what happens? Beulah makes both a scandi compact style head i love it on my switch and i have the skagit style there only 50 bucks and maybe call them down there Bryce is a cool guy. Maybe weigh the sa steelhead 8 weight line figure a distance of line that loads the rod well. and forget the running line. then that may give you a starting point. I made a 10 foot 5 weight trout switch/ mini spey for swinging sculpins built my head from a older head that my lab chewed on seems to do fine. Long story short is enjoy the experiment & Never trust a baby lab.
     
  7. Southsound

    Southsound Steve Cole - Nisqually and Adjacent Environs

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    Yep... as it is, I have an Tonic 410 for my Beulah switch so I gave it a go today with the Scott. Tho' a slightly slower stroke was needed to load, the rod definitely responded well. I think I am in business! Thanks for the helpful feedback...

    Steve
     

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