Bamboo Yesteryear Days

Discussion in 'Bamboo, Fiberglass & Classic Reels' started by William Wallace, May 17, 2008.

  1. William Wallace

    William Wallace Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2008
    Messages:
    622
    Likes Received:
    209
    Location:
    Chesterton IN
    Who all remmbers the days of the old bamboo fly rods and only the purest fished them. The days when you took the section over a steam kettle to straighten. So your ferrel(s) would not get stuck you rub then along side your nose to get the oils. After the strike you always held the rod more towards them so you would not over stress the bamboo. It is now the days of high modulus graphite. Not in my book. I still love using the wood. The fight is so much different. Appreciation of the true sport of fly fishing. I guess what I am getting at is how many of you still use a bamboo fly rod? Here is a pic of one of mine that I still use today. It was bought at Eddie Bauers when it was in Seattle. I mowed a lot of lawns to get this. The overall weight is outstanding but I love how the bamboo feels. Maybe this is the reason I had to get surgery on my casting arm :rofl:

    William "BRAVEHEART" Wallace Jr.
     
  2. Tim Lockhart

    Tim Lockhart Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    2,149
    Likes Received:
    737
    Location:
    Mill Creek, WA
    Nice pix. Gave me a case of Hardy envy...:thumb:
     
  3. Ron Eagle Elk

    Ron Eagle Elk Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2003
    Messages:
    1,806
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    Yelm, WA, USA.
    I have a couple of old South Bend 359's that still cast very nicely and my wife has two Montague Sunbeams that still work very well. In addition, we each have a 7'6" 2/2 for 4 weight made by John Channer from Colorado and I have an 8'6" Quadrate for 6 wgt made by William Taylor from PA.

    We have our share of graphite and glass rods too, but nothing fishes like the lovely reed.
     
  4. Nick Riggs

    Nick Riggs I've been known to fish from time to time...

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2006
    Messages:
    482
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Bamboo kicks ass, but a nice graphite rod - $400 bucks, a 'boo rod - $1500.
     
  5. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2004
    Messages:
    8,635
    Likes Received:
    2,982
    Location:
    Your City ,State
    Will,

    I fish bamboo for trout, but not any longer for steelhead. In fact I have a few too many bamboo rods, but thankfully they don't take up much space. Maybe I'll pick up a nice 4 wt someday, as my lightest line weights are 5s.

    Nice looking rod in your photo. Is that a British made Sharpes that EB used to carry? I saw a couple Powell rods in the downtown store many years ago.

    BTW, steam isn't hot enough to straighten bamboo. The easiest way to get it hot enough to become thermo-elastic is to turn an electric stove burner on high and hold the bamboo section over the heat until it's ready to straighten.

    Although bamboo has a feel not duplicated by other rod making materials, I haven't found fishing with bamboo to be any "truer" sport than with other rods. I think it's a little more about the feel and using a hand-crafted piece of art to cast and fish with.

    Sg
     
  6. Canedawg

    Canedawg Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1969
    Messages:
    203
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    .
    You do not have to pay $1500

    for a quality bamboo rod. You can buy older production models for far less then that. The shorter the rod the more it will cost, which works out well for people in the west who fish bigger streams.

    These older rods such as Heddon, W.M. Granger, or Phillipson in the 8'6" to 9' can be had in good condition for around $350, and sometime quite abit less. This means the tips may have been scarffed,and they will not be pristine, but they are good solid rods for less then the price of new graphite.

    I fish bamboo quite often along with fiberglass, and a sweet Hexagraph. I find the older rod material to be more to my taste. In fact, I am waiting on a custom built medium fast Mcfarland Fiberglass rod right now.

    For those of you who have just recently gotten into flyfishing, or for those who have not ventured into the older rod building technology, I would suggest giving some of the older rods a try. I suspect you may find yourself asking " why the hell did I spend all that money on a new graphite rod, when I could have been fishing these rods for hafe the price."
     
  7. jeff bandy

    jeff bandy Make my day

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2006
    Messages:
    2,704
    Likes Received:
    955
    Location:
    Edmonds, Wa.
    You do not have to pay $1500

    Scarffed? Is that when the tip has been broken off and then repaired?
    If so, doesn't that change the action of the rod quite a bit?
    Jeff
     
  8. hedburner

    hedburner Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    881
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    Mount Vernon, we're the Sketch in the heart of Ska
    Broke my old monty last year. It wasn't a great rod but I did like the way it casted. Caught a bunch of searuns with that rod. Would like to get a nicer one some day. Also want to get one of those McFarland presentation rods maybe a 7.5 foot 4 wt. Some time this summer I'll order one up.
    Question, how about some of those up and coming bamboo rod makers you see on eBay. Usually those rods are being sold in the 500-700 $ range. Would any of those be a good buy?
     
  9. ericfreeman

    ericfreeman New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2006
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Point Roberts, WA
    I don't own anything other than bamboo. Several pristine Wright&McGill Victorys, Granger Specials, one Heddon Black Beauty and one homebuilt by someone else. All 9 footers. Nothing like casting a real silk fly line with a bamboo rod! And, yes, I have two silk lines, a 5wt and a 6wt. Makes fishing more enjoyable for an old duffer like me to use vintage tackle.

    Eric
     
  10. Canedawg

    Canedawg Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1969
    Messages:
    203
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    .
    Scarfed does mean

    having a section's tip being repaired. Any section of the rod can be scarfed. If it is done right, it will not change the action.
     
  11. Rob Zelk

    Rob Zelk I swing, therefore i am.

    Joined:
    May 20, 2004
    Messages:
    622
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Steelhead Central
    Hey Salmo, why don't you fish bamboo for steelhead anymore?
     
  12. Dustin Bise

    Dustin Bise Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2007
    Messages:
    3,086
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    509
    where is the classic fly box to go with it?
     
  13. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2004
    Messages:
    8,635
    Likes Received:
    2,982
    Location:
    Your City ,State
    Rob,

    When the choice was bamboo or fiberglass, the weight difference between the two is negligible. However, I have a 9 and 9.5' bamboo that weigh nearly 8 oz, while my 9.5' 8 wt graphite weighs just a shade over 4 oz. The heavy tip wt and heavier line wt is very noticeable after a long day's fishing.

    I have thought about getting a bamboo Spey rod from Bob Clay tho . . . and then I come to my senses.

    Sg
     
  14. ShuksanRodCo.

    ShuksanRodCo. New Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Bellingham, WA
  15. Greg Armstrong

    Greg Armstrong Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2005
    Messages:
    1,495
    Likes Received:
    608
    Location:
    Pugetropolis
    This bamboo addiction has become a bad disease for me. Here goes;

    1 Winston
    1 Orvis
    1 US Net and Twine (my oldest; made in the 1890's by Edwards and Thomas)
    1 Leonard
    1 South Bend with "comficient" grip (this was my Grandfathers)
    2 Thomas rods (one a "Dirigo" and one a "Special")
    2 Heddons (Great Uncles rods)
    2 A.J. Thramers' (current Oregon bamboo rodmaker)

    Then there's the antique fly reel collection; Youngs with red agate line guards, Allcocks, Hardys, Pfluegers, etc.

    I just like the tradition of our sport and the "feel" and "soul" of the old stuff! Greg