The Great 8wt Steelhead Rod Debate

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Jason Decker, Oct 6, 2005.

  1. Nooksack Mac

    Nooksack Mac Active Member

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    I have a 9-foot, 3-piece 8-weight Gold Cup GC9083, marketed by Bass Pro Shops. It's a nicely appointed fast action rod for not much money.
     
  2. ahab

    ahab Rick L.

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    I have the sage launch 8 weight and it is what I use for everything but trout. It is a good rod as long as you're not throwing super heavy tips with heavy flys. It may be that I'm not a great caster but it seems too flexy under those conditions. I also have the fli 5 weight and if I could do it again I would have gotten the fli 8 wieght instead of the launch. The fli is stiffer and it casts well no matter what I have on the end of it. I would say if you cast faster get the fli.
     
  3. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    Jason,

    From all these posts I can glean only that the only bad 8 wt is your dad's old piece of junk. Everyone seems to love their 8 wt. Maybe there aren't any bad ones. Or maybe the appeal of every rod is more subjective than objective. In any case, I don't think this thread can help you one whit at selecting a new 8 wt. You can only help yourself by trying several and assessing which brand and model is most appealing to your personal subjective prejudice.

    Sincerely,

    Salmo g.
     
  4. Salmo_Gairdneri

    Salmo_Gairdneri Another Fly Fisher

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    Agreed 100% but, for what it is worth, when I got my 8100-4 XP my 8100-3 RPL became a utility boat rod.

    But if a person could scare an 8100-3 up for $200, that'd be a -very- good steelhead tool.

    -tony
     
  5. Flyfishsteel

    Flyfishsteel New Member

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    TFO Ticr all the way my friend! Easily the BEST rod under 300.00. A super-close second is St Croixs 9'6"/10' Legend Ultra at 330.00.

    The Ticr loads any sink-tip at will, and casts like a dream.
    The Professional model is nice, but the Ticr is Better!

    After owning an 8wt for a month now, the rumor is true about the Ticr:"it casts like an XP, at 400.00 less"

    PS, the ONLY drawback about the Ticr is the reel seats. When you tighten the threads it sounds and feels like your nails on a chalkboard! Also I will continue to pray that they will make a Ticr in either 9'6" or 10' . Doing this will end any search for the perfect 8wt Steelhead rod under 300.00
     
  6. Luv2flyfish

    Luv2flyfish Another Flyfisherman

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    Just an addition of a couple pennies from another fish bum.....

    It could very well be only a few months after you spring for your 8wt that you will be thinking that its "over-gunning" for your targeted species. Realistically........

    Silvers......in WA average about what 7 or 8 pounds. The occasional big fish (10 or better)

    Pinks......in WA average about what 4 to 6 pounds. The occasional big fish......to 7 or 8 pounds.....MAYBE

    Steelhead........in WA average (summer 5 to 8 pounds) the occasional big summerrun to maybe 12. Winter run average is realistically......10 to 12 pounds. Yeah you could tie into a upper teens or 20's or larger fish.....depending on how much time you put in.

    You could find yourself thinking that that 8wt is like shooting sparrows with an 8 guage shot gun.

    My 8wts were collecting dust all summer in alaska, but my 7wt was just about right for chums, silvers, kings, and pike. I havent caught a steelhead on my 7wt single hander yet....mainly becuase I dont fish for steelhead anymore on single handers. However, before anyone jumps down my throat for posting this..........IF I were to ever fish for steelhead with single handed rods anywhere in WA or Oregon.....I would most certainly leave my 8wts at home and my 7wt would go. Yes, I would fish my 7wt for winter fish and sink tips too. By no means am I saying this is the only way.........but it is a consideration to make. Realistically - every fish in this state can easily be landed and not over played or under played or whatever on a 7wt. Just my pennies. I could have certainly saved myself some money in the long run if I had thought about this myself a few years ago. Tight Lines. Jay
     
  7. Sloan Craven

    Sloan Craven Active Member

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    I have a TFO 8wt for steelhead when I'm not using my Spey rod. I like it a lot, it casts great. Its just a great rod. Sage is probably a better rod but is gonna cost you more. Depending on the waters your fishing, you may want to consider a small (8wt) TFO spey rod. The Red Shed fly shop has a deal for a rod, line, backing, leader, reel, and a DVD. All you need is the fly.
     
  8. Rob Ast

    Rob Ast Active Member

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    I am in exactly the same situation currently. Just started fishing this year with a sage rpl 690-4 (free from a good friend)and am now looking to get an 8wt. Has anyone fished the orvis clearwater? They make a 10ft 8wt at just about $200. How would this stack up with the Fli or Ticr (which only comes ina 9ft)?
     
  9. FT

    FT Active Member

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    Jay,

    As much as I like and respect you, I must disagree with you on the 7wt for winter steelhead. In winter flies from #2 on up to #2/0 or even larger are the norm and a 7wt is not the best choice for casting such large flies. Can it be done, of course; but just like a 5 wt is not the best tool for tossing #6 or #4 weighted Woolley Buggers because 5 wts don't really have the backbone to cast #6 weighted Woolley Buggers with ease and so make fishing #4 Woolley Buggers not something you want to do all day. Likewise, using a 7 wt for tossing #2 to #2/0 or larger is possible, but not much fun.

    In other words, the 5 wt with weighted #6 Woolley Buggers or the 7 wt with #1/0 marabou spiders requires a pretty open loop with a much longer delivery stroke to avoid overloading the rod tip on the cast, which is why I disagree with you on the 7 wt for winter runs.

    Therefore, I think an 8 wt or even better a 9 wt is better for winter steelhead simply because they are designed to cast the large flies. Note, it has nothing to do with a rod's ability to fight and land a fish, it has everything to do with casting the large flies used in winter. Any good 7 wt could easily fight and land steelhead into the mid-teens, even larger for someone who has a fair amount of experience landing hot, bright fish; but casting #1/0's is not much fun with a 7 wt.

    Heck, back when I was young and poor with only one good fly rod, I fished for and landed northern pike up to 30#'s with a 6 wt while casting #3/0 long shank streamers at them. But I wouldn't consider doing so now, I'd use an 8 or 9 wt on them now because casting those large flies would be far easier.

    Back in the dark ages prior to getting my first 2-hander in 1992, I used a 9 wt in winter and a 6 wt single hander in summer. And I remember one time when I took out my 9' 4 wt for summer runs; but found it not up to the task of casting #6 steelhead skaters. Yeah I could sort of cast them, but only about 45' and had to bust my butt to get that far; whereas, with my 9' 6 wt, 70' was not difficult at all with the same skaters.

    I remember well back in the dark ages (pre-internet and when the only fly fishing magazine was Fly Fishermen) of the 1960's folks were told to match the rod line wt to the mazimum size of the flies they were going to use, not the size of the fish they were likely to encounter. IMHO, this is still the best way to go about deciding on what line wt rated rod to get.

    This is also why I use a 16' 11 wt for winter steelhead. The 11 wt with a long-belly lines allows me to cast large flies easily out to 100' without stripping or shooting line, and if I desire lets me fish well beyond 100' on those few runs where you can't cast too far to cover all the lies. A smaller line weight rod would not allow me to do the same. Again, it has nothing to do with the ability of the rod to fight and land the fish, it has everything to do with the ability of the line to easily cast the size flies I'm using.
     
  10. Luv2flyfish

    Luv2flyfish Another Flyfisherman

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    FT - You bring up some great points and I have to agree with you in certain aspects.

    A 7wt is certainly not the tool for throwing large, heavily weighted flies......on a floating line. When we're throwing at winter steelhead we are (in large part) shooting ourselves in the foot if we are throwing a floating line. Most of the winter/spring fishing is done off of tips. Tips get the fly down thus eliminating us to have to use tungsten cones and double layered lead wrapped shanks on those 2/0's. I no longer use ANY weight on a fly. At least for me and the rivers I fish I have completely quit using weight. I certainly change tips back and forth alot though. An unweighted fly off of a sink tip can still be delivered in a mighty tight loop.

    I like an XLT cut for tips for a winter line on my 2 handers. No problems at all throwing distance with winter sized flies.......but they consist of nothing more than some marabou or bunny and thread ( or maybe some burned goose shoulder ;) . This winter I am going to give my midspey another trial before I completely write off that line (a trusty XLT will be near by though). My 9150 is more than likely going to stay at home and collect dust this winter. The 7141 has become my go-to stick for all applications. Its all just a matter of personal preference ultimately. As long as the guy casting the rod is putting the fly where he stands a reasonable chance at catching the fish he is after........then its all good right? :beer2:
     
  11. troutfanatic

    troutfanatic A day not spent wasted is.....wasted.

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    iagree iagree iagree Had to say it three times. Used a TFO 8 weight TiCr today. Used it with a heavy sink tip around 400 grains, and have used SA, Teeny and Rio lines with it as well.

    For the money, there is no better eight weight. I do wish that they would make it in a 9'6" though. I have tried the Pro series in same weight and it too cast well. However I do not feel that it would handle sink tips as well. It would do the job but just not as crisply. If that makes sense.:confused:

    It will be the next rod that I purchase in the about a month and a half.

    Plus and warranty is only $20 bucks. Try it out of course in the rod program but I bet you'll like it alot.
     
  12. Jason Decker

    Jason Decker Active Member

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    Right on guys! Thanks for all the wisdom and suggestions.:ray1: :ray1: :ray1: I am going out early tommorow AM and will try the PRO 8wt. against the TiCR.:hmmm: I hope it won't be too wet!bawling:

    After reading your comments, I will be somewhat skeptical to see it out perform the TiCR.:rolleyes:

    I have the Sage FLi set to try out when I bring back the TFO's to Chris, my only concern on the FLi is they are $295.

    So right now, I am heading in the TiCR direction!:beer2:

    Also, as far as the Spey Rod suggestions... I went to Aaron's River Run Angler's Spey Demo last weekend and it was a blast, I hope to get a few more of those in. but the spey setups seem a bit spendy, but it is on my "must have list" right after my Clackacraft and 3wt. creek rod!

    My Dream Quiver: 3wt Winston Biix, (My best so far)5wt Winston Biix, 6wt (2nd rod), 8wt TFO or Sage, Spey Rod ! Hopefully that will stop the addiction!

    This has been a fun post so far! let's keep it going!
    :beer2: ptyd ptyd :thumb:
     
  13. HMCFisherman

    HMCFisherman Member

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    I have a very similar quiver to your "dream" quiver---B2X in 3 and 5, but then the madness continues. You have the 6 and 7 wt TFO, the 8wt Powell, the 10wt Sage RPLXi, etc, etc. Beware the addiction, or on the other hand embrace it. I love all my rods, and seem to know the perfect place or situation for fishing (or at least justifying) each one. Being a gear junkie is kinda fun!
     
  14. Dan

    Dan Member

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    Take a look at the Orvis Trident TLS 9'6' 8 weight ($335). It has a three inch extension which makes two-handed overhead casting possible. Also facilitates a modified spey cast. I've been fishing it with an SA Steelhead line, but will move to shooting heads for even more distance. Extra length helps with mending, too.
     
  15. Randy Knapp

    Randy Knapp Active Member

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    With a WF9F line or equivalent weight sink tip or shooting head, I think a TFO TiCr will cast any fly you want for steelhead. I have one and love it for big fish and/or big weighted fly applications.

    Randy