Pick Your Fave Fly Rod Maker ( Yes...any material)

dragless

Active Member
#1
Well I have not stirred it up for at least two weeks: My end of winter/spring Unicorn pursuit has been a bust, and since I already know how many rods most of you have stashed! Let’s start an new topic-Who is your favorite fly rod maker?- yes, we are sticking with fly rods but you can go in any material direction you want.
I will start: I currently think it is Sage- Good range of rods, over the years( many years) very consistent with quality, offer many types of fly rods for varying tastes, and styles of casting.They also offer very good service when you have problems.In the past( long past) I was much more of a TnT guy and sent a lot of money to Winston as well.I like what TnT is doing recently, Winston ain’t doing it for me recently, except for the 8’ #4 Pure...Good god, if a monkey types long enough a novel it will make!
Paul Young is right up there for me too,but they have not pushed out a new rod in a few years, unfortunately, and they are kinda pricey. I like his old stuff though :) Young Para 15 is the shit.
OK >.....................Have at it, and give us some reasons( like great rod models), or service or...
 
#2
I have lots of favorites.

The first to come to mind is the late Tom Morgan, who owned Winston in the 1970's and 1980's, then formed Morgan Rodsmiths after he developed debilitating MS. When graphite came out, Tom applied his knowledge to the new material, and positioned Winston as a premier maker of both bamboo and graphite. Though he lost use of his arms and legs, he continued to be productive and creative until he passed away in 2017. Other hands made and finished great rods under his supervision, and he invented the Morgan Handmill that lots of bamboo rod makers use today. Tom and his wife Gerri are a big inspiration to us all.

Asbjorn Hoergaard was a Norwegian rod maker who was in a Nazi prison camp during WWII. While there, he designed rod making tools and rod tapers on toilet paper. After the war, he set up shop and made bamboo rods for many years. His rods were actually sold at Eddie Bauer in the 1960's and 1970's. Though I never met him or cast his rods, I've always admired his determination and dedication to the craft.

Though I'm a bamboo guy, I really admire Don Green, the founder of Sage. He was the rod designer at Fenwick in the 1960's, where he developed great fiberglass rods that I think transformed the industry, with great tapers and blank materials, and the innovative fiberglass "Ferrule-Lite" ferrule system. After Fenwick moved to California, he formed Sage, and developed great graphite rods that revolutionized the sport.

Finally, there are many other rod makers who I admire and learn a lot from, including Ray Gould, Tom Fulk, Don Anderson, Bob Milward, the late John Bokstrom, and all of the past and present attendees at the Corbett Lake gatherings. And my list would never be complete without mentioning the late Peter McVey.

There are lots of other great past and present rod makers. I look forward to reading more responses to the interesting thread.
 

dragless

Active Member
#3
I have lots of favorites.

The first to come to mind is the late Tom Morgan, who owned Winston in the 1970's and 1980's, then formed Morgan Rodsmiths after he developed debilitating MS. When graphite came out, Tom applied his knowledge to the new material, and positioned Winston as a premier maker of both bamboo and graphite. Though he lost use of his arms and legs, he continued to be productive and creative until he passed away in 2017. Other hands made and finished great rods under his supervision, and he invented the Morgan Handmill that lots of bamboo rod makers use today. Tom and his wife Gerri are a big inspiration to us all.

Asbjorn Hoergaard was a Norwegian rod maker who was in a Nazi prison camp during WWII. While there, he designed rod making tools and rod tapers on toilet paper. After the war, he set up shop and made bamboo rods for many years. His rods were actually sold at Eddie Bauer in the 1960's and 1970's. Though I never met him or cast his rods, I've always admired his determination and dedication to the craft.

Though I'm a bamboo guy, I really admire Don Green, the founder of Sage. He was the rod designer at Fenwick in the 1960's, where he developed great fiberglass rods that I think transformed the industry, with great tapers and blank materials, and the innovative fiberglass "Ferrule-Lite" ferrule system. After Fenwick moved to California, he formed Sage, and developed great graphite rods that revolutionized the sport.

Finally, there are many other rod makers who I admire and learn a lot from, including Ray Gould, Tom Fulk, Don Anderson, Bob Milward, the late John Bokstrom, and all of the past and present attendees at the Corbett Lake gatherings. And my list would never be complete without mentioning the late Peter McVey.

There are lots of other great past and present rod makers. I look forward to reading more responses to the interesting thread.
That is a nice add!
Fished a a Bokstrom cane, met him and he was very nice guy. Also fished McVey rods- he was a character!
I tested some of the early Sages....Green was a super rod designer- can’t say enough about him!
I remember casting some of the early graphite’s from Sage with other guides I was guiding with, we cast, then just looked at each other and laughed, then we had an informal casting competition...we loved the 996 and all ordered them :).I won’t say where we were butucan guess
 

Jake Watrous

(not really a sea otter)
#6
Scott gets the edge over Sage in my book if only because their warranty differences. Sage cranks the price after a few years, Scott’s is a flat fee. They’re both made in USA from start to finish, and both companies seem to take part in conservation.

I also like CF Burkheimer, but I’ve yet to find one of their rods that fits my stroke, so for now they’re on hold.
 
#7
Well, being primarily a glass guy, naturally that's where things are headed....Steffen Bros are, IMO, the best in the biz. Mine are rods that you'll have to pry from my cold dead hands. CTS makes freaking amazing rods too.

My favs in graphite are few and far between, but after playing with a good number of the newest H3s from Orvis (in addition to handling lot of stuff from Sage, et al), they are the best of the best in graphite (currently). Don't believe me? go cast one....
 

dragless

Active Member
#9
Scott has been making some great rods last few years- I thought S4s were great - Radians and G series whatever generation-are wonderful.Scott just needs to purchase some average in Portugal with some old cork trees- Scott u listening?
Gotta give Orvis some credit- they have moved fast in a short amount of time and make some great top end rods.
 
#10
Overall I think Echo makes some damn fine fishing tools.

Scott for the Meridian and Radian.

And the new H3D is friggen phenomenal. Lots of great rods out there. Personally I don't care what a rod looks like, how beautiful the wraps and reel seat are etc. All I care about is how it performs.
 

David Loy

Senior Moment
#13
Tom Morgan for sure. My current favorites are Shane Gray (Graywolf Rods) and Kerry Burkheimer. I visit the fiberglass site and have seen some fabulous rod pictures from a couple guys overseas. Gorgeous but waay over the top to actually fish, IMO. I’ll also add Chris Barclay to my favorites list.
 

Latest posts