Surf Rod vs Switch vs Spey

wetswinger

Active Member
I pretty much only fish off the Puget Sound beachs anymore. Only casting overhead two handed. Right now I use a switch rod. I am thinking of building my own rod from a blank as a little hobby project now that I'm officially retired. I've built several sets of golfclubs so I love tinkering. My question is; what do I look for in a good design (flex pattern) for a overhead 11' two handed rod. I've cast a CND Oceana saltwater rod and thought it much better than my Echo Switch. People that use Beulah Opals adore them. Spey rods overhead? Looking to build something that will handle around 400 grain weight line and I'm soooo confused on what to look for in a blank. Any thoughts on this? Thanks.....PS Is a "kit" a good idea on your 1st building attempt?
 
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Ryan Janos

Active Member
On the subject of a kit for beginner builders, my experience was that I liked the process of choosing each component of my first few builds. I got to customize my rods, and it also helped me learn more about how all the components fit together. I also found that if you aren't too high taste, you can put together whatever combination of components YOU like as a "kit" for only a few dollars more than a generic kit price.

I highly recommend working with the folks at Utmost Enterprises (Batson/Pac Bay). Their customer service is top notch and they are great at explaining how all of the pieces work together. A lot of online vendors will ship you the components you choose without making sure they all fit together for a build. Utmost staff puts all of your parts in-line to make sure you've chosen matching parts.
 
I second the appraisal of Utmost Enterprises as the help you may need to build your own rod. I have built four different rods from them and are very pleased with their help and guidance. You won't do better anywhere!
 

wetswinger

Active Member
My question is, and please forgive my curiosity, what is the difference in a blank, design wise, that differentiates one over the other for Spey casting or overhead? In articles you hear about this rod has a soft tip, this one a stiff tip and a deep bend into the handle. Huh? I’m just curious about what a rod designer strives for when building the various rods and what the true difference is in their given design...what is the real difference, mechanically, between the Spey and overhead rod?...
 

g_smolt

Recreational User
...what is the real difference, mechanically, between the Spey and overhead rod?...
Short answer: There is none.

Fishpoles, regardless of designation, are Class III flexible levers. Mechanically, speypoles are identical to singlehand flypoles.

Individual designers either design for an action THEY like and want in a fishpole, or (and most often) what is the most popular (read: marketable) action, hence the wide range of actions currently present and available in both spraypoles and singlehand flypoles.

To your original question - I prefer a faster-action pole for 2 hand overhead casting, because it matches well with my personal casting idiosyncrasies. I have a relatively compact stroke, I prefer the short, sharp and focused application of power with abrupt stops, and that lends itself well to the use of a faster action, progressive taper fishpole. If your casting stroke is on the longer side and you tend to have a less abrupt acceleration phase, you may want to use a slower action rod.
 
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c-dawg

Active Member
WFF Supporter
Give Damon Stamoolis from PacBay a call at 800-447-0089 ext 111. He's the director of sales and marketing; he can probably recommend a blank for you after a discussion of what you want.

I'd also call the folks at Batson at 877-875-2381. I think Kerry Batson is who you'd want to talk with.

I've built rods from both distributors, purchasing through Utmost, and have no complaints.
 

Driftless Dan

Driftless Dan
WFF Supporter
A few years ago, I decided I wanted a light lake trolling rod using a spinning reel handle on a 9'6-weight fly rod blank. I figured the fly rod nature would be good for kokanee, protecting the hooks from pulling out of their tender mouths. I contacted Mudhole, and conducted an email correspondence with one of their team members to get all the components to do this hybrid rod. They were a great help, and the resulting rod components all fit beautifully.
 

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