Nick- I second your thoughts re: the one piece 7-weight Hardy rod. That was the best rod I ever casted. I am a hack at casting, but this was truly a wonderful machine. I tripped on a tree root and snapped it when I fell. They wouldn't send a 1 piece replacement, and I didn't like, and then sold, the 4 piece that I received via the warranty.
The only bummer was that you needed a full 18 linear feet to get it in the case!