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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New to the board and new to fly fishing, I'm trying to get the lady involved.

My question is, if I had to have only one rod should I go with a 5wt or a 6wt. I currently have a 5wt 8.5ft 4 piece TFO. I bought what I could afford last year but have a little extra this year. (taxes!) I'm thinking I'll go with a 9ft but could use a little advice, how much heavier will the 6wt feel to a 5wt. Keeping in mind I'm adding the extra 6 inches.
Will a 2 piece feel any different than a 4? I like the compactness of a 4 piece but found a great deal on a 2.

The lady will get my TFO, and if she doesn't like it, it will be a buddy rod.
I'm looking at the Sage Z-AXIS 590-4 or 2 rod and found a 690-4 outfit.

Thanks in advance for your insight
 

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"Chasing Riseforms"
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If you are stream fishing or lake fishing for trout around here, go with a nice 4 wt. I use a 4 wt. for Idaho streams as well. If you are throwing big streamers and such, then a 5-6 wt. will suit you. I use a 5 wt. on sea run cutthroat. A lot of guys use a 6wt for coho fishing on the salt (fast action) or sometimes cutts too. In windy conditions a 6 wt. would be handy for trout, but you may have to just get out there and pick what's right for your personnel needs. Just my $.02.
 

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Since you already have the 5wt why not get the 6? The same rod series in 1 wt higher and 6" longer will be heavier for sure. The difference between the 5wt 8.5 TFO and a 9' 5 or 6wt Z Axis would have to be compared for an apples to apples comparison.

590-4 Z is 3 3/16 ounces. 690-4 Z is 3 5/16 ounces. TFO specs can be found here: http://www.templeforkflyrods.com/products/rods.html Based on what 5wt 8.5' rod you have you'll know. If you are going to need another reel too, that can factor more variables into the overall weight of your setup. Best of luck.

Larry is dead on about 4wts...I have more 4wts in my quiver than I should. I like them an awful lot for trout fishing in lakes.
 

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I have a Z Axis in 4 and 6 weights, and I use the 4 wt almost all the time (The Z-Axis has some backbone). About the only time I use the 6 wt is when the wind is really howling and/or I want to toss big streamers. Or when I just want to get the dust off since it gets used so sparingly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Gentlemen,

I could see buying a 6wt being that I do have the other 5wt but it will be in use on trips if my lady likes it. It didn't set me back too much though. I'm currently in New Mexico and I'll be on the Chama, Pecos and San Juan. I probably should of meantioned that right off. I dont think I'll go as low as a 4wt for this area. Does that change anyones advice?
 

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When I was in college and decided my 7wt fiberglass Fenwick I'd been fishing my entire life was no longer adequate I bought a 9ft, 8wt, 3 pc medium action rod. I loved it for Salmon, Steelhead, and Saltwater but felt a little silly when I caught 12" stocked rainbows on it. In my experience I enjoyed my 7wt more as an all around fly rod for all species and waters. I have several rods now and mostly use my 9ft, 5wt, 4pc, 9.5 Tip Flex Orvis for everything except Salmon and Steelhead. I still use my 8wt from college for those fish. So, I suspect a 9ft, 6wt, 4pc rod made these days is more capable of larger fish than my old Fenwick Glass 7wt was and is still light enough to fully appreciate smaller fish. If it were me I'd go with the 6wt or consider a 7wt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've considered the Orvis, they are priced pretty good since the Helios came out. Thanks for the Advice.
 

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If it was me I'd forgo the Z-Axis, and get two lesser priced rods. For what the Axis would cost you you could get a decent 4 wt and 6 wt setup, and cover all your bases. But that is factoring in fishing in WA, not other places with bigger fish. I agree with everyone else, my 4 wt is my favorite rod and I look for excuses to fish it whenever I can. It has plenty of backbone for the occasional larger fish too.

Nick
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi Kirk, (Itchy Dog)

How do you like your 6wt? Here in New Mexico it does get windy a lot! I'm glad to know that the Axis has back bone, but I'm apprehensive about a 6wt wondering if it will be too much for some smaller fish. Could you could compare the two to me that would be great. I've read tons of reviews but nothing from anyone experienced with both.

Thanks
Jeff
PS. I tried to send you a PM and your mail box is full.
Thanks
 

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I have a Z-Axis 690-4 and find I use it quite a lot in Montana and here in WA. It is an awesome streamer rod, and throwing stonefly nymphs and hopper-droppers in the wind is a lot easier with it than my 5 wt. I have a 2 wt, 2 3wts, a 4 wt, 3 5 wts, 6 wt, 7 wt, 2 8 wts and a 9 wt plus an awesome custom made 5 wt 8' bamboo rod that I enoy looking at as much as fishing it!. I use every one of them for some kind of fishing, so just think how many rod purchases you have in your future! My fav? the 389 LL Sage-a classic dry fly rod for medium streams like the upper Skagit (in BC). The 266 makes the smaller streams a real pleasure to fish and those 8 " trout feel a lot bigger! When I last fished NM, I fished the Rio Hondo, the Red River, and the Cimmaron-all small brushy streams where a 3 wt in 6-7' length would be a lot of fun! Rick
 

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Mathews42,

Most folks consider a 5 wt, usually 9', the all around trout rod. Sizing up or down from there is a type of specialization. Depending what special fishing conditions you encounter - a 3 or 4 wt for flat meadow or small streams or a 6 or 7 for streamers or heavy nymphs - that should influence your choice for your next rod.

Sg
 

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Every bit of trout stream and lake I've fished in Washington is perfect for a 4wt. In montana, a 5wt is great for all the medium-size streams, but go with a 6 for places like the Yellowstone or the Clark Fork. I'd average the two states together and say a 5 is great for NM. Just a guess.
 

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Re: 2 piece or 4 piece - You are not likely to notice the difference at this stage of the game. A good price is more likely on the 2 piece but a 4 piece is easier to travel with. You'll have to figure out which one is more important to you but all things being equal, the 4 piece probably makes the most sense.

Re: 4wt, 5wt, or 6wt - The other comments here are pointing you in the same direction. *Generally* speaking 6wt will help with wind and bigger/heavier patterns but at the cost of presentation of smaller dry flies and enjoyment fighting smaller (<12") fish. I will pick a 4wt every time if conditions permit because it is just is funner catching trout on them. But that delicate presentation and accuracy doesn't buy you anything when the wind is howling. Rod design can buy you a bit of leeway in either direction so keep that in mind.

It seems to me that what you pick has as much to do with how much fly fishing you plan on doing and how picky you are. Odds are very high that any of the good quality 5wts out there can bring you many years of good times. If you plan on fishing a lot *and* inclined to optimize your fishing experience, rods of different weights are in your future. If you are fanatical about fishing and really anal, you'll end up with a closet full of 4wts among others. Those are all reasonable outcomes but it has more to do with you and your orientation with fly fishing that determines what's next for you.

Enjoy the process. Fishing with a new rod can be like getting to know a new girlfriend. ;)
 

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"Chasing Riseforms"
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Hi Kirk, (Itchy Dog)

How do you like your 6wt? Here in New Mexico it does get windy a lot! I'm glad to know that the Axis has back bone, but I'm apprehensive about a 6wt wondering if it will be too much for some smaller fish. Could you could compare the two to me that would be great. I've read tons of reviews but nothing from anyone experienced with both.

Thanks
Jeff

Mathews42-

Catching 4 lb. rainbows on a 4 wt. rod is NO PROBLEM. I rest my case.
 
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