Are you loyal to a “brand”? - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-22-2019, 11:37 PM Thread Starter
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The two handed market, let alone the larger fly fishing market, is inundated with products. Companies feel compelled to come up with some “new” to push every year in order to stay competitive. I’m just wondering how many people are loyal to specific companies/makers (of all kinds of gear), and, if so, who and why? I’m pretty new to all this but I have developed a liking for Echo products and like to support that company as much as possible (as opposed to other similar products in that price range). There’s always opinions being given on all kinds of products on here and I guess I’m just really interested in what makes people feel loyal to certain products and companies over others.
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Last edited by adamess; 07-23-2019 at 09:07 AM.
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post #2 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-22-2019, 11:57 PM
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I certainly have preferred brands and/or custom makers, which impressed me with quality and service (e.g. Burkheimer, Meiser, Epic, Saracione), brands which have “sentimental” value (e.g. Bogdan), and brands that make great products and impress with values (Patagonia). And some brands stand out with unique products (e.g. Alpacas of Montana... imho the best warm socks for winter wading you can find).

But it can change... I used to be a big fan of Simms, but their customer service (or lack thereof) and quality issues with new products are changing my perception of the brand drastically, and I guess I will limit my Simms purchase in future to specific products (waders, jackets).

Ps: While my flies are mostly custom-tied (or self-tied), I have to applaud Aqua Flies for their quality.

Last edited by twists; 07-23-2019 at 09:13 AM.
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post #3 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 05:11 AM
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loyal to sage rods and an unashamed whore to all reel companies bar ross.

but here's something... a couple months ago my youngest asked me if I worked for simms.
I guess they make great work clothes, hey.

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post #4 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 09:00 AM
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I would say I am not really loyal to any one brand but I find myself buying more from smaller high quality independent producers such as Burkheimer, Meiser, Saracione and the likes. Coming from a business that sold products from small family producers of high quality I have always tried to support people like these. That being said, I do own four Hardy reels and a rod from them as well.

Great thread BTW.

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post #5 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 12:26 PM
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Like mitchaka2fish I find myself clothed in Simms from head to foot.
For reels I have settled on Young pattern 10B in 3 1/2", 4", and 4 1/2".
For rods I have Scottish built 15'6" Daiwa #9/11 for big rivers , a Hardy 14' #9 for medium and Beulah Onyx #7 for small.
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post #6 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 12:43 PM
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No brand loyalty particularly. But it may not be a coincidence that I have more reels made by Hardy than all the rest of my fly reels combined. I'm not loyal to Sage, but I have 4 of their rods and a sampling of many other rod brands. Since there are so few bad rods, it's easy to end up with many brands in the collection. When it comes to waders, I just buy a name brand that happens to be on sale.
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post #7 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 01:15 PM
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Patagonia, Simms, Lamson,Hardy,Burkhiemer and Sage. That’s all I need. And in a few years an Olson 😬!
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post #8 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 01:40 PM
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I've been loyal to Burkheimer rods for years, with the exception of a Riverwatch from Bob Clay, but I recently had the opportunity to fish a couple of Scott Mackenzie's six piece graphene rods and they were great. Having had my rod tube lost or delayed several times - and with increasing frequency by Air Canada & United - I'm all for being able to stick my rods in my duffel or the overhead compartment.

There are a lot of great rods out there and Scott's are just a part of that expanding universe. But for me, the six piece thing seals the deal. There was a time when I might have shied away from such a rod, but you would never know these are six piece once you put them to work. They are light, powerful and progressive. They are also reasonably priced. I've ordered an eight and a ten.
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post #9 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 02:00 PM
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I don't have the means to make a lot of repeat purchases of big ticket items like rods, reels and waders, but there are brands I REALLY like, that I praise to other anglers, and would get lots of repeat business from me if I could give it to them. The factors are many, but boil down to these:

COST: I want to fish with it, not send it to college. Much as I would love to own a cabinet full of Olsen reels and a quiver of Bob Clay's rods, it ain't gonna' happen on my income. I'm afraid I'm dedicated to mostly middle of the price range stuff. SpeyCo reels, Echo rods, and Angler's Roost rod blanks once I started building my own have done it for me.

FUNCTION and DURABILITY: For a guy with middling abilities like mine, the moderately priced stuff meets my functionality requirement, and the high end goodies surpass my expectations and needs. But durable is critical, because I can't afford to buy new (or even used) rods, reels, and waders very often. If I take care of them - and I do - I expect and need them to last. When I have to buy again, I will go with Simms waders and boots, and I'd likely go with another SpeyCo reel, too.

AESHETICS: As far as looks go, that's all personal preference, but I despise stuff with big logos and too much in the way of bright, splashy colors. No blue, red, yellow, or purple reels, rods, or waders for me, thank you. Camo is out, too. Black (with some silver trim) or pewter colored reels, darker colored, earth toney rods with CORK grips, and bags/packs and clothing heavy on the khaki, brown, and maybe olive are good. No finer looking rods out there than Meiser's (some day, I'll splurge on a custom build); love waders, packs, and outerwear from Simms and Patagonia.

FIT: For shoes, boots, and pants, it's hard to overstate how important fit is to me. Some brands just fit my bod better than others. Keen shoes, Simms wading boots, Eddie Bauer pants, and Columbia shirts work well for me.

TRADITION: I like stuff that has a connection to the past and reflects the traditions within our sport. That's why some day, I will sell my car, live in a shack by the river, and buy a pre-war Hardy Perfect. :-) Until then, I'm probably going to buy a Sharpes of Aberdeen Gordon that I saw on flea-bay. It's Scottish for goodness sake(!) and costs less than two months' salary.

PERSONAL CONNECTION / EXPERIENCE: If I have had a positive personal experience with the people at a certain company, I'll keep going back. Meiser, Simms, and Echo have been stellar here.

CORPORATE BEHAVIOR: If the brand is active in conservation or other environmental work, social responsibility, good corporate citizenship, and is known to agree with my political leanings, they get extra love. Patagonia and LL Bean.

"It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing"
- Duke Ellington
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post #10 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 05:06 PM
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I'm a 'buy once, cry once' type of shopper, and all of my spey/switch reels are Hardy's, my trout reels JW young, and they haven't let me down. For waders/clothing, Patagonia gets my money because I think they're an outstanding corporate citizen, with global sustainability on mind over profits (their 'black friday' approach in incredible). They've also proved to be durable, highly functional, with great customer service, which I've used several times. And they fit me well.

There are a few businesses that I always try and support first, and I have no qualm about promoting them--one isn't a sponsor on this site, but it's a well-known fly shop around Sudbury, Ontario, and the other is our very own Nile Creek Fly Shop, who is a sponsor on this site. Both go above and beyond, great prices and service. If they have close to what I need, they get my business.
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post #11 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 05:23 PM
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Yes and no

Loyalty must be earned, and I do have preferences.

[email protected]#$! happens even to the best of us, and the quality of an organization is reflected by the response. I had a flyline issue years (decades) ago, and the speed of response from Tim Rajeff is such that I have been a repeat customer. Good lines, backed by a organization that supports their customers.

Problems are very few and far between after fly fishing for 30 years ago, but on my NOT list is Orvis.

Simms has done well in repair of waders and jackets, and quality has been good in the field, so yes, I buy I return to Simms, when I want new gore super materials. Though, I have the impression though, their offering in their core product line is less than 10+ years ago, and I wish they had more for women (for my 5'1" fishing partner - my wife, Judy).

I decided a long time ago, I would not be a "Sage" or other guy, etc cetera, but to be able to pickup any rod and cast it. So I have old sticks from many, but if I am buying a new spey rod - I will check Meiser first and use them as the standard (they feel good). I have sold off my old Sage, but still have an Loomis GLX 9wt 15' and Scott 1409 rod.

I really like my Burkheimer 7134, but there was a period 4 years ago I tried to buy another rod, and they just would not return my call-email (atypical I hear, but 4 failed attempts means I am not loyal to them). So I bought a Meiser.

I think the only major rod brands (that is not made in China), I have not own once is MacKenzie, B+W, Vision and Thomas.

I wish that Scott would bring back the old SH ARCs, to compliment the Gs.

I dislike reel companies manufacturing obsolesces by changing designs and making old spools not available. Think Nautilus CF, Hardy Princess, anything Ross, et cetera. I can a replacement spool from my ~20 year old Danielsson 2W (landed my earliest steelheads on this (with the Scott ARCs), so Danielsson gets a first look.

I do not see, why my rod and reel from 10+ years ago, needs to be replaced by newer and better. I do not believe I miss any smallmouth bass between the trees along the bank, as I target them on my local river because I am using a 20+ year old Loomis 4pc 7wt 9' GL3 with my 3M System 2 78 Reel.

I am not looking to buy more. Just want to spend more time on the water.
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post #12 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 05:39 PM
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i will be loyal to a "brand" when it becomes loyal to me...and at this point in my life that hasn't happened..

I will do my best to support guys like Poppy at Redshed....people i know and am friends with in the business i.e. Tim from Bridge fly lines....Gene from B&W and BOSS fly lines...Will Olson...Kerry and boys down at Burkheimer...Scott at Confluence fly shop...Etc.
I know these guys, i have fished with most and i feel like when i'm in crisis (even if it's only in my mind) they come through for me....and while they do that I will be loyal to them!!!
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post #13 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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Nice, I just picked up a line from Tim at his shop the other day. Excited to try it out. He is definitely someone I would go out of my way to support for sure.

Originally Posted by xgolfman View Post
i will be loyal to a "brand" when it becomes loyal to me...and at this point in my life that hasn't happened..

I will do my best to support guys like Poppy at Redshed....people i know and am friends with in the business i.e. Tim from Bridge fly lines....Gene from B&W and BOSS fly lines...Will Olson...Kerry and boys down at Burkheimer...Scott at Confluence fly shop...Etc.
I know these guys, i have fished with most and i feel like when i'm in crisis (even if it's only in my mind) they come through for me....and while they do that I will be loyal to them!!!

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post #14 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 07:00 PM
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Loyal to one brand....No
Loyal to quality....Absolutely!
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post #15 of 40 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 07:19 PM
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As an absolute peasant when it comes to fashion or the latest trends, I'm loyal to the last year's model brand when they are on close out offer price.

My only stipulation is that they must have been good quality top of the line kit in the first place. Chuck in a half price deal so they are now priced more appropriately and those are the ones I choose.

Regards, Tyke.
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