matching reels to rods - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-21-2000, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: JohnDate: 4/21/2000 3:41 PM

I recently called a reel manufacturer to enquire about using one of their reels on a new 15' rod that I have ordered.  The person answering the phone seemed very knowledgable and stated that their new 4" reel designed for 12 and 13 weight lines would probably be too light for a 15" rod and would not balance it.  The reel weighs about 8 1/2 ounces without any line.  Their new 3.5" reel designed for 10 and 11 wieght lines is even lighter.

I am currently using a 6 oz. reel on a 14' 9wt, and cannot say that balance has been a problem.  Since the fulcrum on a two-hander must change with the cast, how important do you find balance to be, and what weight reels are you using?  Thanks

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-22-2000, 06:17 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: bubbaDate: 4/22/2000 2:17 AM
Hello john

reels and spey rods... i think that a reel for a spey rod's real puropse (pun) is actually to balance the rod... the real balance should be compared with about 60-70 feet of line out. i think that large arbor adaptations of regular reels are actually a disadvantage, as the additional backing is good for weight and balance.

i have found that the many reels are actually too light to properly balance larger rods. a reel which is too light will definitely cause the rod to feel tip heavy, and from personal experience, this has caused some pretty severe carpal tunnel symptoms to develop over long days of casting.

the greatest spey caster of all time, alexander grant, actually used to counterbalance his rods by adding weights on the butt cap of his longer rods...

some of the larger and heavier saltwater reels (e.g. abel, charltons, tibors, pates), as well as some of the larger and older hardy bougle's seem to work pretty well. for several 15 foot rods, the largest teton and tioga reels are a decent low cost alternative...

also remember that spey lines take up a LOT more room on a reel, much bigger is better!

i don't know if this is of any use, but good luck!
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2000, 04:14 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: J_DDate: 6/2/2000 12:14 AM

I agree with Bubba. Try working a fly through the swing a couple of times with an unbalanced outfit and you will understand why the balance thing is so important. You will want to hold the rod as far up on the grip as possible, and with the line out on the water, it should balance. Remember too that the river is adding it's pull. Not quite the same as when on the lawn.

I put a Bauer M6 on my 9140 with 250 yards of 30# backing and the extended belly windcutter.And an M5 on a 12ft 7/8 wt rod I have. The new line of Redington reels has several possibilitie also. Some people have used the Ross saltwater and the old Lamson LP5 Spey was often used. I looked at the new Lamson Litespeed, but thought it would be too light.

 New reels are coming out all the time so I might have missed some but this should at least give you a starting point.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2000, 10:40 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: Per StadighDate: 6/2/2000 6:40 AM

Bubba and I have touched this subject over e-mail. My view is that the lighter overall weight the kit has the better one is off.

Possibly this problem is more relevant for those of you that stick to full length lines (as should be known by now am I am a stern user of tailored shooting heads.....)

If one actually feels better off with a "balanced" rod&reel combo, that is fine enogh. But then I strongly question if the extra weight needed should come from the reel. In my view it must be much better to add this weight to the very butt where the least of it is needed.

  1. A lighter reel normally means a lighter spool. I love my LOOP traditionals as their heavier Evotech. (There are other makes today on the same concept) Both have extremly light spools. This a key factor when deciding to step down in tippet strength, as sometimes needed. A large wild Atlantic or Steelhead that takes off the instant the fly is taken CAN break the tippet if the spool's startup inertia is too high. (this has nothing with break settings to do!) Back in the 70's and 80' when I still fished Perfects and other reels with heavy spools this happened to me a few times.
  2. When I fish a cast out I often stick my rod right up in the sky - as to keep the shooting line clear of the water. I also mend with the rod in a high position. All these manouvers are less tiring with a light kit.

Sorry, but I have to be off for office in a few minutes. I am keen to continue this.



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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2000, 08:07 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: AndreDate: 6/2/2000 4:07 PM
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2000, 08:24 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: AndreDate: 6/2/2000 4:24 PM

Your mention of reduced tippets breaking due to start up of the drag provides for more questions.

1, Are you fishing a low rod tip or raised tip? Generally speaking

2, Do you advocate using a loop of line under the finger?

From my limited experience I feel I have a higher hooking to "grab" and a higher landing percentage with the rod tip about eye level and a small loop. I attribute this to providing a "soft" line that allow the fish to turn on the fly. Usually most of the Northwesterns I see and fish with keep a tight line with the tip of the rod just of the water. While I agree one has a better feeling of the tension on the line I question my hooking to "grab" percentages using this method. In extremely cold conditions with lethargic fish there may not be a difference.

To bring this back to the tippet arena. Doesn't this also allow the tip to do one of its jobs and protect the tippet?

gladly still learning

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-03-2000, 02:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: DanaDate: 6/2/2000 10:45 PM

I used to fish with a fellow who often fished out his entire cast with a raised rod tip (generally above shoulder level) and a large loop of line under the index finger of his reel hand. His rod of choice was a Sage 9140-4 "balanced" with a Hardy Salmon #2. If I recall correctly this set up made the rod butt heavy, facilitating the raised tip presentation style. He never set the hook; he would just wait out any form of take until the fish pulled the loop, the rod began to load, and the fish turned and bolted. His approach hooked him many fish, with few LDRs.

I use a similar approach whenever I am strongly leading a fly through the swing, as in "deep greased lining" with a sinktip, for example. But generally I tend to be pretty lazy most of the time, finding the rod's balance point either high on the foregrip or just forward of the foregrip and cradling the rod in a hand held @ waist level. I currently use longer, heavier rods like the Sage 10160-3 which I balance with either a Hardy Salmon #3 or a Ross Salmon/Spey (Saltwater) #5 (their big bluewater reel).

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-21-2000, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: pentaDate: 6/21/2000 12:49 PM
IMHO and I do repeat IMHO
I'm Spey fishing and NOT overhead casting with a 2 handed rod
I've put on System2's to a Bogdan150.All time fav. without question is a Hardy Salmon2 which is on a Sage 131/2 for 7/8wt.Heavy enough to sit right,and if ya need more drag,just palm the rim .There's enough 2nd hand Hardy's out there that you can get one for a descent price*G*. High tech reels on a Spey rod are just "overtooling"
Again just MHO
Cheers Brian
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-29-2000, 04:40 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: Brian STDate: 7/29/2000 12:40 AM


        Im not going to say that a heavier reel is better than a light reel.

I do not feel that it has much to do with how well your rod will perform. I prefer the light reels myself, why add more weight to a heavy rod all spey rods are fairly big and heavy in comparison to a single hander.Just for the hell of it why dont you check out Hugh Falkus's newest book on speycasting and read what he had to say about the weight of the reel.You will really be suprised when you read the bit on reel belts.

Brian St

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