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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First-off, I did not test a Z-Axis Spey rod. If they are going to make Speys in the new Z-Axis blanks, then this mini-review might even be relavent :D

I had the opportunity this morning to cast the replacements for the Sage XP series rods. First off, the Z-Axis blank is beautifully finished in a light olive color. I compared two (2) rods side-by-side-both 590-3's.

First I cast the XP and got the feel for that rod again. Then I switched-over the the new Z-Axis rod. There was a noticble difference and it was hard to pinpoint just what is was at first. There was a difference in the tactile feel-both in the hand and in the shoulder. Finally it became clear that ther Z-Axis is thinner, lighter & cuts through the air with less parasitic drag. Also, due to the construction of the new Z-Axis blank, there is less material used in the tip section, which further leads to a lighter feel than the XP.

The Z-Axis casts just as accurately and is the same "Speed" as the XP series -let's call it fast. However, you will be able to fish it with less fatique over a long day due to this new Weight Optimized rod blank design. You can easily feel the difference in only a few casts. Great new design. Thumbs-up End of Casting Review



For Techies and Rod Builders:

The features that allow the new Sage Z-Axis blank to be weight optimized is they that have changed the design in two ways from what I could tell . This after examining the cut-up pieces of XP and Z-Axis blanks that the Sage rep had, speaking with him about the designs and casting these two rods this morning (Note: I am a Composites Engineer by trade).

1) They have eliminated most of the fiberglass scrim from the new Z-Axis blank and therefore the weight of the scrim is gone and the effective stiffness off the taper has been enhanced. I recall this being first done by Jim Murphy at Redington on the DFR series of blanks (Sweet casting rods thise DFR's ). Apparently (now this a shoot-from-the-hip guess on my part) Sage designers liked this design feature enough to have incorporated this material modification into the design of the Z-Axis; since Sage now owns Redington and a bunch of DFR's nowadays.

2) The same grade of graphite fibers are used in the Z-Axis rod blanks as have been used previously in the XP's. The Scrim is now gone. There is a 90 degree ply put down first in the butt & mid section of the blank. Furthermore, and most importantly, Sage has now eliminated most of the fiber orientation "run-out" that is common when cutting 2-D graphite prepreg patterns and applying the "Flags" to 3D tapered mandrels having compound curvature. What they do now, which is different than most all manufacturer's, is terminate the uni-fiber prepreg "flag" as the fibers start to run off "Axis". Then they start a new "flag" to maintain the proper fiber alignment as they laminate the blank towards the tip. Guessing again that this feature may refer to the "Z-Axis" handle these new Sage blanks and rods have. Guessing mind you.

The result of the axial uniformity of the graphite fibers is realizing more of the inherent modulus of the fibers that go into this new rod. This means that you now benefit in having a stiff, fast action rod blank at a lighter weight. All this from the Sage Designers paying attention to small details like fiber orientation. This has paid-off handsomely for Sage in these new Z-Axis rods by improving the rod noticably-IMHO.

Rich
 

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Did Sage change the Blanks for the Spey rods or just relabel them? Looking at the new catalog, it looks like this just relabeled their existing spey line.

- David
 

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Do you think the rod will break more easily?

From your description of the new rod , it might be prone to more breakage since they have eliminated the fiberglass scrim. Yes, it's lighter and thinner but this could lead to more breakage. Would you agree with my assessment?
FishHawk
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
FishHawk said:
From your description of the new rod , it might be prone to more breakage since they have eliminated the fiberglass scrim. Yes, it's lighter and thinner but this could lead to more breakage. Would you agree with my assessment?
FishHawk
Indeed I do! As the rep explained how the absence of the scrim allows the fibers to co-mingle and nest into a more compact, super efficient structure, I quipped "Until you whack it on something and then it will be less forgiving than the XP". He nodded affirmatively and politely changed the subject a little:tsk_tsk:

High performance always comes with some excess baggage....

Does Sage have one of those bullet proof warranty policies? If so, then you only deal with "inconvienience" for suffering an "unplanned incident".
 

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FlyMaker said:
Indeed I do! As the rep explained how the absence of the scrim allows the fibers to co-mingle and nest into a more compact, super efficient structure, I quipped "Until you whack it on something and then it will be less forgiving than the XP". He nodded affirmatively and politely changed the subject a little:tsk_tsk:

High performance always comes with some excess baggage....

Does Sage have one of those bullet proof warranty policies? If so, then you only ideal with "inconvienience" for suffering an "unplanned incident".
Yes but when you are 100 miles from the nearest rod, warrenty means nothing if you have only one rod!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Dornblaser said:
Did Sage change the Blanks for the Spey rods or just relabel them? Looking at the new catalog, it looks like this just relabeled their existing spey line.

- David
Found the info you asked about. Not a Sage mole (Don't own one), nor any affiliation with the F-shop- it just has the Z-Axis Spey Rod Info clearly dispalyed-FYI

[Four New Spey Models-Shipping Sept. 1st]
 
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