Spey Pages banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Indicators Anonymous
Joined
·
846 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I've been fishing a 9140-4 and a Hardy Viscount 10/11 for a short period of time now and I have noticed that the rod is a little off balance. Should have put a larger reel on it I guess as the balance point is about 3" above the cork.

It seems that if I got the rod to balance somewhere on the cork, it would be less fatiguing on my arm during the swing.

Has anyone messed with any weighting systems?...I know that there are some companies that make caps to put on the butt of the rod to add quarters to balance rods better but these are made specifically for drift and float rods.

Just curious...

THANKS!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
Need some Lead in your Butt?

Balance is definitely a factor - if the balance point is 3" above your cork, that's where I'd suggest you grip it (until you make adjustments).

Spey rods are heavy, and the strain on your forearm is significant if the rod/reel combo is not balanced where you're holding it. Some anglers also hold the rod in two hands during the swing, which would also minimize the annoyance of the forward balance point.

You can put custom butts (email me if interested in these) on your rod, and they will move the balance point back. Or you can use a heavier reel.

DS
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
Ryan,

It made a big difference for me during a day's fishing if the balance point of the rod is on the cork somewhere. As Simon Gawesworth mentioned in 'International Spey Casting' one's upper hand should be positioned exactly on the balance point of the rod and I found that works for me.

It's less fatiguing to cast and probably makes for higher sensitivity to takes during the swing. Mending also takes less effort. Another trick that was referenced in the "Fishing Position" thread in the 'Techniques' forum is to cradle the butt of the rod in one's armpit during the swing.

However I also found the total weight of the whole rod/reel combo making a difference at the end of the day. One can obviously balance any rod somewhere on the cork by putting on a heavy reel. Yet I always try to balance a rod with the least heavy reel I have to minimize the total weight.

I have not come across any weight compensating fighting butt or reel seat components in the half a dozen spey rods that I have built. However one can always choose a big PacBay or Struble aluminum seat instead of a Fuji synthetic seat and choose a machined aluminum or brass butt instead of a plastic fighting butt. I also trial balance the blank before I decide on how long a handle I'd need to build.

One last trick I have is to build my reel seats down-locking. Depending on the length of your reel seat it would result in moving the balance point 2"-3" closer to the butt which in many cases is all one would need to move the balance point onto the thumb well at the top of the long cork handle. This was a suggestion I took from Scott Baker-McGarva of Berry's in Richmond when I bought my first spey blank - a Sage 9140-4B - many years ago.

Hope you find some of these ramblings useful. :)

Regards,
Andy
 

·
Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
Joined
·
1,771 Posts
Ryan - did you try it without the jig and bobber? :devil: :devil:
 

·
Coednakedspey
Joined
·
168 Posts
Ryan,
I use the same reel as you, the Hardy Viscount 10/11 click Pawl Large Arbor (brown finish) with my Sage 9140-3 which is heavier than the 9140-4 by an ounce or an ounce and a half. Is the 9140-4 balaned different then the 9140-3 (euro action) being a traditional action rod?

I honestly don't see balance in this (at least my) setup as all that much of a problem. The one thing I like about the Viscount is it's an extremely light reel which really pays dividends at the end of the day. I mean you could keep this reel on which is about 5 or 6 ounces, or go to something heavier like a Marquis or Salmon (around 9-12 ounces), but what you gain in "balance," you lose in all around fatigue at the end of the day.

Also, could someone answer this for me...
If you had to unbalance one end of your rod, either the reel end, or the tip end, which would be better? Can this be answered? I always thought a rod that was a bit more tip heavy might help you with momentum when casting, would it not? Or would it be condusive to creating mistakes because you are fighting with the tip heavyness of it and you let your rod "droop" a bit more from it's firing position and finishing position?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,042 Posts
Scott,

The 9140-3 has a much thicker diameter in the butt section than the 4-piece, which probably accounts for the balance point being in the handle. I am not sure that it makes too much difference to as to exactly where the balance point of my rods are, I just tend to hold it there (even if it is 2 or 3 " up the blank). Most of the time I use two hands on the swing so its usually a moot point. With my bigger rods such as the 18' B&W, the 10160 and even the 10151 I don't think it would be possible to balance them in the cork anyway! If you did manage it, the rod /reel/weight system would probably wear you out in no time flat.
 

·
loco alto!
Joined
·
2,979 Posts
You can add some weight by adding LC13 on the spindle. I imagine that the tungsten lines - dredgers - would be even better.

1 ounce = 437 grains, which is about 33' of LC13 at 13 grains/foot. On my JLH Salmon I can spool on 70' of LC13 onto the spindle before if reaches the centermost holes in the face of the reel. That's an extra 2 ounces, and the one time my backing went this far it was a lost cause anyway. :eek:

You can spool the LC13 (or tungsten) initially onto the outside to determine how much you need for balance, then remove backing and line, and spool the stuff on the spindle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
JLH Salmon 1

Loc Alto, klahowya, have you had to rebuild your JLH yet? The post rivet assembly that holds the cams in place wears out with heavy use. They can be tightened once, twice at the most, then you will have to replace them. Just got mine back a couple of weeks ago from Archuletta's Reel Works down in Santa Rosa he does a great job it ran me about $70 with shipping both ways.
I do like the reel to bad they chose aluminum for that one part, definitly a design flaw. Oh well everything else on the reel is pretty smooth. Good luck if you have very many of those reel emptying episodes you will need to be sending it to the Reel Works shop.
 

·
loco alto!
Joined
·
2,979 Posts
this is *unfortunate news to me. I had not previously heard of this difficulty with the JLH reels. Are you aware of experiences outside your own where this has occurred. That is, could it be an isolated situation, or a big bad deal?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
LA your the only other fellow I'eve run into with one. I'eve had a couple of good fish on the rebuild already, and the aluminum dust is already showing arond the rivet site where they are set in the casing of the reel body. I like to keep the tension turned up on mine and that might be asking too much of the aluminum. I really do like the reel and if I have this problem again I might see if someone can machine out a replacement set in bronze.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
104 Posts
Ryan,

You ever figure out how to get your rod to balance? My new rod isn't balancing too well, currently 6 or 7 inches above the cork. I bought a pair of wrist weights and was going to try that. What did you end up doing?
JIms
 

·
Indicators Anonymous
Joined
·
846 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Well...I end up purchasing even heavier rod which is actually very tip heavy...Winston DBF 7/8.

The best solution to this problem was buying a very very heavy reel...I now run a Abel Big Game 4.5N Non-Ported...and it does balance the rod...but barely! :rolleyes:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,100 Posts
NFor16 re balance

Simon G. taught me that a spey rod should be balanced in the upper portion of the upper grip where the top hand is placed when the head of the spey line is outside the rod's tiptop guide and resting on ground or still water.

For example, if you have a WindCutter spey line which has a 54 foot head, you would strip 54 feet of line outside the tiptop guide and place it on the ground or in still water. Then determine the balance point. It should be in the upper area of the upper grip where the top hand is supposed to be placed.

Reel manufacturers try to build light reels for the demands of the single hand rod market, but light reels are often a disadvantage to the spey caster.

Since the majority of effort in a spey cast comes from the lower hand, you can understand why the upper hand should be a fulcrum at the balance point. If the upper hand is not at the balance point, effort to cast is magnified.
 

·
Hooked on Salmon
Joined
·
161 Posts
Here we are again.....

As said so many times before: I just don't buy this balance thing - at least not on a dogmatic scale. It was more relevant when one fished the heavy spliced Sharpes, like we fancied in the 70's, or even the first generations of the still heavy carbonfibre ones.

Nowadays I always strive to get the lightest outfit possible. Even on a my T&T 16' I prefer a light Loop reel. What tires arms&back most is the actual weight hauled around, or hold in a static angle, while the cast is fished out. A few extra ounces over maybe 10 hours builds up quickly.

If the casting as such really suffers from this I doubt - in the long run the overall positive effect is larger, anyhow.

All desk theories about the balance points comes to shame at the instant one pokes the rod butt into the tommy, while fishing the cast out or fighting a fish.

Another way to support the wrist is to let the lower handle & reel seat be supported by the underside of the lower rod arm. That is my favorite position, as I often prefer to fish the cast out with a low rod point. That grip also helps one manouver a long rod with much freedom - like when using a single hander.

But, as always, there are many roads leading to Rome.... I like the lightest possible of them.

Cheers,

Per

PS. I had a sensational trip to the Rio Gallego. What wonderful sea run browns that thrive down there!! DS
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
127 Posts
Using a long head

What seems to add the most stress to me after a long day is picking up a long head. With the shooting heads I am able to use more wrist action to fire it out there. Jerry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
138 Posts
B. Pauli makes a great point. You really do need to strip some line off the reel before you can determine the balance point because after all, you're trying to mimic a real casting situation and the line weight does factor in. I purchased a 12 ounce reel that I thought would be way too heavy for my T&T 1307, but when I stripped-out the head of my MS 6/7, the balance point was about two inches below the top of the upper cork section--perfect. And having your hand at the balance point during casting not only decreases fatigue, it allows you to cast with better technique. Also, the point about many reels being too light for two-handed rods is right on the money: for a single hand rod, reel weight is a huge factor, but too light of a reel in spey casting can be a hindrance (your rod tip will always be in the water and as we all know, when your tip's in the water, it make for a COLD day!).
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top