both are great rods. exceptional smooth and heck of light feels... feather light and super sensitive in hands. 13'6 and 14' are in my wish list. Great line control and cast with absolutely authority!! IMHO
I cast them both last weekend, and am trying to make a final decision. The 13'6" cast much further and easier, but I am not sure that I need that much rod on my home waters. If I fished bigger rivers more often I would definitely go for it. But since I am fishing not so big of a river, the 12'6 should be fine. But on the other hand since I plane to travel a bit this year, the bigger one would be nice to have as well. Decisions, decisions!
1. Yes, my eyes also stopped on the down-locking reel, which makes sense (at least for me and my arms-casting style).
2. Accuracy - I am not good enough with a Spey Rod to comment wisely, but think I can offer the following for single hand rods. We can call it dampening and I think we can relate to speed-power, but I find I can achieve a more accurate cast with a smoother - slower rod,versus one to punch line out hard.
For years, I have lawn cast to mutliple targets (5wt and 7wts), and find, I can achieve greater accuracy with a relax cast (from 30' to 70'). Maybe because I think less about the cast, and more about the fishing, or maybe I have have to spend less effort in managing the shock.
With my 9wt RPLXi (Pike tool), I am using more arm, and notice a tendancy to roll the rod (thus slicing (sorry for the golf metaphor)).
(Continue with the golf). My father loved golf, as much as I do with fly-fishing. I grew up with a club in my hand, and was with my Dad a lot (too much, so when I came of age, I shun golf). There are similarities, but one lesson, that applies, from back stroke to front stroke, it is about the rythym of the transition.
I am not good enough in my spey cast to comment on what makes a rod more accurate, but for a single-handed rod, if is help me, to keep my stroke slower and the transitions clean, it would.
Oh yes, I found a relationship with the line selected to. My 8' 5wt Bamboo with a Courtland 444 DT, the rod is graceful, but use a RIO Trout LT WF5 and it just does not work!
I used the 4 ,5, 8 in the 11'6 version of the ONE at the Sandy Clave. Not sure which one[4?] with the same setup you first tried...280 steelhead Scandi...All were effortless pleasure. I did some teaching and thought the 4 & 5 were perfect to learn with as well...light ,easy length for beginner to handle,easy to feel the rod do the work,etc,etc.I will probably get the 5116.
On the 4 wt 325 short skagit was a little missile. I liked the 7136 much better then the brother zaxis for my stroke. It Was a little stiffer and faster but not to the level of the tcx. The 7126 one was a wicked rod and the 8136 with a 510 steelhead scandinavia rocked.
Something which does'nt seem to have been taken up by any of the reviews trade or otherwise is the Ones ability to roll up a fast sinking line/head from a fast flow , I fish a 9143 ZA and love the thing but it really is'nt keen on working one up ,wonder was this part of the Sage brief when the rod was designed ?as need to get something for getting deep with big flies.
I had a chance to try out some of the "One" spey and switch rods recently. I'll throw out the provision that I'm not an expert, just an average guy, with average casting ability.
The first one I picked up was the 8126. My first thought was how heavy it felt compared to my Loop Opti 8124. The rod cast ok for me. I still couldn't get over how heavy it felt. Next rod was the 8136. Again, felt really heavy for me comparatively. I've since done some research, and found that the 8126 One weights 6.625 oz, and the Opti- is 6.825, so while lighter, the one felt heavier in hand.
I thought was done, but then picked up the 6116 switch rod. I liked it. Easy to cast, and light in hand.
I then picked up the 8116. I loved this rod. It was so light and so easy to cast it was funny. I loved casting it so much, and the casts felt effortless. I thought, I'll see how far I can cast it. I would cast, pull off a couple pulls of line and cast again, and again and again. I thought I can't wait to sell a kidney or some pints of blood to get this. Then I was told to try to 4116. Loved it. Now I need to sell a liver, a kidney and double the blood, plus my first born, but I was really impressed by the switch series in the "One" rods.
The full length "Spey" rods I wasn't sold on, but I loved the switch rods. I wish I'd paid more attention to the lines I was casting on them, but that will be part of the fun if / when I pick up these two rods.
Funny you should mention how heavy the 8126 rod felt. I stopped by a friends house to see the new 7126 sage one rod he bought. My first impression was that it felt heavy in hand as well. The rod may be light in total weight but the swing weight can make it feel heavy. (kind of like golf clubs) The cork seemed a little too thick for my taste as well. I never casted the rod so I can't give any info on lines and such. I'm going to the river tomorrow to give it a test. I'm still new to this switch rod / Spey rod fishing so every rod over 11'6" will probably feel heavy to me. My tcx 6119 doesn't feel heavy to me at all in comparison.
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