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chrome-magnon man
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Lots of folks are always looking for advice on a first two-hander. I thought it would be interesting to hear from you about the first two-hander you purchased.

Mine was a custom made Sage 10150 that was recommended to me by a friend who also happened to be a tackle dealer. The year was 1994 and Sage was the two-hander of choice, and of course it had to be a "traditional" action because I thought that must be what I needed if I was going to be spey casting.
 

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That was my first rod too. It was the one I cast during my introduction to spey casting, a lesson with Whistler (Brian Niska). Think it was back in 96, or maybe 97. Unfortunately, I never really got it lined right, and didn't put much into practicing with it. So now, I'm basically back at the beginner stage, and casting short rods with shooting heads. And having way more fun, and catching fish to boot. Planning on lining the 10150 up this year just for kicks though...
 

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St. Croix 14-foot 9/10

Dr. Way Yin (Spey Bubba) told me that this was a rod that performed far better than its modest price indicated. I did find it to be a capable medium-heavy rod, of medium action, well matched with a DT10. I've been through a dozen spey rods since, as our selection continues to increase and improve. The rod and I parted company under embarrasing circumstances, or I'd still be happy to use it occasionally.
 

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You boys are just beginers 94 ,97......... I started at about the age of 11 or 12(1967) with a hand me down Fibreglass Clan 14ft. This was not the same Clan company of today and was based in the Trossachs. After on season my father and I stripped of the handle and stuck a couple of feet of green heart up the butt of the rod to make it a 15fter. It was all the rage at the time there were no commercial available 15rods on the market.I feel in retrospect this alteration did not assist the action of the rod.
 

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My first rod was bought back in 1992. It was a shakespeare traditional 15ft #11.

The rod was a beast. It had an action more like a broom stick than a casting tool. However, it served it's purpose.

Gordon
 

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Mine was a Bruce and Walker 15`Norway Speycaster that I relieved my brother of, at a modest discount. :devil:
He was cleaning out his closet at the time, and it seems like I`ve been filling mine ever since.

Cascade
 

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While in Kamchatka in 96 Adam Tavender told me that I'd really enjoy spey casting. I told him I'd been quite interested, but there was so much confusing information I didn't know where to start. He told me to give Kerry Burkheimer a call and discuss my needs. As my primary steelhead river was the N Umpqua, Kerry built me a 1338. I still use it, but his 1398 has become my most used rod.
 

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Mines was a gold motif 14' hardy favorite with a double taper aircel supreme of which i was an absolute embaressment to my fishing companions as all i acheived was aerate the water ,then came the daiwa amorphous 15ft jim love special of which i still use today for my sunkline work. I hadn't seen this rod worked until i seen head boatman colin wilkie throw the whole Lee Wulff across the Tay!
 

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Sage 9140-3

was my first. I used it for overhead casting. I wish I still had it and that I had gotton to Dana, or some other instruction early. It would have saved me me money and a LOT of frustration. Then it was the 9140-4 and 10150-4 by Sage.
 

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My first Spey was an unknown blank that a friend built for me when I was 19. He bought it from Anglers Workshop. Reddish brown finish 13' 9/10 weight. Very fast, I believe IMX graphite. I'm actually curious if anyone could possibly identify it ? Never got it lined right and it sits in a closet now.

Soon after I bought a Orvis Trident 12'6" 8 weight. This is the same rod that Dana has reviewed on Spey Pages. It is actually a very nice rod and a good beginner rod. My wife fished it on the Deschutes last September and was hucking out 60 - 65 ' casts with ease after only 1 lesson.

Gillie
 

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Sage 9140-3

I bought it at a Steelhead Society Auction in 1992 as a blank. While everyone told me it was wrong 9140 it just took me a fair while to figure out how to line it (it is really a 10 wt) it was and still is, one of the very best rods around. While I now have dozens of rods and it rarely gets used, it is still a favourite. :smokin:
 

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Pullin' Thread
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My first was a SAge 9140-4 I bought in early 1993. I bought it because two folks I knew who were using 2-handers recommended I get a Sage 9140. Since they didn't tell me if it was the 9140-3 or the 9140-4 they were talking about, like Dana I decided it had to be the 9140-4 because it was a "traditional spey rod". After I got the rod and ran into both of these folks on the river, they told me they forgot to say it was the 9140-3 they were actually recommending, not the 9140-4.
 
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My first rod was the Sage 1014-3 RP II. It was purchased about 1990-91. The reason I bought it was because a local shop had it sitting around and made me an offer that was tough to refuse. Absolutely no one was using a double-handed rod around here at that time. I put an Ultra 2 DT11F Salmon taper line on it and used a reel which I later discovered was way too light to balance it correctly (a Lamson LP 6 or 7). Since my initial instruction came from Mike Maxwell, who hated the Sage rods, I quickly thereafter bought a Fisher 15' 9 weight made from a blank by a friend of mine. This rod had an action very similar to those of Mike's Gold-N-West speyrods as Fisher made the blanks for Mike. The truth is I didn't particularly like either rod and ended up buying the Sage 9126-3 (or was it a 10126) that had the European action and was perfect for GL steelhead water around here. I later learned that Goran Andersson designed that rod for Sage and there are still times I wish I hadn't sold it. Especially since the fishing buddy who bought it rarely uses it.
 

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PiscatorNonSolumPiscatur
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In 1999 I got the bug to give this 2-handed stuff a try. I was convinced by a long-time 2-hand user and local flyshop owner that to fish the Cowlitz effectively I needed a T&T 11wt. I had lived close to this river and fished it regularly. He had after many years settled on the 16' version. I checked out other sources and talked to other shops but was sure this guy in his many years of experience was ahead of the others . I ordered the 15' model and with some videos began the process of teaching myself to use it with a double taper line. Had I not caught a nice 30" hen the first time out I probably would not have had the perserverance to stick with it. I knew no one else who used a 2-hander,and had not yet become famailar with the internet.
Anyway, after a summer of fishing, alot of frustration, and an occaisional fish to keep me hooked, I began to get the basics of the movements and timing etched in the neuro-networks of my brain. Later, this website did more than anything else to teach me.
I still use that rod in winter but have tried out many others. That first rod did indeed affect my tastes in rods as I have a harder time using the "softer" rods.
 

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Junkyard Spey
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Being as I couldn't afford a "real" spey rod my first two hander was the
"junkyard spey" which hangs in a place of honor on the wall of my shop.
It is 12' long. The tip and the mid section were made from an 8'6"-8wt yellow Fenwick fiberglass fly rod. The butt section was made from the bottom half of a Fenwick "Flippin Stick" bass rod. The line was 41' of DT floater for the head and the running line was from the back end of a WF5F trout line.

When a customer comes into my shop and tells me they want to get into spey fishing but they are on a tight budget, I can relate.
 

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I re injured my old damaged right shoulder, 3 years ago this coming May. Since that injury, I'm not able to cast a single handed rod.

My first Spey Rod was the Sage 7136. It worked great with indicators with a lob or roll cast. I tried a Sage 9140, and I was not able to handle it with my injured shoulder. The 7136 worked great with the WC 678 lobbing indicators and tossing the sinktips it came with. I bought the Rio MS 6/7 floating line and used it to cast floating flies and emergers, and it worked great.

I got some bad advice for the 7136 and bought the RIO WC upgrade for my 7136 and took it and sinking heads for the worst day fishing I ever had. I went Shad Fishing on the American River during high water and fast water flows. I was unable to cast. Fortunately, Bob Pauli recommended this site after that disaster. which was a great suggestion.

I still have the 7136, and it is a perfect trout/summer steelhead rod with the Rio MS 6/7 floating line. I can cast that combo for hours. Last year after a day on the River with Simon at Jeff Putnam's school on the American River. I'm now able to cast the 7136 with tips including the tip compensator and even the WC upgrade if I really take my time with the Double Spey. It will not do a snake roll with the tips or the Upgrade.
 

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loco alto!
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I lived in Seattle in the early 90's, left for a while, then back to the PNW in 1999. That's when I bought a Sage 9140-3. I lacked a local mentor, so finding the ISC site in early 2000 was a major benefit to my spey development. My 9140-3 came with a matched line (Cortland DT 11/12) and had a great action for learning, but was just too much for Oregon steelhead. It was sold a few months ago to a good home.
 

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I got my first double hander from my buddy Todd Hopkins back in the early 90's. It was a 16' 10(or 11) wt. 3 pc. Sage with an Accelerator line and a Hardy Salmon #3. I can still remember a sunny day in Sept. on the Bulkley fishing alone and flopping that long line around untill my arms actually fell off. It was quit the battle. A fellow from Smithers walked up and said "big gear eh? You look like you could use a beer."

I sold the rod a couple of years latter and now wish that I still had it. It was really a nice rod but for a beginner it was an ass kicker.

Greg
 

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First double handed rod I fished with was a Hardy 'Wye' 11' cane rod which I had on long-term loan from a great family friend, and I caught my first salmon on this aged 11 in 1974.

First double handed rod I owned was a 13' Grant Vibration greenheart handed down to me when I was about 15 from a great aunt who was finding it a bit heavy as she moved into her seventies. I still have it but alas the middle section is in pieces.

First double handed rod I bought was a B&W 'Cairngorm'; 15' fibre glass. Floppy as wet spaghetti, though I didn't mind at the time.

I only came to speycasting fairly recently; all the above rods were cast overhead. Don't know if that means they can be counted as 'spey' rods or not.
 
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