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Thread: Fast action, vs. slow action rods

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Western Cape
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    Default Fast action, vs. slow action rods

    Following from the "Elbe" thread, which has moved slightly into a discussion about rod actions, I thought it might be interesting to find out what preferences the guys have for rods of diffent loading speeds (commonly reffered to as the rods action), and where they might be used to good effect.
    My pesonal preference tends generally towards rods in the meduim to fast bracket, but while I also enjoy slower rods in some cases, there are definatly instances where conditions dictate wheather a slow or fast loading rod is more suitable.
    It would be interesting to hear the opinions of guys who fish with several rods of different loading speeds, and in what condidions they prefer the faster rods as pooposed to the slower ones, and vise versa.
    Disclaimer.... none of my posts are intended to be "expert advice"..just opinions from someone who is willing to help where he can.

  2. #2
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    Mar 2008
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    Bloemfontein,Free State
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    Hi Andre
    I have five rods that I use on a constant basis.The slower rods are a Bruce Truter Custom 6wt 8.6' and a Daiwa Osprey 6wt 9' and both can handle 4lbs tippets comfortably (my new 4wt Elbe does'nt handle 4lbs tippets well at all).The BTC 6wt has the slowest action.I use these rods under normal conditions and where there is'nt too much underwater structure to be concerned about.My next rod is a BTC-Fenwick 7wt 9' and is a med-fast rod,but I would rate it as a med rod.This rod is used where there is heavy and/or lots of underwater structure and very clear water conditions.The 7wt allows me to fish with either 6lbs mono or 8lbs flouro tippet and gives me bit more leverage on than the two slower rods.My new 4wt Elbe is a med-fast rod(more fast than med),for a 4wt it is very stiff and I have to be cautious when fishing with a 6lbs tippet never mind a 4lbs tippet!!I use it now and again for dams and rivers with lots of vegetation(like the Tsomo River near Elliot with it's canopy of Wattle trees)where conditions are not too demanding and I can use 8-15lbs leaders.The last rod is a fast Loomis&Franklin Matrix 10wt 9' and I use it for estuaries/sea,barbel and bass fishing(where there is heavy and/or lots of structure).Although some people are of the opinion that a 10wt is too much rod for barbel and bass,I like the amount of assurance that 10wt provides knowing that I can put quite a lot of pressure onto the fish with 100%confidence not 80%.The 10wt also handles well in windy conditions and can effectively cast 3/0 bassbugs and clousers,something I would not be too comfortable doing with an 8wt setup.
    Last edited by Halfstone; 20-12-09 at 04:12 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Nottingham Road Village, KZN
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    For stillwaters, I have 4 rods that I use regularly:

    - Deane "Stream" 8 foot 4-wt
    - Daiwa Osprey 8 foot 5/6-wt
    - Stealth Xtreme 9 foot 5/6-wt
    - Horizon XRS 9 foot 5-wt

    The Deane and Diawa I would in the medium-to-slow bracket, and while I like casting them, they are a bit limited in what they can throw

    The Stealth I would put in the medium bracket and is a great all round all purpose rod.

    The Horizon is a super fast "broom stick" and I use it mainly from a float tube as it can lift a team of 3 large/weighted flies easily and chuck them properly from a seated position low down on the water.


    For stream work I have:

    - Stealth Xtreme 7 foot 6 inch 2/3-wt
    - Xplorer Guide 7 foot 9 inch 3-wt
    - Stealth Xtreme 8 foot 3-wt

    All lovely rods to work with, the Xplorer being in the medium to slow bracket, and the Stealths being a tad faster, more medium.
    Jan L. KorrŻbel
    Nottingham Road Village

  4. #4
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    Sep 2006
    Location
    Cape Town
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    Streams:
    Medium actions (slow side of medium), but with a lot of power in the blank for various reasons:
    1) To fish a medium action at short distance requires a change to the way one casts. It is a very lazy flowing type of casting which just makes me feel more at home on the streams
    2) Tippet protection
    3) Delicate presentation
    Rods of Choice:
    T&T LPS 9ft 3wt
    Ecotech River Run 7ft 6in 3wt
    Ones i'd love to try:
    Sage ZXL 3wt (longest they got - not sure what that is)
    Scott G2 3wt 8ft 8in

    Stillwater fishing:
    Fast Action long light rods, mainly to be able to turn over 2 or 3 flies on long leaders at distance.
    Rod of Choice:
    Vision GTFour 10ft 6wt
    Ones I'd like to try
    Sage Z-Axis 10ft 6wt
    (Wish there were more very good 10ft 6wt options.)

    Short line Nymphing techniques (eg vaal or on streams etc)
    Medium Fast action - i don't know why, i just know that i loose to much feel with the medium action, and my fast action rods just don't feel as good as my med-fast rated ones. Unfortunately haven't worked it out more scientificly than that.
    Rod of Choice:
    Vision 3Zone 10ft 5wt
    Ones i'd like to try:
    Greys Streamflex 10ft 4wt

    Small Saltwater, Tigerfish, Large Bream
    Fast action to turn over large flies in windy conditions (possibly with wire trace).
    Rod of Choice:
    TFO TiCr-X 9ft 8wt
    One's I'd like to try:
    The G-Loomis Rods in an 8wt 9ft
    T&T Horizon in an 8wt, 9ft
    "So hereís my point. Donít go and get your ego all out of proportion because you can tie a fly and catch a fish thatís dumb enough to eat a car key.." - Louis Cahill - Gink and Gasoline

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Benoni, Gauteng
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    It should be said that there is a big difference between action and taper...

    The question posed does not make this clear, and perhaps the following explanations will get people on the same page:

    (Extract taken from : http://www.ctsfishing.com/flytermsexplained.php)

    In designing, we use two different terms to describe the feel of our blanks. Action and Taper. For the most part these two components of our designs are closely related to provide a well balanced blank that is quite specific in its discipline.

    Action, commonly referred to as the lock up point, is where our blank first starts to stiffen dramatically. This affects the strike action of the blank and determines to a large extent the casting style. We use actions from slow through to extra fast. Outlined are our three basic categories:

    Slow This is an extremely graceful action that has a very subtle lock up point around mid way. Our Vintage Series, based on the traditional cane style, combines this action with a slow taper, allowing the blank to flex and load very smoothly throughout its length.


    Medium Beautiful balance and ease of casting. Our medium action is often combined with our medium taper. This action allows the blank to lock up from above midway into the top third. It is a great all round action.


    Fast A more demanding action, this action locks up in the top third of the blank. This action is generally paired with faster tapers to provide a blank that has plenty of power for both casting and fish fighting.



    The taper of the blank describes the power of the butt area in relation to the power of the tip area. A faster taper means a more powerful blank. Our fly series utilizes tapers from slow through to extra fast.

    Slow This very subtle taper allows the blank to flex right down to the lower third of the blank. Our slower taper allows us to build a feather light blank with an extremely smooth casting style and fly presentation.


    Medium Our medium taper blanks have a huge sweet spot. Beautifully light in the hand, these blanks load easily for excellent line delivery and have plenty of power for longer casting and fish stopping ability.


    Fast With a more powerful cast, these blanks will power up and deliver. Generally coupled with our fast or extra fast actions this style blank will generate great line speed and distance. The extra power through the butt area generates superb fish fighting ability.

    So is the question what action you prefer or what taper or indeed what combination? As not everything boils down to the rod action.
    "All you need is ignorance and confidence and the success is sure." - Mark Twain

  6. #6
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    Sep 2006
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    Waikato
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    I have read that CTS explanation before and I still don't get what they mean. I must be slow (actioned?).

    I like a medium-fast action in all my rods. I want the rod I am fishing with to be able to do it all, from short delicate casts to booming distance casts. The rod needs to be able to cast with just the tip engaged, but still have enough power in the butt to handle the extra weight when you lengthen the line. I can do all this with a quality rod in medium-fast action, so I don't feel the need to have rods with different actions. It just confuses my small brain and messes with muscle memory.
    Life is a series of trout missions with that numbing feeling in between...

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinE View Post
    I have read that CTS explanation before and I still don't get what they mean. I must be slow (actioned?).

    I like a medium-fast action in all my rods. I want the rod I am fishing with to be able to do it all, from short delicate casts to booming distance casts. The rod needs to be able to cast with just the tip engaged, but still have enough power in the butt to handle the extra weight when you lengthen the line. I can do all this with a quality rod in medium-fast action, so I don't feel the need to have rods with different actions. It just confuses my small brain and messes with muscle memory.

    Kevin I see it like this, the action relates to the rate of recovery, where as the taper refers to the point at which the blank locks up when under load.

    So a slow taper fast action (sounds daft) would flex almost fully along the entire length of the blank, but recover quickly. Just like a fast action and fast taper would flex little along the blank with mostly the tip doing the work and recover quickly.
    "All you need is ignorance and confidence and the success is sure." - Mark Twain

  8. #8
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    Nov 2007
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    Guys,

    Ive wondered about this for a long time before this thread.

    I think I am disabled in the sense that I am now at this stage where I only use fast to super fast actioned rods. Except for delicate stream casts etc.

    Im using TFO TiCr X 5wt for stillwater, yellows, kurper and bass.

    I proved to myself again this weekend that I can easiliy cast an intermediate line with a huge mouse all day long for as long and far as I want without a problem and then I have enough backbone to fight the fish as well.

    For bigger fish, tigers, salt and barbel I use the TFO Axiom 10wt.

    This thing is a monster and the line speed is amazing.

    You can really load it quickly and release it for maximum distance.

    I like it because I can cover more water with less effort, and you can pull out a blue whale with that rod.

    I may be wrong but I get the feeling that fast actioned rods fight better than slower actioned rods... Slower actioned rods are softer and absorbs more of the fight than fast actioned rods, so I prefer fast actioned rods with a backbone in the first 60% of the rod so I can force the fish in the direction/way I want... As one of the post comments that the faster actioned rods gives you a faster cleaner fight as well.

    My 2c

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Troep View Post

    I may be wrong but I get the feeling that fast actioned rods fight better than slower actioned rods... Slower actioned rods are softer and absorbs more of the fight than fast actioned rods, so I prefer fast actioned rods with a backbone in the first 60% of the rod so I can force the fish in the direction/way I want... As one of the post comments that the faster actioned rods gives you a faster cleaner fight as well.

    My 2c
    Thats not technically all that correct.

    What youre actually talking about is the taper, not the action.

    So when you say the backbone should be the first 60% of the rod, you ean the lockup point should be at around 60% of the rod lengh. which in turn means youre talking about a fast taper or maybee an extra fast taper.

    So If im correct, you like a fast actioned rod with a fast taper.

    Lets put it simply, action = speed, taper = power...
    "All you need is ignorance and confidence and the success is sure." - Mark Twain

  10. #10
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    I'm completely lost Mark.

    Is it just me?
    Life is a series of trout missions with that numbing feeling in between...

    My Album

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