Monday, July 21, 2014

Budget Minded Fly Fishing Tackle - Graphite Rods

Recently, I wrote a blog post on "Budget Minded Fly Fishing Tackle - Fiberglass Rods"I am very thankful for all the great comments that were left pertaining to the subject at hand.  True, "Glass Is Not Dead", and is becoming more and more evident as the days and weeks pass in the fly fishing scene.  Many fly fishers are in the process of trying the new generation fiberglass rods and tracking down models from yesteryear at auction sites, estate sales, and yard sales.  Other fly fishers have already made a complete change and fish only fiberglass rods at this point in time.  I would place myself in the group that is "curious" about all this fiberglass rod stuff.  I have picked up a few on the very low budget end and have been learning to use them.  

However, clearly I am not ready to adapt to strictly just the use of fiberglass rods.  To be fair, most all of my experience has been with graphite rods, in my thirty some year fly fishing career.  From expensive Sage, G. Loomis, Orvis brand rods to moderately priced rods like Lamiglas, St. Croix, and, TFO fly rods.  I have owned and fished graphite models from each.  They all had my attention at one time or another.  What I would like to do with this post is take a look at some Budget Minded Fly Rods on the graphite side of the seen.  Again, there are some nice ones available at a price that most any of us could get into without breaking the bank, so to speak.  Again, as a senior citizen on a fixed income, I am always looking for good quality at the best price for what my budget limits are.  Below are a few that have been well received and offer fly fishers an opportunity to enjoy the sport of fly fishing with a fly rod that doesn't cause you to take out a second mortgage.

Let's begin with 

$69 - $79  (Even less when on sale)
These rods are a great way to have a decent set up for under $100.
They come in 2 or 4 piece models with out the case.
One year limited warranty
Have had excellent reviews on this rod.

Another option

$69 - $89
Redington offers these nice rods to fit in the under $100 price range,  too.
They come in 2 or 4 piece models with out the case.
One Year warranty
I own this rod and have been very pleased with it and its responsiveness.
Or, how about a

They come in a 2 piece rod with out the case 
Warrantied for the life of the original registered owner with shipping and handling fee paid by user.
Lefty is a fly fishing legend.  His expertise has made these rods a welcome addition
Again, I own this rod and I believe it is a delight to fish with.
Or a

This rod is a 4 piece rod only (Great for the traveling angler)
Comes with a Lifetime Warranty
This series was designed by Tim Rajeff with the plan to be able to get more people out fly fishing.  I think mission accomplished from all that I have seen.

Now all of these are fine budget minded fly rods, however, they are not the only ones that are available at a budget offering.  Other fly rod company's have gotten into the scene with their offerings also.  St. Croix, Ross, Allen, and a number of other companies have gotten on the bandwagon lately.  Truth be told, there are other Cabela's, Redington's, TFO's, and Echo fly rods that are priced at another step up, yet, they also fit within the budget minded fly fishers approach.  Just to be clear, I have independently chosen the $200. price or below for inclusion in my fly rod options.

I hope I have balanced my views on what is available for both the graphite and fiberglass fly rod leaners in this series on budget minded fly rods.  You might be surprised at what spending a little "less" money will do when you shop for your next rod.

Happy hook ups!


  1. Great post Mel. I tried to find some bargains for you at the ICAST show, but fly rods under $100 are tough to come by! Two I'd suggest adding to your list are the $62 AX Series from Wild Water Fly Fishing. It's inexpensive and comes with a lifetime warranty. Also, how about the $85 Classic from Badger Tenkara. You don't even need to spend money on a reel!

    1. Mike, thanks for thinking of me while at the ICAST show. Rods under a $100 are out there for sure, but, I would expect ICAST to be pretty much the much classier stuff. I will check into the Wild Water Fly Fishing AX Series. Thanks for that tip as I was not familiar with them. Kudos on the Badger Tenkara rod for under $100. That is a heck of a start for someone interested in Tenkara...

  2. Certainly something to keep in mind, when the need for a fly rod comes up.

    1. Mark, been waiting for you to give me a review on "3". He or She should have been included here, I bet..................................

  3. Mel one does not have to take out a mortgage to buy a quality fly rod.
    I have TFO's Lefty rod and I'm so pleased with it.

    1. Alan, thanks for backing me up on my judgement. There are a lot of us folks out there that need to remain in this budget cost area, and, I am happy that the fly rod companies are noticing that. I am very happy, also, with my TFO Lefty rod. Wouldn't mind another one in a different size...

  4. I have 2 Cabela's Rods, and lost a Reddington Crosswater a couple of years ago. All great fishing rods. More than adequate to get the fly in front of a fish, and that is really all that we are trying to do. I also have a Echo rod, but it was a little bit more money but still a good value considering that is has two tips which make it both a 9'6" and a 10 foot rod.

    These days, one can buy a fine rod for less money that the parts to make one.

    1. Hi, Charlie. Thanks for the visit and comment. I think I would be happy with any of the rods I featured here. Heck, I have two of them already. I like your philosophy on what it is all about "to get the fly in front of a fish". I am quickly becoming a fan of Echo rods, too. Your rod would be perfect for a lot of lake fishing situations in my part of the world.

  5. Great post brother Mel. My first graphite was an Orvis many years ago. It was a fine rod I got on ebay for around $100. I also had a St. Croix, at the time one of the best buys you could get on a graphite rod. Shortly thereafter, I bought a second hand WM glass rod and I was hooked. I loved the fast action which forced me to slow my cast down. I also loved feeling the rod flex which helped my casting a great deal. Slow graphite doesn't usually let you feel the flex down to the butt. You're welcome to try any of my glass any time you want. By the was, nice seeing you on

    1. Thank you, brother Howard.....
      Not only for the comment on the post, but, your generosity in offering me a chance to try one of your many glass rods on the water. Just may have to take you up on that offer sometime this season...............
      As far as the Fiberglass Fly Rodders Forum, always curious and willing to learn what I can. Thanks for making me comfortable over there.

  6. Mel
    Over the years I have tried the fiberglass, glass and finally years ago settled on the graphite and have never strayed from it since. I fish the Redington Tempt and the Ct classic and like everything about both fly rods, especially the lightness, both weighting in at less than 2.4 oz. As I get older I need a fly rod that is light especially if I am on the water a half a day or more which is seldom, but the fly rod needs to be light enough not to tire me out and both of these brands work well for me. Thanks for sharing some great info about the graphite’s, as you can tell they are my favorite.


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