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 Post subject: Known tapers in bamboo
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:28 am • # 1 
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You may or may not know that I have more than just a passing interest in bamboo rods. And obviously I also have more than a passing interest in rods of the ultralight variety. Which is really my "dilemma", and what has prompted this post.

My request for anyone/everyone here is to identify tapers developed specifically for bamboo rods in the sub-four-weight range. And if they are classic tapers that "pre-date" AFTMA standardized line weights, then tapers that were specifically developed for casting lines designated as G, H, or I. (I assign the middle letter of a tapered line designation as the "weight" rating. So an IHI designated double-taper line would be an "H", and by rough conversion to current line weights: a two weight.)

I'm not looking for tapers that were "modified" by using the old rod maker's rule of taking/adding .005"-.006" to each station to bump up or down a line weight. Or for that matter, am I looking for tapers that have been put through RodDNA or some other program to recalculate the taper for a different line weight. I'm only interested in identifying both classic and modern tapers that were/are specifically developed to be 1, 2, or 3 weight rods. Quad, Hex, Pents... whatever. If you own or have experience casting a rod with that taper so much the better, and please provide any insights you might have into its action.

I know of some tapers, and have actual experience with a few. But there aren't very many that I've come across, and I would love to hear what anyone here might suggest.

---David


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 12:53 pm • # 2 
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David, Thanks for welcome. I am not an expert on UL tapers or rods for matter made of any material. Though handling mostly vintage bamboo examples and research I have a basic understanding. Many lightweight bamboo tapers of 6 1/2 - 9' may fall into this category. I usually use a combination of ferrule size & rod wt. to determine this rather than rod wt. alone, as you know these tapers can react differently with lighter/heavier line wt. either way of advertised/recommended line wt., and ,in my understanding, not all lines are created equal.
Mostly my focus has been on vintage cane before line standards came into use in the 50's-60's. Many times a silk line could be match to the rod's advertised weight as new lines of today.
So, I very much like increase the scope of the conversation and to include the many lightweight tapers throwing 4 wt and below line, if that is what you had in mind?
Very few UL bamboo rods examples exist publicly, many are tucked away in personal/museum closets/collections, but it seems most big rod companies produced them at some time in their history, but they still remain rare birds.
Montague made a 6 1/2' Manitou and a Fishkill, advertised in 1939, but I own most every length Fishkill from 7 1/2- 9 1/2' made yet have never seen one for sale or display. Heddon, Granger, Southbend, Leonard, Divine, etc. all made these LW tapers, even the very rare 7 1/2' 3pc Redwing is more common. To me it is a fascinating part of rod making history as well.
IMO, Ed
PS: Although all these tapers are hard to find, some considered proprietary, guarded by some makers, they all were developed long ago. So, many of these good one's have been published somewhere. I would think any real tweaking to them would be minimal at most, even though rod makers do not readily want to share them for what ever reason they may have in the back of their minds. My opinion, in the end, you buy the quality of the makers product not necessarily the taper, but on the other hand look at the Horrocks Ibbotson Tonka series a poor quality finished rods with great tapers, a fluke that many have copied. Also the low demand for these specialized UL rods further complicates and limits availability I would think.


Last edited by ewp313 on Fri Sep 14, 2012 9:40 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 3:17 pm • # 3 
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David, take a look at this link (or you may have seen it already). It lists tapers with measurements for rod makers, but it's good info none the less. Some is vintage, some contemporary. It lists modern line weights.

http://www.hexrod.net/Tapers/drtapers/index.html

Ed is right, there weren't all that many vintage light tapers, but they do exist.
Leonard's Fairy series probably being the best known.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:46 pm • # 4 
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Here's a early 1900's Landman "Fairy", owned/donated to a flyfishing museum by a member of Clarks forum. It is an extremely rare lightweight. Ed
ImageImageImage


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 5:59 pm • # 5 
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The only real experience I have is with that Winston Merrick 2wt. 6'0" rod I briefly owned. I can recount the action and feel of the rod if you would like, but I know nothing about the measurements of the taper.

Contact Dennis Stone if you are interested in gaining more information about the taper itself. He's the one who built the rod I owned. It was a nice little rod. A bit faster than your Scott F2, but it certainly handled a 2wt. or a 3wt. line just fine.


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