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PostPosted: Sat Dec 03, 2022 9:42 am • # 1 
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I've fished 3 wt rods in 6', 7' and 7.5' lengths, and the longest rod is a real favourite. But I'm intrigued by the prospect of a 9' (or 8.5), and what it might deliver, all other things being equal. In particular, I'm wondering if there are casting distance advantages or heavier fly capacities. I like the shorter rods for tight stream brookies and my home stream, although it holds some smallies over 18", averages only 30' across. The 7.5' rod will throw 55+ feet of line with a light fly, but I'm wondering what I might gain by going longer? The collective wisdom here has never let me down. Opinions, please?
brent


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2022 10:42 am • # 2 
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"The collective wisdom here" - well, that leaves me out, but the longer the rod is the better it will be while casting in the wind. I have a 7', 3-wt that I use 90% of the time, but when it's windy I get out my 9', 4-wt. because it is so much easier to use in the wind.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2022 2:05 pm • # 3 
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Cliff Hilbert wrote:
... when it's windy I get out my 9', 4-wt. because it is so much easier to use in the wind.

Ah, good advice, Cliff. Thanks. And don't be so hard on yourself - that's my job. ;)
brent


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2022 2:59 pm • # 4 
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There's a fundamental geometrical advantage based on the speed of the rod tip. So theoretically more line speed, which I find to be true. I can't say they're any easier/harder to cast but I could see there being less margin for timing errors. You can't whip them about as easy as a shorter rod. I think it's pretty indisputable that you get more distance out of a longer rod. Mending and high sticking is way easier. Not sure if this is the kind of info you're looking for.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2022 9:52 pm • # 5 
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preast wrote:
Not sure if this is the kind of info you're looking for.


Pretty much exactly what I was looking for! Thanks
brent


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2022 10:18 am • # 6 
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So far, all my truly UL fly rods range between 5 and 7.5 feet. But...

Sometimes my mind wanders into thinking how much fun it might be to play with a rod that is 9' or so, for say a true 2- or 3-weight line. Not so much for line mending, high sticking, or tight line nymphing as for roll/single-hand spey/switch casting. However, I don't feel interested into rods built specifically for those types of casting that require much heavier lines than what they're listed for. And at the present time, there are other things that seem much more urgent...


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2022 8:35 pm • # 7 
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I agree with all said above. I have a 10 ft 3wt. I've fished everything from a 5 ft to the 10 ft and the longer rods are more versatile, although I still fish my 7ft; the shorter rods are less stressful on the body and provide a break from that stress.

Anyway, each length is a different casting experience for me and I enjoy that.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2022 9:03 am • # 8 
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"the shorter rods are less stressful on the body and provide a break from that stress." - Ummmm, Jim, you're showing your age by that comment. But I know exactly what you're saying because I'm old also. I'm sure Brent can also relate to that. :lol :lol :lol


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2022 4:49 pm • # 9 
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PampasPete: good insights there!
JimRed/Cliff Hilbert: I hear ya. (less stressful on the body). Earlier this year I spent three days fishing salmon with a 9wt rod and sinking/sinking tip lines on a big river. By the end, my arm and shoulder were pretty tired, yet the next day I spent four joyous hours on my home stream with a 6' one weight and, if anything, it loosened things up a bit.
brent


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2022 6:50 am • # 10 
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I have also found that longer rods just read havoc my back and shoulders. My ul rods consist of a6’9” 1wt, 7 1/2’ 2wt, 8’4” 3wt my nonuls are 8 1/2’ 4wt, 9’ 5wt, and testing out a 9 1/2’ 6wt. 1-4wt I can fish all daylong with no issues. It seems that as soon as I go over 8 1/2’ and I have tried after 2 or 3 hours the aches and pains set in. It doesn’t appear to be an issue with the physical weight of the rod and reel. Just the length. I used to have a 8’ Heat 8wt from Bass Pro, never had any issues with it either. The only advantage I see in longer rod is the ability to mend line is improved.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2022 8:35 am • # 11 
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Thanks, Mbarker. So, what I'm hearing overall, is that a longer rod is not necessariy going to help throw heavier flies further.
brent


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2022 1:23 pm • # 12 
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I think that's fair to say. Since castable fly size has more to do with line weight, I don't think lengthening the rod reallys solves for heavy flies. I was gonna add that I think 8.5' is a good sweet spot for a longer rod. I guess it's just based on our human dimensions, but for some reason 9' feels heavier in relation to 8.5' than 8.5' does to 8'. I actually rarely fish a rod over 8' nowadays, mostly because I'm either out of kayak or using UL. Long UL rods don't seem as fun to me. If I'm on a boat though, it's probably gonna be a 9' (but also probably a heavier weight). I use an 8' 3wt for the extra distance on backcountry lakes for trout, but that's the longest light rod I own.

The math of angular velocity is there on the rod tip speed on a wider arc of a longer rod. I also wonder if it's due to more rod/mass to absorb the energy on the backcast. But yeah, the energy has to come from somewhere, so they can wear you out.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 28, 2022 9:21 pm • # 13 
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I've got a Sage 379 LL, custom made on a LL blank, and a 380 NIPPON marked.

For smaller streams etc., I go with the shorter rod. The 379 has a bit more backbone to it, but I can get to land flies in tight places.

The 380 does well for more open area small streams, as the length helps put the fly out there a bit more.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2022 8:27 pm • # 14 
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wheezeburnt wrote:
But I'm intrigued by the prospect of a 9' (or 8.5), and what it might deliver, all other things being equal.

There's some stuff in this thread which might be of interest to you, it was one Dominikk85 started a while back...https://ultralightflyfishing.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=68&t=12955

My thoughts on longer UL rod have not changed and are reflected in the above link. They're different, yet worthy of consideration and might be nice addition to what you already have.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2022 8:41 am • # 15 
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knotjoe wrote:
There's some stuff in this thread which might be of interest to you, it was one Dominikk85 started a while back...https://ultralightflyfishing.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=68&t=12955

My thoughts on longer UL rod have not changed and are reflected in the above link. They're different, yet worthy of consideration and might be nice addition to what you already have.


Thanks for the link! More food for thought.
brent


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2022 9:19 am • # 16 
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A simple thought for dessert...don't re-purchase what you already have.

If you're gonna do it, go long at 9' or more and get full utility of length. It'll be different, but if you utilize the advantages it'll be money well spent.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2022 8:35 am • # 17 
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knotjoe wrote:
A simple thought for dessert...don't re-purchase what you already have.If you're gonna do it, go long at 9' or more and get full utility of length. It'll be different, but if you utilize the advantages it'll be money well spent.


Good advice,which I shall take. I have 3wt rods in 7' and 7.5', and 1wt and 4wt in 6' rods. I think your suggestion of 9' (going for 3wt to handle fly size) is a good one.
brent


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2022 10:56 am • # 18 
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Brent, I think you should try a 12-wt, 5ft long rod for the huge minnows you have up there.
Happy New Year!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2022 10:36 pm • # 19 
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Right back atcha, Cliff. And I'll consider your advice. Currently sorting through my tent pole collection for a candidate.
brent


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2023 11:19 am • # 20 
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wheezeburnt wrote:
PampasPete: good insights there!
JimRed/Cliff Hilbert: I hear ya. (less stressful on the body). Earlier this year I spent three days fishing salmon with a 9wt rod and sinking/sinking tip lines on a big river. By the end, my arm and shoulder were pretty tired, yet the next day I spent four joyous hours on my home stream with a 6' one weight and, if anything, it loosened things up a bit.
brent


I know this is off topic, but I think it's a good opportunity for an important topic, "how to handle aging and continued fly fishing".
Also, if you need a rational for buying more fly rods here is one: I think not only using lighter fly rods mixed in with the heavier fly rods relieve the body stress, but also using different fly rods in general (requiring different casting techniques and using different body parts) also relieve the body stress.

Or am I just rationalizing my collection of fly rods? Any comments welcome.


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