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First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Josh Avroch (---.amazon.com)
Date: October 04, 2018 05:15PM

I just joined this forum a couple of days ago, as I'm going to start my first rod build in about a month. I'm taking a rod building class at my local angling and casting club. I'm curious what you all think of my component selection and also have a few questions for those of you that are more experienced than myself. Mostly, I expect to be using this in the San Francisco Bay Area in the surf, fishing for Halibut, Surf Perch, Stripers, etc. My local fly shop suggested the 9'6" to 10' rod, since I wanted to go with a single haned rod instead of a double hand switch rod. My thinking is that a single hand 8wt would be more useful in other situations, outside of the surf. I started by reading "Fly Rod Building Made Easy" by Art Scheck and am now about a quarter of the way through "Advanced Custom Rod Building" by Dale Clemens.

Here's what I'm thinking so far:
Pac Bay Quickline FAF10084 10' 8wt 4-piece blank (Black Gloss)
REC RGML Up-Locking Reel Seat (Titanium Smoke) w/ fixed radiused fighting butt and Stabilized Natural Burl Hardwood spacer
REC Full Wells 7" cork grip with recessed hood
REC RSG Stripping Guides
REC RSNX Snake Guides
REC RTTUL-L / RTTUL-XL Tip Top 4.5/64ths

For thread, I'm thinking black, charcoal, and/or almond, to go with the black blank, titanium smoke reel seat, and stabilized natural burl hardwood.

A few questions:
1. How much clearance do you need for the reel seat, beyond the butt size? The butt diameter of this blank is .430". I can order the reel seat with .438, .450, .475, or .500" bore size. So far, I'm leaning toward .450" bore size on the reel seat. .438" seemed like it might be a little too snug for bushings/masking tape?

2. This is a bit of a matter of opinion, I'd think, but do people generally start with the manufacturer's recommendations for guide spacing / sizing? Or, one of the many algebraic equations? Here, I'm kind of more curious about the sizing than the spacing even. Pac Bay seems to suggest 10 and 12 stripping guides, and then 9 snake guides: 1x #6 1x #5, and 7x #4. Going by Art Scheck's recommendations, mainly for saltwater rods over 9', I was thinking more like three stripping guides: a 12, 16, and a 20. Followed by 8 snake guides: 1x #6, 2x #5, 2x #4, and 3x #3. Do either / both of these make sense as far as guide sizes? Should I drop the section of 3x #3 snake guides? Both ways, it's 11 guides and a tip top for a 10' blank.

3. Do any of you have any experience with these Quickline blanks? I haven't seen much in terms of Quickline reviews, but what I have seen from searching this forum sounds really good.

4. Have I missed anything huge and obvious?

Thanks in advance!
- Josh



Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 10/04/2018 07:58PM by Josh Avroch.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Donald La Mar (---)
Date: October 04, 2018 06:14PM

Josh

.475 ID would be fine. Too snug is not an issue; the reel seat either slides over the butt or it does not.

Two (2) stripping guides on an 8 weight is enough. I'd either use 1 #6 and the remaining #4s or, more probably, 1 #5 and the remaining #3s. The #3s are a tiny bit lighter, but be certain they will easily pass the line to leader knot when rigging. Hope the XL in the tip top model # indicates a large loop tip top.

I'd rethink a hardwood reel seat insert for the salt and consider an all aluminum seat.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: October 04, 2018 06:16PM

Josh,
Question: Are you really going to use rod as a s/h switch rod vs a s/h overhead fly rod??
Switches are used essentially to re position the fly up stream.
If you are not going to end-up using rod as a switch - which I suspect - there is a world of difference swinging a 10' rod vs a 9' rod.
The fish you mention do not need a soft tip to protect the tippet.

I use REC reel seats exclusively - and some hold the reel foot better than others. I am not familiar with the RGLM seat - but it looks to have the same rear hood as the RFTS which does not hold the seat as well as the RSLL.

Re guides: There is only one (1) stripping guide - ever. A #20 or #16 is good. If you go with #20 - then the 2nd guide can be a #16 or #12. A 3rd one is not necessary - or even recommended.
Tom will suggest that you can go directly from the 2nd or 3rd guide to your #4. No #6, #5.
The REC #20 RSG does not get the line very far off the blank. Best to go with a Fuji Titanium, frame and SiC or Torzite for stripper - then #16, #12, #10 REC single foot spinning guides (RSPG) then #4 runners the rest of the way.

Don't use a XL tip-top ring. large is big enough.
Regards,
Herb
U.S. Distributor, CTS Rod Blanks

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Phil Erickson (---.dsl.pltn13.sbcglobal.net)
Date: October 04, 2018 06:17PM

First of all, there is no reason to go that much oversize on the reel seat ID diameter! If you are worried that the rod diameter may be oversize, go with the .450, you want it snug.

Also no need for 3 strippers, I would go with a 16 & 12 after that the Pac Bay recommendation is fine. You do not need 4 different sizes.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Josh Avroch (136.24.149.---)
Date: October 04, 2018 07:07PM

Thanks for all the responses! I very much appreciate the comments/feedback!

Herb, to clarify, I intend on using this as a single hand surf rod, not as a switch/overhead casting rod. I can see why my wording might have been confusing. I only mentioned the switch rod because my local fly shop/instructors at the surf clinic that I attended suggested either a switch rod, or a longer 9'6" to 10' 8wt. single hand rod, over a standard 9' one. I tested some at this length and they were quite nice, especially on the beach with the waves and all. Maybe a 10' is a bit too much? There is a 9' 8wt. Quickline as well. After hearing what you all said, I'll probably drop down from the XL tip top to the large one. Thanks for the advice.

Phil, I'll probably go with the .450 bore size on the reel seat as well. I was worried that might be *too* small, but I agree after reading what you said. Thanks for that advice as well.

I appreciate all the advice on the guide sizing as well. I'll probably re-think using so many sizes/three strippers. It looks like that might have been a bit overkill.

Donald, as per the stabilized hardwood reel seat insert, I was waiting for somebody to bring that up. I had read that stabilized / impregnated hardwoods should be fine with saltwater. Is that not the case? That's what REC would have you believe at least.

Thanks again for all the comments/feedback. It looks like with a few tweaks, I might be on the right track.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/04/2018 07:11PM by Josh Avroch.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Donald La Mar (---)
Date: October 04, 2018 07:27PM

Stabilized wood is OK, and the aesthetics are initially superior to metal. The down side is the heavier fly rods and fly rods for the salt tend to live harder lives with more bangs and bumps than their lighter, fresh water kin, which, for me, argues for metal. Call it six of one and half dozen of another.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: October 04, 2018 08:25PM

Josh,
Common wisdom is that a 10' rod will get you over the waves better than a 9' rod.
This is not necessarily so. The 10' rod's flex profile will probably cancel out any advantage over the 9' rod. Also - the 10' #8 will probably need more grains to load than a 9' rod.
The extra foot is all in the butt - therefore will handle a heavier line. If the rods flex profile is too stiff it will be a bear to cast.

IMO - you are better off incorporating a faster line speed into your casting to get over the waves instead of relying on the length. If it ends up that length is important - go to a TH rod in 12' plus that is suitable for the surf. i.e. not a Spey rod - but a TH with the action like a SH rod.
I have built, own and casted many 10 footers. I rarely use them other than to test them once in a while to re-convince me that I don't like them. Much too heavy vs a 9' rod.

What type of surf will you be dealing with. i.e height of waves and how far do you have to cast to reach beyond the waves.
herb

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: October 04, 2018 08:25PM

Josh,
Sorry - dupe post



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/04/2018 08:26PM by Herb Ladenheim.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Bill Sidney (---.gci.net)
Date: October 04, 2018 10:49PM

is this your first BUILD ? if it is go cheap an work up , save you a lot of problems

William Sidney
AK

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Drew Pollock (---.218-62-69.ftth.swbr.surewest.net)
Date: October 04, 2018 11:15PM

I've built several of the 8 weight Quickline blanks. Overall, it's a very decent blank, well priced, no issues.

I would use Fuji K series and I'd recommend size 16 and then 12 before dropping to your running guides.

If you're surf fishing, all your guides should be titanium to avoid rust issues.

The REC snake guides are great. I use them on every rod I make. The tip top is your call but the Fuji "F" tops look like spinning tops but work perfectly as fly tops. And they are much smoother than a wire loop top under load.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Ron Weber (---)
Date: October 04, 2018 11:58PM

If the Butt OD is .430, then the .438 bore ID is what you want. The closest bore oversize to the blank is always the best

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---)
Date: October 05, 2018 11:13AM

Josh
If you want additional to info it is always best to "unhide" your email address
Herb

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.res.spectrum.com)
Date: October 05, 2018 11:20AM

If I trust a company enough to buy their blank I trust their recommendation for the best guide spacing - and size. You can't go wrong with REC guides, although their tip-tops are ugly and their strippers are ugly and noisy - but bomb-proof. Anodized aluminum reel seat for sure, but if you THOROUGHLY rinse your rod top-to bottom IMMEDIATELY after fishing the salt you can use dang near any reel seat and guides. For salt-water fly casting in the surf you really MUST learn to double haul. When fishing the surf with a one-handed rod no blank, no components, no line at ANY expense will compensate for the ability to double-haul cast.

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: October 05, 2018 12:11PM

Except for trusting blank manufacturer on guide spacing - "what Phil said."
Herb

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Re: First Rod Build: 10' 8wt Single Hand Surf Rod
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (---)
Date: October 06, 2018 02:08AM

Josh,
I think you are going too long on the rod for one hand rod, it is going to wear you out. 9' is a good size. I would also use an anodized aluminum reel seat and if it has a an insert I would not go with wood for a saltwater rod. Some kind of composite material would be better for an insert. Look at the Alps HERA7WL2 reel seat or one of the all metal REC seats. I also don't use tape for arbors, I like the foam or graphite arbors instead. I am in total agreement with Herb on the stripping guides. Ti frames all the way, SIC or Torzite then go to the RECs for runners and a Fuji KG Arowana Tip Top in 6 or 7 mm. My set up would be like Fuji KW 16 and KW 10 to REC 7 double foot snake with the rest REC 4 double foot snakes. 2 strippers and 8 runners. I like the transition with 7 snake. No need for a bunch of different sizes.
Lance

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