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Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: January 27, 2019 02:05AM

Hello everyone,
i am looking for the ultimate dry fly Blank. The price is not a major factor. Important for me is quality, weight (it should be light, but does not have to be like extra extra light and thin) and maybe the warranty. Since i haven´t cast many different light rods it´s hard to tell what i am looking for. Also it´s almost impossible for me to test cast some Blanks. I will test cast some light rods next weeks, so i get into it. But it will still be hard to find the right blank. For light Streamer fishing i love my #6 9' Affinity X. I have a quite active style of casting and those fast rods are perfekt for me. However, i am not too sure, if that Blank would make a nice dry fly rod as a line 4. Either i am not sure an Affinity M would fit my needs. Sounds awkward to stiffen the tip and soften the buttom to reach a deeper load. I would think a softer Tip and a stronger Butt would make the better rod. What do you think?
What i have casted is an Orvis Superfine Carbon in line 4. It is a nice rod, but i am missing something, like some spices are missing in your meal. Hard for me to explain in english. Looking for something fast but not stiff. Something light and crispy, but with some deep power supporting longer casts and "Watercasts" ( don´t know the specific term; like roll cast or spey cast).

To shorten it up: What companies are producing the highest quality of Blanks? Would you say a 1000$ Orvis, Hardy or Winston has better Blanks (in terms of quality and performance) than you could buy at the known blank-factorys?
Which Blank do you like for dry fly fishing? Which could be suitable for me?

So please let me know if anything comes in your minds. General suggestions, also as specific Blank suggestions are highly appreciated.
I will spend some time finding the right Blank, so don´t hesitate to answer, even if this thread got a bit older. I am planning to update you as soon as i casted some rods or can specify my needs better.
As you have noticed, i am not a native english speaker, so pls bear with me and my bad english. Hope it did not went too bad ;)

Looking forward for discussing blanks and dry fly rods.
Kind regards
Michel

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: January 27, 2019 10:32AM

Michel,
I understand your quest.
Every once in awhile I search out other blanks besides CTS' just to see what's out there in "high-performance" blanks.
I am always disappointed, however, in whichever blanks I build on other than CTS.
I smiled when I saw your description of the "missing spice" because I agree.
Of course there is the fact that most blanks have much more obvious shortcomings. i.e. Tip heavy. Too heavy. Too stiff. Lack of "liveliness".

I agree with you re the Affinity-M. It is not one of my favorite blanks.
The Affinity-MX will, I believe, be the perfect dry fly rod if the "X" is too fast. Yes - the Affinity-MX is discontinued. However CTS will build the "MX" for my customers at a very modest up-charge. As I am sure you are aware, the MX and the "X" share the same tip. The "MX" has a softer butt. If you haven't "wiggled" one, it is a nice crisp blank. Certainly not sloppy.

The MX is a favorite rod of one of my friends from the UK. He uses it in a #10 for Striped Bass on Cape Cod outer beaches. So it is not a "wimpy" blank. He just prefers a more moderate blank than the "X".

If you need more info or pricing - send me an email.
Regards,
Herb
U.S. Distributor CTS Rod Blanks

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.res.spectrum.com)
Date: January 27, 2019 10:40AM

Can you give a ballpark number of what you mean by "a longer cast"?

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: January 27, 2019 01:54PM

Phil Ewanicki Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Can you give a ballpark number of what you mean by
> "a longer cast"?

I am not going to try to present my dry fly 30 meters away. I want to use the rod on middle sized stream. Maybe 10 to 30 meters wide. Most casts will be within around 15 meters. A light parabolic 4 WT that is from it´s powerlevel (?) at the lower end of the 4 WT´s might struggle, if i need to cast a bit further some times. So i want to make sure the rod has some reserves for casts a few meters longer. All distance information are estimated don´t even know how long i might be able to cast with a 4 WT.

And thank you Herb for your opinion regarding "CTS vs. the others". You reinforced my opinion in not buying an Affinity M. The Affinity MX might be a good choice though, but hard to get, maybe i´ll find a reminder in some shop. Maybe i´ll contact you for that blank, but not sure if that will pay off since i am from Germany.

Any opinions on the other producers like CD, NFC, Batson, MHX and so on?

Thanks for your help,
Michel

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Drew Pollock (---.201-34-174.ftth.swbr.surewest.net)
Date: January 27, 2019 03:21PM

"The Best" is a highly fluid, and subjective moving target.

My favorite fly rods are the St Croix SCVs that I've built. And now that Rod Geeks will be carrying them, and will paint to order, that's going to be a difficult combo to beat. And even their Carbon4 rods are great and sound just like what you want for small $$. I've recently built 2 of the Carbon4s and have to say they are really nice, especially for the price. They are inexpensive enough, that you could build 2 of them

Sage, Orvis, Winston, etc don't have any special magic to justify a 2-3 times higher price. The one Sage 8wt I built for myself is an excellent rod, but every time I go salmon fishing, I take one of my St Croix SCV rods.

But if you're already fixed on a brand, that's fine too. Almost all modern blanks are extremely good. I've had good luck with Batson, and MHx, and can't comment on CTS.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.res.spectrum.com)
Date: January 27, 2019 03:41PM

I have a 5 wt. MHX I built for shad fishing here in Florida and I am quite satisfied with it. It's what I would describe as medium-fast and it handles 1/128 oz. shad darts and sinking flies nicely. It does tend to "fold up" when pushed to cast more than 50-55 feet. Because I want the fly to stay down in the current it's a 9-foot rod, which facilitates mending line to keep the flies down. When I take it fishing trout streams back to my old haunts in the central New York Finger Lakes regions the 9' length causes problems in bushy streams but aids in roll casting when back casts are obstructed. Every rod is the result of a set of compromises, but I never understood the benefits of a parabolic action fly rod. Nostalgia for old-timers like me, maybe?

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: herb canter (---.atmc.net)
Date: January 27, 2019 04:31PM

Here's my recommendation , i would take a very hard look at the North Fork Composites fly rod blanks , they're like 60% off list i believe and Gary himself is behind their design and manufacture . Loomis fly rod's get superb ratings in most comparison tests .

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: January 27, 2019 06:09PM

Thank you all! I have just read you comments. It´s nighttime here in Germany, so i will enlarge on your comments tomorrow (if the term is bad or wrong it is google´s fault).

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Randy Kruger (---.res.spectrum.com)
Date: January 27, 2019 11:58PM

CTS Quartz Glass, or McFarland fiberglass are both excellent blanks for fly fishing.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Spencer Phipps (---.hsd1.or.comcast.net)
Date: January 28, 2019 12:26AM

IMO the finest 4 wt. dry fly rod that sounds like it meets your specs isn't available as a blank. For almost a decade the 8 1/2 ft. Hardy Zenith and than Zephrus 4 wt have been phenomenal. Find a blank that is similar and your golden. The Sage TXL was also a good stick, but no longer produced, though you may find a blank around.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/28/2019 12:56AM by Spencer Phipps.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: January 28, 2019 04:37AM

Hello,
have heard some good stuff abut St Croix and MHX. Gonna have a look at those again.

NFC sound really interesting for me. I could meet a guy to test cast a line 6 NFC, that makes it even more interesting.
In my mind i allready saw me ordering one after a testcast.
But NFC-Support does not answer German requests. Also i could find only a few dealer in the EU and they add 100 to 200% on the US price.
I don´t see me paying 450€ on a NFC LMX blank. Would be up to just test those Blanks but the price in EU is ridiculous.

Maybe someday i´ll test a glass blank to satisfy my curiosity, but for now i am looking for carbon.

Spencer, i am sure the Zephrus is amazing, but i will stick to my plan in building up a Blank. Nonetheless i will do some research of the Zephrus Taper/Aktion.

Thanks for all the help, i will keep you updated if something new comes in my mind, or if i am coming closer to a decision.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Herb Ladenheim (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: January 28, 2019 08:18AM

Michel
unhide your email - or email me for more comments
Herb

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: January 28, 2019 08:42AM

Hello Herb,
i have send you an e-mail.
I was thinking a bit about glass blanks. If i choose a fairly fast rod now, i could justify buying a glass blank later. hmmm.....

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Bill Hickey (---.nycap.res.rr.com)
Date: January 28, 2019 12:07PM

I would recommend a CTS Affinity MX 8'-6" 4wt 4pc based on what you are looking to do with it. I have built several for customers, and I did fish one myself for several seasons. Its a great blank for fishing dries, along with dry/dropper rigs. When I had mine, it did work very well with several different lines, both WF and DT.


Contact Herb and he'll get you the blank.

If your looking for a Fiberglass 4wt, my top choice would be a Livingston Western Glass 8'-9" 4wt 4pc, followed by a CTS Quartz 8'-6" 4wt. There are other brands out there that are good, Steffen, McFarland, Epic, but when it comes to longer glass, Livingston and CTS will get the nod from me.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Claus Bech (212.10.231.---)
Date: January 29, 2019 01:28AM

Hello Michel
I might be able to help you as I have a golden brown MX blank in #4 - 8'6" - 4 pc in Denmark.
Claus

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Eric MONTACLAIR (---.subs.proxad.net)
Date: January 29, 2019 01:34AM

Michel Schoenbrock Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The Affinity MX might be a
> good choice though, but hard to get, maybe i´ll
> find a reminder in some shop. Maybe i´ll contact
> you for that blank, but not sure if that will pay
> off since i am from Germany.
>
Michel
I’m not far away from you and I still have one in 8’6" #4 (4pc).
Very good choice for your target use.
Fell free to contact me if I can help you.

________________________________________
@+
Eric
[www.emfishing.fr]

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Spencer Phipps (---.hsd1.or.comcast.net)
Date: January 29, 2019 02:29AM

Took a look around, the Winston BIIIx blanks are still available and are a true dry fly blank with a bit more butt to them compared to the earlier Winston I've fished. I don't own one, but a friend has one and she says it's outside range for a consistent turn over is a bit over 15 meters, with a long leader and any reasonable fly.There is no need to overlying the rod at any fishing distance. She has the 8 1/2 ft. version, and it roll casts like a dream.
Angler's Workshop has them if you haven't another source, they ship anywhere.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/29/2019 02:29AM by Spencer Phipps.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: January 31, 2019 07:49AM

Thank,s for all the help.
I am now in contact with Herb, Claus and Eric.
Winston might be a good choice, but can´t find someone selling it in EU. If i order it in US i will end at about 550$ that is a bit expensive.

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (---.lightspeed.hstntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: February 01, 2019 03:35PM

Michel,
I don't know if you are still monitoring this thread, but I recently finished a F903-4-MHX-M Blank. This is a 3 wt 9' 4pc blank made by MHX. It is not an expensive blank. I am using a short taper WF F Scientific Angler 3wt line on it and am consistently casting 60' (18 meters) with little effort using #16 & #18 dry flies. Although it does not have the conventional snake guides, I am using 11 single foot ceramic L guides and a double foot KW stripper and Arowana TT. The blank really surprised me in the way it cast, and I did not expect it to cast this well for a "cheap" blank. I don't think you could go wrong getting one due to the price. I do like the NFC 5 & 4 wt blanks also. Another blank that surprised me was the Temple Fork Outfitters BVK 5 wt 8.5' 4 pc blank. I built it more conventional using REC light duty snake guides and two KW double foot strippers. It also cast very well and works with dry flies and streamers. All these blanks are what I would call in the fast range that sound like they would work for your style of casting (similar to mine). The NFC blanks will take about a month to just to fill the order, but they will be 50% off retail prices. Their customer service is almost non-existent, but their product is exceptional. The 8wt rod I built on their 9' 4pc blank, F 890-4 (GammaBeta LMX) is straight up the best 8wt fly rod I have ever cast.
Good Luck,
Lance

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Re: Best Dryfly-Blank
Posted by: Michel Schoenbrock (---.dynamic.kabel-deutschland.de)
Date: February 02, 2019 10:44AM

Lance,
i am still monitoring this thread and i will in future. I am young, so there are many rods to build. I think for now i will go with the Affinity MX. I already have the Affinity X in line 6 and love that rod.So the chances i will be happy with that blank are good i guess.
Having a line 6, 8 and soon 4, makes it not easy to find a gap to fill with future builds. But i am really curious to know the NFC Blanks. I kinda expect them to be great and i am sure i will build a rod based on them one day.
Michel

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