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guide choices
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.inf6.spectrum.com)
Date: May 31, 2022 03:44PM

Assuming a fly line will be used on a fly rod is there any advantage - or any disadvantage - to building fly rods with ceramic guides or tip-tops?

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Terry Kirk (---)
Date: May 31, 2022 03:55PM

My guess is it will be determined which is best if you know the ambient temperature and whether or not you intend to double haul or not.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 31, 2022 04:11PM

Often, yes. On hard fighting fish, good quality ceramic guides will pay out line smoother than almost any wire or steel guides. They are "quieter" than wire or steel guides as the line moves across them, in or out. They will not groove or wear. Your fly line will last longer.

Having said this, I would not use cheaper, heavy type ceramic guides on a fly rod. Too keep any additional weight down to the bare minimum, it is important to spend the extra to get the very lightest ceramics available.

The one claim about ceramic guides that is absolutely false is that they will lengthen your casts. They won't.

..........

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Michael Danek (---.alma.mi.frontiernet.net)
Date: May 31, 2022 05:23PM

Won't lengthen casts, but at the right ambient temperature and with double hauling, they will make your rod more soulful.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Phil Erickson (---)
Date: May 31, 2022 05:50PM

Is a single haul only half as soulful!? Beside ambient temp. does humidity effect the soulfulness?

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Michael Danek (---.alma.mi.frontiernet.net)
Date: May 31, 2022 06:39PM

Phil?

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (172.58.102.---)
Date: June 01, 2022 02:20PM

I have done some fairly extensive testing using ceramic guides for runners on fly rods. My findings are that more are needed than double foot snake guides for similar casting results. They have a smoother feel and sound than wire guides. You can cast just as far with them. They are slightly heavier than double foot snake guides so they will make the tip slightly heavier. This can be counterbalance by the reel and/or grip. They will cast different line types more equally the same, than double foot snake guide runners. They are superior to single foot snake guides in the way they cast. My set up for an 8wt 9' fly rod, fast action is Fuji Ti frame SIC or Torzite Ring KW16, KW10, Seaguide single foot L frame TiXMG with RS ring (Fuji stopped making a Ti L frame guide) 7,7,7,7,7,7,7,6,6,6 and Fuji Arowana 7 tip top. Trying to reduce as much weight at the tip so that is why the 6 mm guides. This is the best combination and amount of guides that cast the best on an 8wt. I do a 9' 5wt the same way except KW12, 8 and 10-6s to the tip and a 6 or 7 tip top.

When I started putting ceramic guides on top end blanks, I caught a lot of flak from other fly rod builders. They did not like the idea of adding the weight of those types of guides to the rod tip section. My reasoning was that the blanks are so much stiffer and faster now, that a little extra weight would just slow it down a little to a more original action. Also, instead of the weight of two wraps, like on a double foot snake guide, you would only have one on a single foot ceramic guide, so really there is not that much additional weight. A Fuji Arowana Ti Torzite Tip Top actually weighs less than a large Fly Loop tip top but the old chrome plated double foot snake guides still weigh less than a single foot ceramic guide. On 8 wt and up, where the final rod weight is going to be 4 oz and over, you will notice a little extra tip weight. On a 10 wt rod it is very noticeable, but they are heavier anyway. On rods where the final weight is going to be 3.8 oz or less you do not notice it at all. I have a 9' 3 wt rod built on 4 pc MHX blank with a KW 10 SS Alconite stripper, L frame SS Alconite 7 mm, and 10 L frame SS Alconite 5 mm running train (12 guides total) and a 6 mm Alconite tip top. The total weight is 3.25 oz. It can cast the 3wt WF F line 80' with no effort. I did not expect that out of a Chinese made MHX blank.

I am sure that many fly rod builders won't particularly like this, but it is a viable alternative that works. You are not going to get more distance but you will get the same as a double foot snake set up with a smoother feel (I have no other way to describe it). The ceramic guide set up will not be as sensitive to different line types as the snakes. The reality is that whoever invented the double foot snake guide back around 1865-70, had something that would be very hard to improve. It still works and is lighter than anything we can come up with so far.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (172.58.102.---)
Date: June 01, 2022 02:20PM

Repeat



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/01/2022 04:25PM by Lance Schreckenbach.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Michael Danek (---.alma.mi.frontiernet.net)
Date: June 01, 2022 04:26PM

Great post, Lance.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Ladd Flock (---)
Date: June 01, 2022 06:47PM

FWIW, I built a fly rod for drift fishing using ceramic guides and I used more guides than normal. It casts fine, but it really excels at feeding out extra line when needed to get a very long drift. I just need to flick/wiggle the tip and the extra ceramic guides help feed more line onto the water. The line doesn't sag and it slides effortlessly along the rod length. It's fun to see how long I can keep a fly on the water and in a zone of feeding trout.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 06/03/2022 11:47AM by Ladd Flock.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: ben belote (---.hsd1.md.comcast.net)
Date: June 01, 2022 07:42PM

Good stuff LAnce..I like tinkering with rods and guides and I,m sure you do too..my most favorite build is on a lamiglas im904t pitching rod casting a very large bass bug I make using moose mane on 5/0 hook..I use a720 grain twenty seven foot shooting head with a forty foot piece of #7level line fused to it..it easily fills a saltwater medalist reel..the bug is tied in a Henshall pattern and has a six in wingspan and weighs 160grains when wet but the 720grain line will cast it fifty feet.finally one night I caught a 7.5# bass, my best ever on fly. I wanted also say that I used nine #6BLAGs on the rod,



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/01/2022 08:39PM by ben belote.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (172.58.99.---)
Date: June 02, 2022 08:49AM

ben belote Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Good stuff LAnce..I like tinkering with rods and
> guides and I,m sure you do too..my most favorite
> build is on a lamiglas im904t pitching rod casting
> a very large bass bug I make using moose mane on
> 5/0 hook..I use a720 grain twenty seven foot
> shooting head with a forty foot piece of #7level
> line fused to it..it easily fills a saltwater
> medalist reel..the bug is tied in a Henshall
> pattern and has a six in wingspan and weighs
> 160grains when wet but the 720grain line will cast
> it fifty feet.finally one night I caught a 7.5#
> bass, my best ever on fly. I wanted also say that
> I used nine #6BLAGs on the rod,

That heavy stuff is a different animal. The bass scene has recently blown up with it, requiring a whole different blank line. Sounds like you got it wired in. At a fishing show I recently saw some short fly rods in the 7'-8' range, that they are using offshore with big flies and all ceramic guides. They claim they are getting 80' cast with them. I really like people pushing the limits and seeing what works.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: ben belote (---.hsd1.md.comcast.net)
Date: June 02, 2022 01:12PM

What,s funny is that there is no hauling to cast. The line is held against the foregrip by one hand and against the butt grip by the other hand..the fly is quickly lifted into the back cast and shot forward..no hauling but short strong strokes and the line really movev..give it a try Phil..lol. just too much weight to haul.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: ben belote (---.hsd1.va.comcast.net)
Date: June 02, 2022 02:39PM

Lance, in my early bass bugging days 8' rods were the thing like Shakespeare Wonder rod,,to this day I do not care for nine footers..I only fish still waters.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: ben belote (---.hsd1.md.comcast.net)
Date: June 04, 2022 05:46PM

Phil, my average fly cast is twenty to thirty feet but the line outside the guides adds another twenty or thirty feet to give a total cast of fifty to sixty feet..this short cast by the rod is a shooting cast and I feel that ceramics make this cast better than any kind of wire and make for a little longer cast than. wire..

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: ben belote (---.hsd1.va.comcast.net)
Date: June 07, 2022 08:47AM

LAnce, I,m just curious as to what line size they use to cast 80'..Thanks.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: Phil Ewanicki (---.res.spectrum.com)
Date: June 10, 2022 08:51AM

What type of guides are used by the most successful distance casters? Those who fish small streams and ponds exclusively have no reason to double-haul . . . or to belittle those who do. Should you fly fish salt flats or any big water with a guide you will put a smile on his face when you double haul. Your success, not your opinions, are your guide's livelihood.

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Re: guide choices
Posted by: ben belote (---.hsd1.va.comcast.net)
Date: June 10, 2022 10:13AM

Phil, the only thing that makes a guide smile is a big tip..Fly distance casters must use wire guides or it,s not considered a fly rod.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/10/2022 10:26AM by ben belote.

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