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NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Ed Rose (---)
Date: November 02, 2023 04:25PM

Have any of you made this blank as a casting rod and if so how did you like it for lures in th 3/16 to 1/2 oz range. Thank you.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: eric popejoy (---.dia.static.qwest.net)
Date: November 03, 2023 10:13AM

I recently built a casting rod with a sj703 x ray blank but I did a simple spiral wrap on it. I also cut 3" off the butt. I fish the south texas coast for redfish and trout and generally throw a 1/8 to 1/4 oz jig head and a 3 to 5" soft plastic. I have only taken it out once and threw a 1/8 oz jig head with a soft plastic, and I really like the way it cast and worked the lure. I only caught some dink trout (14-15") so I didn't get a chance to see how it handled a bigger fish. Being that I have 3 small children and that I don't get to fish a couple times a week the way I used to I asked a friend to take it out and give me his thoughts on the blank. He threw a "she dog" top water and said it handled the bigger bait with no problems and he caught trout up to 3 lbs and said the rod did great. I noticed that NFC has since come out with the inshore x ray blanks that appear similar to the sj 703, I plan on giving those a try next.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Les Cline (---)
Date: November 03, 2023 10:35AM

Ed,

My fishing buddy has this blank as a casting rod and it is one of his favorites. He mostly throws Rapala DT4's and 6's which are in your weight range. This spring, he.caught and landed a 24 lb. blue catfish on it while throwing for smallmouth; I was in the boat and got a firsthand look at how the rod performed. No problems during a 10 minute fight.

I have thrown this rod a few times and I like it, too. Lots of praise for this model on the board! I'd bet you will be very happy with it in spin or cast config's. How about both!?

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Ed Rose (---)
Date: November 03, 2023 11:56AM

thanks guys. Seems like a well liked blank in either configuration.
Les I have an sb722 in spinning configuration so it seems like a good compliment to an sj703in casting.
Eric I hope to also do a simple spiral wrap. Thanks again.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Norman Miller (Moderator)
Date: November 03, 2023 02:21PM

The SB722 can also be used as a casting rod.
Norm

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Jacob Clark (198.153.107.---)
Date: November 03, 2023 06:59PM

I built one last year for my BIL. I cut 2 inches off the butt to make it 6ft 10in. It makes for a fantastic jerkbait rod.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Spencer Phipps (---)
Date: November 03, 2023 08:07PM

This power rod and the one lighter, the 6 - 12 lb., 1/8 to 3/8 oz. lures were probably the most popular blanks we used in the late 80's, early 90's casting rods we were building for the small bass lures that came out back then, little crankbait copies of the larger popular baits of the time, 1/8 oz. spinnerbaits, finesse worms and other soft baits, etc. I see no reason to think with the much better casting reels of today they wouldn't be even better.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Ernie Blum (---)
Date: November 03, 2023 08:47PM

I don't know exactly what blank you are referring to, but I built a 703-1 X-ray LMX, having taken the description at face value. I built it as a spinning rod, and put a lot of time, effort, and all Fuji KL-H, KT and KB running guides on it. I am not unhappy with the rod at all, but the rod has WAY less backbone than I would have guessed it would have based on the line and lure ratings provided.

I built it for inshore fishing in Florida....redfish, trout, snook, and flounder. Putting a plastic paddletail of 3-4" rigged on a 1/8oz weighted hook into the air puts a pretty good bend in that rod. I very much wish it had been beefier than it is.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Mark Brassett (---)
Date: November 04, 2023 06:24AM

I've built a couple dozen rods using the 703. They are built for speckled trout and 1/4-1/8 oz swim baits. Like Ernie said, these blanks have a WAY less backbone than you would like when fishing for reds. A 1/2 oz lure surely can be fished with these blanks but it feels a bit whippy when casting and retrieving. It certainly is capable of handling 10lb-30lb redfish. It just takes a lot longer to get them to the boat than it would with a blank with more backbone.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: David Baylor (---.neo.res.rr.com)
Date: November 04, 2023 08:59AM

Several years ago I ran into the same thing that Ernie mentioned, in that I bought a blank based on the manufacturers lure weight and line size ratings. When I got the blank and flexed it for the first time I was hugely disappointed with how the blank felt. Thinking that it would perhaps fish vastly different than it felt, I went ahead and built the rod. Titanium guides, foam core carbon fiber skinned grip, etc .....

Well it didn't fish any differently than I thought it would based on how it felt when I put that initial deep bend into it. I stripped of the guides and replaced them with some Fuji Alconite ringed guides, and it is now a dedicated pan fish rod that I use two .... maybe 3 times a year.

Anyhow ..... it's a good reason to become with the CCS numbers for rods you already own, so can use available CCS numbers to help you choose a blank you'll be happy with.

As far as the SJ 703 blank. When NFC had their introductory offer of the C6O2 version of that SJ 703 it seemed like a blank I may be interested in, until I looked at the CCS numbers for the SJ 703 X ray. Based on those numbers I'm not surprised a few have mentioned how under powered it is when you consider the lure weight and line weight ratings.

Get familiar with CCS numbers and how they relate to different baits and fishing situations. It will help immensely in choosing a blank that you'll be happy with

Addtion: I have an MB 733 X ray that is scheduled to be here on Tuesday of the up coming week. If you don't already have or haven't already ordered the SJ 703 blank. The MB 733 may be more of what you're looking for. Not that it's worth much, but I'll offer an opinion on that blank when I get it. And I'll do some CCS numbers for it as well. If it matches those posted in the Rodbuilding.org data base, it may be a blank for you to consider.

If you don't already have it, here is a link to the CCS data base. [docs.google.com]



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/04/2023 09:05AM by David Baylor.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Ed Rose (---.dynamic.fuse.net)
Date: November 04, 2023 01:45PM

Thanks to all who replied. Through reading old posts I have noted that this sj703 blank is not quite what the nfc specs indicate but acts” lighter”. That may be ok for me as I’m looking for something a slight step above bfs. Like a medium light casting rod for river smallmouth.
Mr Miller have you built casting rods on the nfc sb722 and if so how did they work out? That may be the best approach for me since that blank is a known entity for me.
Thanks again

Edit. David I have not ordered yet and will wait for your evaluation. Thank you



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/04/2023 01:51PM by Ed Rose.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Spencer Phipps (---)
Date: November 04, 2023 02:35PM

I've always found the SJ blanks to be pretty much what I expected, they are no MB blanks, back in the day the G Loomis rod catalogs had very good descriptions of their rods and an alphabetical list of what they thought were the fish this rod could be used to catch, looking at the species vs presentations that may match the species variety gave me a pretty good idea of what to expect. For the SJ rods the upper end lure rating was pretty much where the rods got sloppy, not where they were at their best. I found the SB rods and blanks to be much more what many expect. Another blank I used that I didn't believe the specs on was the All Star BAST 813-T the tops and Tails blank, it was actually what I thought it might be which is quite a bit off from its 1/8 to 1 oz. posted lure rating.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Spencer Phipps (---)
Date: November 04, 2023 02:58PM

Double Post.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/04/2023 05:18PM by Spencer Phipps.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Patrick Coco (---)
Date: November 04, 2023 03:10PM

If you're looking for a rod "a slight step above BFS", the xray SB683 is also worth a look.

I recently built one for throwing BFS+ hard baits for river bass. Down here, that's spots, Guadalupe and smaller LM, but it'd be great for smallies too. The owner cultiva zip n ziggy and the evergreen showerblows 77.7 will launch a long ways on it too.

I haven't thrown plastics on it, but I'd fish exposed single hook baits no doubt.

IP 258, AA 63

It'll throw down to 1/10oz comfoetably with the right reel, and it handled a 17" largemouth no problem.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Norman Miller (Moderator)
Date: November 04, 2023 03:11PM

I have not built the SB722 as a casting. However, if it has the characteristics you like, there is no reason you can’t build it as a casting rod.
Norm

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Jason Whitman (---.mid.dyn.suddenlink.net)
Date: November 16, 2023 12:08PM

I built a SJ 703-1 X-Ray as a casting rod, and really like it for finesse bass fishing. I put a Kast King Zephyr BFS reel on it and it works great for unweighted plastics like Trick Worms, flukes, etc, using 8 lb braid.

I would suggest a spiral wrap though, the rod has a lot of flex and you'll use a lot of guides to keep the line off the blank if you do a traditional wrap for a casting rod.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Robert Henry (---)
Date: November 19, 2023 05:56PM

I have built a couple IS 703 X-ray blanks as casting rods for sight fishing reds. Love them. I have 2 SJ 703 blanks on order now. They will be built as spinning rods, and unfortunately not for me. I’m curious to see how they compare.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Tim Scott (---)
Date: November 20, 2023 09:43PM

Be interested in your thoughts on flex of the SJ vs the IS. I haven’t looked to see if cs is out for it.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Robert Henry (57.140.28.---)
Date: November 29, 2023 04:42PM

Tim I didn't measure the CCS for the IS 703, I should have because I haven't found it anywhere, but I haven't asked NFC either. It is noticeably slower than the bare SJ 703 blanks I have. I'd say the IS fishes as a moderate-fast. I recognize that's one mans opinion and useless from an objectivity lens.

I have two built as casting rods specifically for sight fishing slot reds on the open flats, I couldn't be more pleased with them.

I should have the first SJ 703 done this weekend and since it's being built for a buddy I'll see if I can get it on the water and fish both side by side, another subjective "test"...

Much like Ernie said above where he feels the rod doesn't have the back bone for reds, I think it has plenty. I fish shallow open flats with it and like a casting rod that'll accurately throw light artificial. When fishing heavy current, bull reds or structure it's not my rod of choice.

I will be building more IS 703s and get a CCS on the next run of blanks, can also test the rods I've already built for a ball park number if there's interest.

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Re: NFC sj 703 as casting rod?
Posted by: Les Cline (---)
Date: December 01, 2023 11:45AM

Robert,

I think there is a great deal of interest in CCS data you can gather and share! Count me as one who is interested!

I just ordered the SJ 703 C6O2, and the 725 model, from NFC, and I am excited to build and fish these rods.

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