November 12th, 2006

Better Every Year?
By James Castwell


Just because I'm Castwell doesn't mean I'm right, that's for sure. But, I do get to have an opinion, just like everyone else. I do think that each year or so, when the rod makers say their new line is better in some way, I believe it. I do have the opportunity to cast, and often fish with, the new ones, sometimes even before they are on the market. It is only my opinion, but I feel that the rod makers are able to make improvements on successive models. They pay good bucks to pretty smart guys to do just that. Make a better rod than the last one. Sometimes it may not be so much a better rod, but rather a different 'family' of characteristics. Those can be welcome too.

I know several people who can cast as pretty a loop with a cheap rod as an expensive one, but the cheap one is heavier, more work, not as much enjoyment, more tiring and you will fish it less on any given day than a higher quality rod. "Less time on the water = less fish."

Well, there you have it. That is a post I put on the bulletin board on November 7th, this year. My point for repeating it here is this. It seems like there are always those who delight in saying negative things. Always against everything. No matter what, it is they think they know better and are smarter and their opinion is of far more value than anybody else's.

The bulletin board subject was, 'no matter how much the companies claim it, there is no way they can have improvements each year on their rods and other gear.' It is an often stated, or implied notion. And it is not true. The products do get better, in many ways.

Fly rods benefit especially from new developments in especially the 'space age' whatever that is. Better, stronger, lighter, more flexible, resistant to who knows what. These new materials are then incorporated into differing tapers for new purposes. Perhaps faster, or stronger with a more sensitive tip or more flexible in some other area. Thousands of combinations are available with just the single development of a new graphite product.

These are what it takes to create a whole new line of rods. A totally new family of characteristics. A new series to fill a neglected slice of the fly fishing world. Market driven innovation. It's what makes the world go around. We help out by deciding that we can't get a good night's sleep if we don't have one.

What does a high priced rod give you? Mostly one that is more pleasurable to fish. For any given rod length and line size it will likely be lighter in hand. It just may make your day nicer. And it is true, not all can afford some of them but that does not mean that any of the other rods, in any price range, will not give us a grand time astream. They will, some just a little easier than others. ~ JC

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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