As far as the weight factor goes, I really don't think that extra 6 in. is going to tire me sooner?? I mean, this has got to be so insignifigent. I have heard of people buying rods with single foot guides because they are lighter with less metal and thread wraps. How could one possibly even notice this difference? Besides, I would be going from a 9 ft. 6 wt. down to a 9 1/2 5 wt. so I don't think weight would be a factor.
Thanks for your input