Quote Originally Posted by ColdPass View Post
To the original question, a custom rod can be light if the builder strives for it. I've seen Orvis blanks built up to be lighter than their factory counter parts by using thin coatings, and cork reel seats with light weight bands.
I'd venture that most custom builds are heavier than their factory counter parts - using a slightly bigger handle, building a rod with "burl", "exotic" or other composite corks, adding feather inlays, using nickle silver rather than aluminum, and doing long signature wraps will all bump up the weight. I'm not saying that these techniques and components make a bad rod, not in the slightest, but they're things you want to stay away from if you're primary focus is grams.
The key is to discuss with your builder what you want. If you ask them to keep it light they should very well be able to.
This is all very true. I would venture to say that almost all of my customs are heavier than the factory counterpart. I can shave a bit by using single foot guides, minimalist guide wraps, graphite reel seat, and other weight saving components but most folks don't like how these look.

If minimal weight is what you want, you will have to say so. Many custom builders have their "hook" that gets you to pay attention to their rod and hopefully ache to own one. For me, it is the military ribbon wraps and my grips. I know I have a buyer hooked when he/she gently takes a rod in hand and fondles the grip or when a Vet's eyes get a bit moist seeing his decorations on his rod. An emotional relationship has just been forged with the rod that a few grams can't break.

Discussions on weight produce interesting discussion but it is still my opinion that when looked at in a logical manner a person should be more concerned with balance as the weight differences even between an IM6 blank and a Sage One blank are minuscule. The first can be made to feel divine in hand with proper balance and that Sage One can feel like a club if not balanced well.