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Thread: Powell fly rods

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    Powell fly rods

    Has anyone ever fished with the edge or tiboron II series rods? I've read good reviews, but haven't tried them out. Anyone hear anything about the new Tiboron XL series Powell is putting out? From what I hear its replacing both the edge and tiboron II. As always your thoughts are appreciated.

    Thanks.


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    Powell seems to have become a pretty insignificant rod company, which is too bad considering their legacy with bamboo. At last I heard, they lost all their retail distribution in the USA except for the discount magazine Sierra Trading Post. I just looked on their website and they have some stores for their bass rods, but apparently not their trout rods. They still make bamboo with a 4-6 month wait.

    I would not purchase a trout rod from them at this time. They seem to be in trouble and who knows if they'll be around much longer to live up to their waranty.

    In my humble opinion, of course.


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    THey actually intentionally did away with retailers and rely on faithful customers buying directly from them so they can maintain their standards at a little more reasonable price... 500-600 bucks instead of 6-8... or at least that's the company line. The tiboron II still gets great reviews.


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    You eastern guys are killing me!!! Press Powell, son of Walton Powell and grandson of EC Powell was 'swindled' (my opinion) out of their family name and business by Charles Schwab in 1996. Basically, the Powells were forced out and are no longer allowed to manufacture fly rods and are not involved with the current Schwab operation. All so-called 'Powell' fly rods are now imported from China, including their high-end rods. Why would anybody spend $500 on a rod imported from China which probably cost $40 to import??? Anybody who knowingly purchases a Schwab-era rod from Powell should be ashamed of themselves! But maybe I'm being too harsh.

    In any event, I'm sure poor EC and Walton are turning over in their graves right now!


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    I absolutely love the Powell Tiboron Rods! Even if they are made in China, they are a fantastic rod and worth the $299 at Sierra Trading Post. I have over 60 fly rods from Orvis, Hardy, Sage, Diamondback, Austin, JP Ross, Powell, Fenwick, Redington, etc. If I had to give up all of my fly rods except 1 each starting with a 4wt and going up to 10wt I would keep the Powell Tiboron rods and get rid of the rest (fortunately I don’t have to do that). They are extremely light, and forgiving in casting. I tend to pull the trigger a little fast and they match my casting style.

    I read the article on how Charles Schwab obtained the Powell rod company and it is truly unfortunate. If I had read the article before I purchased the Tiborons I would have likely not purchased them. Fortunately I did not read the article until after I purchased them and I am happy I own a set. I don’t know who Charles Schwab has working for them on the Powell line but they are doing a fantastic job on the Tiborons.


    Just a note, Jim Gunderson won the best of the west casting competition last March (2006) using a Powell Edge fly rod.


    Hope this helps



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    nb_ken is offline Fishizzle, I use worms but I'm looking to upgrade!
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    Re: Powell fly rods

    Hi,

    I'm a western fly fisher (Washington State) who ran across this forum while trying to find some information on a Tiboron rod. Darned little info out there. There seems to be a few folks on this board who like throwing Powell rods.

    I have Tiboron (without the II) 6wt. That thing'll throw a streamer a mile. Does anyone know when Powell went from the Tiboron to the Tiboron II? Has anyone ever used both the T and the TII? If so, how do they compare? Have all Tiborons always been made in China, or were some of them manufactured in California?

    My rod has no indication about where it was made. I imagine when the Powell family was making the rods it never crossed anyone's mind that a Powell rod would be made anywhere but in the US, so it didn't occur to them to put a manufacturing country on the product.

    Thanks,
    --ken


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    The tiboron II and edge series came out a few years ago. Tiboron II was widely touted as best rod from Powell in a long time. Someone won a major fly casting competition with the edge (extra-fast action). For 2007, Powell has done away with both series and now has the tiboron xl. Haven't put that through its paces. Like the II and the edge, but was dissuaded from purchasing them because they are made in China. Didn't realize the production had been moved offshore from Cali by Schwab when he bought out the powells. Anyway, Great rods. very elegant design. they really launch a fly, but I'll stick with scott, and support american rod producers. I highly recommedn the tiboron II from sierratradingpost.com though if you don't mind buying offshore rods. great deal on them. I think they're at 299.00. great feel on the rod. Check em out. Maybe Keith Bryan will move production back to the US if they start making money off the rods. I dunno. The whole tale is sordid and unfortunate, and while I loved the rod, I felt guilty keeping it.


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    I own both Tiboron and Tiboron IIs, and they are both excellent. I can't tell a difference between the two. I believe the Tiborons were made in the USA and the Tiboron IIs were made in China. If the China thing really gives you trouble, be advised that several rods are now made overseas; Lefty Kreh's TFO, Albright, Fenwick, Redington, and lower end Orvis just to name a few. Even some of the rods made in the USA are made under foreign ownership like GL Loomis which is owned by Shamano. Looking at great American companies like Orvis and LL Bean most of their product (clothing, vests, tools, etc.) is made overseas. I would wager that other than their rods, even much of Scott's products are made overseas. Given today's culture of multinational companies it is difficult to know what is foreign and what isn't. I prefer to buy as many products made in the USA as possible, provided that I can obtain them at a reasonable price. I own several English made rods (Hardy, Sharpe, Bruce and Walker) and a portion of my 401K is foreign invested, so I guess I got over the foreign thing.



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    Re: Powell fly rods

    I forgot to mention Sharpe of England now owns Thomas and Thomas and also owns Abel reels


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    What do you think about Powell's conversion to a bass rod company with its limited fly rod selection. I mean for my purposes I would only be interested in the tiboron xl, but that's a pretty limited selection. they only offer the high end and medium range rods. like i said I liked the tiboron II a lot, but am hesitatnt about powell the company.


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    Wink Re: Powell fly rods

    Yea, I noticed that they are becoming a bass rod company. I don't think they are going to be in the high end fly rod market for that much longer. I wouldn't pay full price for one of their fly rods because I don't think that you will be able to count on their warranty. For the price, the Powell Tiboron II or Edge rods on sale at Sierra Trading Post are a bargain. A great rod at a great price. Again I wouldn't expect to be able to take advantage of their warranty beyond a couple of years. But since the price at Sierra is almost half, you could always buy two and keep one as a backup.

    I really like these rods (Tiboron) and its a shame that Powell (Schwab) is going in another direction. But on the positive side it opens up an opportunity to get a great rod at a great price. I own one each from 4wt to 10wt (mixed Tiboron and Tiboron II) and I am amazed at how exceptionally light they are and how well they cast; out of all the fly rods I own they are my favorite fly rods. They are a very fast rod and that isn't for everyone or for every situation; hence justification to keep my other rods.

    Hope this Helps


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    Re: Powell fly rods

    Remembering Press Powell


    By Devanie Angel
    more stories by this author

    This article was published on 03.18.04.

    http://www.newsreview.com/binary/6689/comm-8366.jpeg PRESS FOR PRESS In 2001, Press Powell was photographed for a News & Review cover story about the rod-making family business and its alleged takeover by stockbroker Charles Schwab.


    www.newsreview.com/issues/chico/2001-08-02/cover.asp




    The flower arrangements were appropriately accented with bamboo rods, as a standing-room-only crowd filled the East Avenue Community Church to remember the life of Press Powell.
    At the March 15 service, speakers ranging from young children to an octogenarian praised the Chico man, best known for his work with fly rods, who died March 11 at the age of 57.
    Powell had aggressively fought colon cancer since 2000, hoping to live to see his teenaged sons grow up. He'd been married to Martha Powell since 1970.
    Gary Moore, a Yuba City pastor and high-school friend, led the service and described Powell, no pun intended, as "irrepressible."
    "It was really hard to get him down," Moore said. "No matter what happened, he would smile through it."
    Although Powell earned fame as a third-generation successful fly-rod maker and fisherman, his friends described him as first and foremost someone who lived to make others feel special. Powell was slow to anger, quick to laugh and never limited his friendships to any clique or class of person.
    Friends told of Little League pitching acumen and Chico High antics and, later, duck-hunting and tennis matches at the racquet club. Powell also helped start the Hooked on Fishing Not on Drugs children's event.
    Jay Fair, an expert fisherman and guide who considered Powell a great friend, said that in his 80 years he'd known few people of Powell's character.
    "He," said Fair, his voice trembling, "was a real gentleman."
    Powell had recently undergone yet another procedure he hoped would thwart the cancer but succumbed to his illness at Enloe Medical Center.
    The News & Review featured Press Powell in an August 2001 cover story that was largely about the lawsuit his late father, Walton Powell, filed against stockbroker giant Charles Schwab. Schwab, the suit charged, tricked Powell in 1996 into signing over the family name and then moved the company from Chico, forced the Powells out and ran it into the ground. The case was later settled, as was a similar suit filed by Press's brother, John.
    His health failing, Press Powell sold the renamed Chico Fly Shop to longtime employees in 2002. Powell, who had been forbidden to build and sell rods with the Powell name under the agreement with Schwab, was later sued by Schwab--a case that was resolved when Schwab's company agreed to buy Press' stock, said Jeffrey Wagner, a Powell family attorney. Wagner added that Schwab has not yet paid all of the money owed, and it is now due to Powell's estate.
    Powell had graduated from Chico State University with degrees in biology and agricultural science and capped that off with a master's degree at UC Davis before taking a teaching job. In 1977, his mother convinced him to come back to Chico and rejoin the family business.
    Following the tradition of E. C. Powell in the 1930s, his son, Walt, became skilled at constructing bamboo fly rods and experimented with fiberglass and graphite. Press Powell's mother, Earline, was an expert at tying flies. But Press took rod-building to the next level, respecting the bamboo tradition but expanding the family's product line to include top-quality graphite rods. It was also Press Powell who urged his family to begin selling its wares in retail stores through dealers, rather than just direct-to-customer. He traveled the world promoting the rods.
    He built rods for heads of state and Hollywood stars but also made time to take neighbor boys fishing. One of them came to the church microphone in tears to share a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," fishing with the master. "I miss him so much, because he's such a good guy," the boy said.


    End of an era
    When Walton Powell died June 29, 2001 in Fall River Mills, a family lost its patriarch. But the public will most remember Powell as a standout in four generations of fly fishing rod makers. The Powell Rod Co. was known for crafting the finest bamboo and graphite rods on the market, making each one lovingly by hand in a Chico shop.Then, the Powell family met the Charles Schwab family, of stockbrokerage fame, and therein lies a lawsuit that the Powells' attorney promises will survive Walt Powell.
    John McGuinn, of San Francisco, said that even as Powell was weakened by prostate cancer, the 85-year-old's deposition was taken over 12 days in recent months and "the jury will get to see him" at the Sacramento trial.
    "They were all forced out of this company [by Schwab]," McGuinn said. "It rendered this man destitute." (The Schwabs and their Powell & Co. Inc. retort that it was Powell who walked out of his consulting job, and that they never promised to keep the company in Chico.) Powell felt tremendously betrayed by the younger Schwab, who he said had been a fishing buddy. The suit, McGuinn said, is "the thing that kept him going. He wanted to be vindicated more than anything else."

    Cheers,


    Cliff N.

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