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  1. #1
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    Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Hot off the IFTD show come several new fly rods from the leading equipment manufactures.

    Sage won for best overall fly rod with the new Sage X. Designed to replace the very successful Sage One. The C has had of positive reviews. I had one in my hand a couple of weeks ago. It's quite nice aesthetically speaking and definitely felt nice although I didn't have time to cast it. MSRP 865.00

    Winston was a close second with its Winston Air designed to be replacement for the boron 3x it supposedly incorporates a mix of some newer resigns with boron and the new shooting guides. Some reviewers felt it was slightly better than the X. Rod should be shipping in September with a retail price of $965.00

    Finally G Loomis introduced the Asquith as its follow on from the NRX. It also placed very close to the Sage X. I believe this one retails for 1200.00

    As you can see the price, increases are pretty substantial for top of the line fly rods. Previously the best fly rods were in a range of 695.00-795.00 with the Winston boron 3x an outlier at 895.00 I have the NRX LP which is a stellar fly rod and the Scott radian which is also excellent. I had the sage one at one point and have cast the Winston boron 3x. All phenomenal rods and yeti have to wonder who much better these new rods can be. Obviously some of this is just for folks who want the latest and greatest but at what point does the price become a barrier. I have to say I would be hard pressed to find a better casting rod than the NRX LP but of the 3 I am most interested in seeing the Winston air. The first time I cast the boron 3x it was pretty easy to throw a giant size 8 Isonychia Catskill pattern 70ft. That being said its not often that becomes necessary.

    Clearly manufacturers want to make more money and there will be buyers but will they buy at the same volume. There are still a lot of great rods on the market between 400 and 800 dollars today. These new flyrods are starting to get into the same territory as custom bamboo fly rods. There is a similar trend on the fly feel front and Winston also introduced a new fly line priced at 90 bucks. At what point do the manufacturers price themselves out of the market for most buyers?

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    "Angling is extremely time consuming. That's sort of the whole point." - Thomas McGuane

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  3. #2
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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Great post. I for one am not going to buy anything new unless something breaks. Enough is enough. Fly rod marketing is like golf club marketing. Each claims that the latest is going to give you more distance due to new design and materials. But it never does because for most of us its not the arrow but the indian. Winston used to say beyond 40 ft its hard to set the hook in time or not break off beyond that distance. So when it comes to dry fly trout fishing, trying to see your #18 BWO at 70 ft is a challenge let alone seeing the take and setting the hook. So i dont need a distance tool. Same goes for trout reels. I dont need a $500 reel for trout. If thats your thing its fine with me, but im jumping off the "our best rod ever" merry go round.

    To look good is to fish good

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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Price does not equal performance. Never has, never will.

    A bunch of reasons for this, but the most fundamental is that there's a feedback loop between price and demand at the high end that changes the elasticity of the demand curve. In plain English, those consumers in a position to spend $800 - $1200 on a fly rod have a bunch of disposable income - an extra few hundred bucks doesn't matter much to them.

    And as with all luxury items, the high price actually becomes a selling point, which changes the price - demand relationship. People who want a top-of-the-line fly rod actually take the price as a signal of quality and exclusivity and are willing to pay more, perversely, simply because the fly rod costs more.

    Behavioral economists have shown this over and over. A bottle of wine priced at $100 tastes better than the one priced at $10, even if it's the same wine, under a different label. The price alters the experience of consuming the thing. Same deal with fly rods. A $1000 rod is not 10x more effective at catching fish than a $100 rod. A rich d-bag casting said premium rod does not catch 10x as many fish as a blue collar angler with the same innate ability, using a P.O.S. from Cabela's.

    To look good is not to fish good.

    But it might make you feel good while fishing, so who's to say you shouldn't waste that $1000 on something that is a pointless leisure activity to begin with. And, having borrowed my cousin's NRX LP a few times last spring, I'm with Mac - holy shit that rod casts like a dream. I'm not sure it casts 3x as well as the Orvis entry level thing that I usually fish with, and I know I wouldn't catch 3x as many fish with it, but it feels like I would, and at some point that's what you're paying for.


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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    I don't disagree that rod prices are getting out of hand but i had new found appreciateion for my One after a week on the Upper Missouri throwing 70 feet through nonstop 20-30mph winds. I snapped the rod 2 days into the trip and was severely under-gunned / inaccurate for the remainder. that said i have casted some 800-900 dollar rods that feel like dog sh*t so at the end of the day its matter of preference for me i haven't found anything comparable to the Ones for accuracy/distance/finesse and would pay the 900 again and again


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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.

    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    A thousand dollars for mass produced carbon stick is out of hand. By a nice handmade split cane rod from a skilled craftsman if you want to spend that much money.


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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    To me the rod doesn't matter at all, because I cast like shit......

    "I'm not out on the river to win." -Kieth Rutherford

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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Not to long ago, I got out my old thirty dollar Fenwick Ferralite, and a ten dollar Diawa reel of the same vintage, and went fishing.

    I enjoyed the fishing experience just as much as I do using higher priced tackle.


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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Quote Originally Posted by lightenup View Post
    To me the rod doesn't matter at all, because I cast like shit......
    Although, I love my Winston IM6 and hate my G. Loomis Pro 4x..if anyone wants to but the Loomis it's very lightly used and FOR SALE...$250.00 takes it, you gotta pick it up, I have several locations available.

    "I'm not out on the river to win." -Kieth Rutherford

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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    When I bought my first high end fly rod, a Sage RPL+, it went for $450 and I questioned why I was paying so damned much $$ for a fly rod. As MAC reminds us, that rod today would be the Sage X for $865. It's all relative. Your homes cost more today than ever, cars are the same, food, etc. If customers stop buying, then the prices will fall. If not and they keep buying, expect prices to keep climbing. It's that easy.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Until 10 years I never paid more than $100 for a rod and caught a fair amount of fish. Love to fish an old blue Conolon with an auto reel among the snooty crowd. I will also say that I like softer rods, so that helps. Then my kids moved out West and I built a Z Axis for $350 in parts (it was just when the One was announced and prices went down for a short while) and don't regret it for larger streams. I also paid $300 for my Streamflex 10' 3 wt which is my go to nymphing rod. I felt a little guilty for paying so much. I keep thinking about paying more, but my cheaper side always wins.

    However, you can go too cheap. For a while I was playing around with older fiberglass rods and spent a fortune on roughly $30 to $75 rods. I would have been way ahead with two $150 to $200 rods. But then again, I got to play with a lot of rods. I think I did the same thing with longer nymph rods. Starting in the late 80's I started on a long rod kick. I tried all sorts of stuff on the cheap, like using crappie rod blanks, which added up to plenty. After years of playing around the Streamflex fit my needs and I've stopped to home built approach. However, back in the 80's was before the Czech nymphing craze and long rods were tough to get and most weren't that good.


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  21. #11
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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    Quote Originally Posted by WBDluver View Post
    Great post. I for one am not going to buy anything new unless something breaks. Enough is enough. Fly rod marketing is like golf club marketing. Each claims that the latest is going to give you more distance due to new design and materials. But it never does because for most of us its not the arrow but the indian. Winston used to say beyond 40 ft its hard to set the hook in time or not break off beyond that distance. So when it comes to dry fly trout fishing, trying to see your #18 BWO at 70 ft is a challenge let alone seeing the take and setting the hook. So i dont need a distance tool. Same goes for trout reels. I dont need a $500 reel for trout. If thats your thing its fine with me, but im jumping off the "our best rod ever" merry go round.
    I agree, I used to upgrade my arsenal every so often, but I pretty much stopped with the Sage XP for my dry fly rods, and the Xi3 for the salt. And a LL series for small streams that I will never sell to buy something else. They say that Lefty Kreh can throw an entire fly line using no rod at all, only his bare arms. So why not make yourself a better caster using what you already have. Who knows, I may even go back to fiberglass myself to try something different (maybe not so much on the big tailwaters, granted). It's not about the money, if you want the latest and greatest, knock yourself out!


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  23. #12
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    Re: Newest Fly Rods getting more expensive

    I think if you "need" more than one rod, for example a nymph rod and a dry fly rod you are overspending...I only bought a second rod, for a back-up, in case my Winston broke(which did happen once) and to cast on heavy wind in Montana, I don't use it for that because I hate it....you are overspending...get one nice rod that fits your needs for trout, and a cheap back-up in case it breaks....I nymph just fine with the 8' 5" IM6, sure, sometime another for or two would be nice, but I can't justify the expense for another form of fishing....hell I don't even switch leaders or change my set-up for nymphing and dry fly fishing, just change the tippet and there ya go...I catch plenty of fish to keep me happy!!!!


    Like my signature quote says.....I'm not on the river to win.....just my thoughts, yours are probably different, and that is why you are a boob!!!!

    "I'm not out on the river to win." -Kieth Rutherford

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