Are they really worth the money?

  • Thread starter Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA)
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Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA)

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One only has to look at the vast range of quality fly rods at very reasonable prices from the stables of Greys, Sonik, Airflo and Scierra for example and then to compare them with theUSA sourced equivalents.It makes me wonder what we are getting in return, for the high price of these rodswhichin most cases is triple!

Yet there are those who will pay upwards of £600 for a Sage fly rod, when a £180 Greys will do the same job admirably.

Are you one of those who will put the family budget at risk by forking out £600 plus for a fly rod? And if so, are you fully aware that you just might bechucking £400 down the drain.
 
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Shrek

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Ron,

Just one question. How many Sage rods do you own now?

Cheers,

Adrian
 

Peter Jacobs

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"It makes me wonder what we are getting in return, for the high price of these rodswhichin most cases is triple!"

Ron,

Here are a few quotes from one of your previous threads regarding Sage rods:

"My love affair with Sage fly rods goes back to 1988 when I had two rods built up for myself on Sage blanks by the late Rod Cross - South African master rod builder."

"So there it is folks; expensive they may be and built mainly for good casters, but for me, yes probably they are the best"

"I have since used it at my local ressie - and by crikey what a revelation; two false casts and the whole of a 30 yards forward taper goes sizzling through the rings with such velocity that it made the reel spin when it came to a stop!"

<u>Try that with a cheaper alternative.</u>

"Sage, as well as other top makes have an undefinable quality which makes you feel fully in charge of the line in the air."

"And they are the lightest rods for their lengths I have ever handled. My 9 1/2 footer weighs in at just under 3 1/2 oz."


"Yet I would rate my Sage XP 9 1/2 footer as perhaps the finest all round still water fly rod I have ever used."

That noted,I have 4 Sage rods and I don't believe that I put any budget at risk by buying them. Absolutely fantastic rods, but like a lot of quality items, yes,they are expensive.

I have recently coupled my 6# Z-Axis with an Abel reel and that combination is silky smooth and a joy to fish with.

If you think about it Ron quality always comes with a price, a £4 fly box holds flies, but a £45 walnut cased Wheatley is a thing of beauty and feels great to use.

You canalso buya trout bag for about £10 but a Brady bag will set you back over £100 and maybe says something about the owner to boot.
 
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Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA)

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One

/forum/smilies/smile_smiley.gif

But I didn't pay £600 for it, in fact I didn't even pay £200.

I paid what it was worth!

But in all honesty, I can cast just as well with a 9 1/2 foot equivalent made for me by Steve Parton on a Harrison blank for £160.00

/forum/smilies/big_smile_smiley.gif
 

Bryan Baron 2

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Its all relative. If your paying thousands to fish the southern chalk streams every year then whats another couple of hundred quid.

Then there are thouse that just buy the prestige brands. Cant afford a prestige car but can a rod.
 
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Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA)

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That Sage rod made for me by the late Rod Cross - supreme rod builder of SA cost me the equivalent of about £180.

This was in the early nineties and my comments were certainly based on the rods available at that time.
 

Gary Dolman

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There are several issues here, and least important are performance and value for money. Posession of top of the range tackle and equipment is rarely justifiable in terms of performance, and is more about how it makes the owner feel. If you want to become a better caster sign up for some lessons with a good pro, it will be money well spent.

It is the same for golf, £300 for a new driver each year in search of a hypothetical increase in distance & direction control, when half a dozen lessons each year from a good pro would demonstrate that in most cases you have a more than adequate driver.

Some anglers can afford and are prepared to pay top whack for gear, that is their choice, and more power to their elbow, as it is only a matter of time before the new technology filters down to us lesser mortals.

Most of the posters on here can remember the old cane rods & the development of fibre glass, lets face it most of the R&D costs are borne by the likes of Peter, keep it up son!!
 

Peter Jacobs

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Gary,

Not only can I remember the old cane rods but I still use them, in fact, most if not all of my cane rods get an airing or two every season.

As to the Sage rods, and if you have used one then you will know where I am coming from, in their case 'perfection' and price do actually go together.

I will grant you, and Ron, that an Abel reel is a sheer luxury, as I have a couple of Orvis reels that are equally smooth with a similar clutch 'feel' but then, why else do we bother working if not to fuel the price of a few nice things, from time to time?

Regarding expensive Hardy or Brady game bags then it really is just a matter of wanting to own something a little 'special' as it does say something about the owner rather than the performance of the article.

It is the same in the field of Coarse rods too, my Carbotec rods were very costly, but then their 'performance' is not equalled by Shimano, Harrison or others in that bracket.

As to golf clubs, well,I bought one of the original Callaway ECR drivers when they first came out at a hideous price, butit put an extra 25 yards on my best drivers. I think the battle still rages as to whether or not they were 'legal' in use. I was playing at the time in the States where they were acceptable at club level, but not in official USPGA governed copmetitions.

I cannot see Sage rod prices ever coming down all that much, after all they have an unequaled product and at aim at a particular end of the market, so why should they?
 

Gary Dolman

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I also saw a TV programme a few years ago, part of the Sir John Harvey Jones series, then CEO of ICI I think, where he went into ailing firms & gave his advice.

I do remember his advice to a firm who were selling "top end", goods, jewellery I think it was, and he advised them to put their prices up, as the clients they were aiming at expected to be fleeced, and being cheaper than your competitors was not a benefit.

All that said, quality generally costs, and each to his own I say. It would be a really boring world if we were all the same.
 
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Richard Drayson

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From Peter's post <blockquote class=quoteheader>Peter Jacobs wrote (see)</blockquote><blockquote class=quote>

Ron,

Here are a few quotes from one of your previous threads regarding Sage rods:

"And they are the lightest rods for their lengths I have ever handled. My 9 1/2 footer weighs in at just under 3 1/2 oz."</blockquote>
I know there's really no comparison in performance between a 'cheap' fly rod and a 'top of the range' rod but, purely out of interest, I've just weighed my 9ft flextec rod on accurate digital kitchen scales and it weighs precisely 3.55 oz or 100 grams/forum/smilies/i_dont_know_smiley.gif
 

GrahamM

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All this is much more simple for me:
  1. I'm lucky enough to be able to afford a Sage rod or two
  2. They make me feel good when I use them
  3. They make me feel like I can cast better when I use them
  4. I've used lots of other makes of fly rod and none make me feel as good as does a Sage
  5. No contest
 
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Shrek

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He also sleeps with them and uses the tubes for things we can't mention on here.........!!!!
 
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Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA)

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But you must admit Marso that the Greys G Tech rods for £225 are dinkum sticks.

I felt one the other day and it had a bonzer action.

If I had the where withall, thats the fly stick I would get.

No worries mate!
 
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Shrek

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See, I reckon that's a load of rubbish, that you can guage what a fly rod is like just from waggling it in the shop.

I strongly believe that you really don't know what a rod is like until you put a line on it and go and have a cast with it.
 

Derek Gibson

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If you can afford them, and as Graham notes, it makes him feel good, that in my opinion is reason enough to choose one make of rod over another. Back in the mid sixties Ron, Steve Crawshaw and myself attended the game fair at Scarborough. On the day Jack Martin champion fly caster, was giving a demo of both distance and accuracy. And I vividly recall all of us being amazed, not least of all due to the fact that he was using ''Sealy Glane'' fly rods. Hardly top of the range gear, but that was the company sponsoring him at the time. Later I had the opportunity to speak to Jack in the marquee and express my admiration. I will never forget his words, ''I have been doing this a long time and I had a good tutor. Develop good technique from a good tutor and you can be efficient with a garden cane''. Wise words, if not a little bitter sweet, as I at the time was the proud possessor of several ''Hardy'' rods. Including the legendary C.C. deFrance, and my results were crap in comparison, something I am currently trying to correct, under the guidance of Ronnie boy.
 
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Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA)

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By saying that I had a feel of the rod, did not mean that I only waggled it around in the shop. No, I had the shop assistant set the rod up with the recomended line on it. Then I went outside and cast with it.

However one thing I will say at this juncture is when you have fly fished for any length of time, it is possible to pick up a rod, and without even casting with it, tell to a fair degree whether it is any good or not. The secret here is dampening. If the rod waggles about for a long period after you have given it a flick, it is likely to be cheap and nasty. A really good fly rod has that almost undefinable feel of quality.
 
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