Fly Fishing Gear - Fly Rods
Fly Rod Purpose:
The fly rod serves a dual purpose. First and foremost it propels or casts the line and
leader, which presents the fly. Secondly, it serves to cushion the fight of the fish.
In some anglers mind, the fly rod is the single most important tool in fly-fishing. In reality,
it is just a major part of the system. Many times angers select their rod as the first item of
priority without any regard to the type and size of flies they intend to cast. One should
first select the line size that best delivers those flies in a particular fishing scenario, and
then a rod that casts that line size properly with ease. In other words, it is impossible to
intelligently select a fly rod without first knowing the type and size of the flies that you
intend to cast and the weight of the fly line that best presents the flies that the rod will be
casting. In fact, fly rods are normally described by the size of the line that they have been
designed and built to cast.
Number of Sections:
Although I don’t have one, there would be nothing wrong with using a one-piece fly rod
strictly from a fishing standpoint. It will work as good or maybe even better than any, but
transporting and storing it would be very impractical in most cases. For this reason most
fly rods are made in two pieces and often three or even as many as seven pieces.
Parts of a Fly Rod:
The joints that attach the sections of the rod together are called “ferrules”. The lower rod
section, which is the thickest and heaviest, consists of the rod blank, a grip section and a
reel seat section. Normally the rod blank extends through the seat and grip section. The
very end of this section has some type of cap or end plug.
The reel is secured to the rod at the “reel seat”, which sole purpose to hold and secure
the reel. Usually some type of screw locking device is used but some of the very light
rods use simple rings that slide over the seat of the reel.
The “grip” or handle of the fly rod varies in shape, size and design. .
At the lower part of the exposed rod blank you will usually find a “hook keeper”, which
serves to hold your fly when you are not fishing. It helps prevent the fly from getting
caught in your clothes, tree limbs, etc.
The first guide is called the “stripping guide”. It receives the most wear of any of the
guides since it is the first guide that takes the friction from the pressure that the line
exerts when line is being stripped.
The guides are spaced along the rod blank depending upon several factors including the
rod length and action that is involved with the particular design of the rod.
The last guide is called the “tip guide”. There are many variations in the design and
construction of fly rods but this covers the basic components of a standard fly rod.
Copyright 2013 James Marsh
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