Custom Fishing Rods
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I want a Custom Fishing Rod, where do I start?
Custom fishing rod, or any fishing rod for that matter is comprised of 4 main components:
1.) The Rod Blank
2.) The Line Guides
3.) The Handle
4.) The Reel Seat
THE ROD BLANK: The rod blank is the tube that the rest of the elements are mounted or affixed to, the backbone of the rod. Rod blanks are categorized by power and action ratings as listed below.
Rod blanks are manufactured using a few different materials such as fiberglass, graphite, carbon fiber and bamboo. Some blanks can combine different materials to gain or eliminate certain properties. Graphite and carbon have greatly enhanced the strength to weight ratio fishing rods causing less fatigue and greater sensitivity for the angler. Fiberglass remains a quality rod blank material but it is typically heavier and larger in diameter that the graphite and carbon counterparts. Bamboo is used and sometimes preferred in certain situations by some anglers. What material you chose, will be mostly a personal preference that you will develop by getting out on the water and fishing with rods made from the different materials.
( Please note that each rod manufacturer may use standards that are slightly different than those represented below) This information below has been extracted from Batson Enterprises catalog and website and based off the Rainshadow line of blanks.
TYPES OF RODS:
Spinning Rods: This rod is designed for, strangely enough, spinning reels. This type of setup is best used to present live bait such as worms, minnows, leeches, crayfish (crawdads) and the like. While smaller artificial and spinning baits can correctly be used with this setup, it is best suited for live bait / finesse fishing. Aside from the closed-face fishing outfit ( Zebco 202 ) the spinning rod & reel is the easiest for the beginning fisherman to use. For the traveling fisherman, High quality Rainshadow blanks offer 3 and 4pc blanks that make transport of your custom rod easier and less expensive
Casting Rods: Casting rods are used with baits, as the name implies, that get their action from being cast and retrieved. The rig is mostly associated with throwing crank and spin baits while primarily bass fishing. The heavy and extra-heavy rigs are great for large pike and musky as well. This rod is usually used by more practiced fisherman as this rig is more difficult to cast than a spinning rig. But when this new casting method is practiced and figured out, this setup, for catching bass, has no equal. For the traveling fisherman, High quality Rainshadow blanks offer 3 and 4pc blanks that make transport of your custom rod easier and less expensive
Fly Rods: Fly rod setups are unique in that you are actually casting your line and not the lure. Unlike casting and spinning rigs, the lightest part of the casting structure on a fly rod is lure or fly at the end of the leader. ( a length of monofilament line attached to the end of the fly line ) Where as casting and spinning rigs use either the weight of the lure or sinkers attached to the line for casting weight. Fly rods are are very versatile and can be used for just about any freshwater fish. Fly rods are classified by weight class as it relates to the fly line. Ther lighter the fly line the lighter the fly rod. A 1 - 3 weight fly rod uses 1 - 3 weight line and would be used for pan fish and small trout. On the other end of the scale a 9 to 14 weight rod would be used in salt water fishing as well as salmon and trout / steelhead fishing in the Great Lakes, Niagara River and Salmon River. ( by the way these 3 choices are the best fishing for these species in the world! Visit http://anglingaddictguide.com and book your trip with a top notch guide and accomplished angler.
POWER RATINGS: Spinning Rods
Ultra-Light: This rod is typically a 1 or 2pc rod measuring 5-0" to 6-6" in length. Just as the name implies, this setup is at it's best when used with 2 to 6 lb test line and lure weights of 1/32 to 3/16 oz. You'll want to use this rod when fishing for small trout, kokanee and panfish. ( panfish = bluegill, perch, crappie etc )
Light: This rod is very similar to the Ultra-Light in most respects. You will find 1 to 2pc light actions rods in lengths up to 7'-0 and are their best with 2 to 6 lb test line and lure weights up to 1/4oz. You can use this set up on all the above species as well.
Medium Light: This rod is typically 1 to 2 pcs and up to 7-0" in length. Use 6 to 12lb test line and lure weights from 1/8 to 3/8oz. This rod is suitable for all the above species as well as bass and walleye and trout.
Medium: The medium and medium light action rods can be thought as multi-purpose rods. While these rods are still limber enough for the trout and panfish they are stout enough to handle bigger trout, steelhead, bass and walleye. Medium power rods are best suited for 8 to 14lb test line and lure weights between 1/4 to 5/8oz lures.
Medium Heavy: This rod is typically 1 to 2 pc rod and measures up to 7-0' long. You are going to want to gear up with 10 - 17 lb test line and use lure weights between 5/16 and 3/4oz. Those who target bass, walleye, salmon, trout carp, big catfish and pike will be served well with an outfit of this weight.
Heavy: Use this rod for all the same species above except walleye, stay with the medium light through med heavy for the "eyes". Again 1 to 2 pc rods with slightly heavier line topping out at 20 lb test line and lures in the 3/8 to 1oz weight range.
POWER RATINGS: Casting Rods
Medium: This rod is typically a 1 or 2 pc rod between 6' and 8' in length. You will want to keep your line in the 8 to 14 lb test range and throw lures 1/4 and 5/8 oz.
Medium Heavy: Again a 1 to 2 pc rod using 10 to 17 lb test line and lures weighing between 1/4 and 3/4 oz and will be between 6' and 8' long..
Heavy: This rig will usually be 1 or 2pcs have a line use rating of 12 to 25 lb test, lure weights of 3/8 to 1 oz and again be 6' to 8' long
Extra Heavy: This biggin' is best suited for 15 to 30 lb test line, is between 6' and 8' feet in length and can handle lures that weigh between 1/2 to 1-1/2 oz.
POWER RATINGS: Fly Rods ( thanks to Fly Fishing Gear.Info) for the Fly Rod Line Ratings
1 - 3 Weight: This rod is best suited for small trout and panfish ( sunfish, bluegill, crappie etc. ) Used also for casting small flies over relatively short distances.
4 Weight: This rod will be used for medium sized trout, bass. You will be able to cast small to medium sized flies a little bit further than the 1-3 weight rods.
5 - 6 Weight: These weights can be thought of as the Utility or Multi-Purpose rigs. These will be good choices for just about everything except for the smallest and largest of fish. These weights will allow for longer casting while still being able to hit the smaller casts as well.
7 - 8 Weight: You'll be able to target large trout, large bass, pike and musky will these weights. Long casts are are no problem. This setup is not for the small neighborhood trout stream. This is also a good starting point for saltwater applications.
9 - 14 Weight: These weights are for the heavy weights! Steelhead, salmon and saltwater fishing.
Line guides, just as the name suggests, gives the line a path to travel as it unwinds off the reel as a result of a cast or when fighting a fish. Equally importantly, line guides help distribute the load or tension on the line to both the rod and line equally, allowing the angler to use the small diameter lines that will get the job done.
Line guides consist of a hard, durable ring of material pressed in a wire / steel frame that is attached to the rod blank. The most common material used for off the shelf rods is aluminum oxide. Aluminum Oxide is durable and cost effective and will give the weekend angler years of trouble free service. Zirconium is also a popular material. Zirconium is a high quality ceramic that is very hard and has very low surface friction allowing superior casting distance and accuracy. Guides manufactured by Alps use coated zirconium for additional hardness, Titanium Nitrite is one of the coatings applied to the guides ( PVD Process )that gives the rings a gold color. This is the same material and process that is used on high speed drill bits.
Many manufacturers such as Alps, Fuji, Pac Bay, Recoil and Merrick Tackle have proprietary materials in many different combinations and colors. Please visit these manufacturers websites ( see our links page ) for specifications and additional information on the products they offer. Suppliesforguys can build your custom fishing rod with guides from any of these manufactures.
The wire / steel frames that the guides are pressed into should be made from a durable material such as stainless steel or non-stainless steels with a protective coating (anodize) that protects it from the rust and corrosion. This is particularly important for saltwater applications where corrosion can will be a big problem. For saltwater application you will want to insist on 304 or 316 stainless steel.
Custom Fishing Rod Handles and Reel Seats:
Just like the line guides, there are dozens of different styles of handles. Combine this with the reel seats and there are hundreds of combinations.
The most common rod handles or grips will be either EVA foam or cork. Both of these material come in several different grades. The better the grade the more costly the product. Both materials are very durable and washable. The foam grip comes in several different colors and shapes depending usually on the manufacturer's preferences so you will want to do a little searching for what suits your individual need. Same goes for the cork, except cork really adds the custom look and feel that one would expect in a custom rod.