By Ronnie Garrison,
Information on fishing rods, from picking a rod to reviews of specific rods.
Rods come in a huge variety of lengths and types, from spinning to casting and pistol grip to straight grip. Add they vary in power, which is the stiffness of the rod, and action, which is how much of the rod bends and how fast, and you can get confused. Here is some information on how to choose a fishing rod, including links to some manufacturers and custom rod information.
I found a St. Croix casting rod that meets my needs for an all around rod for a variety of kinds of fishing. This seven foot rod has fast action so its tip is fairly flexible but stiffens up quickly. It is medium-heavy power meaning it is stiff enough to set the hook on a worm but flexible enough to use 10 pound line and not break it.
I bought a Castaway spinning rod for throwing tubes, drop shot worms and small crankbaits. This rod met my needs since it is the length I like and is flexible enough to handle light line but strong enough to set the hook. I also like the Tennessee handle on it.
Lee McClellan shares his thoughts on choosing the right rod for your kind of fishing. Rods can be confusing and you don't want to spend a lot of money on the wrong one. Unfortunately, you usually can not "test drive" a rod on the lake unless you find someone with one that will go fishing with you. That is the best way to find out if you like a rod, take it fishing.
The six-foot, six-inch Deep South Medium Heavy casting rod is one of the most sensitive I have used. It is great for Texas rigged worms and I also throw weightless Senkos on it. These rods were originally named Fig Rig Rods. I won this rod in a drawing and was amazed at how well it worked. It is a good choice for some kinds of plastic bait fishing.
You can replace the guides on a fishing rod if one gets broken or if the wrapping wears out. Don't let a broken or worn out guide ruin a fishing tip. Keep an eye on your rod guides and replace them before they break. It is a good idea to keep a small kit with repair items and a variety of rod guides and tips in your tackle box.
Tips on fishing rods often get broken, and sometimes you will break a few inches off the tip of your rod. You can replace the tip with little trouble. I keep a kit with ferrule cement and a selection of different size rod tips in my boat so I can replace one and keep fishing. Repair kits are available or you can make your own by purchasing the cement and some tips and putting them in a small plastic box or zipper type bag. It is also a good idea to have some matches or a lighter to melt the cement.
The Tennessee Handle is popular on many rods and keeps the rod lighter. It does take more effort to put the reel on the rod and it is more trouble to change it. On a Tennessee Handle you tape the reel seat to the rod and there are no moving parts to break and weigh down the rod. You can also move the reel up and down the handle to get the best balance for you before taping it down.
Putting the guides on a casting rod so they spiral around the rod is called a Roberts Wrap. It has its good and bad points. Some say you can make longer casts with a Roberts Wrap rod. You might also have less chance of breaking the line while fighting a fish since the line does not touch the rod when it is bent. It does look different, and for me the line seems to tangle in the guides more often than with a regular system of having the guides in a straight line.
Keep a tight line!