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Thread: Any bamboo flyrod lovers out there?

  1. #1
    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Default Any bamboo flyrod lovers out there?

    I was just wondering if there were any folks around on the forum that share an interest in bamboo flyrods. I've been collecting bamboo rods now for about 10 or 12 years, and so far have about 6 or 7, several of which are just cheap wall hangers. I do have a couple Grangers that I have fished occasionally, one needs to be refinished for sure and the other could probably use it also. I have a Ron Kusse Quadrate, that he custom made for me about 7 years ago that I have never fished and only put it together once. Probably a shame, but this rod cost a small fortune (for me anyway), and I'm having a real difficult time bringing myself to fish it. Anyway, I just thought I'd bring it up to see if anyone else up here shared my enthusiasm for fishing with grass.

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    Supporting Member bullbuster's Avatar
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    I love the fight on a bamboo rod, there is nothing like a great grass rod.
    I have a few, one is a CM Kreider that I inherited from Grampa. The family story is that it was the last one he made, after he made the Duke one.
    I used to take it out, but haven't for a few years. I get more worried about the rod than losing the fish.
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    I have an old South Bend (I think) that I haven't used in years. I am planning on using it at least some this year though. How much different are the better rods though? Mine is about 8' or 8'6" for a HDH line. It casts well but it's heavy and really slow, but it's fun to use.


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    Member CTobias's Avatar
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    I didn't know they made rods out of anything else. Actually, that's a lie. I just recently got into bamboo rods.

    I own a sharpes 12'9" 3/2 8wt Spliced Ferrule Spey
    E.C. Powell 9'6" 3/2 7 wt
    Bob Clay is building me a 12'6" 3/2 7/8wt five sider spliced spey. Should be done by October this year.
    James Reid just started on my 10'10" 3/2 5/6wt trout spey. Should be done by August of this year.
    Walter Babb and Ron frost are both building me 8' 2/2 5wt. Should be done by August of this year.

    Don't ask about the reel collection. Haha.

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    Member CTobias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AK Troutbum View Post
    I have a Ron Kusse Quadrate, that he custom made for me about 7 years ago that I have never fished and only put it together once. Probably a shame, but this rod cost a small fortune (for me anyway), and I'm having a real difficult time bringing myself to fish it.

    Fish it. Bamboo is tougher than graphite. A rod is meant to be fished, not hung on a wall!!!

  6. #6

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    I really enjoy cane for trout fishing, but not much else. Since I have done less trout fishing in the last 15 or 20 years, I've kinda fallen off the wagon with cane.

    My pride and joy fishes the same or better, but isn't actually cane. It's a Payne Hexagraphic 6-weight with a couple of tips I got back when A River Runs Through It was first filmed. Been using it ever since on my trout safaris to southern places, and nothing has made me want to replace it.

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    gotta love the old cane rods, someday when all the others are disintigrated the cane will still be catching fish

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    Member G_Smolt's Avatar
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    M. Shay 8'1" 8wt Parabolic 16 taper...not just for trout, kids.


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    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTobias View Post
    Fish it. Bamboo is tougher than graphite. A rod is meant to be fished, not hung on a wall!!!
    I know, I know. I only hang my junkers on the wall, I keep the Kusse in the safe. I do agree with you though, it was made to be fished and that's what I need to, and will do with it. The right situation just hasn't presented itself yet.

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    Fish Bamboo much of the time. Fish Parks highway streams (5wt hex.), upper and middle Kenai for Trout (7-8wt quad). Even take the quad down to the Situk and put those slat fresh steelies to the bank w/ the Boo. Very well suited for roll casts into tight spots typical of those stream w/ over-hanging brush. The rods are built locally; that's right, an AK built cane Rod for AK waters and AK fish by builder named Chris Carlin http://www.farnorthrodsmiths.com/. Check him out if you have any interest in fishing a bamboo rod.
    Last year my buddy boated a 25lb king on a hollowed hex 8wt built for steelhead and I've landed numerous largish rainbows (28" on the 5wt) and (38" Steelie on the 7/8wt). So they are built to fish.

    There is just something a little more fun about fishing w/ a cane rod

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    Several members of our local fly club have made the trip up to Bill Oyster's class in bamboo rod building and built their own rod. The class is about 12 or 15 hundred dollars and last a week, but the rods are really nice. Bill Oyster also sells his rods--they range from 3 to 6K, depending of the engraving. I don't have a bamboo, but I have cast one of the ones a club member built and was amazed at how forgiving it was on timing and how well it turned the fly over.

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    My first fly rod was bamboo, bought it at the local hardware store in 1965 I think it was. Down south, caught lots of bream, bluegills, and bass with it. I have one now that is probably about the same age, my step dad used for trout fishing in Colorado, but it's in desperate need of refinishing. Another project waiting for attention...

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    Default Tradition and much more . .

    Bought an Orvis Madison, 7-1/2', 6-weight back about 40 years ago . . used it on Michigan's Boardman and Big Manistee Rivers for brown trout . . haven't fished it much since.

    For me, bamboo rods are about much more than catching fish . .

    Attachment 60330

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    I know we're not covering new ground here, but on the off chance you inspire somebody: There is a special room in hell saved for people who fish drag on cane.



    Quote Originally Posted by G_Smolt View Post
    M. Shay 8'1" 8wt Parabolic 16 taper...not just for trout, kids.


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    Member G_Smolt's Avatar
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    If you didn't like that one, you will HATE this one...drag reel, polyurethane line, fluorocarbon leader, and a bead


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    Member CTobias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGK View Post
    There is a special room in hell saved for people who fish drag on cane.
    They make reels with drags on them?

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    Everybody on the internet has seen that dolly's shame.

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    Lightbulb It ain't about catching fish . . .

    I've posted this before, but here it is again. Reed Curry is a maker of bamboo fly rods.

    Observations on a Soggy Cigar
    By Reed F. Curry



    A few years ago, while sorting through a box of old fly fishing magazines - scanning the cover photos before placing each in its pile to keep or toss - I began to detect an interesting pattern. Curious, I set aside ten covers from the late seventies, and ten covers from the late nineties, all chosen at random.

    Not surprisingly, each of the covers from the 90's journals depicted one of the "beautiful people" draped from trendy chapeau to gravel guard in the latest (spotless) logo-beribboned apparel, tenderly holding an enormous fish (usually a salmonid) and smiling engagingly for the camera. The blotches of oil left behind by a leaky floatant bottle, the smattering of blood or fish-scales from the quick and merciful death of a bleeder, the burn marks from a cigarette falling from open lips as the angler hooks into a "big one" --- none of these were in evidence on the cover photos. But always the fish and always the posed smile.


    In contrast, the earlier covers included a distant shot of a lone angler leaving the water of a western river, a young couple holding hands-- and fly rods-- as they waded, laughing, out of a high mountain lake, a pair of parkas (little else visible) fishing from a driftboat in a snowstorm, two still-lifes of tackle, a lone fisherman framed in autumn leaves, and, finally, a placid John Voelker, crouched on a log in thick pine woods, his rod leaning against a tree, quietly smoking a cigar in the rain. Interestingly, only one of the early covers showed a fish in hand, and this was being displayed to a curious wading Schnauzer.


    I'm not certain what, if anything, this tells us about the sport itself. To the cynical, it may suggest that the magazines get a kickback from fishing tackle makers for highlighting their gear on the cover... or from the American Dental Association. Either of these may be true, but, it is more likely that the magazine is responding to changes in prevailing attitudes toward the sport of flyfishing. Perhaps flyfishing is now success related --- the largest fish, or the greatest number of fish --- rather than the mere opportunity to be fishing. The word "Fishing", if we believe the magazine covers, is synonymous with "Catching", and catching is a numbers game.


    The act of fishing (not necessarily catching) has traditionally had a backdrop of "wildness" that was an intrinsic component of the day astream -- if not a beautiful natural setting, at least a sense of remoteness, a distance from other fishermen. If you must encounter another angler there was a formula that permitted each to maintain their world apart. Just a few years ago, good streamside manners bade a wet-fly angler working downstream to leave the river on sighting a fisherman working upstream, to walk high on the banks around him, and re-enter the flow at least one pool below. Of course, conversation between anglers might take place, but the very acceptance of the buffer zone that each afforded the other strengthened the sense of isolation.


    A second equally important element of fishing is leisure. Fishing offers the opportunity to step outside the timestream of faxes and emails, of conference calls and thrice-rescheduled meetings, to a place beyond time. The third item in the mix -- observation of the natural world -- depends in part on the two previous. Just as TIME is defined by SPACE and MOTION, Timeless observation is defined by the space around you, the macro/microcosm, and blissful immobility. The fisherman who has a warbler land on his rod-tip is doing something right.

  19. #19
    Member FishGod's Avatar
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    I've been using bamboo fly rods from http://www.farnorthrodsmiths.com/ and absolutely love them. I've caught everything from kings to grayling on them. I highly recommend these rods. They are a thing of beauty, but they can take one hell of a beating.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Your bait stinks and your boat is ugly

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    Member CTobias's Avatar
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    Anyone got any pics of their bamboo sticks?
    Here are a couple of my 7wt EC Powell.
    Attachment 60623
    Attachment 60624

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