STICK FLOAT RODS?

Rick123

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We get asked a lot about stick float rods on this forum, along with reels its a popular topic. My view of a stick float rod was from my old memories of what I saw the match guys use. It was not designed for big barbel (like some are made for today 8lb line rating) But 3lb mainline would be about right with a very light 1.5lb hook link. Now that's how I remember them, maybe others will disagree? Its not to say a big fish could not be landed (they were) with the anglers skills. But today I don't think such a rod is being made. Maybe the Trip-Cast Mark likes so much, or Sams Browning, but those ultra fine line rods that most match-men had are just not being made. They are all "one rod does it all" I looked at the Daiwa range before writing this and all the rods are 2lb 8lb rating, that must tell us something don't you think? JMO.
 

Sam Vimes

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Power creep is apparent in pretty much every type of coarse fishing rods. Back in the early nineties, when the bulk of the desirable Daiwa spliced tip rods were being made, most folks fished for barbel with a 1.25lb Avon rod and a heavy carp rod was 2.5lb TC. You are unlikely to find a barbel rod less than 1.75 and it's a struggle to find a full size carp rod under 2.75lb. Match rods were generally rated to little more than 4lb mainline (though 6lb never really bothered them anyway). These days, 2-8lb ratings are common, though how a float rod can genuinely cover that full range is beyond me. Poles in the early 90s were generally rated to a 14 elastic. Modern poles, even those that aren't especially powerful, are usually rated to 18/20+. Less powerful poles are still available but are generally seen as specialized tools.

Since the early 90s, commercial fisheries have come to prominence and the fish in them have got steadily larger. I remember fishing commies in the early nineties and them being dominated by pasty carp that rarely exceeded 3lb. Unless they've been recently stocked, the average carp on most commercials these days is way in excess of 3lb. Even F1s are regularly bigger. All of those changes have coincided with fewer people fishing rivers, especially with methods that would have been almost universal amongst river anglers of the 90s and further back.

Spliced tip rods, especially really light (actioned) ones appeal to an increasingly small number of people. That's the reason why so few manufacturers even bother. There's simply not the volume of sales there for them. If there really has been any power creep in the few current spliced tip rods still available (I'm not particularly convinced, the old rods were rarely as weedy as the ratings might suggest), then you can chalk that up to the pervading fashion for increasingly powerful rods right through coarse fishing.

I still have my 90s Daiwa Spliced Tip rods. I also have examples of two (of the three I'm aware of) current Spliced Tip rods. The way I use them, there's no huge difference in the power of the blanks. The most significant differences are in the weight, reel seats and rings.
 

trotter2

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It's also worth remembering the spliced rods of that time were made that way because they found it difficult to produce rods with fine tips that match anglers require at the time .A lot of the top anglers fishing the river today manage fine with hollow tip rods now the manufacturing problems have been addressed. With no great hardship ask the likes of Dave Harrell. It's personal preference that's all.
 

MarkW

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It's also worth remembering the spliced rods of that time were made that way because they found it difficult to produce rods with fine tips that match anglers required at the time .A lot of the top anglers fishing the river today manage fine with hollow tip rods now the manufacturing problems have been addressed. With no great hardship ask the likes of Dave Harrell. It's personal preference that's all.
Anglers are no longer fishing the true size 24s (John Allerton's hook size of choice on the Trent) and 22s on rivers that we did 30 years ago. We fished fine main lines as well. I fished 1.5lb Maxima (still use it a bit) and 1.5 Daiwa lines and once (1992) got hammered by Gary Etheridge who was using a 26 to 8oz with 1lb Maxima main line with a Norboron. He won with 6-13 and I had 2-13 in a Bristol Avon Super League match - I was on 1.5 Maxima and a 22 to 0.08 with a Titan 2000. The same summer I fished at Evesham with size 23 Mustad 90340 to 0.06 with double maggots to catch roach. Put that size 23 against a modern 20 and it's like a 20 against a 12 in the original sizes.
I read about a Trent National a couple of years ago and anglers were using the modern 18s; you wouldn't buy a bite on that back 30 years ago.
 

Flathead

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Anglers are no longer fishing the true size 24s (John Allerton's hook size of choice on the Trent) and 22s on rivers that we did 30 years ago. We fished fine main lines as well. I fished 1.5lb Maxima (still use it a bit) and 1.5 Daiwa lines and once (1992) got hammered by Gary Etheridge who was using a 26 to 8oz with 1lb Maxima main line with a Norboron. He won with 6-13 and I had 2-13 in a Bristol Avon Super League match - I was on 1.5 Maxima and a 22 to 0.08 with a Titan 2000. The same summer I fished at Evesham with size 23 Mustad 90340 to 0.06 with double maggots to catch roach. Put that size 23 against a modern 20 and it's like a 20 against a 12 in the original sizes.
I read about a Trent National a couple of years ago and anglers were using the modern 18s; you wouldn't buy a bite on that back 30 years ago.
I still have some boxes of 90340 in 22 and 20.

We used to use 1.5 mainline for trotting and anything down to 8 oz. hooklenths on the Trent......that was not considered unusual.....I fish a lot heavier now but am not really sure why? I think the explosion of Chub on the Trent many years ago may have changed things a bit
 

adriang

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I'm still pretty well fishing the same way as I did 20 odd years ago, I'm generally using the same rods and reels and lines, although I've experimented a little with some 'medium tech' lines, early days yet. I'm probably going to start a session on a size 20 or 22 b520 now that my stock of samurai has finally ended.

A lot of it is all down to whats enjoyable and works for you, and I've found no real reason to change.

I've followed loads of threads on here about various rods with interest, but similar as above, I've fishing with 20-30 year old rods, and over the closed season got one of my Mircolites upgraded with a new fuji real seat which I've only just got back, so yet to use it, but if it works for me, I'll do the other one. While I was waiting for the Microlite to come back, I did break out a Mach 2 boron, I forgot what a good rod it is.
 

adriang

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It's also worth remembering the spliced rods of that time were made that way because they found it difficult to produce rods with fine tips that match anglers require at the time .A lot of the top anglers fishing the river today manage fine with hollow tip rods now the manufacturing problems have been addressed. With no great hardship ask the likes of Dave Harrell. It's personal preference that's all.
I've seen an interview with DH where he talked about the capabilities to make finer hollow tips nowadays, I did want to spend some time looking at 'modern rods' at one of the events like the Evesham, but not possible this year.

Out of curiosity, what rods are you using?
 

john wilson

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I've seen an interview with DH where he talked about the capabilities to make finer hollow tips nowadays, I did want to spend some time looking at 'modern rods' at one of the events like the Evesham, but not possible this year.

Out of curiosity, what rods are you using?
Still only use Normarks Team 2000 Mic,Titan and Avenger plus there older tip rods.
 

trotter2

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I've seen an interview with DH where he talked about the capabilities to make finer hollow tips nowadays, I did want to spend some time looking at 'modern rods' at one of the events like the Evesham, but not possible this year.

Out of curiosity, what rods are you using?
The rod I have used for majority of my stick float fishing is the acolyte ultra in 13,14 and 15ft. I find it will fish hook lengths down to .06 with no problems.
 

Silverfisher

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The rod I have used for majority of my stick float fishing is the acolyte ultra in 13,14 and 15ft. I find it will fish hook lengths down to .06 with no problems.

There are almost certainly better rods for stick or waggler but I do find that acolyte ultras have an ideal action to cover both methods well ??
 

RedhillPhil

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Power creep is apparent in pretty much every type of coarse fishing rods. Back in the early nineties, when the bulk of the desirable Daiwa spliced tip rods were being made, most folks fished for barbel with a 1.25lb Avon rod and a heavy carp rod was 2.5lb TC. You are unlikely to find a barbel rod less than 1.75 and it's a struggle to find a full size carp rod under 2.75lb. Match rods were generally rated to little more than 4lb mainline (though 6lb never really bothered them anyway). These days, 2-8lb ratings are common, though how a float rod can genuinely cover that full range is beyond me. Poles in the early 90s were generally rated to a 14 elastic. Modern poles, even those that aren't especially powerful, are usually rated to 18/20+. Less powerful poles are still available but are generally seen as specialized tools.

Since the early 90s, commercial fisheries have come to prominence and the fish in them have got steadily larger. I remember fishing commies in the early nineties and them being dominated by pasty carp that rarely exceeded 3lb. Unless they've been recently stocked, the average carp on most commercials these days is way in excess of 3lb. Even F1s are regularly bigger. All of those changes have coincided with fewer people fishing rivers, especially with methods that would have been almost universal amongst river anglers of the 90s and further back.

Spliced tip rods, especially really light (actioned) ones appeal to an increasingly small number of people. That's the reason why so few manufacturers even bother. There's simply not the volume of sales there for them. If there really has been any power creep in the few current spliced tip rods still available (I'm not particularly convinced, the old rods were rarely as weedy as the ratings might suggest), then you can chalk that up to the pervading fashion for increasingly powerful rods right through coarse fishing.

I still have my 90s Daiwa Spliced Tip rods. I also have examples of two (of the three I'm aware of) current Spliced Tip rods. The way I use them, there's no huge difference in the power of the blanks. The most significant differences are in the weight, reel seats and rings.

Dick Walker landed his record breaking 44lb carp on a 1.25lb test curve rod coupled with a Mitchell 300 loaded with 8lb line from a (then) snaggy Redmire.
 

trotter2

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Just a question I have never had any hollow tip rods that do truly replicate the action of a spliced tip rod .The rod I use is perhaps as near as I can imagine. Not saying it's important but the acolyte ultra is as near as I have personally found that represents that action which is accomplished by a step down spliced tip. Bit more mileage in this discussion perhaps?.
 

Rick123

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I still have some boxes of 90340 in 22 and 20.

We used to use 1.5 mainline for trotting and anything down to 8 oz. hooklenths on the Trent......that was not considered unusual.....I fish a lot heavier now but am not really sure why? I think the explosion of Chub on the Trent many years ago may have changed things a bit

Mark. I'm not taking you to task, just having a conversation and trying to learn (even at my age). If fine lines and tiny hooks was an aid to catching fish when the Trent was not as clear as it is today, why don't the anglers use them today would you think? Its so clear nowadays would not a revert back to 24s and fine lines work better?
 

Flathead

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Mark. I'm not taking you to task, just having a conversation and trying to learn (even at my age). If fine lines and tiny hooks was an aid to catching fish when the Trent was not as clear as it is today, why don't the anglers use them today would you think? Its so clear nowadays would not a revert back to 24s and fine lines work better?
That is an interesting question. I am not sure why there is or has been a trend towards larger hooks and heavier tackle.

Maybe it wasn’t necessary in the first place but some very well known anglers would use a 22 as standard and reckoned it got them more bites. I am sure that they would still be more effective.

Alas I do not live near the Trent any longer but still used size 20 as standard on the fens.

I suspect the demise of roach on the Trent a few years ago and the general demise of the open match scene may have contributed. I also think that anglers have got used to stronger tackle on commercials and in fishing in general. Nowadays many anglers use 3 or 4 pound line for trotting which used to be unheard of.

Maybe it no longer feels right to use small hooks but I am sure it would still work fine.

There is some interesting stuff in ‘ The rising Antenna’ by Jim Baxter which covers a lot of this....a lot of the big catches in the 70’s were taken on barbless 22 or even 24 hooks.....not sure I would feel happy using a 24!

I suppose it is worth trying and see if it makes much difference....but, remember, the Trent was very heavily fished in the 70’s so maybe conditions were very different
 

Rick123

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That is an interesting question. I am not sure why there is or has been a trend towards larger hooks and heavier tackle.

Maybe it wasn’t necessary in the first place but some very well known anglers would use a 22 as standard and reckoned it got them more bites. I am sure that they would still be more effective.

Alas I do not live near the Trent any longer but still used size 20 as standard on the fens.

I suspect the demise of roach on the Trent a few years ago and the general demise of the open match scene may have contributed. I also think that anglers have got used to stronger tackle on commercials and in fishing in general. Nowadays many anglers use 3 or 4 pound line for trotting which used to be unheard of.

Maybe it no longer feels right to use small hooks but I am sure it would still work fine.

There is some interesting stuff in ‘ The rising Antenna’ by Jim Baxter which covers a lot of this....a lot of the big catches in the 70’s were taken on barbless 22 or even 24 hooks.....not sure I would feel happy using a 24!

I suppose it is worth trying and see if it makes much difference....but, remember, the Trent was very heavily fished in the 70’s so maybe conditions were very different

But as I say buddy the clarity is amazing now days. I think the first part of your argument stands up better, it was not required? But then Marks remarks about his match gives him reason to suggest it was. It's interesting as I know Mark still uses such gossamer tackle at times? One International anger i speak to suggests it gives you better presentation, hence more bites, rather thn the fish requiring light tackle ie being line hook shy? He even thinks a 16s hook is better for winter roach than a small one, its the fineness of the hook, not the size.
 

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Flathead

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But as I say buddy the clarity is amazing now days. I think the first part of your argument stands up better, it was not required? But then Marks remarks about his match gives him reason to suggest it was. It's interesting as I know Mark still uses such gossamer tackle at times? One International anger i speak to suggests it gives you better presentation, hence more bites, rather thn the fish requiring light tackle ie being line hook shy? He even thinks a 16s hook is better for winter roach than a small one, its the fineness of the hook, not the size.
I think the thinking was that it was the weight of the hook that mattered as it affected how the maggot/ caster would sink. When we fished Tares a 14 hook was OK.

I first fished the Trent between Nottingham and Newark and the water clarity was poor...as it was when I moved to Derby but, when the power stations closed, the water cleared and weed appeared and is now quite abundant.....but the focus also moved to Chub rather than roach and Dace became much more common. Barbel also featured heavily in matches and those fish all seemed less fussy than roach.

I do not know how the river fishes nowadays because I have not fished it for nearly 15 years but I still think that fishing fine will pay dividends at time and small hooks will handle surprisingly large fish.....I have caught Barbel of up to 9 pounds on a single maggot and 20 hook....and that is how a lot of big Barbel weights in matches were caught....but then the river was full of small to medium sized Barbel, as was the Derwent....that has all changed as well.

Maybe it is best to start small and fine and increase hook size when the fish are feeding well.

Or it could simply be that we did not need to fish so light in the first place...I doubt if I could even se a 24 hook now never mind tying it!:oops:
 
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