Fiberglass Fly Rods
Fiberglass fly rods are again becoming popular. Maybe they always were and I just missed that boat. My first trout rod was a great fiberglass rod made by Ferdinand Claudio. As I recall it was a model 856. From what I can tell, this rod would be worth a lot more today than what I paid for it back in 1977.
From what I understand from several hours of research and a long discussion with a "glass gut" friend of mine, is that the glass rods of today are considerably different from the fiberglass rods of the 70's. The tapers are more refined and materials are better. Many fly fishers that really use these glass rods will tell you that there are several advantages of glass over the fast action graphite rods of today. They list the following:
1. Flexibility - A fiberglass rod's greater flexibility is a supplements the drag when playing a strong fish - it can keep that big fish from snapping your light 6-7x tippet.
2. Presentation - Many say a fiberglass rods makes it easier to make a delicate presentation of the fly.
3. Easier to cast - Because a glass rod has a slower action than graphite and flexes deeper into the rod, it is easier to load the rod and it requires less energy to make the cast. Many say that glass rods are a better rod for beginners because it is easier to develop the timing needed to make a proper cast.
4. Fighting a fish - Because a glass rod bends deeper into the butt section, it is better for fighting larger stronger fish...glass is a better shock absorber.
Links to information on fiberglass fly rods:
The Fiberglass Flyrodders - a great resource on glass rods and a great section on older fly reels.
New Fiberglass Rods Revolution (Flyfisherman.com) - a good general discussion about glass rods
The Fiberglass Manifesto (this appears to be the new home for the Fiberglass Flyrodders but the original site is still up and seems to have information that does not appear on the new site). There is a very complete listing of fiberglass fly rod makers.