New 5-Weight recommendations

mattbray85

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Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
10
Hello all.

I've been covetting a rod upgrade for a wee while.

I'm an Improving angler/caster (. Started out on an Orvis Encounter (9' 5#) outfit and have been fishing a Clearwater (10' 5#) for a while.

I'm ready to throw (a bit) more money at a rod, and hope to generate more feel, finesse and greater satisfaction as a result.

I fish mostly small still waters. And most of those are 'single fly' only venues, where I'll fish everything from dries, buzzers, nymphs up to the standard array of stillwater lures/attractors.


Looking for a mid range rod up to about £400 (ish). Sticking to 5-weight to match a growing collection of lines.

I've checked out reviews for Hardy Shadow/Demon, Guideline LPXe, Greys GR80, and Orvis Recon.

I'd like to get somewhere to try out a few, but clearly thats not on the cards right now. So I'm interested to hear opinions on those rods and whatever other 5-weights people are using for small stillwater fishing.

Cheers,

Matt
 

sage5

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Joined
Apr 28, 2010
Messages
548
Location
west coast of scotland
Hello all.

I've been covetting a rod upgrade for a wee while.

I'm an Improving angler/caster (. Started out on an Orvis Encounter (9' 5#) outfit and have been fishing a Clearwater (10' 5#) for a while.

I'm ready to throw (a bit) more money at a rod, and hope to generate more feel, finesse and greater satisfaction as a result.

I fish mostly small still waters. And most of those are 'single fly' only venues, where I'll fish everything from dries, buzzers, nymphs up to the standard array of stillwater lures/attractors.


Looking for a mid range rod up to about £400 (ish). Sticking to 5-weight to match a growing collection of lines.

I've checked out reviews for Hardy Shadow/Demon, Guideline LPXe, Greys GR80, and Orvis Recon.

I'd like to get somewhere to try out a few, but clearly thats not on the cards right now. So I'm interested to hear opinions on those rods and whatever other 5-weights people are using for small stillwater fishing.

Cheers,

Matt
I don' mean to be rude, but, if you have not been fishing long, I would keep what you have.
Clearwaters are pretty decent rods for the Money
 

mattbray85

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Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
10
I don' mean to be rude, but, if you have not been fishing long, I would keep what you have.
Clearwaters are pretty decent rods for the Money
Ha. That's fair enough. Do you know my wife?

I know what you mean though, and I don't pretend there's not an element of 'keeping up with the joneses' having joined a club and been fishing in friendly comps for the first time last season.
 

iainmortimer

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Apr 5, 2014
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3,310
Location
West Sussex
I have a Greys GR80 9’ #5 and it is an excellent rod being light in the hand bur with plenty of power to control bigger fish. I use it as my first choice rod on small stillwaters and medium rivers like the lower Test and Itchen, Monnow and Usk. It is also long enough to also handle boat fishing well and has served me proud on big reservoirs like Chew. It handles dry fly and nymph work very well but at #5 I’m not sure it would be great for lure stripping - for that I would want a #7 but as I don’t enjoy stripping lures it’s not a problem!

That would be my choice because unless you get up into the £700+ class of rods I doubt you will get more rod for the money.

This is it in full fighting curve for a decent brownie...
07AE044E-D9D1-4D78-9EAB-F7DBFC5F7E68.jpeg


8C0A0D7D-5FAF-4F8E-BE97-F76EBFCD8AFE.jpeg
 
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Tangled

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Dec 28, 2015
Messages
6,044
You'll get endless recommendations and they'll all be good. But you've got a good rod now, another would just be different, not necessarily a better casting tool for you.

The pressure for a retail solution is really high, and we all want nice new shiny things. But the real solution is to forget your gear and get lessons and practice.

That's the real, proper answer, the one that will actually make a real difference to your casting. But we don't do it do we? :) The credit card solution is quick and easy.

I suggest two possible ways forward.

1. Throw your sensible budget away and recognise that what you are doing is simply going up a notch in your mind which will always leave you wondering about whether there's a better rod. Instead, buy a top-end rod, I suspect it doesn't matter which, so long as it's premium brand that isn't a specialist rod. So now you've got no excuse and you might do something about your casting technique.

2. Have a rod built for you. This has the added benefit of being inside your current budget. There are a number of UK builders in the Understanding Rods thread. One benefit should be that you shouldn't need another new rod for a while - this one has your name on it. The big issue here is, do you know enough about what you actually want to be able to ask for it? If you don't it's unlikely that you'll be satisfied with any rod.

Both roads get you nice rods but both roads probably also lead you back to lessons and practice :)

Let me know if it works and I'll do the same :cool:
 

mattbray85

Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
10
You'll get endless recommendations and they'll all be good. But you've got a good rod now, another would just be different, not necessarily a better casting tool for you.

The pressure for a retail solution is really high, and we all want nice new shiny things. But the real solution is to forget your gear and get lessons and practice.

That's the real, proper answer, the one that will actually make a real difference to your casting. But we don't do it do we? :) The credit card solution is quick and easy.

I suggest two possible ways forward.

1. Throw your sensible budget away and recognise that what you are doing is simply going up a notch in your mind which will always leave you wondering about whether there's a better rod. Instead, buy a top-end rod, I suspect it doesn't matter which, so long as it's premium brand that isn't a specialist rod. So now you've got no excuse and you might do something about your casting technique.

2. Have a rod built for you. This has the added benefit of being inside your current budget. There are a number of UK builders in the Understanding Rods thread. One benefit should be that you shouldn't need another new rod for a while - this one has your name on it. The big issue here is, do you know enough about what you actually want to be able to ask for it? If you don't it's unlikely that you'll be satisfied with any rod.

Both roads get you nice rods but both roads probably also lead you back to lessons and practice :)

Let me know if it works and I'll do the same :cool:

Too true mate - too true.

I would say though that I'm not trying to buy my way to getting better.

I've done lessons, I practice, I fish in a friendly league/club and I'm really enjoying fishing. I just fancied upgrading my line pointing device!

I may actually be better served by getting a second, shorter Clearwater. I sometimes find the 10' option too long for stalking around the tighter spots on some small waters.

Echoing some of your sentiment though. You only have to spend 10 minutes flicking through magazines and Fly Fishing social media to see that there is a whole host of technology and 'performance' on the market beyond the £200-300 entry level point. Is it all just retail nonsense? Who's it for, if pros get it all for free and the consensus seems to be that you have to fish for years doing your journeymans time to achieve 'jedi' level casting on cheaper rods to justify buying it?

I'm not daft. I know it's all marketing pressure and that tackle companies are profit seeking organisations. And I know I've broken off into a broader debate beyond what I should spend my lockdown savings on ;) 😉

I'll let you know how it goes...!!
 

roger h 10

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Nov 30, 2012
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South East Kent
Mind you I have a10FT 5WT Vision Onki on order but I have been fishing for years.

Hope you get on OK what ever you decide
I would be very interested to know what you think of the Onki as I have several in various lengths and weights but haven't been able to get any feedback on the 10'0" #5.
 

roger h 10

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Wherabouts in the country do you live Matt? I have several 9' # 5's that you would be welcome to try once we're allowed to.
 

running bear

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Oct 23, 2009
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Location
North County Dublin
I see you've listed a Hardy shadow, in my very humble opinion, you'll be disappointed if moving from a Clearwater to a shadow. Clearwaters are good all rounders, the shadow is more suitable to dries from my experience, a nice sensitive tip but no guts behind it. Ill offend many I'm sure, but I find them insipid.

The demon sintrix on the other hand is very much a step up, it's 95% Zephrus without the special tip feel. If you like the clearwater, the demon is a similar beast, but with more beast. 400 quid would get you a used Zephrus btw.

As IM posted the gr80 series are great, I always found the top of the range greys rods to be better than the entry level hardy (shadow)..no doubt someone will have me shot.

To add, you're not far from scott flex money, another lovely all rounder in a 9' 5wt.
 
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Gdog

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Apr 13, 2009
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Dublin
Have a look at the Yellowstone Angler 2020 5 weight shootout for 9 foot rods. If you want to burn a hole in your pocket, this will give you plenty of options.


The same company owns Fenwick and Greys, the Aetos is the discontinued GR50. The Fenwick Fenlite Streamflex is the same as the GR80 Streamflex. I own the older model XF2 Streamflex, it is a lovely rod and better than most other 5 weights.
 

mattbray85

Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
10
I see you've listed a Hardy shadow, in my very humble opinion, you'll be disappointed if moving from a Clearwater to a shadow. Clearwaters are good all rounders, the shadow is more suitable to dries from my experience, a nice sensitive tip but no guts behind it. Ill offend many I'm sure, but I find them insipid.

The demon sintrix on the other hand is very much a step up, it's 95% Zephrus without the special tip feel. If you like the clearwater, the demon is a similar beast, but with more beast. 400 quid would get you a used Zephrus btw.

As IM posted the gr80 series are great, I always found the top of the range greys rods to be better than the entry level hardy (shadow)..no doubt someone will have me shot.

To add, you're not far from scott flex money, another lovely all rounder in a 9' 5wt.

That is really helpful thanks.
 

mattbray85

Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
10
Have a look at the Yellowstone Angler 2020 5 weight shootout for 9 foot rods. If you want to burn a hole in your pocket, this will give you plenty of options.


The same company owns Fenwick and Greys, the Aetos is the discontinued GR50. The Fenwick Fenlite Streamflex is the same as the GR80 Streamflex. I own the older model XF2 Streamflex, it is a lovely rod and better than most other 5 weights.
I'd come across that, but hadn't looked into or been aware of those connections with 'UK' market rods. Thanks for that insight.
 

easker1

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Nov 10, 2010
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Highlands
I have a TFO Lefty Kreh TCRX, it's my got to rod one of the nicest rods I have owned, this is home built but you can buy them complete, ( But them I'm a Tight Git) easker1
 

rusty

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Jun 18, 2006
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1,470
Location
Warwickshire
I note you have two good #5 rods, 9ft and 10ft, plus numerous #5 lines. You want to upgrade to something a bit more refined but still a #5.
To be honest, I think you ought to take this opportunity to diversify to another line weight if you want to further your fishing capabilities.
I know #5 tackle has a wide range of applications but it will not do everything and handle all conditions.
Sorry if I have rocked your boat.
Rusty
 
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