Winston GVX vs Sage VXP

dutchy1978

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Well i thought it would be a good idea to do a mini shootout between two 8,6 foot three weights. We already know both companies make some good fly rods so lets see who makes the best mid priced (yeah right:rolleyes:) rod.. I can't say anything about the factory finishing and components on the rods because i assembled the rods myself.

I did not test both rods with the same line because in my (strange) world i think it's all about a good marriage between fly line and fly rod. These are my thoughts about these rods and not necessarily right, also there will be huge differences in the two line ups from both companies. So to make matters even more complicated the five weights could be completely different.

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Winston GVX,

This rod should just have been called boron IIx without boron so if you liked the BIIx you wil certainly like this one. The GVX has a soft tip compared to the butt section which makes it very strange when you wobble it arround without a fly line through the rings. It also makes it feel extremely light there is hardly any swing weight with this one. A bit of a novelty for Winston is the lack of feel or soul this rod has, i think thats a shame because that is what i always loved with Winstons. At first i was a bit scared to get some nasty waves in my fly line whilst casting, but the rod looses that wobbly sloppy tip feeling when there is a line on. I've tried about 8 lines on this one, it is very line picky but i found a good match with the SA GPX (nymphs) and Wulff triangle taper (allround). Because the rods soft tip it will load with a couple of feet out, yet if timed correctly the butt section is very powerfull and will produce good casts at a reasonable distance. With unweighted or light flies it is very easy to throw nice thight loops, you do have to time this rod well and not put to much power in your cast otherwise it all collapses. I hated the BIIx in this configuration because the tip was too soft compared to the butt and allthough this is not going to be my favorite rod it seems more balanced then the BIIx. I think Winston made a pretty good stick and if you are fishing smaller streams and make casts up to 40/50 feet it does the job quite nicely, but i think in this price bracket there are probably better rods.

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The VXP,

Now here is a winner, i like this one a lot. The first noticable difference between the GVX is the blank, it is a lot slimmer. Also it casted well with all 8 lines i tested on the GVX. I do think it is best suited with a longer belly line, i've found the guideline highwater to be the best match. A lot of people say it is quite similar to the XP, i can't comment (yet) about the heavier rods but the three weight is not at all like my three weight XP. It is not as powerfull and a lot smoother compared to the XP. You can build up your cast seemless between being delicate and reaching down in the butt section where there is hidden power to be found . The tip is stiffer which makes it more heavy then the GVX, it also has a bit more swing weight, but we are talking three weight swing weight, which is hardly an issue. The only thing the GVX does better is casting at really short range the VXP feels a bit stiff with a couple of feet out. I think Sage is spot on with this one and made a superb light weight trout (or in my case roach) rod.

Again these are my thoughts on these rods, but i tried to give them a honest test. But this time the Sage wins hands down..

Jerry (i'm such a tart)

P.S.
Sorry for the lousy pictures they had to be made with my underwater camara, which well, SUCKS
 
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Mrtrout

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Great report Jerry, thanks, and as always rods to die for.
One of these days I will visit you, and watch you build one, I would love to see that.
Yes you are a tart, so what. ;)
S.
 

dutchy1978

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Thanks Steven you are very kind, and more then welcome to visit me in my flat little country. Don't know if it is very spectacular to see some one buried in cork dust and epoxy though. Probably it would be better if i came and visit you and see and fish your beloved Eden;). And try some of those magical leaders everybody talks about :D.

Jerry
 

royvs

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May 23, 2006
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Thanks for that.

I don't like Winstons, much as I would like to, but I am flirting with the VXP.

I have a #5 9ft. XP and would like to try a VXP but don't want to find that I like it more than the XP!!! In fact I have several XPs and there's not one I don't like, could be an expensive "trial" :eek:
 

dutchy1978

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Roy, i think the VXP would be a cracker in a five, as a matter of fact i'm also flirting with the idea to assemble the vife and four:rolleyes:.
If the five is anything like this three weight i think it might give the XP a run for it's money. On the other hand i've owned the 9ft #5 XP and loved it to bits so i'm not sure because the three VXP is nothing like the three XP. It is an expensive trial indeed, the problem for me is that on most my builds i pick the blanks blind and from what i can read about them.. Thats why i hate crappie reviews that don't give an honest opinion about the rods, also a lot of times when people spend 500+ on a rod it is hard for them to say it is not as good as they would have liked..

Jerry
 

rhutchinson19

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Jul 10, 2009
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Edinburgh
Cheers Jerry, great review. Managed to get a cast with the 9ft 5wt and 10ft 7wt VXP last week. The 5wt was superb, 7wt wasn't to my taste.
 

dutchy1978

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Hi Ryan, the seven was quite a soft slower rod i guess?? Tell me some more about the five, how did it feel and what line did you use on it??

Jerry
 

rhutchinson19

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Hi Ryan, the seven was quite a soft slower rod i guess?? Tell me some more about the five, how did it feel and what line did you use on it??

Jerry

Jerry, sorry for the late reply. I've been stuck for the last few days due to snow. The 7 was too slow for me, yeh. I was getting at least an extra 5m with the hydros.

I used a snowbee xs on the 5wt. The tip felt quite fast and there was plenty of power. Felt much crisper at distance than the 7. Would love to give the rio gold a go on it. May go for a custom built one myself for xmas. That or a ZXL or Guideline Fario....decisions decisions....
 

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