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ClownColor

High end rods

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It wasen't actually to long ago that I hit a time in my life, like so many do, that you find yourself buying more "quality" products then quantity. I've had friends laugh when they realized how much I've spent on my ice fishing rods (custom) and even just buying rain gear seems to almost break the bank. But with high dollars, "typically" you get a product that will last, and is well worth it. Prior to this, I was a complete bargin shopper that would buy the cheap nock off and would usually pay for it later...though not to say good buys are not to be had (pfluger president, keystone light, benelli nova, remington 870 to name a few).

Ok-after all that, I've grown to love my Cabelas Mag touch rods. At $100, I'd consider them on the low side of "high end" but I can't get around to a rod feeling much better. Who's fished with these rods and has also fished st.crois and g-loomis....and other high end rods and felt a big difference?

For fishing applications, I'm 90% lindy rigg'in and 10% jigging with theses rods.

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The difference between a $30 rod and a $100 rod is huge. The difference between a $100 rod and a $300 rod is not all that much. Typically minor things that get really specific to techniques.

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2 weeks ago I bought my first St. Croix after using Berkley products for 40 years. After using it one weekend, I ordered 2 more as I couldn't resist the price.. Don't get me wrong, I really liked the berkley series one rods, but since they have chosen to discontinue them, I'm moving on..

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no really, Keystone Light?

LOL...who doesn't like the cheap mans coors light? grin okay,that was a joke...I wouldn't dream of drinking this over my frost brewed rookies!

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As far as a rigging rod or a jigging rod I couldn't disagree more. When I first started out I fished with St. Croix premiere series, and was happy with them because I didn't know any different. Now I am running GLoomis GLX rods for rigging and St Croix legend Xtreme for my jigging rods. The feel is so much better I can not put it to words. The weight is also much lighter. That being said I don't know what $100 rods you have been using, or what $300 rods you are comparing them to, but in my experience there is a big difference.

The difference between a $30 rod and a $100 rod is huge. The difference between a $100 rod and a $300 rod is not all that much. Typically minor things that get really specific to techniques.

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...though not to say good buys are not to be had (pfluger president, keystone light, benelli nova, remington 870 to name a few).

My God - it's like we were separated at birth. grin I'm a big fan of all of those too. I don't care what they say I love a cold case of stones

As far as the rods check out limit creek. I picked one up a few years back and I love it. I think they run in the $90-$110 range and are just as good as many $200 rods IMO. Plus they are a local co and advertise on this site too.

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ClownColor,

With 100$ Cabela rods you currently have a perfectly serviceable tool (though no rod is as sensitive as your fingertips).

However, given your stated conditions of Lindy rigging and a desire to try the finer things in life, you could certainly upgrade. I wouldn't go nuts here, though. Try one new rod in the 150/175$ range and see if it makes a noticeable difference. In this range you typically see significantly lighter rods with greater strength-to-weight rations. Lighter rods reduce fatigue and are (theoretically) more sensitive to the subtle weight increases that often indicate finesse fishing strikes. They also have the strength needed to boat fish in timely fashion.

Rods are always on sale somewhere, so you never have to pay full retail. Personally, I'm a huge Plueger guy, but no way am I drinking cheap beer--life's too short.

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I own a St. Croix Legend Tournament Walleye Rod and also have a custom built Thorne Brothers Predator Walleye rod and I can honestly say that I used those rods for 95% of my fishing last year. Personally, I can tell the difference in a rod that is $100 versus $200-$300. They are usually a lot lighter and they are usually much more sensitive.

With that being said, my favorite rod that I own for the PERFECT VALUE would definitely the Shimano Compre from about 5 years back. The rod was around $100 and was my go to rod for panfish, walleyes, and bass, that is until I purchased my St.Croix Legend Tournament.

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The main thing... besides performance... that made me jump to the next tier of gear... especially rods... is warranties that will cover your rod for a lifetime of use... why buy 4-5 rods that cost you $40 each as the break every other year... when you can buy 1 rod for $100-200 and it'll be covered by a lifetime warranty... with little to no cost for replacement

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I too was in your position and made the jump years ago. Anyone that can't tell the difference in a $100 vs. $300+ rod either hasn't used one or is numb from the wrist down. I have the premier rods from most manufactures Shimano, G.Loomis, Fenwick, St.Croix etc. I'm a jig guy. I find the St. Croix tournment legend in my hand more than any other. For rigging, the Loomis GLX is my favorite. They all can be interchangable. It's a fishing rod for goodness sake. Once you make that leap, you will see where the specialty rods make a difference and you can find your own favorite.

Many years ago I asked a friend that owned a sporting goods store "What's the big difference between these rods?" He told me if you spend that kind of cash you will have it for life (warranty). Through the years I have returned many broken rods. Every company has different policies but when it's all over, I have a new rod at little or no expence to me.

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Quality and affordability are very subjective terms. However, there is a reasonable price point at which a rod offers every tangible, necessary feature.

For argument's sake, if we conducted a blindfold test, so we couldn't see graphics or construction features, and asked ourselves to identify 150$, 200$, 250$, 300$, and 350$ rods strictly by feel, our accuracy would be no better than random.

We buy much of our fishing equipment with the same subjective rationale we use to buy golf clubs, clothes, and tv's.

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It's all relative to how much time you spend on the water and how much money you have to wizz away. If you are a guy who goes out once and a while it would be a waste. You don't need the best tools in the world for random home remodeling but you do if you are a professional builder, you don't need $250 red wing work boots to land scape on day a year and so on. And like I said- some guys don't need the best because they are a pro guide or tourney angler- they just have way too much money to burn (and I'm jealous). :-) Yes, noticable difference's at every level. Right in the middle of the pack seems to be pretty nice for me.

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Weight and warranty are the most obvious differences when you get up to the high-end rods. Light weight but much strength, and longer, more comprehensive warranties mean you really do make an investment with a $300 Loomis or something.

Really good fisherman can catch fish on low-end stuff just as good as they do on high-end stuff...it's the "decent" fisherman who notice the big difference. Just having a $300 Loomis doesn't mean you're going to catch more fish just like that! You need to learn how to use it...

But bottom line is a guy can never have too many fishing rods or duckboats. There, I'm out of the closet!

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I have used a variety over the years, but in my opinion, if you want to have a quality rod for YOUR KIND OF FISHING, the best thing you can do is visit (or call) Thorne Bros. You can pick out exactly what you want for exactly what you do and they will teach you why this or why that. That way you only spend for the options you need. They are the experts, so use them and educate yourself!

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Most likely spoken by somebody who has economically challenged equipment. grin

Quality and affordability are very subjective terms. However, there is a reasonable price point at which a rod offers every tangible, necessary feature.

For argument's sake, if we conducted a blindfold test, so we couldn't see graphics or construction features, and asked ourselves to identify 150$, 200$, 250$, 300$, and 350$ rods strictly by feel, our accuracy would be no better than random.

We buy much of our fishing equipment with the same subjective rationale we use to buy golf clubs, clothes, and tv's.

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I have two lindy rig rods, a St. Croix Legend Tournament and a G. Loomis HSR9000. Both teamed up with Shimano Symetre reels. I do let others use them in my boat and nobody has ever said they are overpriced after using them.

There is a difference but it's just like a fine wine or wiskey, not everyone is going to notice a big difference, but to some it will be huge.

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It's all relative to how much time you spend on the water and how much money you have to wizz away. If you are a guy who goes out once and a while it would be a waste. You don't need the best tools in the world for random home remodeling but you do if you are a professional builder, you don't need $250 red wing work boots to land scape on day a year and so on. And like I said- some guys don't need the best because they are a pro guide or tourney angler- they just have way too much money to burn (and I'm jealous). :-) Yes, noticable difference's at every level. Right in the middle of the pack seems to be pretty nice for me.

x2. But don't forget the high quality reel too. Hate to buy a $200 rod and team it with an inexpensive, much too heavy reel that screws up everything.

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That's why i brought up the shimano stella. $750.00 at Cabela's last fall. I wondered how many people would buy a reel that expensive?

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Save your money on the reel for freshwater fishing anyway - walleyes and such. All a reel does is hold your line - I have never worried about the drag anyway as I backreel when I hook a fish that needs to run. Never had a problem. I have and continue to buy Shimano 1000 or 2000 series reels at the low end - must have about a dozen on my rods right now. I know how they work, can change parts if needed, spools all interchange, and they cost less than $30. I have made my own rods for about 30 years, and have all the high-end stuff I need - Fenwick, Loomis, St Croix, Powell, Sage - you name it.

Reels are way over rated - save money on a reel and put it into your rod.

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I was thinking about this thread today and here is my second 2 cents on this.

High end stuff really won't put any more fish in the boat when the fish are aggressive and attacking the bait. The good stuff really shines when the bite is tough or super light and every bite counts. The better rod/reel combos will shave a few ozs of weight and that may not sound like much, but after a day of tough fishing that may be the difference between a trophy and a skunk.

FWIW, walleye pros do not have to much money and fish with the best stuff on the market. You would be surprised how many guys fish with junk.

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I am also not sure what I think about the costs/benefits of spending $$ on the super-nice rods. I've fished with them very rarely, and I suppose I could tell a difference, but when push comes to shove, I've never pulled the trigger on a super-expensive rod (or reel, or crankbait, or boat, for that matter). Ultimately, I think mnfishinguy is right--there are times when the nice stuff will make a difference. But they're few and far between (the fish are usually really active under my boat, doncha know whistle), but for me, it's just not worth the extra money. When faced with this decision, I'll end up spending the same amount of money on two or three rods instead of one really expensive one. Just my .02.

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