Even if you do not build fishing rods all questions related to fishing rods are applicable. Yes, I am not familiar with all the different store bought models BUT others member might be. So don't hesitate to ask.
QUESTION............ I need a 6 1/2' conventional fluke rod to fish deep water, over 30', and a strong current and I usually use 8 oz sinkers. I use 20# braided line. What can be suggested?
ANSWER..................Start with your local B&T shop. Ask them for suggestions. They are fishermen and understand your needs.
I would take an 8 oz sinker attached to a couple feet of the line you use with you. You can even bring the reel you will be using on the new rod.
The person behind the counter says this is good for what you need and shows you the rod/rods and the reasons it will do the job. Now take the line with the sinker attached and loop it around the tiptop. Bounce the tip a few times and see if this feels good to you. You may have to do this on several rods before you find what you like. Make sure the rod is rated for 20# test line.
But what material, fiberglas, graphite or composite, should the rods be made from? Good question! Let me explain the basic difference of the materials.
FIBERGLAS rods are know for their flex, MODERATE, which means that 1/2 or more of the rod bends with a load on it, FISH. They are very durable, means they won't be easy to break. Work great with mono or braided line.
GRAPHITE rods are the strongest (lifting power) as they are very stiff for more than 1/2 the length of the rod. They are very lite in weight. The walls are thin and they have fast (top third of tip flexes) to extra fast (top quarter of tip flexes)actions. They are also the most sensitive to a bite.
For all these attributes a graphite rod is NOT braided line friendly. You can certainly use braided line on your graphite rod and catch lots of fish. However more graphite rods are broken than the other two types ! Why? Because braided line does not stretch and graphite rods do not flex. Owners get stuck on the bottom and they high stick the rod to pull it out. A graphite rod goes very quickly from flex to stiff and at this point it will break when over stressed. It may break in 2 places. Too many anglers that use braided line will use 50# or so line as it is easier to tie the knots and fish a tight drag.
If using braided line on a graphite rod use line the rod is rated for, fish with a lite drag set up on reel, use a mono shock leader and don't hi stick fighting the fish. It has been proven that you place more pressure on a fish letting your rod and reel do it's job while holding the rod between 3 and 5 o'clock position'
So what then is a better solution?
A COMPOSITE rod!!! What is that? It is a rod incorporating graphite and fiberglas material. It gives you the best options of both materials, is strong, durable, sensitive and user friendly with braided line.
Well I have digressed abit but I hope it will give some members an insight about selecting a rod.
Okay capt what do you suggest? Very easy, for me I would buy a Lamiglas BL 6620. It is a composite blank, 6 1/2', long rated 20# test line and will easily handle 6-8 oz sinkers. This is there Tri-Flax Series.
As a custom rod builder I build on their CGBT 78 1L blank which is the same blank they use for the BL 6620.
You can find simular rods manufactured by Seeker, Calstar, St Croix, Lamiglas, Diawa and many others including Cabelas and Bass Pro Shops. It is better to have the rod in your hands to play with to get the real feel.
I hope this post was of interest!