Here's a question from the January/February 1999 issue of RodMaker magazine:
"I am building a 12/13 weight G.Loomis 3-piece fly rod. Should I put a fore grip
on this rod? If so, how would you locate it? Bill . . .via E-mail.
Most fly rods are pretty long when compared to casting or spinning rods and
offer the fish a pretty long lever for working against the angler. The natural
inclination for most people battling a big fish with a fly rod is to reach and
grasp farther up the rod, thereby shifting the fulcrum point and providing better
leverage for the fisherman. But there's a problem with doing this. You see, most
of the pulling or lifting power in a rod is in the lower butt area. When you reach
above this point you are denying yourself the opportunity of using the strongest
part of the rod. You are also putting the greatest amount of stress on an area
of the rod which wasn't designed to handle it.
I'm not going to tell you that you shouldn't put a fore grip on your rod, since
many others do and manage to do fine with it, but I'm going to suggest what
I think is a better set-up. First, if your goal is to achieve better leverage and
lifting power against big fish, try using a shorter blank, say an 8-footer instead
of a 9. Now extend the standard grip from the usual 7.5 inches out to about
11 or 12-inches. This will allow you to reach a bit farther up the rod without
wasting that portion where the real power is located, and the slightly shorter
blank will help put some of the leverage back in your favor. ~ Tom Kirkman
If you have any tips or techniques, send them
along! Help out your fellow rodmakers!
~ Publisher, FAOL