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Fly Rods : The move to lighter.

A fishing rod is primarily a tool to absorb the shock of fighting a fish. It's secondary purpose is to help cast our lure further. During the age of silk fly lines, we had cane fly rods, bamboo fly rods, fiberglass fly rods and then we had graphite and carbon rods. Silk fly lines are thinner than pvc fly lines, so the rings on older rods were smaller. Also, they bent more, they were softer.

The problem with silk lines is that are the density of intermediate fly lines. Untreated, they sink at approx 1.2 inches per second. So, to make a silk fly line float you need to dry it first, then apply a line dressing. That creates a hydrophobic coating and makes the line swim, not float. Silk lines are also a drab colour.

When pvc fly lines came along they solved all that. We could have any colour we wanted, we didn't have to dry them and they floated without line dressing. However, they are thicker due to the micro balloons of air in the coating. They literally contain air. A thicker fly line needs a stronger stiffer fly blank to cast it. The thicker line has more friction in the guides and has more air resistance.

There was a market desire for easy casting, far flying, brightly coloured, high floating fly lines. We needed stronger stiffer carbon to cast them. That hamster wheel lasted for nearly 3 decades. Sunray have recognised that and stopped that dysfunctional relationship. A carbon fly blank needn't feel like a broomstick.

We use low friction guides and, in combination with our low diameter fly lines, we can cast distances un achievable with heavy, thick fly lines previously. Also, we don't need the stiff carbon to cast the lines, so a Sunray blank is typically softer, bending progressively into the butt.

Softer rods and thinner lines catch more fish.

Because our blanks bend more, we can use lighter tippets and thinner fly lines, which means we spook less, hook more and land more fish. We have over 5000 customers and enough proof now to stand by this theory and it is our data led philosophy. Softer rods and thinner lines catch more fish.

A fiberglass fly rod is inherently softer but developments in glassfibre mean that we can make fast action glass rods. Perfect for small stream work and delicate presentation. Fiberglass evokes the nostalgia of past, they are fun to cast and fun to play fish on, simply due to the fact they bend more. We use our thumb on top of the handle to push through the stroke when casting softer blanks to keep the tip travelling flat, creating tight loops

Our lines load the rod easier and fly without the friction associated with thicker lines, meaning the rod can bend more easily. You need less effort to cast a Sunray blank. Casting a fly whether it's spey casting or overhead casting is easy, the casting techniques required are less technical. Our double hand rods also bend more. A spey fly rod or a scandi rod uses the bottom handle to generate the power. It's important that application of power travels in a progressive way through to the tip of the fly rod.

Balanced Taper

Our tapers use a philosophy we call 'balanced taper.' If there are any uneven changes in how the blank bends, the rod will break under stress around those stress points. Our blanks are tested to break just above the handle, where the energy meets it's most drastic stress point. That means the energy in our rods flows in an even way through from the tip down to the butt. 

A beginner can use a Sunray outfit more easily and get better distance within a shorter learning curve. The best fly rod for a beginner is usually 9 foot. A 5 weight is the all round tool for people wanting to learn fly fishing. People want to know how to cast a fly rod easily, using thick fly lines and stiff blanks makes that process harder. There have been developments in single handed fly fish rods, double hand fly fish rods, saltwater fly rods, Spey rods and switch rods in the last 10 years. Those developments make buying a fly rod harder in some respects, due to the amount of choice.

The common denominator to look for in choosing the right fly rod is whether it has a balanced action. Some rods bend mostly at the tip and then the rest of the rod is stiff. Some rods wobble at the tip and bend too easily through to the butt. A Sunray rod bends progressively, each section passing the load smoothly from tip to butt. 

Some rods play the fish using only the top third of the blank, leaving the other 2 thirds dormant. The rod should be playing the fish using all of its blank, spreading the load evenly. Our outfits mean you can use lighter rods, thinner lines, lighter tippets and smaller flies. The result is you simply catch more fish. That is our philosophy which is now proof, tested by over 5000 customers around the world since 2014.