Choose Customized Fishing Rods For Comfortable, Effortless Fishing

With so many excellent factory-built fishing rods available from a number of manufacturers, why would anyone feel the need to create or commission a custom-built rod for themselves? While many high-end rod companies produce off-the-shelf rods that can meet and even exceed your expectations on the water, customized fishing rods can offer something more. Custom rods can be designed to best fit your stature to make for comfortable, effortless casting. They can employ some of the latest rod-building components or set-ups that might not be available on factory-built rods, and they can be tailored specifically to your fishing techniques and style.

Rod building can be an intimidating hobby to get into, especially when you see the quality of the work that many experienced builders can produce. Poke around online and you’ll see pictures of beautiful, artistic fishing rods that look like they could be hung in a museum. Creating a work of art is nice, but that isn’t what this article is about. This article is about designing a great rod, custom fit to you and your fishing.

Customized Rods are great for serious anglers
Custom-built rods can be made to mesh perfectly with your stature, style and fishing preferences.

You don’t have to be a rod builder to design a great custom rod; you can bring your ideas to a rod-building professional and they can create the rod that you are looking for. Rod building consists of designing a rod by selecting the components and the layout, and then assembling and wrapping the rod. The artwork is what people pay attention to when looking at the rod, but the rod design is what makes the rod a good tool.

Most professional builders are happy to build rods that customers have designed and they can provide the artwork where your skills are lacking. If you do go to a custom fishing rod builder, pick an experienced one and get their feedback on your design. If they caution you about components or design elements, they may be steering you away from a mistake that they made in the past.

The first thing you have to recognize is that there is no universal definition of the perfect fishing rod – two anglers fishing the same spot with the same lures may have very different ideas of what makes a rod good. Rod preference is very subjective, and relying on others too much for advice can be a major pitfall – they will steer you toward rods and components that they like. You are better off getting input from a variety of sources and learning about the pros and cons of all of the different components. Checking out the blanks and components at a local shop or one of the winter sportsman’s shows is a great way to get an idea of what is out there. Pick up and flex some factory-built rods also to provide inspiration for your rod design.

Custom rods allow anglers to choose every component, right down to the guides
Spiral wrapped guide layouts are not available on many factory-made rods, but are a popular option on custom built conventional rods.

Before conceiving your rod, however, you must first consider what fishing you hope to do with it. The more specific the “mission” of your rod, the better tuned your custom rod will be. Are you looking for a rod that is as light in weight as possible? Are you looking for a more comfortable, durable or artistic grip? Are you looking for a specific action for a particular kind of fishing? Most of us have a narrow array of lures or baits that we use most frequently and we know what we plan on using each trip. You can build a rod that is ideal for presenting your favorite baits. Also consider how much weight you will be casting, what size line you will be using, what reel you’ll be using, and where you will be fishing the rod. Considering these factors should help you envision the rod you hope to build.

Your fishing environment will guide your choice in blank, components, and build. Rock-hopping surfcasters who have fallen and broken a few rods shouldn’t be fishing a top-of-the-line graphite blank with delicate guides, but boat anglers may be able to get away with more delicate components. Saltwater rods take considerably more abuse than most freshwater rods, due to the harshness of the ocean environment. Your build also needs to take into account how rough you are with your tackle – remember, you want to produce the best rod for you to fish with.