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Thread: Deciding on a New 5 or 6 weight

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009

    Default Deciding on a New 5 or 6 weight

    I am interested in getting a new 5 or 6 weight. I found this awesome article on 5 weights, and I was surprised by the winner. Which was the Z-axis by Sage, and 2nd was the G Loom GLX Streamdance. The G loom was a huge surprise since so many people bad mouth the GLX series. To be honest I was leaning towards a Helio, Scott G2, and Winston BIIx. Now I have to reconsider, I know ratings are just ratings, but this article has some actual validity in the testing. So now I am going to test The above 2 rods and the 3 others I mentioned with more of an open mind. I also noticed Cabellas had the Sage XP on a limted run, but I am not sure how they compare to the new technologies, also I can't support local shops if I buy from them which is quite important to me.

    The next thing I need to decide is to get a 5 or 6 weight. I have a 3 weight TFO Pro (good enough for streams),a G loom IM6 4 weight (its my baby), a 5 weight TFO Pro ( I hate its feel, but it is a true wind beater, 6 weight Bass Pro Piece of S%^&, and a Ross 8 weight (Only used on Salt Water). Obviously I need a 5 or 6 weight. I feel my 5 weight TFO Pro can feel the gap for a 6 weight since it is such a stiff rod. So do I go with a new 5 weight or a 6 weight?

    Article I read:
    "Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day." ~Unknown~

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Northern Kentucky


    Making recommendations on a fly rod is kind of like making recommendations on a wife, what's right for one guy may not be right for another.

    The rods you mentioned are quite different. I've never cast a Helio so I cannot make any knowledgable comment. I have cast the BIIx and the Scott G2 both in 5 wt. I bought the G2. I have a 9' 5wt. I picked it up used from a guy who wanted a faster rod. I like medium action rods.

    I have a G2 in 3wt and 5wt and a Winston BIIt in 4wt and a number of lower end rods in various weights.

    Personally, I'm not a big fan of fast action rods but a lot of guys swear by them so, like wives, rods are a very personal choice.

    I've never cast an XP so cannot make a comment there either.

    If you're in the neighborhood, I'd recommend stopping into LRO and talking with one of the folks in the shop. They'll rig up the rods and let you go out back to cast different ones until you find the one that is right for you.

    If you're not close enough to stop in give them a call, let them know what you like, how you cast, what you're going to do with the rod and see what they would recommend. They will not steer you wrong. I can say from personal experience, the folks at LRO want YOU to be happy with the purchase and will do everything in their power to ensure you get what is right for you.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Northern Kentucky


    Oh, one other thing, when you test cast a rod, don't worry so much about which one lets you cast the farthest. A lot of guys get seduced by the long range casting the faster rods can sometimes allow. The trick isn't so much how far you can cast but how accruately you can cast and even more importantly, how accurately you can cast over a wide range of distances. I usually pick a target about 15 or so feet out and then progressively go out to about 60 feet or so and see how close I can come to the target across a range of distances.

    That is what sold me on the BIIt. I hit everything I aimed at. After a couple seasons fishing the rod, I'm still impressed with how well it works close in and when I need to launch one out there, I still can with reasonable accuracy.

    If this is old hat info for you, I apologize.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008


    Yeah, you may also want to look at the rods that won the contest and the rods that did not do so well vs the rods they carry in the shop vs the rods they do not carry ;-) Seems they favor the sticks their shop has a dealership set up with. Big discussion on this shootout on another board where the results were really called out. Not saying that the Z is a bad rod, just saying some of the sticks that got bad marks were pretty darn nice rods. You can put any rod on a deflection wall but it doesn't really mean all that much. Check out the rod design article by Phil Monahan in the last issue of American Angler. Good insight in that piece that shoots holes all in that "rating" done by George's shop.

    And like they said, it's all very very subjective. Cast them all and make your own decision.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Fountain City

    Default Deciding on a New 5 or 6 weight

    While I am not the accomplished fly fisherman some of the other guys areI would still like to offer my opinion. Regarding the brand or model I suggest you let one of the people at LRO suit up several different outfits and try them without looking at brands to find the correct feel. I did that and purchased the z axis, I am happy with it.
    As far as which weight if you fish with a lot of streamers I would go with the 6 weight otherwise I choose the 5 wieght for its ability to accomodate a large variety of flies. Most of all enjoy the experience of the purchase.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009

    Default who knows?

    well just my 2cents, I just bought a Winston LT-5 piece in a 5wt. I test cast the ZXL, Zaxis, BIIt, and VT2. I just loved the feel of the winston and its medium/fast action. IN my opinion it kind of depends on what you want to do most (ie cast streamers or land big fish). If you want to cast big flies get the 6, if your just looking to land some bigger fish I have landed some monsters on my 5 and it was great. If you want a supper fast action get the Zaxis, it is an absolute rocket. BIIt is said to be fast but its more like a sage medium/fast, however it is like butter in your hand. I dont know if that is any help but thats what I know....Winston is awesome


    Remember......I'm and idiot

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Crossville, TN


    I would definitely go to a fly shop like LRO and cast the Winston BIIX, Sage Z-Axis, and Orvis Helios, all in a 9 foot 5 weight. One will probably just feel right to you... Choosing a rod is definitely personal and is based on your casting stroke. Personally I would lean towards the Helios...
    "Then He said to them, 'Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.'" Matthew 4:19

    Guided Fly Fishing with David Knapp
    The Trout Zone Blog
    contact: TroutZoneAnglers at gmail dot com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007


    Tippet, Sounds like this new rod is going to be your bread and butter rod. It is the one you are fishing with 80% of the time. I would make it the rod you'll spend some money on, because you will use it so much. Get what you really want. I'm like you I've got an 8wt I rarely use. Casting flagpoles around is too much like work, but I'm willing if big fish a are a possibility. Most of us don't have the luxury of fishing salt, or for salmon with any regularity. I like a 5wt because it can cover all the reasonable bases.

    Sure Knots, Monk

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