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Have rods reached a plateau in technology for quite some time?

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Rods have come a long way. However, besides technology that could make rods a little stiffer, better action, more durable, sensitive, or other will there be any drastic improvements in technology in the future? Perhaps nanotechnology could make rods super light weight or something but not sure. 

 

Have rods reached a plateau in technology? 

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Im absolutely certain line, rods and reels for that matter will be drastically different in 20 years. Im not entirely sure what technology will be in play or how itll work out but my current example is in Febuary we are getting our first well reviewed mass produced reel without ball berrings. Copolymer berrings in a casting reel supposedly zero rust corrosion or lubrication needed.

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No not at least from a marketing standpoint.  Every year the last years model is obsolete ;)

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TD-Z reels came out in 1998 and they still compete with and beat out most baitcasters as far as ability to fish light and heavy stuff and anything in between.  30 year old Loomis IMX/GLX MBR models have been out that still are some of the most sensitive rods out there.  You paid top dollar for those items back then...technology has trickled down to keep the cost down for similar products today (as does place of origin) but for the most part, I think the late 1990s/early 2000s has some of the best fishing equipment available from the standpoint of quality matching price paid.  If you buy an Abu, Lew's, BPS, etc. reel today, they are all coming from the same Chinese or Korean factories with specs set by the main branded company.  They are sort of generic in that you pick the frame, add color, bells and whistles, etc. and then call it whatever brand you want.  Not saying they are bad reels, but I doubt you'll find the same quality in a $400 Abu versus a $400 Shimano or Daiwa.

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1 hour ago, Big-Bass said:

TD-Z reels came out in 1998 and they still compete with and beat out most baitcasters as far as ability to fish light and heavy stuff and anything in between.  30 year old Loomis IMX/GLX MBR models have been out that still are some of the most sensitive rods out there.  You paid top dollar for those items back then...technology has trickled down to keep the cost down for similar products today (as does place of origin) but for the most part, I think the late 1990s/early 2000s has some of the best fishing equipment available from the standpoint of quality matching price paid.  If you buy an Abu, Lew's, BPS, etc. reel today, they are all coming from the same Chinese or Korean factories with specs set by the main branded company.  They are sort of generic in that you pick the frame, add color, bells and whistles, etc. and then call it whatever brand you want.  Not saying they are bad reels, but I doubt you'll find the same quality in a $400 Abu versus a $400 Shimano or Daiwa.

I think you forgot to mention phluger along with all the other generic reels that come from China and korea or "doyo factory "

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3 hours ago, tcbass said:

Rods have come a long way. However, besides technology that could make rods a little stiffer, better action, more durable, sensitive, or other will there be any drastic improvements in technology in the future? Perhaps nanotechnology could make rods super light weight or something but not sure. 

 

Have rods reached a plateau in technology? 

No way.......technology will keep advancing.....we don't even know what we don't know.......but I like your thoughts on nano technology....

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And one day we will have magic reels with no ball bearings that you have to be careful not to spool out when you cast.

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I always think the same thing about bicycles. I ride some oh-my-god expensive race bikes, and every year I'm like, what can they possibly improve, but they do somehow. Something stiffer, lighter, more responsive, prettier, I dunno. 

 

I don't know about rods, but I think in general a lot of composite materials, such as carbon fiber, graphite, and even to an extent fiberglass, will see a lot of replacement by the up-and-coming graphene composites. 

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I think carbon nanotubes will make a huge diffrence in rods but how long until that's cost effective.

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Design its only limited by the imagination. The driver for light weight high strength materials has been the aerospace industry and that has been dormate for about a decade. Nono technology isn't new, it is to commercial usage. Cost is and always will be a limitation to adopting expensive materials and It's a catch 22, quantity lowers cost. 

The recreational angler has been willing to pay higher prices and that encourages new product development.

Tom

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I've been on the BR forum for about a year now, and one thing I see over and over is the similarity in attitude toward fishing equipment and golf equipment.  Each year club and ball manufacturers market the new lines as being exponentially superior to last year's versions, yet strangely enough, the the actual real world data shows that the changes in performance, if any, are minuscule.  Most players can't perceive any change at all, but they won't admit that they bought the hype.  They have to believe that the new gear has made them better, even though their scoring doesn't reflect that belief.  I finally quit buying the orange juice about a decade ago.  

 

I'm not good enough to make the same blanket statement about fishing rods, but it's hard to see how they can make any truly dramatic improvement, aside from bringing the price of the good stuff down to the point where I can justify trying it. :D

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Planned obsolescence.

 

Used for years in the automobile industry.

 

Rod manufactures always have "something better or different" each year so we will buy their new products.

 

As Tom said above, the research and development departments never stop. It is their responsibility to produce new rods, reels, lines, baits, boats, trailers, motors, pumps, PFD's, flares, and you name it to continue interest and sales in their company's products.

 

Don't worry about it. Just go out and buy some new rods. You need them.

 

And you will make the Bait Monkey happy, too.

 

Happy New Year!

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On 1/8/2018 at 5:20 AM, The Bassman said:

And one day we will have magic reels with no ball bearings that you have to be careful not to spool out when you cast.Do you mean like the new unmentionables? 

 

The OP mentioned only rods. I would say yes. The crazy priced stuff may be slightly better, but the performance doesn't match the price. The in the late 70's, 80's, even 90's new rods were exponentially  better than what we had in the 60's. Frankly the rod world became good enough for me with IMX and Avid. That said I own both GLX and Elite. Had an NRX but really didn't like it. The bait monkey takes no prisoners. 

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On 1/8/2018 at 3:04 AM, Yumeya said:

27795626879_cd03c446a8_o.jpg

I would love to read a longform article about the effect those things had of the international bering business.  That was a crazy amount of demand that seemed to sprout up overnight.  

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On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 7:23 PM, RPreeb said:

I've been on the BR forum for about a year now, and one thing I see over and over is the similarity in attitude toward fishing equipment and golf equipment.  Each year club and ball manufacturers market the new lines as being exponentially superior to last year's versions, yet strangely enough, the the actual real world data shows that the changes in performance, if any, are minuscule.  Most players can't perceive any change at all, but they won't admit that they bought the hype.  They have to believe that the new gear has made them better, even though their scoring doesn't reflect that belief.  I finally quit buying the orange juice about a decade ago.  

 

I'm not good enough to make the same blanket statement about fishing rods, but it's hard to see how they can make any truly dramatic improvement, aside from bringing the price of the good stuff down to the point where I can justify trying it. :D

Before I got wrapped up in the fishing world I was heavy into the paintball world. It was growing exponentially with the latest and greatest technology being released every year. However the difference was just like in the car industry when the new gun was released last years model was discontinued. Every year I was buying a gun for about $1200 just to sell it for $400 (if I was lucky) to pay another $1200. Finally in about 2009 technology plateaued and sales dropped. In 2011 manufactures decided it wasn't in their best interest to release a new gun every year and now they are released every 3 years.

 

I think the fishing industry is heading in the same direction. There are longer gaps in between latest and greatest releases. An example would be, I know this topic was brought up about rods,  the Curado. Shimano released a new Curado every three years however between the I and K there are 5 years. Abu Garcia lengthen the time between updates not only their reels but their rods. I think we are at a time period in the fishing industry where technology has slowed whether its because it hasn't been discovered or materials are just too expensive to use. In the next 5 years there will be another jump start in the market that will push new products faster with better technology.

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Been plateaued for decades...just incremental changes and improvements.

 

Bamboo>Steel>Fiberglass (solid, then hollow)>Graphite/Carbon Fiber with a largely unsuccessful Boron stint back in the late 70s.

 

A little dabbling with Kevlar and Titanium along the way. Now days it's nano resins. Still waiting for the next revolution...

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On 1/7/2018 at 4:57 PM, tcbass said:

Rods have come a long way. However, besides technology that could make rods a little stiffer, better action, more durable, sensitive, or other will there be any drastic improvements in technology in the future? Perhaps nanotechnology could make rods super light weight or something but not sure. 

 

Have rods reached a plateau in technology? 

In the time I've been fishing (50 yrs), yes rod technology has come a long way. Fenwick glass Lunkerstiks were the deal back in the day for bass fishing. Then Loomis IM6, Fenwick's HMG graphite rods and Skyline graphite rods were the deal. To be honest, after Loomis GLX and Fuji Alconite guides were introduced (80's?), there has been no real "drastic" (to use your word, tcbass) improvement in rod tech, IMO. I'm sure rod blank makers will tell you there's a trade-off between stiffness, weight reduction, durability, action, sensitivity, etc. such that there is a finite limit to what a rod can weigh and still have the power, action and durability to catch bass (fish). The reduction in rod weight has made it possible for anglers to use much longer rods than before and this (using light, sensitive 7 foot + rods) has definitely improved everyone's bass angling experience. 

 

The main technological improvements that have been made over the years are from Gary Loomis and his development of IM6-IMX-GLX-NRX, which everyone can agree are relatively miniscule improvements. Same with the move from Alconite-SiC-Torzite guides. Yes, those are definite tech improvements but in the end, things like recoil guides, EVA/Winn grip handles, Microwave guides, split grips, JDM "bling" are not what I would consider technological improvements. Just ways for companies to get anglers (and golfers as mentioned) to upgrade their rods every year or two. I was on that train myself until a few years ago and if I could, I would turn back the clock to buy all the original Loomis Weibe handle IMX/GLX rods I could get my hands on because those rods were the best ever made, IMO. They need to put the MBR 842, 843, and 844 in some bass fishing hall of fame. 

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All but two of my main 7 combos has a rod more than a decade old. I don't think rods have advanced so greatly in a decade that i need to replace them all. They aren't broken. But I have replaced all my older BC reels. It was a big step up. I just yard sold the round Ambassadeur reels I used for bass 15 years ago. And i finally retired the Daiwa Procaster I got for Christmas when I was 13.

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I'd like to see some improvements in the strength to weight ratio.  A little more wiggle room for bonehead moves with a top flight rod.

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Self-healing rod tips!

 

Here's proof it's possible...in theory...hypothetically speaking.

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/11/11/lamborghini-creates-self-healing-sports-car/

 

Quote

Using sensors the car can conduct its own health check to detect any damages and self-repair itself by filling the crack with nanotubes to prevent it spreading.

 

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9 hours ago, Darren. said:

Self-healing rod tips!

 

Here's proof it's possible...in theory...hypothetically speaking.

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/11/11/lamborghini-creates-self-healing-sports-car/

 

 

Carrying the battery to power it would suck... ;)

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Rod technology...

 

I saw interesting developments in two places last year with fly rods.

 

St. Croix came up with a new two piece rod (Sole) that is supposed to improve power, lift and sensitivity.

 

Orvis has some interesting technology in the new H3 that makes the rods lighter, and that is supposed to keep the round shape better (all hollow rods go oval when cast) that is supposed to reduce deflection and improve accuracy.

 

Have not tried either.

 

Temple Forks is claiming similar to the Orvis with their new Axiom II.

 

Lamson dug up an old idea and refined it - the are mounting their reels much more in line with the shaft of the rod to lessen the effect of the weight of the rod and line hanging below the rod (Might not seem like much, but imagine a 500 grain weight swinging 4" below your hand...and then imagine the same weight in your palm...).

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1 hour ago, Further North said:

Rod technology...

 

I saw interesting developments in two places last year with fly rods.

 

St. Croix came up with a new two piece rod (Sole) that is supposed to improve power, lift and sensitivity.

 

Orvis has some interesting technology in the new H3 that makes the rods lighter, and that is supposed to keep the round shape better (all hollow rods go oval when cast) that is supposed to reduce deflection and improve accuracy.

 

Have not tried either.

 

Temple Forks is claiming similar to the Orvis with their new Axiom II.

 

Lamson dug up an old idea and refined it - the are mounting their reels much more in line with the shaft of the rod to lessen the effect of the weight of the rod and line hanging below the rod (Might not seem like much, but imagine a 500 grain weight swinging 4" below your hand...and then imagine the same weight in your palm...).

 

The new Helios seems like one incredible stick.  I have had the pleasure of handling a few and between the shape retention technology and offering more than one tip, they're doing some really interesting things.  I think the biggest thing happening in fly rods is that manufacturers are beginning to learn that anglers want specialized rods for streamers, nymphing, etc and that simply beefing up a blank on a great 4 wt doesn't necessarily make for a good 8 wt.  The St. Croix and TFO lines designed for specific applications seem like excellent rods, as do the new Sage ultra fast action rods designed to be over-lined for streamer fishing.  I'm very happy that it seems like that industry is moving past inconclusive science like Winston's insistence on boron.  

 

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