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Time and time again many people in our community of fishermen turn their nose up at cheap gear. I started on cheap gear. Most of us probably did. These days I'm so biased towards Fenwick and Daiwa, but I do branch out. My first casting setup eons ago was a Lightning Rod paired with a Silver Max, 6'6" M/MF. I threw the heck out of squarebills and lipless crankbaits with it. Today most of my setups will run me from a modest $150 upwards to a more pricey tag of $450. Because I've advanced to needing more sensitive, durable, and technique driven gear, as most of us have. But to THIS DAY, my squarebills and lipless crankbaits are primarily fished on Lightning Rods and Silver Maxs. Simple reason is that it fishes those baits so well. Nothing has felt as good to ME, that didn't put a serious hole in the pocket. I think the ego and pride of some people are so astounding that it becomes about not how something fishes or how something feels, but about how much they can say it costs. Sometimes the perfect tool for you does not cost that much. 

 

Inspired by a guy on a Facebook post who was pooping on another guys sub 100 dollar gear as if it was the worst thing ever and won't and can't possibly catch fish. 

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4 minutes ago, Glaucus said:

Sometimes the perfect tool for you does not cost that much. 

Agreed here. My finesse rod is a Mitchell Avocet RZ-2000 on an ML/F Avocet rod. Does everything I need it to and the total cost was $40.

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I agree. Especially now. You can get a totally awesome setup for $200-250. I’ve been playing with one for a couple weeks. New Tatula 100 on a 6’ 6” BPS Crankin Stick.  About $225 for the combo (I added $25 for a totally not necessary bearing upgrade from Boca + SmoothDrag, to get a more refined feel).

 

I usually use rods 150 and under, because there’s usually no point to spending more, if you feel enough rods. Plus I love soft, parabolic, backbone free rods, there aren’t many as you go up in price. I use braid and set hooks like Happy Gilmore, so I can’t use the super fast hyper backbone rods that are all the rage these days. 

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3 minutes ago, MN Fisher said:

Agreed here. My finesse rod is a Mitchell Avocet RZ-2000 on an ML/F Avocet rod. Does everything I need it to and the total cost was $40.

First time I ever tried a Ned Rig I didn't have something suitable for it. I picked up a Pflueger Monarch combo for 50 bucks to see what that bait was all about. Went an entire season of slaying fish. Now I will say that that combo did not old up and I would never buy it again, but it did its job for a season and taught me how to fish a Ned Rig. Never failed me on a fish. The cheap plastic reel just started grinding horribly and I gave it to a buddy who can't afford more than one setup. 

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A lot of guys like to collect high end tackle, and there is certainly nothing wrong with that. The sad part, and you see it here as well as other places is where folks with little or no experience buy into the "you have to have high end gear or you won't catch fish" mentality. On the other hand, you do want to stay away from the really cheap stuff. The 3rd or 4th item in a line usually offers the best bang for the buck.

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 I fished with a friend years ago who only used Berkeley Cherrywood rods. His catches were good. He just didn't see the need to spend a ton of money on tackle. He actually won 1rst place in a club tournament we had against another club. He never worried about it. If one of these rods broke, he marched right into Wal Mart and exchanged it for another one

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2 minutes ago, reason said:

The 3rd or 4th item in a line usually offers the best bang for the buck.

Exactly right. The RZ is the 3rd in the Avocet line after the R and the R-FS. Held up last year for Ned rigs, Drop Shots, 1/16oz Texas rigs and #2 and #3 Mepps Aguilas and Comets. This winter, after a cleaning and re-lube/oil - spins like it was brand new again.

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I like nice stuff, but I bought most of my nicer stuff before I had a family to support. Now I get the less expensive where I can and really don't notice a drop off in production. 

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In my younger days I had Cores, Chronarchs, Steezes, etc. Now I am using Denali Fission rods, a couple Citicas, a Scorpion and a Curado. 

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2 minutes ago, jbsoonerfan said:

In my younger days I had Cores, Chronarchs, Steezes, etc. Now I am using Denali Fission rods, a couple Citicas, a Scorpion and a Curado

I think we're talking even less than that. My best setup is my new Fuego CT on an Aird-X - and that rig together cost what your Citica without a rod does. My #2 rig is a President on an Aird-X - and that rig was under $100

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7 minutes ago, MN Fisher said:

I think we're talking even less than that. My best setup is my new Fuego CT on an Aird-X - and that rig together cost what your Citica without a rod does. My #2 rig is a President on an Aird-X - and that rig was under $100

My bad, I will see my way out of the thread.

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Cheap gear you say? I have caught more fish (not necessarily bass) on a Shakespeare ultralight spinning rig that I caught. Yes, I caught the spinning combo a few years back on a jig. I dried it out, oiled it up and it has been very good to me. I'd bet I have caught a thousand panfish in the last 3 years on that combo.

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1 hour ago, Glaucus said:

Time and time again many people in our community of fishermen turn their nose up at cheap gear (anything). I think the ego and pride of some people are so astounding that it becomes about not how something fishes (performs) or how something feels, but about how much they can say it costs. Sometimes the perfect tool for you does not cost that much. 

I updated your post to apply to literally everything in life, cars, clothes, food, hobbies. Everyone's got their reasons for spending what they do. Some do it for status, some appreciate the smallest advantages provided by higher quality (pros), and some just enjoy it.

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13 minutes ago, MN Fisher said:

I think we're talking even less than that. My best setup is my new Fuego CT on an Aird-X - and that rig together cost what your Citica without a rod does. My #2 rig is a President on an Aird-X - and that rig was under $100

What would you rate your Aird-X out of ten? I've been thinking about getting one but I can't decide.

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I love my Abu Black Max and Pro Max reels. I've spent over $100 on one rod the rest are $50 or less. I don't know what high end is like so I know, no different. I catch fish and I have a blast doing it that's all that matters. Plus kids are expensive! 😂

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2 minutes ago, EGbassing said:

What would you rate your Aird-X out of ten? I've been thinking about getting one but I can't decide.

All I've done so far is 'bench testing'...it's brand new and we got 'hard water' here. But it seems to be reactive, sturdy and balanced. I'm looking forward to testing it on the water.

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15 minutes ago, jbsoonerfan said:

My bad, I will see my way out of the thread.

And take your Tatsu and PopMax with you...  :) 

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4 minutes ago, 12poundbass said:

I love my Abu Black Max and Pro Max reels. I've spent over $100 on one rod the rest are $50 or less. I don't know what high end is like so I know, no different. I catch fish and I have a blast doing it that's all that matters. Plus kids are expensive! 😂

A hundred dollar rod feels better, more balanced, more refined, than a $50 rod, depending on the brand. I'm partial to Fenwick. My opinion is it's the best bang for the buck. A $100 dollar St Croix feels like a $40 Ugly Stick. A $100 Fenwick feels like a $300 St Croix.

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You say people in the community turn their nose up at low end gear......

My observations are that there are more posts across the boards and on social media of fisherman turning their nose up AT people with high end gear.......If I had a nickle for every one of those posts I have enough to buy all high end gear. LOL

 

We've all seen the posts about how it's the fisherman and you can catch big fish on inexpensive gear and spending X amount is a waste of money..

 

That being said I'm strictly middle class with my gear...

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You won't catch me throwing $25 baits. Not when I can buy 5 baits for that much. 

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Just now, Gundog said:

You won't catch me throwing $25 baits. Not when I can buy 5 baits for that much. 

I'm the same - let's see, for spinnerbaits I can get one Booyah for six bucks, or two Jawbones for the same price...I know what I'm getting.

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Personally I like to save up for as long as I need to and buy exactly what I want.

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3 minutes ago, Joshua van Wyk said:

Personally I like to save up for as long as I need to and buy exactly what I want.

The trick is figuring out if you really want it, or if you just think you want it grasshopper.

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All my stuff is middle to lower middle of the gear spectrum. I honestly don't think I'm good enough to get the most out of high end gear. But the thing is, I really don't care. My stuff doesn't break the bank, I catch plenty of fish, but most importantly I have a ton of fun.

 

  That being said, I do appreciate a higher end fly rod. With fly fishing, I think it's worth it.

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1 minute ago, reason said:

The trick is figuring out if you really want it, or if you just think you want it grasshopper.

Now that is a difficult trick to learn!

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