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Is Fuji really the I Ching of rod components?

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I've been reading the Kilster thread about ill-fitting reel seats and got to wondering whats so special about Fuji components.

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying Fuji isn't great. I'm more inclidned to buy a rod with Fuji components than without. But recently (thanks to Flechero) I've come to realize there are several other makers of rod components that seem to make really nice components that are the equal of Fuji. And I'm wondering if I haven't been overlooking some good rods that use components from other companies.

Fuji Aluminum Oxide guides seem to be the standard guides on rods these days. It's light, hard and durable. Fuji makes Hardloy, Alconite, Gold Cermet and Silicone Carbide (SiC) guides. All of which are highly regarded. SiC is very hard, but apparently brittle.

But companies like American Tackle make aluminum oxide guides as well. Their high end guides are titanium coated zirconia. Zirconia is almost as hard as SiC without being as brittle, and has good heat disipation properties. The titanium coating makes them very slick. This combination seesm to scream BRAID!

As someone stated in another thread, higher end Bass Pro Shop brand rods use really nice reel seats. I have no idea who makes those seats. I do have a couple BPS rods and I really think they are better than the Fuji seats on some of my other rods.

I guess what I'm getting at is that Fuji seems to the most common maker of components. Why don't we see more use of other brands like American Tackle on rods?

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Why don't we see more use of other brands like American Tackle on rods?

I don't know.  I give up..Why?

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I don't think he is giving a quiz.  I think he is asking a question.

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Fuji has successfully marketed their brand and created an aura about it.  It doesn't mean they don't make some good products, but it does explain the difference between their market presence and that of some other equal/better products...

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Fuji, like most manufacturers, makes some great components and also some lousy ones. The TPS line is garbage. The TCSSD 'soft touch' on my home made Flippin stick is beautiful. I think Fuji has cut smoe great volume deals with rod manufacturers and that's why you see them so often. But for those of us who build our own, AMTAK, Struble and  Pac Bay makes some decent seats. For guides, AMTAK, Pac Bay and REC (recoil) are good alternatives to fuji. I still think Fuji has the biggest selection of guides and seats. However I am glad to see some others challenge them in the marketplace. JMHO

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Does anyone know who makes the reel seats for BPS rods?

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Fuji Aluminum Oxide guides seem to be the standard guides on rods these days.

Yes, they are the industry standard. They are good quality & very affordable. (and rated for braid)

Good topic... For a long time, I think Fuji was miles ahead of the others in guides. These days, I still give the "best" to Fuji in the higher end guides but there are some good products out there by other companies. (There are lots of Fuji guide copies out there... ReelMech has some good stories on that)

Besides Fuji, I've built with 4 types of the Batson guides- the PVD TiCh, Blue TiO, H and standard zirconium. All are good guides, all have a place and I'd use them again if they fit the design criteria of a build. I've used AmTak and Pac Bay on repairs (to match factory stuff). I normally stick to Alconites or Ti SiC on my own rods. I still want to get the Gold Cermets but for that much $$$ I have to wait for a very special blank. ...lol (this winter I'll get some)

I use mostly Fuji ECS seats but before they were offered in sizes over 15mm I used Batson exposed seats for the big stuff... they are surprisingly nice. (comfy and sturdy) But everyone asks for Fuji seats so that's all I actually stock. Spinning seats are a different story (long story actually) I have yet to use the same one twice. My favorite was a comfort contoured wooden seat used on LBH's rod. It was super comfy and looked good. I'll use that on my own next spinning rod.

On fly rods, I have yet to use a Fuji component... but that's a discussion for another day.  ...lol

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I missed this question on my above response...

Why don't we see more use of other brands like American Tackle on rods?

They are used on lots of factory rods, it's just not advertised.  Name recognition, plain and simple.  Fuji is the fishing world's "Coke."  If you saw a cardboard tag on a rod advertising Amtak or Pac Bay guides, would it get your attention or make you more likely to purchase it?  Most people wouldn't recognize that.

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I've been reading the Kilster thread about ill-fitting reel seats and got to wondering whats so special about Fuji components.

SiC's and Gold Cermet guides have always been the best inserts out there.  As far as reel seats, I guess the Fuji seats have far less seating issues than the Batson seats Kistler was using, or they wouldn't have switched to the Fuji ECS.  Kistler had Batson producing every component of their rods; the blank, guides, inserts, and reel seats.  I bet it is costing them quite a bit more to go with the fuji seats, so I surmize it took a lot of complaints or returned rods to make a company decision that is costing them more money.

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I know gold cermet is pretty and hard and expensive. But according to Fuji literature, it's not as hard as SiC and only a little harder than Aluminum Oxide. It apparently has great heat disipation properties.

Zirconia appears to be much harder then gold cermet (and a little less hard than SiC), and with a titanium nitride coating it looks exactly the same. It's got very good heat disipation properties.

Why is gold cermet considered the ultimate guide?  It seems to me that it has nothing on titanium coated zirconia.

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I kinda of dreaming about a "very special" blank on a custom.

How much for the Gold Cermets? ::o

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The G.C. rings are thinner, lighter and "twice as smooth" as SiC.  They are not plated or coated, but a solid ceramic ring.  Make sure you compare hardness of the guides and coatings on a common scale.  I think the top end materials are closer than you think.  (search "Vickers scale" or "ring hardness" on RBO, a few of the guys there have posted this stuff in detail.

Having said all that.... I'll fall for it once.  ...lol   :o

I can't really answer your question, at least not until I use them and have some real world usage to report on.

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How much for the Gold Cermets?

Between $10 and $54 per guide. :o A wild guess- about $100-$150 for a casting set up, depending on guide types.

For you, RW, it's somewhere between pocket change and lunch money! ;D

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How much for the Gold Cermets?

Between $10 and $54 per guide.   :o  A wild guess- about $100-$150 for a casting set up, depending on guide types.

For you, RW, it's somewhere between pocket change and lunch money!    ;D

Those are also a Titanium Alloy Frame, Solid Gold Ceramic Ring (Not Plated) - Diamond Polished. The tip tops in a #7 lite casting/spinning run upwards of $20.75, and the standard #8 cast/spin run $26.31 ea.

Most builders don't even stock these puppies, they are so pricy...

Tight Lines!!!!!  

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There are plenty of high quality components other than Fuji.  For guides I have recently built 2 rods with Amtak titanium frame nanolite ring guides ("Titans") and really like them.  I cannot testify about Fuji's customer service, but Amtak is very fast and responsive.

Nanolite is zirconium oxide, which according to Amtak is almost as hard as SIC but much less brittle.  I have used both and had no trouble with either.  Of course for what you pay for them, they both should be very good!

I think the need for the hardest rings is most important for tiptops.  I have some pretty cheap rods that I have used with braid for many years and have never grooved a guide.  Just the tiptops.

I love the Forecast textured trigger reel seat as it is available in a large selection of inside diameters so you don't use arbors, just get the right size and glue it in.

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I have a St. Croix Triumph that has a Fuji reel seat. It keeps loosening up....very unhappy with it.

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I have a St. Croix Triumph that has a Fuji reel seat. It keeps loosening up....very unhappy with it.

I don't care too much for Fuji reel seats, either.  I have a couple of rods with Fuji TCS seats and they tend to loosen, too.  My favorite seats are those on BPS rods.  

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The only time I have had a seat loosen up is with a particular reel that I hold differently than the rest.  I seem to hold mostly reel on that one.  Each cast and then hookset moves the reel a fraction back and forth so it is able to wiggle the nut loose over time.  Really no problem to check the nut as I pick up the rod each time.  

I have used that reel on almost every rod I own and with seats made by Fuji, Batson, Amtak and an unknown... it does it on all of them.  My guess is that you guys palm your reels like I palm that one.

That BPS seat mentioned, if it's the one I'm thinking of, would force you to hold the reel differently than the Fuji.... maybe that's the difference.  Just a thought.

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Let me clarify, I don't care for Fuji TCS seats.  The rods that I have TCS seats mount my Abu 5600C4s.  That very well my have something to do with it.   My rods with ECS(?) seats have my Revos on them and they are just fine.  My spinning rods with Fuji seats are just fine as well.  

I haven't a clue who makes the reel seats for BPS baitcasters.  But I really like them.   They've never loosened on me, and they are exceptionally comfortable.

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