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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am sure this question has been asked hundreds of times, but I am new to fly fishing and I am just trying to do some research. I live on the Georgia coast and I want to start chasing after reds, trout, with the occasional trip down to south west Florida for snook, small tarpon etc. I would be fishing from both land and sometimes a boat. What would you guys recommend for a good beginner fly rod setup? Any info is greatly appreciated!
 

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Lip Ripper
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I suggest an 8wt for what you're chasing. As far as rods and reels go you may actually start a war with that. But my suggestions are below. Also, honestly reels don't really matter that much at first when you're learning. But if you're looking for something to last then go Tibor or Nautilus.

Budget friendly Rod: Echo Ion XL 8wt 9ft
Mid Priced: TFO BVK 8wt 9ft
Used Rods: Scott Meridian, Orvis Helios 2, Sage Salt.. etc. Typically you can find a used rod for about the price of a new BVK.
 

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Agree with an 8wt, lots of options as to which one. Kinda goes to your personal casting stroke. If you can try some out at a fly shop, would be good, or get with someone with experience and try some of theirs.
 

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I'm sort of new as well and I recently got a used TFO Mangrove rod in 9wt that casts great. I'll yield to the more seasoned folks here on weight but you might want to look at a TFO.
BTW, lot of really helpful folks on here that will give you good advice.
 

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An 8 or a 9wt, a floating line -a beater reel that will hold at least 100 yards of backing... and you're ready to get started... Learn to cast with it, then learn your knots and a bit about flies - then use it, again and again... You'll learn to catch a fish or two, you'll also learn what you like (and what you don't like...).

Your best bet will be to hook up with someone that's already fly fishing and learn all you can from them... then expand a bit, join a club if there's one within range -and fish with as many different guys as you can...

All that I'm describing is the way I got started way back when... Be careful, it's addicting... If you can, try not to fall into the trap that most do --- better gear won't necessarily make you a better caster.... so practice, practice - and it will help to have someone watching you that knows a bit about the sport.. They'll spot things that you can work on....

Hope this helps
 

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I Love microskiff.com!
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An 8 or a 9wt, a floating line -a beater reel that will hold at least 100 yards of backing... and you're ready to get started... Learn to cast with it, then learn your knots and a bit about flies - then use it, again and again... You'll learn to catch a fish or two, you'll also learn what you like (and what you don't like...).

Your best bet will be to hook up with someone that's already fly fishing and learn all you can from them... then expand a bit, join a club if there's one within range -and fish with as many different guys as you can...

All that I'm describing is the way I got started way back when... Be careful, it's addicting... If you can, try not to fall into the trap that most do --- better gear won't necessarily make you a better caster.... so practice, practice - and it will help to have someone watching you that knows a bit about the sport.. They'll spot things that you can work on....

Hope this helps
Perfect advice Bob.
 

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If you're serious about transitioning from conventional tackle to fly I'd recommend finding a fly shop that offers lessons. After some lessons supplemented with practice you'll make a better choice on what equipment you need.
 

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Lowcountry Degen
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Beginner setup, I'd look at something along the lines of an 8wt TFO Signature 2 (~$130) and a Redington Behemoth (~100). I wouldn't go cheap on the line, though. You should be able to find something in the $80 range that will work well for you. I personally like bonefish (less aggressive) tapers.

You can get good prices online, but I think you'd be much better served to buy something along the lines of the TFO and Redington from a local fly shop, where you can get good advice to go along with them. Plus, if you buy everything from them, they will usually spool it all up for you and might even throw in the backing for free. If they have some room outside and aren't busy, they will probably help you with the basics of your cast too.

I'm typically more of a "used gear" kind of guy, but many warranties are non-transferable, and you will likely miss out of the advice of the fly shop guys, which is more valuable than you may think. Although if you go in and talk to them before you buy anything at all, one of them may have a lead on some used equipment for you anyway.
 
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If you're serious about transitioning from conventional tackle to fly I'd recommend finding a fly shop that offers lessons. After some lessons supplemented with practice you'll make a better choice on what equipment you need.
I couldn't agree more with J-Dad. Taking a few lessons will allow you to learn without forming a bunch of bad habits if self taught. A reputable shop will also steer you in the right direction as far as equipment goes. Don't be afraid of looking at used gear. Some people trade in their gear whenever "new and improved" gear comes to market. Good luck, have fun.
 

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Lowcountry Degen
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Agree with an 8wt, lots of options as to which one. Kinda goes to your personal casting stroke. If you can try some out at a fly shop, would be good, or get with someone with experience and try some of theirs.
wait a second, you're telling me you like the 8wt recommendation? :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I appreciate all the info! I have a local fly shop that offers some free casting classes and other private classes for a fair price. I’ll probably look into those
 

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Beginner setup, I'd look at something along the lines of an 8wt TFO Signature 2 (~$130) and a Redington Behemoth (~100). I wouldn't go cheap on the line, though. You should be able to find something in the $80 range that will work well for you. I personally like bonefish (less aggressive) tapers.

You can get good prices online, but I think you'd be much better served to buy something along the lines of the TFO and Redington from a local fly shop, where you can get good advice to go along with them. Plus, if you buy everything from them, they will usually spool it all up for you and might even throw in the backing for free. If they have some room outside and aren't busy, they will probably help you with the basics of your cast too.

I'm typically more of a "used gear" kind of guy, but many warranties are non-transferable, and you will likely miss out of the advice of the fly shop guys, which is more valuable than you may think. Although if you go in and talk to them before you buy anything at all, one of them may have a lead on some used equipment for you anyway.
Great advice Bryson
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Anybody have any knowledge or experience with Wade company rods or moonshine rod company? Around the $300 price and look to be nice rods with a good warranty. I think they’re manufactured in China though.
 

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Lip Ripper
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Anybody have any knowledge or experience with Wade company rods or moonshine rod company? Around the $300 price and look to be nice rods with a good warranty. I think they’re manufactured in China though.

I wouldn't mess with it. the low cost options out there that aren't well known will more than likely be wasted money
 

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8weight as mentioned above. My advise is to take only the fly rod with you leave the spinning gear at home you'll find yourself getting frustrated and putting down the fly rod. I've caught fish at the end of a day that I wouldn't have caught because I would have put it down and picked up a spinner once you hook a fish on fly you'll be addicted.
 

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Anybody have any knowledge or experience with Wade company rods or moonshine rod company? Around the $300 price and look to be nice rods with a good warranty. I think they’re manufactured in China though.
I would shy away from both of those rods heavily. All marketing and hype in my opinion with overseas “quality”. You would be much better served spending that same 2-300 on a used Loomis/Hardy/Sage/Scott etc. or a brand new and excellent rod from TFO or Echo. There are loads of great options out there for you and with companies like TFO and Echo designing fantastic rods for less money there is zero reason to buy into some social media marketing scheme and waste your money on junk.
 

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All this advice is good. When I first started fly fishing (1989) it was saltwater. I went out and looked at rods and reels then saw how much they were, and my butt puckered. Went to a fly shop and told them I wanted to catch Reds and Specs and they laughed at me saying; that I was fishing for bait, “Tarpon is where it’s at son”. The rods were too much anyway, and the reels were so expensive and all they did was hold line (as far as I could tell). So, this got me to looking at making my own rods and I bought an English made Cortland reel and saltwater fly line then found a place that sold Sage blanks, Struble reel seats and fly guides. The blank was a Sage 2pc RPL that was $200. It cost me about $250 to build a $425 Sage rod. I had a small surfboard company so assembling a fishing rod was easy for me. Fast forward about 300 rods made of all types later and I will tell you this; most of the blanks now are all faster and somewhat lighter and even the cheaper ones are better than what was available 30 years ago. If you are hard core and know that you are going to stick with it, spend the money. If you are look warm and not sure, go get you one of those “everything in one package” deal, like a Redington set that has the rod, line and reel ready to go. It is a harder way to fish but also very rewarding as you develop, it is almost like learning how to fish all over again. You can catch fish anywhere on a fly at the same places you would with conventional gear. Get someone that knows how to cast to show you and that way you won’t start with bad habits.
 

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You seem to have a local shop that you trust. Go take some classes and cast different rods they suggest for you. An 8 weight is a good place to start. Ask the guys at the shop about a decent reel to with with the new rod. Find an outfit that works for you and go fishing. I second leaving your other gear at home. Stick with the fly gear and learn how to fish it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I appreciate all the advice. I will definitely leave the spinning and conventional gear at home when I go fly fishing. In reference to the moonshine rods, I agree with what you guys’ are saying. They do have a “midnight special” line that’s 100% USA made but it’s not vetted enough like the other rods like TFO etc. only problem I foresee going to the fly shop and trying out rods to figure out which one I like is that they really only sell orvis rods. I don’t have anything against orvis but I feel like I’m not getting exposed to potentially better rods for the same price point. I guess I’ll just have to continue to do more research once I figure out what kind of action, weight etc. I like
 
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