Fishing Rods Part 1, Terminology

In this first article we look at fishing rods and the terminology used by manufacturers when building rods

This is the first of a multi part series on Fishing rods, and how they are built what materials are used and how they effect rods. This part covers the basics of rod blanks Terminology, what the terminology is and how it can be applied to help you find the right rod for you fishing style.

Rod building is a technical hobby, the more you dig into the information the more complex it becomes, this is a simple guide to rod building terminology.

There are 3 main things that are talked about on rods that describe how they bend and perform, and what fishing method they are used for.

1. Taper/action: the taper refers to how quickly the rod changes from fat to skinny. The rod starts quite thick at the butt end (that goes in the rod holder) to quite thin at the tip end. This taper effects the how the rod bends when pressure is applied at the tip of the rod. The Taper is referred to as one or a combination of the following 3 terms fast, moderate or slow. A slow taper rod can sometimes be referred to as parabolic in nature.

A fast taper rod will bend quick in the 1/3rd of the rod that is closest to the it, it will have allot of power through the mid part of the rod allowing pressure to be put on the fish. Moderate tapered rods start bending in the mid third of the rod and slow tapered bend all the way through. The easiest way to identify the rods taper is to bend the rod, if you are visiting our Fullon Fishing we will quite often offer to load the rod blank up and show you how it feels/bends. This is done by simulating the bend in the rod when fished.

The Taper/action is not usually printed on the rods in the factory, some manufacturers give us the information on the action but quite often the only way to tell what the action is is to bend the rod.

2. Line Weight: the line weight that is printed on the rods is a guide to the line class range that should be used on the rod. The line class is shown in a 2 number series eg: 6-10kg or 4-6kg. There is no set standard for measuring these line weights on the rods so every manufacturer will be slightly different. This is a good guide for setting your drag on your reel too and also gives a good indication of the reels you should choose to go with the rod. When setting your drag it is good practice to set the drag on Lever Drag reels to 1/3rd the line weight on the rod or the line weight used which ever is lesser.

3. Power: The power rating for the rod can be found in the code of the rod eg. 702DSH, The "H" in this code is for Heavy, this power rating refers back to the line rating and how much lift power the rod has for that line weight. The power rating is shown as light, medium or heavy or a combination of these, A rod with a light action will have minimal power in the butt of the rod where as a heavy action rod will have allot more lifting power.