Any bamboo nuts around? After reading for years about the supposed magic of bamboo I finally plunked for an old Wright & McGill Water Seal 8-1/2' 3-piece for 5-6 line. Had only one tip, saved me dough. An impregnated, mahogany-colored rod. Seemed HEAVY at first, and I found I coldn't force it--I had to let it do the casting. Then I found it would pretty much cast itself if I just let it. Then I stoppedf noticing the weight.
Later I got a Goodwin Granger Aristocrat 8-1/2' 3-piece for 5-6, this time all original with two tips and original bag/tube. Much lighter, amber varnished cane, and sweet to cast. I was gone. A year later I bought a Doug Kulick 7-1/2' 2-piece 2-tip for 4-5, which cast like a dream BUT there was a twist in the tip sections so it was hard to shoot or even pay out line without a lot of false-casting. Finally sold it.
Then my sister who worked at an Orvis store asked me to fill in at a casting class she was giving, and said Orvis would pay me for it. I taught, then told her to tell her boss not to cut a check, just make it a down payment on one of their bamboos. She called next day and said that they had a 1940s Battenkill 7'6" 2/2 which an old gentleman had dropped off for repair but had never come back. They tried for 2 years to find family and finally did, and they said "None of us fish. Why don't you sell it for what you can and give the money to charity?"
So I went and tried it...a lovely mahogany impregnated rod with blued ferrules. How much? The manager said well, it's kind of an orphan....I figure if I can get $200 that'll be fine. I snapped it up. New Orvis bamboos go for $1500-1700.
Now I was far gone in the madness. Even when conditions called for a fast graphite I would find a way to use bamboo and live with not being able to reach 60' through a gale.
Then my practice came out in the black at the end of its first year. I decided I had a bonus coming, which took the form of a Leonard Model 50 8' 3/2 with everything there. What was left?
Two things: fish with silk, which is what these rode were made for, and build my own.
With 4 boys at home I knew I'd never be able to lay a tool down and find it the next day, so that had to wait. I bought a 90' Phoenix silk DT6 line, and found a whole new dimension to my rods. And all the hassle that was supposed to attend fishing silk--having to stop to air-dry the line every four hours, unspoolin it at day's end to dry, greasing the line, etc--never became a problem. For one thing, it's rare for me to have over 4 continuous hours to fish anyway. And it only takes a few minutes to grease a line, and a few to unspool at day's end. And you can pick that line up off the water like it's nothing at all, because it floats very high. Silk line are thinner for a given weight, and tolerate wind better.
Last season I never used graphit or plastic at all, and had a great time with lots of good fish. Anybody else as demented?