Blank for offshore trolling

Looking to build my trolling rods soon. Gonna be matched up with tld 25's. What brands to you guys suggest using? How do the gator and gorilla blanks stack up against the better ones. I am looking at building 5 so I'm not trying to break the bank, however in 5 years I'll be upset that I have 5 junk rods and will forget how much I didn't spend.

Replies

  • reel cowboyreel cowboy Posts: 565 Officer
    Those are really outside of my relam but I always hear & read good reviews for Calstars & Seekers.
  • JohnnyTsuJohnnyTsu Posts: 133 Deckhand
    I made a Gorilla CBSW54XH matched with a PENN 30W. The blank has a real nice finish, much better than the gator glass ridges. Real nice action with power to spare. Been in use for a year with no problems with the blank. Big plus was the butt of the rod made perfectly for a uni-butt with the right diameter and being parallel. Also the lifetime warranty.
  • seanfishseanfish Posts: 254 Deckhand
    The Gorilla blanks are pretty nice, but they are very heavy blanks. While calstar and seeker do sit at the top of the price chart, my personal preference is to meet in the middle. American Tackle has a very nice line up of Graphite composite blanks and this is where I would head. I actually have the grips and seat drying on an AXGC70M currently. I am only going to list the 6'6" heights though as the Gorilla's only go up to that.

    AXGC66M 20-40# = Great 20-30# class rod, 40 is pushin it.
    AXGC66MH 20-50# = Overkill for 20, 30-40#m 50 is a flat out dont do it.

    This applies to the 7' models as well 70M and 70MH respectively. Pair them up with Virtus Lite Frame with the Duralite rings and a NBBT (nanolite boat top) and you have a heck of a combo around $150/piece (guestimate). The blanks run around $80/ea at 6'6" and 85-90/ea at 7'. So not way up there but by no means crap.

    Contrast calstar in the same range GF765M 20-50# at $112. 30 bucks over 5 rods is a savings of 150 bucks.

    American tackle also has a decent stand up blank (although I use it on trolling rods more than stand up rods. All glass AXST66MH 20-50 (20-30# rod) sits right at 45 bucks. They dont weigh much either, but this line tends to be overrated a little bit. I wouldnt use 40 on the MH blank I listed, although its BARELY capable of it. The AXST66H may be best suited with a TLD25. While listed as 30-60#, its a perfect 30-40# rod. Use the low end of these ratings if selecting this line.

    If you decide to go with the gorilla series, use the upper end of those ratings as they are very conservative.

    Calstar tends to be almost right on the money.
  • Greyt EscapeGreyt Escape Posts: 326 Officer
    wow thanks that helps out a lot! I've never looked at AT blanks for trolling. Is the difference between the two models you suggested only that the first one is a graphie composite and the stand up blank is not? They both weigh the same and have similar butt diameters. What is the difference between a trolling rod and a stand up rod? Also what is an IGFA style? Im aware of the IGFA organization, but not familiar of the way it is used to describe rods. 1 more question is that you stated that gorilla blanks are heavy, but I cannot find out how much they actually weight. I assumed they were heavier because of the price point, but its is significant?
  • Greyt EscapeGreyt Escape Posts: 326 Officer
    wow thanks that helps out a lot! I've never looked at AT blanks for trolling. Is the difference between the two models you suggested only that the first one is a graphie composite and the stand up blank is not? They both weigh the same and have similar butt diameters. What is the difference between a trolling rod and a stand up rod? Also what is an IGFA style? Im aware of the IGFA organization, but not familiar of the way it is used to describe rods. 1 more question is that you stated that gorilla blanks are heavy, but I cannot find out how much they actually weight. I assumed they were heavier because of the price point, but its is significant?
  • seanfishseanfish Posts: 254 Deckhand
    I find the weight of them significantly heavy. The stand up blanks are all glass, and generally glass is a little more durable.
    IGFA blanks are specifically tested and measured to meet IGFA standards so a IGFA 30 blank is a true 30 class rod where as most blanks ratings are arbitrary with minimal testing. Usually IGFA blanks are used for those chasing world records or fishing IGFA rules tournaments. BTW many blanks meet IGFA criteria, just not necessarily in the range you thing.
  • Greyt EscapeGreyt Escape Posts: 326 Officer
    OK I really don't want to mess around with a heavy blank. I really want to use the perfection aluminum gimbal and reel seat and possibly go with all stuart roller guides so there is a good amount of extra weight just in components. I would like to have fairly lightweight set ups. I'd put the tld 15 on if it were a bigger drop in weight, but only 6oz is not enough. I may get rid of the extra aluminum and only get the top roller. Definatly gonna do more homework on the AT blanks.
  • seanfishseanfish Posts: 254 Deckhand
    Honestly skip the rollers and go with the Virtus lite guides with the Nanolite rings. Keep the aluminum seat and aluminum gimbal, roller top if you must, but I prefer the nanolite boat top. The rings are more than capable and there is no more ring poping out failure with the ring lock frame designs. I've literally hit the guides with a hammer several times and distorted and mangled the frames before the ring shattered, but interestingly never popped out.
  • AlwaysAbuAlwaysAbu Posts: 472 Officer
    The roller guides are to fight friction under heavy drag pressure and weakening the line. If you are fishing TLD 25s there is no need for a rod with roller guides.
  • Greyt EscapeGreyt Escape Posts: 326 Officer
    I'm having trouble finding a good guideline for what size guides to use. I have been able to find it in the past for my spinners, but this is my first trolling rod. What/where can I educate myself on what size guides work best. I will take your advice once again and go with those Virtus guides from AT. But what about the turbo boat guides from them? It seems that I can get a nice material for the insert and they may be a bit heavier. Does anyone have any experience with them? Again seanfish you have helped me out a lot and helped me avoid wasting my time and money. Thats why I came here for answers!!! Thanks again.
  • seanfishseanfish Posts: 254 Deckhand
    I'm having trouble finding a good guideline for what size guides to use. I have been able to find it in the past for my spinners, but this is my first trolling rod. What/where can I educate myself on what size guides work best. I will take your advice once again and go with those Virtus guides from AT. But what about the turbo boat guides from them? It seems that I can get a nice material for the insert and they may be a bit heavier. Does anyone have any experience with them? Again seanfish you have helped me out a lot and helped me avoid wasting my time and money. Thats why I came here for answers!!! Thanks again.

    Guide size line on a TLD25, Id say start with a 20 MAYBE a 25, then 12 and 10s on out. The key here to this is to keep the line high enough off the blank through the stripper guide to not get in the way of you holding the grip or touching the grip when under a load (fighting a fish). Just make sure the guides are big enough to easily pass your largest connection that must go through them (and sometimes this takes some messing with)

    The turbo guides are nice, personal preference here, I just really like the ring lock design and the guides are beefy yet pretty light in weight. That said I use the tiitanium frames on mine. Not what I would recommend really on a full set of 5 unless you wanna pay for it. The black frames in the light frame will fully suffice.

    I actually just found that I need to change out a guide to a higher frame on a setup while test casting. Line slap and poor casting as a result of such is not what I prefer my rods to have. This is the kind of reason we build rods rather than buy them.
  • fishtale17fishtale17 Posts: 17 Greenhorn
    seanfish wrote: »

    I actually just found that I need to change out a guide to a higher frame on a setup while test casting. Line slap and poor casting as a result of such is not what I prefer my rods to have. This is the kind of reason we build rods rather than buy them.


    Sean, seems to know his stuff. The rod he is currently working on is for my 8yr old son. This is the 5th rod he has built for me. This kind of FREE knowledge he is offering is priceless. Good luck.

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