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United Composites/Graphite USA Rods

tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 240 Deckhand
Who uses these rods? How do you like them? Are there any dealers in Florida that sell their factory rods, or are there only custom builders?

Replies

  • privateer19privateer19 Posts: 439 Deckhand
    i have a couple of them. they are great rods. super light, very strong and very fast action but all that comes at a price, big money. only place i know to buy them is Charkbait.
  • ReverendoReverendo SoFlPosts: 13 Greenhorn
    Yea I have one that I haven't used yet.  It's teamed up with an Avet Raptor.  It is extremely strong for it's weight.  A lot of west coast anglers swear by them and this is why I got one.  Those guys are very particular about their tackle.
  • TugasTugas Posts: 202 Deckhand
    I loved the wahoo .. also the tilefish... I’m not sure where to get one of their blanks from without paying a lot in shipping but outside of that they’re pretty purchaseable in factory form. 
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 240 Deckhand
    Tugas, what are the wahoo and tilefish rods used mainly for here in Florida?  I know they're 8 foot blanks, so are they good Tortugas rods?  What is the maximum weight each rod can handle, specifically for bottom fishing?
  • TugasTugas Posts: 202 Deckhand
    They’re awesome for bottom fishing and perfect for your needs. I used them on Yankee Capts and either rod is capable of fishing 2lbs of lead and still being very sensitive while providing lots of lift when needed within a fight with bottom species. They’re also lighter than calstars.. think of a calstar generation 2 ... I sold mine only because it was factory and I’ve grown to just prefer. 9ft bottom rod for most of my needs. Their blanks are really hard to get to Florida so I just built my calstars with a twist to be exactly what I wanted. So now I have a 900h a .. a special blank ... a phenix hybrid 929h and a 800h that I use almost exclusively for shallow water grouper fishing with heavy drag, line, and leader. 

    I truly love love when I can fish 20oz or less and can use my phenix .. it’s lighter than both mentioned and has the same lift as a 900h. 
  • InstaGatorInstaGator Posts: 177 Deckhand
    Tugas, i have researched the United composites blanks and think these will be the perfect YC rod, specifically the rods for hammered jigs.  I will be getting a UC Challenger elite 700 XH for my 8-10oz hammered jigs.  This is a 7ft rod for 30-50# braid.  I am building my rob and it will weigh approx 13 oz when finished.  To me this rod stands out for what I wil be using it for as it is extremely light with great action and lifting power.  You can buy the rod from CharkBait.com completed rod for $269.  You can get the blank for about $135.

    Also, I will be buying 2 calstar blanks as I know of a place that has a couple for sale.  I will be getting the GF800 H and GF700M.  These are essentially the same blank only one is 8’ and the other is 7’.  These have been the typically recommended YC rods and they are great.  I just want to get 2 while I can as the company will not be around for much longer I am afraid and they are classics.  I do think as you stated they are the next generation of rods, 1 degree further advanced than the calstar.  I would be interested in your thought on the UC swimbait fanatics, RUC711XH.  These are 7’11” i believe and rated for 30-60# braid and 4-10 oz jigs.  They are finished as a split but rod and would seem perfect for jigging hammered jigs on the YC.
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 240 Deckhand
    I have talked to the folks at UC/Graphite USA and the tilefish and RUC711xh swimbait blanks are basically the same. Does anyone know of a dealer in Florida that has finished rods or blanks in these models in stock? Right now it's almost impossible to get any one piece blank or rod that's 8 feet long or longer shipped via UPS, Fed Ex or USPS. United Composites is shipping BOXES of at least 7  or 8 rods via Southwest Airlines - airport to airport. I'm seriously considering starting a small shop and selling United Composites, Temple Reef and perhaps Phenix here in Florida in the next year or two. The wholesaler for Temple Reef has a minimum opening order of $3000 to get started so I figure it will cost at least $20,000 - $40,000 to start a shop. It would be a specialty retail store - I was in that business as both a manager and owner for 15 years. Shipping might still be a problem if UPS, Fed Ex, etc. don't change their policies. On the other hand, I have driven about 120 miles one way to deliver a GLoomis GLX fly rod back in the day.
  • TugasTugas Posts: 202 Deckhand
    edited February 2019 #9
    I forgot .. I think the best new style blank for Florida fishing has to go to the phenix hybrid 869xh... it’s lighter than UC.. more lift ... muuuuch easier to get than a UC in any length ... it’s just faster ... but the 867 is the mildest and really a GEM.. if the UC were more accessible and if it came in 9ft it would be a better fight but those two things matter so me so... if I were you I’d get that blank ... I use it for bottom fishing and hammered diamond jigs when I use them . A little pricey but I am almost certain you won’t be disappointed. 
  • Yeaaa_ChrisYeaaa_Chris Posts: 558 Officer
    Tugas, i have researched the United composites blanks and think these will be the perfect YC rod, specifically the rods for hammered jigs.  I will be getting a UC Challenger elite 700 XH for my 8-10oz hammered jigs.  This is a 7ft rod for 30-50# braid.  I am building my rob and it will weigh approx 13 oz when finished.  To me this rod stands out for what I wil be using it for as it is extremely light with great action and lifting power.  You can buy the rod from CharkBait.com completed rod for $269.  You can get the blank for about $135.

    Also, I will be buying 2 calstar blanks as I know of a place that has a couple for sale.  I will be getting the GF800 H and GF700M.  These are essentially the same blank only one is 8’ and the other is 7’.  These have been the typically recommended YC rods and they are great.  I just want to get 2 while I can as the company will not be around for much longer I am afraid and they are classics.  I do think as you stated they are the next generation of rods, 1 degree further advanced than the calstar.  I would be interested in your thought on the UC swimbait fanatics, RUC711XH.  These are 7’11” i believe and rated for 30-60# braid and 4-10 oz jigs.  They are finished as a split but rod and would seem perfect for jigging hammered jigs on the YC.

    I have a UC CE 700h that I use for the same purpose and it’s crazy light compared to most bottom rods out there. The action is nothing like other composites out, it’s stiff in the tip with a mod-fast action.

    Another light blank to check out is the black hole challenger bank, those things are legit. I have a Medium heavy, and am always impressed with the lift on this little rod. 

    Also, get bit outdoors is a Florida dealer for united composites, and the shipping prices for blanks up to 8 feet is something like 5-10 bucks. Takes a couple weeks for them to get the blank in, but you’ll get it with out paying a fortune ordering from the west coast. 
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 240 Deckhand
    Shipping thru UPS and Fed EX has gone though the roof on packages longer than 95 inches. I asked a local UPS store what it would cost to ship an 8 & 1/2 foot 4 inch rod tube from Jacksonville to Miami and they told me it would be more than $1000!! I was in Strike Zone yesterday and we got to talking about this. Dave Workman told me a customer wanted to ship a G Loomis rod and the shipping cost was $900. He said something to the effect that they may start selling more 8 foot rods now. They order their rods in larger quantities and have them trucked in to his store. I may see if Greyhound will ship 8 or 9 foot rods at a reasonable price.  It looks like it will be tough to get 8 foot or longer rods or blanks through mail order, at least for the near future, that's for sure. 
  • InstaGatorInstaGator Posts: 177 Deckhand
    Tugas that is a sweet looking rod, the phoenix hereby 869xh. I will have to check them out.  I will be building 4 rods soon so I may need to wait a few months before I start another rod.
  • TONY_YNOTTONY_YNOT Posts: 81 Greenhorn
    Los Angeles, CA - to - Miami, FL, a 9' x1' x1' box is $249.51 going through UPS Ground and can weigh up to 94lbs. You can probably fit at least 12 rods. Seems like you have to order quite a few of them to make it reasonable and keep the individual costs down.
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 240 Deckhand
    Thanks for the info, Tony. For 12 rods, the shipping cost is about $21 per rod. I didn't ask the guy I spoke with at United Composites what their dealer cost was, but I think it's probably around a 30% markup. If you use that markup for a $350 rod you're going to make $105.00 for every rod you sell. Take $21.00 from that for shipping and you're left with what, $84.00 profit from every rod you sell so you need to sell a lot of rods to make any money. BTW, selling high end rods may not be where a shop make the most money. The majority of profits often come from selling line, lures, hooks, sinkers, etc. and soft goods, i. e. clothing, tackle bags, etc. Many of these goods carry higher profit margins than rods and reels. Rods and reels do help get your potential customers' attention and had large amounts of $$$ to you gross sales though, and help draw them to your business, as does well done marketing such as blogs, chat rooms and just well done web sites in general.
  • bryguybryguy Posts: 31 Greenhorn
    I have 2 UC rods.........one GUSA tilefish jr and one challenger elite mega.  Both rods have Avets and work great for Mangroves and grouper out at the middle groudns(can not imagine they would not work equally well in the Keys)  I caught my biggest red grouper on the mega and an SX Raptor last summer.  No problem at all on that fish.  The guys at Charkbait now have a deal worked out with FedEx to ship rods up 8 1/2 feet long for $50 anywhere in the USA. 
    The tielsfish jr I have has a reel seat on it, and I am not as big a fan of that as I am of the deckhand style rods.  I have 3 deckhand rods and much prefer them over a rod with a conventional seat.  It gives you much more latitude in reel placement and comfort.  I use cork puppies and have not had any issue with reel twist even with the Avet HX on the XH Rainshadow I have.  I have caught big AJs and some nice gags with no issue using a deckhand rod and the cork puppy.  I will be adding a monster challenger elite and a MXL raptor to my arsenal soon..........their rods are well worht what they costs to me.   
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