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Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 11:39 • #1 
Master Guide
Joined: 06/07/12
Posts: 744
Location: US-CA
Interesting couple of threads regarding 4 weight rods and (lack of) love. I thought this topic might merit its own thread.

I DO like my black glass 4 wt Scott. With it, I can do fairly delicate work and also handle decent-sized dry dropper rigs. I used it to catch all of the California Heritage Trout species back in 2020. On the other hand, I just did not bond with my Hardy Test glass rod - I was constantly throwing tailing loops with it.

I kind of feel like many 4 weights might fall into a gap - not quite substantial enough for big waters, but not really delicate like lighter creek rods. On the other hand, maybe a good one can do both?

Thoughts?


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 11:46 • #2 
Guide
Joined: 04/04/13
Posts: 192
Location: Central Maryland
They perfect for many of the streams and small to medium sized rivers that I fish.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 11:56 • #3 
New Member
Joined: 03/15/22
Posts: 19
Location: Canon City Colorado
I mainly use a 4 wt every where. I only have 1 fiberglass thats a T L Johnson synergy
4 wt. But I mainly fish bamboo any more in a 4 wt. (also if you don't like 4 wt. you can send them all to me.)


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 12:01 • #4 
Guide
Joined: 08/11/21
Posts: 156
Location: Tucson, AZ
My favorite 4 wt graphite rod is a Scott "Eclipse" 9' 3 pc...moderate action with some power.

A Scott 8'8" "G" series 4 wt, again 3 pc is a favorite for more delicate fishing...swinging softhackles, small nymphs, poppers etc

Though not calling for a 4 wt line, a Phillipson custom 6'6" is the only real 4 wt glass rod I fish, for small creeks that tumble down our steep AZ mountains

Got rid of a favorite Sage 8' 4 wt SP..to a friend, luckily, that was a good dry fly and streamer rod.

When I buy a new glass rod, after casting it first, it will probably a 7'6" or 8' 4 wt


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 12:29 • #5 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 08/25/08
Posts: 1523
Location: Delton, MI
Where the heck is this coming from? 4wts are GOTO trout weights, have been for years, and it isn’t going to change. I have seen a penchant for buying 2 and 3 wt graphite rods in recent years. But 95% of those are 4 and 5 wt rods. Just because it says 2 or 3 wt, doesn’t mean they fish best at those weights. Most rod ratings for modern rods seem to be set for the longest line it can cast. But that’s not necessarily the best line for fishing distances for that rod. I had a guy bring a 2wt graphite rod to me one time that was a pool cue of a 2wt. I brought him line after line but didn’t tell him what weights they were. After deciding which he liked best for accuracy, joy of casting, etc, I told him it was a 6wt line. Get over the line rating listed on the rod and cast it with different lines. Cast it at different distances, especially with 1-30 feet of fly line out of the rod tip because those are typical trout fishing distances. Go ahead and see how far you can cast it but don’t let that determine which rod you should buy. See what line is most accurate and casts most comfortably. When you do that, you’ll find that the rods that cast a 4wt line best are great trout rods.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 12:32 • #6 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 06/21/06
Posts: 2912
Location: Orygun
???

If all I fished for were small stream trout, I'd probably have a stable of 4wts rivaling my current stable of 10wts.

just boils down to one's preferred target....I wouldn't say "lack of love" by any stretch.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 13:02 • #7 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 10/09/09
Posts: 2692
Location: US-NM
4wts are great and I have more 4wts than any other rod.5pc. Scott,Barklay,Steffen and a 6pc.Lammy all fished with a 4........Aurelio
And a Fenwick 7’ hmg 4wt. Just a awesome rod that thinks it’s glass


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 13:10 • #8 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/10/07
Posts: 1527
Location: The Netherlands
I'm known as "Mr. Four Weight" :D


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 13:33 • #9 
Guide
Joined: 02/06/16
Posts: 263
Location: US
Ummmm, who doesn't fish 4wts? My ********* 864 and Kabuto 8033 see a lot of action!


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 13:40 • #10 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 09/03/07
Posts: 2027
Location: Marble Falls, Texas
Great small to medium stream rods for me. If it’s windy I’ll use a 7.5 Sage BSFL, not so windy a 7’3” Jenkins PLG. This doesn’t include the graphites.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 13:45 • #11 
Guide
Joined: 09/05/17
Posts: 237
Location: On a Stream
Five weight for me is the foundation of a rod lineup. I believe in skipping a size, next size up or down is too close for me to offer a significant justifiable difference. So a four will never be in my lineup.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 14:18 • #12 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 08/25/08
Posts: 1523
Location: Delton, MI
Cappy, I think that’s a terrific way to go. I suggest just that to those trying to limit their fly rod count but still fish all kinds of fish in all kinds of water. My son has a 9ft, 8ft, and 7ft 5wt and a 9ft 7wt and 9ft 9wt. That’s 5 rods total. The 9 footers are graphite and the shorter two are Steffen glass. He is never wanting for anything more but fishes the devil out of all of them.


Last edited by CrustyBugger on 09 Jul 2022, 14:20, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 14:20 • #13 
Master Guide
Joined: 09/29/09
Posts: 864
Location: US-MI



Two of my favorite four weights in fiberglass. Also like a couple of bamboo and graphite rods in this line weight quite well that are true four weights.

Agree that some rods, especially common in graphite rods made within the past 15 years, don’t fill me with joy using a four weight line.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 14:37 • #14 
Guide
Joined: 06/15/20
Posts: 142
Location: Toledo, Ohio, USA.
I also love 4wts. In fact, I think 4 wts 7'6" and shorter are the ideal small creek rods. Sure, lots of people love 3wts and lighter. But give me a four. Much better at handling terrestrials, dry-droppers, and small streamers that I often use of small creeks. If I never owned a 1, 2, or 3 wt rod I would still be just and happy. And you can still feel a small fish on a 4wt.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 15:15 • #15 
Sport
Joined: 12/20/19
Posts: 87
Location: Christchurch, NZ
I like to fish as light as possible and practical and 4 weights are the go for me.
I have a pretty impressive collection of 4 weights in glass and some are great for nymphs and others great for dries. Others great all rounders. Some progressive and some parabolic .
All are wonderful in certain situations .
Michael


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 16:40 • #16 
Global Moderator
Joined: 04/20/07
Posts: 8588
Location: US-ME
Chose a line weight (and rod designed to cast that weight) based on the size of the flies to be used predominantly. The size of the fish and the water conditions are secondary. So of course there is plenty of use for a 4 weight. If "big" fish and "big" water kicks in, go up a weight or two for the same size flies. If high wind is a factor, same thing, realizing that "delicacy" on a wind-riffled surface is far less important. Realize that in the fiberglass heyday, a 5 weight was considered light, and delicacy was achieved in leader design. You could fish 20s and up just fine on a 5 weight and still can. But there is a much larger selection of 4 weights available today, and plenty of conditions to put them to work.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 17:23 • #17 
Master Guide
Joined: 08/03/14
Posts: 889
Location: central AR
My gateway back into glass was an original Diamondglass 8’
4 wgt. I don’t fish it much as I have way more rods than time, but when I do, WOW! Then I feel guilty about leaving it in the tube so much.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 18:45 • #18 
New Member
Joined: 10/20/21
Posts: 10
Location: Oregon
I spent last evening on the Deschutes River in Central Oregon with my 7’6” Epic glass 4wt for the evening caddis hatch. The fishing was fast and furious and my 4wt was the perfect tool for casting a light elk hair caddis dry-dropper rig to the raising rainbows. This is now my favorite rod for summer evening dry fly fishing.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 09 Jul 2022, 21:24 • #19 
Guide
Joined: 02/02/16
Posts: 348
Location: Georgia
My only 4 wts are dual line rated - a Steffen 3/4 and a Trout Smiths 4/5. The Steffen 3/4 is my closest to a true 4 wt, but I’m well stocked on glass 5, 6, and 7 wts. Like Whrlpool said, I always use fly size as the primary consideration when selecting a line weight, and I like to throw big flies, mostly to bass these days. I would say water conditions are a clear second and then fish size falls to third consideration in riverine fishing environments.

That said, I will probably add a true 4 wt in the 7’9 - 8’ range eventually when I can travel more often for trout fishing with smaller flies. McFarland and Kenney are two makers that are near the top of my list for potential 4 wt rods.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 10 Jul 2022, 05:21 • #20 
New Member
Joined: 05/03/14
Posts: 23
Location: Jämtland - Sweden
Wind, rather than fly size, has been my main reason for not going for a four wieght. Is that just bad logic? Are rod taper, length, and line taper greater factors when it comes to wind?

Wind can really up where I live and we lack large terrestrials. I fish brown trout with light dropper rigs or a single dry/unweighted nymph.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 10 Jul 2022, 05:47 • #21 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 06/24/11
Posts: 1091
Location: Belgium
I often cast 4wt lines on 3 and 5wt rated rods, let alone 4wt rated rods. For the trout fishing I do the 4wt is king.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 10 Jul 2022, 07:55 • #22 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 11/06/17
Posts: 2170
Location: South of Joplin
I'm much more of a short rod #7 type, so if I take the skip a weight advice above, going down would be #5, then #3 which is probably a mislabeled #5, etc. and I use a #7 line on most rods marked as #5; so back to the 6.5'-7.5' #6/7 and easy fishing.
Having fished a lot of still water with a #9 line (for roll cast mass) and #20-24 flies I've never found a need to go ultra light. I did cast enough of Humphreys' flat mono back ca1980 that I know you don't need a special rod to use very light lines. Since there is no accepted standard for rating a rod the same rod can marked #3 or #9 and one is as true as the other.
Is there a #4 line that will roll cast 40-50'?


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 10 Jul 2022, 09:27 • #23 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 10/09/09
Posts: 2692
Location: US-NM
Trev I fish my GP Barklay with a SA mastery trout WF 4 and it will roll cast 40’ with ease maybe 50 in the hands of a good caster very powerful rod........Aurelio


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 10 Jul 2022, 09:40 • #24 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 08/25/08
Posts: 1523
Location: Delton, MI
You can go 4 6 8 10 just as easy as 3 5 7 9. A 4 or 5 can cast most any dry fly, nymph, or small streamer you care to throw at a trout. But true 3’s start to limit the flies you can throw, especially in the wind. You can also present dry flies very delicately with a 5 or 6 wt. That’s what long leaders and good technique are for.


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Re: Nobody likes 4 wts?
Post 10 Jul 2022, 10:09 • #25 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 10/09/09
Posts: 2692
Location: US-NM
What Crusty said sums it up........Aurelio


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