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Sloppy Wraps from Orvis?
Post 05 Oct 2021, 19:18 • #1 
Sport
Joined: 08/11/20
Posts: 65
Location: Ontario, Canada
I’ve never built a rod so I might not know what I’m looking at, but I can’t recall ever seeing thread wraps with this many gaps before. Is the QC at Orvis slipping or is this on par for a $500 fly rod?




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Post 05 Oct 2021, 20:00 • #2 
Global Moderator
Joined: 04/20/07
Posts: 8334
Location: US-ME
I think your best bet is to ask them if the rod meets their expectations. It is one rod that may or may not be representative. Personally, I wouldn't be concerned about it. What macro photography shows is not what the eye sees in common view. Others would be more fastidious about it. Dark-light thread-blank combinations do show anomalies more readily, but they are still inconsequential unless made the focus of using a fly rod. They secure the guides to the bank just fine. Wouldn't want to speak for or about a product based on one sample. Quite likely, Orvis would accept a return or exchange if you aren't satisfied, regardless of whether someone else says you should or shouldn't be. So asking is the best starting point for questions about a single transaction, and the outcome is between the customer and the seller.


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Post 05 Oct 2021, 22:32 • #3 
Sport
Joined: 08/11/20
Posts: 65
Location: Ontario, Canada
This is sage advice and insightful feedback. Much appreciated.


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 05:46 • #4 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 12/05/06
Posts: 1734
Location: US-PA
However, QC with these rods has come up before:

viewtopic.php?f=32&t=63685&p=382941

viewtopic.php?f=32&t=44451&p=211769

If it was me, I'd call them to task and get them to fix it and up their game.


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 11:10 • #5 
Sport
Joined: 08/11/20
Posts: 65
Location: Ontario, Canada
So, I did just as suggested. I sent an email to Orvis with photos of the wraps and reel seat, asking if this met their standards of build quality. I got a response within 12 hours from a guy who fishes the 764-3 Superfine glass. He said that while his rod also has some gaps in the wraps, they’re not nearly as pronounced or as numerous as the ones on my rod. He said that this rod doesn’t meet their build standards and should not have left the shop. He let me know that I can absolutely exchange the rod at no cost through the shop where I purchased the rod. If they don’t have another in stock, I can send the rod directly to Orvis, but they won’t have stock until mid December. He let me know that I’m welcome to keep fishing the rod until then and it wouldn’t at all impact the warranty exchange. That’s very generous but a moot issue, as trout season is closed up here now.

Either way, it’s good to know that Orvis at least stands by their warranty. While this has been an edifying process, I might just save myself the postage and keep fishing this rod. It’s really pretty sweet!

Thanks again for the helpful replies, tight lines!


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 11:26 • #6 
Master Guide
Joined: 11/11/13
Posts: 557
Location: US-CA
Hello, this has been on going problem with the SFG rods since the series was introduced. I really enjoy the series but the build quality is very suspect. I am surprised Orvis sends out rods with such poor quality wraps. I have a 4, 5 and 6 wt. in this series and the wraps on all three rods were so poorly done I refinished/ wrapped each rod. I will say the cork on my rods is very high quality.


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 11:47 • #7 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 12/05/06
Posts: 1734
Location: US-PA
While Orvis build quality may have slipped in recent times, it's good to know that Orvis customer service hasn't.


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 12:20 • #8 
Sport
Joined: 08/18/21
Posts: 30
Location: Southern Maine
I would echo the comments already made. My first SFG had similar issues but Orvis customer support was excellent. The new rod is marginally better but fishes excellent and is one of my favorites. I'll likely add an 8 wt from them soon due to the experience.


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 14:20 • #9 
Guide
Joined: 06/08/18
Posts: 195
Location: Boston , MA
I myself have also noticed these issues , I own 2 Orvis SFG’s , first one being a 7’-3wt when they first were introduced , beautiful rod , nicely crafted , one of my favorites , next was their latest 8wt configuration bought last year , and yes , subpar wraps , rather sloppy epoxy work , remember thinking exactly as you are , but , as whirlpool stated what may be the proper avenue to pursue if dissatisfied , these things weren’t enough of a bother to me , rod was bought for a particular purpose and function , which it served nicely , kinda like one of those “good enough” 10 footer paint jobs on your old Camaro , and I do enjoy the rod(s) very much , but Orvis is a stand up company with their products , and sounds like they are going over and above past/present/ and future to keep customers happy , that to me anyway , is well worth the price of admission itself … Best outcome for you BigHeavy , I’m sure things will work out perfectly …


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Post 06 Oct 2021, 17:19 • #10 
Master Guide
Joined: 12/31/15
Posts: 965
Location: The Rockies
I saw similar issues with a 476, but I don’t think they were quite that bad. It convinced me to try rod building, since I figured I could do as well or better on my own wraps.

At the time, Orvis had a shipping label you could request from their website for a reduced price. They would then deduct that cost from your return. They were kind enough not to charge me for it when they processed everything.

Their customer service was quite good.


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Post 11 Oct 2021, 12:53 • #11 
Master Guide
Joined: 07/18/07
Posts: 645
Location: US-NH
I just checked my 6 wt and here is what I found.


The butt section was nicely done.


There was a "run" in the ink? Looks like 8/19 :-)

There was paint brush hair left behind in the middle section:-)


I still have 20+ years of warranty :-)

Other than these issues, the rod is fun to fish.


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Post 12 Oct 2021, 12:45 • #12 
Sport
Joined: 08/18/21
Posts: 30
Location: Southern Maine
That brush hair certainly add character.


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Post 12 Oct 2021, 17:19 • #13 
Guide
Joined: 05/08/15
Posts: 108
Location: Victoria Australia
At least it wasn't a curly hair :lol


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Post 13 Oct 2021, 22:24 • #14 
Guide
Joined: 12/11/20
Posts: 293
Location: Dallas, TX
Doublehaul, I can highly recommend the SFG 8! I have a 6 that I love fishing also. I’d buy a 4 too, if I didn’t have so damn many other 4s I love.


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Post 15 Oct 2021, 10:33 • #15 
Guide
Joined: 02/06/16
Posts: 220
Location: US
Just in general I think Orvis is an outstanding company to deal with. I have sent them back numerous old superfines and CFO's that I have picked up along the way that had one issue or another. Although these were all well out of warranty, Orvis repaired them all for just a fee of $30.00 a pop. You can't beat that. And it makes a whole lot of marketing sense too, says a lot for a manufacturer, if their rods and reels are still being used after 30+ years.


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Post 22 Nov 2021, 01:16 • #16 
New Member
Joined: 07/25/18
Posts: 21
Location: US-CA
I had a 23 year old Orvis rod that broke at the ferrule and sent it in. 3 months later I get a hydros (not what I wanted) but it was a beautiful rod, impeccably finished. I own a lot of Orvis as a result of that experience.


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Post 22 Nov 2021, 08:50 • #17 
Master Guide
Joined: 04/12/18
Posts: 399
Location: Upstate NY - L.George region
kimosabe131 wrote:
There was paint brush hair left behind in the middle section:-)
Other than these issues, the rod is fun to fish.



That reminds of the time Ducati sent an example of their new 750SS to Cycle magazine for a product test back in the 1970s. The magazine staffers found a housefly in the paint on the fuel tank of the what was to become legendary bike. :lol


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Post 23 Nov 2021, 15:06 • #18 
Guide
Joined: 01/19/11
Posts: 219
Location: Ontario, Canada
My Orvis SFG 805 (built in 2014) is my first (modern) fiberglass rod. (In the early 90s I fished a really nice Lamiglass S-glass 8' 6" #7/8 wt.) While the new Orvis 805 glass was a sweet casting rod, it had a few faults in its build that really surprised me, for a 400.00 + CAD (mid price) fly rod.

The tip-top & the whipping below it did not touch each other, with quite a gap at one side. Sure, the tip-top itself was cemented on securely, but it just didn't look right cosmetically. Soon after, I discovered that the rod's guides were not in proper alignment. If I set up the tip & middle sections, the guides were perfectly in line. However, I could not then set up the butt section to line up with the middle & tip sections. This rod could be fished but lacked the minimum requirements for guide alignment. The fly shop where I bought the rod did not want to deal with any warranty claim. I was on my own.

With some difficulty, I was able to contact the manager of the rod crafting shop in Manchester Vermont. He was very supportive & suggested that I ship the rod to him. As it happened, that Spring, my wife & I were planning to go to Cape Cod. If we routed through Manchester, I could hand the rod over to the shop. Besides, I wanted to get a shop tour & visit the main Orvis store in the town.
On seeing the rod the shop manager wondered how this rod initially got through the shop door. You could see the miss-alignment of the guides, yet the Laser at the shop could shoot through all the guides. He told me that he would personally build a rod that will be done correctly. We returned to Canada a week later to find an Orvis rod waiting for me at the post office. What fantastic customer service.

During the shop tour, I wanted to see how Orvis wraps the guides & particularly how the epoxy finishes are performed. That part of the rod assembly was not on our shop tour itinerary. I was told that much of the guide wrapping is done at home by the crafts persons, then these rods are checked at the shop, both visually & with a Laser. The epoxy finishes are then applied in a dust free room.

With improved cosmetics & properly aligned guides, this 3pc. Orvis 8' 5wt.glass rod has served me well indeed. It took me a season to get used to the handling characteristics of a modern s-glass rod. Casting the rod was pleasurable, but during that year I lost a lot of fish. This Orvis glass rod got me interested in fishing with fiberglass. By 2016, a fine Scott F2 7'7" 4wt stick followed. I thinned my herd of (soft) graphite rods down to three old favourites that get little use.
In 2020 Dusty built me a fantastic Livingston 806 & this year a tad longer 865 that's waiting now to be cast & fished.
Now I'm truly hooked!


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