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Post Number: 1
Bill Hanneman

Group: Members
Posts: 710
Joined: Oct. 2004
 Posted on: Mar. 30 2007,04:01

SEXYLOOPERS’ GUIDE to the COMMON CENTS  SYSTEM (CCS) and the UNIVERSAL ROD RATING SYSTEM (URRS)

The Common Cents System (CCS) is universally recognized as the first practical approach for defining and objectively measuring, by relative means, fly rod action and power.

The data presented here are tyical results I obtained on a selection of Sage and Redington fly rods

A full discussion of the details of the development of this method, definitions, and the precise methods for making the measurements are available at the Common Cents Information site at www.rodbuilding.org.

Briefly, the system involves:
1.  Firmly support a fly rod by its handle in a horizontal position and attach a lightweight plastic sack to its tip.
2,  Add new shining, U.S. one cent pieces (which weigh 2.50 grams each) to the sack until the tip of the rod is deflected downward from the horizon a distance equal to one third of the length of the rod.
3.  Count the number of cents required and convert that number to ERN (Effective Rod Number) using Table 1.
4. While the rod is so deflected, measure the angle from the horizon formed by the tip top. This value represents the AA (Action Angle).
5.  Add additional cents until the tip of the rod is deflected a distance equal to one half of the length of the rod. Count the number of cents required and convert that number to PR (Power Reservoir) using Table 1.
6.  Support the rod on a flat surface with the tip extending. At one foot intervals from the tip, determine the number of cents required to deflect the rod one third of the distance extended. This value will initially be high, pass through a minimum, and again increase. Determine the minimum value and convert that number to TP (Tip Power) using Table 1.
7.  The results for ERN and AA are commonly called the Defined Bending Index (DBI) written in the form  DBI=ERN / AA.  Typical results are shown in Table 2 under the heading DBI. Results may also be written as ERN (TP, PR) / AA.

The success of the CCS for characterizing fly rods and blanks has led to its application to fishing rods of all types under the guise of the Universal Rod Rating System (URRS).

This is a simplified approach which, while useful for fishing rods in general, does not have the precision desired for most Sexylooper's discussions.

The URRS rating of a rod or blank consists of a set of three numbers representing its ERN, TP, and PR values, in that order and reduced to integers. See the URR column in Table 2. These values are slightly less precise, but more universally useful.

For example, consider the Redington RED FLY in Table 2 having the following CCS values: ERN=5.5, TP=4.6, PR=12.0, AA=62. This produces a URRS rating of 5:4:12 which could be inscribed on that rod for general characterization purposes.

A URRS 5:4:12 rod has an ERN between 5.00 and 5.99, a Tip Power between 4.00 and 4.99, and a Power Reservoir between 12.00 and 12.99. Interpretation of these numbers are in accordance with the concepts of the CCS and the specifications for each range are defined on the “Rosetta Stone.” The fundamental unit of this system is the grain and thus can be traced back to original AFTMA specifications. The total range of power for all rods is much larger than that for just fly rods, consequently, ERN values have been defined up to 200.

The previously described numbers describe the intrinsic properties of the tested rod. These are fixed when the rod is build and cannot be changed by the angler—unless the rod is rebuilt.

Inherent in all of this is the concept the ERN of a rod is directly related to the Weight of Line (WL) which that rod was designed to cast. AFTMA lines are based on the weight of 30 feet of aerialized line—i.e., a cast of 50 feet, counting length of rod, leader, and arm reach—without a haul. For example, an "ideal" AFTMA #5 line weighs 140 grains and has a ELN (Effective Line Number) of 5.5. This leads to the expression of ERN=ELN for a line which balances line weight with rod power (ERN=5.5).

While any angler should have no problems casting such a balanced “outfit,” that is not to say that ERN must equal ELN. The actual choice of line is the prerogative of the angler. It is only logical that one can cast a longer length of lighter line or a shorter length of heavier line with the same effort.

However, more importantly, is how the rod and line combination “feel” to the angler. “Feel” is a function of the response or recovery rate of the “outfit,” which can and will be changed as a function of the weight of line beyond the tip of the rod. This is where the angler applies his personal input.

The CCF (Common Cents Frequency) of a typical fast action graphite rod falls in the range of 80 to 85 cpm,—bamboo ranges around 60 cpm.  By increasing or decreasing one AFTMA line number, one can decrease or increase the frequency of one's outfit by about 5 cpm per line number change.

Actually, there is no reason one cannot use any line with any rod. Modern rods are strong enough to handle almost any line. An experienced angler using a URR 7:3:15 rod can easily cast any line from an AFTMA #3 line to a #15 line by just adjusting his casting stroke. One must just learn to match (adjust) the frequency of your "outfit" with the speed or rate of casting you find desirable.
----------------
Interpretation of values

The reader must recognize that CCS and URRS values are completely objective numbers and carry no connotations of good, bad, or better. They simply reflect the strength and action of the rod tested. That is all.

Nevertheless, once the relative numbers are available, they will be used for comparative purposes. Each individual is entitled to make his own subjective interpretations of what the data suggests to him. A good example of this is illustrated by the column marked X in Table 2.

Here, in my opinion, “X” or the “X Factor” is a measure of level of “Xpertise” or “Xperience” required of the caster in order for him to be able to make full use of the capabilities built into that rod by its designer. You will note that X = PR - TP, and is a mesure of the "action" of the full rod, rather than just the tip, as described by the AA. These data explain, to a point, why the TCR 590 is considered a "beast" by some and a "great 7-weight rod" by others.

I shall  leave the rest of these data for each of you to consider and interpret. However, since all of the above rods are advertised and sold to anglers as “5-wt” rods, I trust you will recognize (1) my insistence that when you describe your rod as a "5-wt," you have not imparted any useful information. (2) When you describe your rod as Brand X, model Y, z ft, you have provided a bit of information to those few individuals who have experience with that particular rod. (3) When you provide CCS or URRS data about your rod, everyone in the world can understand what you are talking about and discuss it intelligently—if they aren’t too lazy.

One last warning. In skilled hands, the CCS is precise enough to measure the variation of ERN about the longitudinal axis of a rod blank. Experience has shown there may be a variation of 0.2 to 0.3 due to the position of the "spine." This is why it is important for each angler to measure his own rod.

ERN     Cents
TP
PR

2          20.5
3          27
4          34
5          41
6          47.5
7          55
8          63
9          71.5
10         82
11         95
12       110
13       127
14       144
15       158.5
16       173

Table 2    Typical Results  (Question marks = degrees of angle)

URR           DBI             X     TP       PR
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
REDINGTON RODS

TRS-3                 5 : 4 :  9       5.1 / 62?       5      4.0       9.4
RED FLY             5 : 4 : 12      5.5 / 62?       7      4.6     12.0
Wayfarer            5 : 3 : 11      5.7 / 68?       8      3.7     11.8
Super Sport        6 : 3 : 13      6.8 / 70?     10      3.1     13.3

SAGE RODS

SLT                      4 : 3 : 11      4.9 / 66?       8      3.1     11.7
Z-Axis                  5 : 3 : 12      5.7 / 70?       9      3.1     12.6
FLI                      6 : 3 : 13      6.5 / 70?       9      3.7     13.4
VT-2                    6 : 3 : 14      6.8 / 73?     10      3.6     14.0
TCR 590              7 : 3 : 15      7.5 / 73?     11      3.6     15.1

URR = ERN : TP : PR     Each value reduced to integer.

DBI = ERN : AA

X = PR - TP       Difference reduced to integer.

Any questions?

Best wishes,
Bill

Post Number: 2
Guest
Unregistered

 Posted on: Mar. 30 2007,04:53

(Bill Hanneman @ Mar. 30 2007,05:01)
QUOTE
6.  Support the rod on a flat surface with the tip extending. At one foot intervals from the tip, determine the number of cents required to deflect the rod one third of the distance extended. This value will initially be high, pass through a minimum, and again increase. Determine the minimum value and convert that number to TP (Tip Power) using Table 1.

Dear Bill,

thanks for the very understandable explanation. The only point I didn't quite get was Point 6. What is defined as "Tip of the rod."?

Cheers,
Thomas

Post Number: 3
Bill Hanneman

Group: Members
Posts: 710
Joined: Oct. 2004
 Posted on: Mar. 30 2007,16:36

T.Z.

On a finished rod, I hang the sack from the tip top. On a blank, about one quarter inch from the tip. I don't find the exact spot makes too much difference—especially for TP.

Bill

Post Number: 4
tatheo

Group: Members
Posts: 15
Joined: Sep. 2006
 Posted on: Mar. 30 2007,20:50

Hi Bill,
I've been using the CCS for a time now but haven't seen the TP & PR & URR before. Have you updated your info on rodbuilder.org because I never read it there? Anyway, very interesting and wondering if you have it somewhere, pdf format or something that we can go and print out in its entirety? Also, what does the X number show as far as expertise? 0-? beginner, 5-10 intermediate, etc.?
Todd

Post Number: 5
Bill Hanneman

Group: Members
Posts: 710
Joined: Oct. 2004
 Posted on: Mar. 30 2007,22:19

tatheo,

The web site will be updated as soon as Tom Kirkman gets around to it. So I have been told. It is comming.

As for the X number, I don't know. Feedback is needed. At any rate, Sage should be happy, as it indicates they cater to experts.

Bill

Post Number: 6
FlyAlf

Group: Members
Posts: 376
Joined: Nov. 2005
 Posted on: Mar. 31 2007,17:57

Thanks Bill!

Would you say that a variance of ERN on around 0,2 - 0,3 is *typical* for flyrods in same series?

I have measured some Streamstix T5 (used in 5 casting cup in Norway), and they vary from 8,9 to 9,4, and also differ 1,5 cm min lenght.

--------------
Alf
------------
Catch & Relax

Post Number: 7
Paul Arden
Fly God 2010

Posts: 25672
Joined: Jul. 2003
 Posted on: Mar. 31 2007,18:23

DON'T PANIC!

--------------
It's an exploration; bring flyrods.

Flycasting Definitions

Post Number: 8
Paul Arden
Fly God 2010

Posts: 25672
Joined: Jul. 2003
 Posted on: Mar. 31 2007,18:45

I reckon if a rod has an ERN of 5.99 you should call it 6, not 5. I dunno Bill, I try to read it but it reminds me of school. Are you a teacher?

--------------
It's an exploration; bring flyrods.

Flycasting Definitions

Post Number: 9
Bill Hanneman

Group: Members
Posts: 710
Joined: Oct. 2004
 Posted on: Apr. 01 2007,05:58

FlyAlf

I believe I said the variation of ERN within a single rod has been shown to vary 0.2 - 0.3 according to “spine “ orientation, and that is typical.  Now a statistician would say that the variation within a series would be equal or greater than that value.  The variation from 8.9 to 9.4 you found is probably within the quality control limits of that rod. The length factor should be accommodated by the length/3 measurement.
In any event, I am glad I don’t have to fish that rod using an AFTMA #5 line.
Bill

Post Number: 10
Bill Hanneman

Group: Members
Posts: 710
Joined: Oct. 2004
 Posted on: Apr. 01 2007,06:06

QUOTE
I reckon if a rod has an ERN of 5.99 you should call it 6, not 5. I dunno Bill, I try to read it but it reminds me of school. Are you a teacher?

Paul,
Sorry, I’m not a teacher—just one who believes words have meanings and one must learn those meanings and use them correctly if one is to carry on an intelligible discussion. Was school a bad experience?

It makes little practical difference to anyone whether one calls a rod an ERN=5.99 or an ERN=6.00. However, there is a considerable difference between integers and fractional numbers.

At the certain risk of offending you and/or a great number of your followers, I would like to make a few comments.

There are whole numbers and there are fractional numbers. By definition, whole numbers are called integers. There are no fractional integers.

In the beginning, the AFTMA defined plastic fly lines on the basis of weight and defined the limits. For example, an AFTMA #5 line weighs 140 plus or minus 10 grains and an AFTMA #6 line weighs between 150 and 172.5 grains. In order to eliminate the problem of what to call a line weighing exactly 150 grains, they set manufacturing specifications which excluded such values and assigned integral values to the AFTMA Line Numbers. THERE ARE NO FRACTIONS—ONLY INTEGERS

Recognizing the fact that there is a significant difference between a #5 line weighing 132 grains and a #5 line weighing 148 grains, the CCS adopted the concept of ELN which would describe the former line as ELN=5.1 and the latter as ELN=5.9. This, of course defined a mid range AFTMA #5 line as having an ELN=5.5 and weighing 140 grains. These are fractional values, not integers. Then, along came faster action rods which were more powerful and needed more weight of line to load them. What to do?

It is not as “macho” to use a “6-wt” rod.  However, one can preserve one’s image  by using a rod which is labeled a “5-wt” rod even though it requires an AFTMA #6 line to load it, if only the line manufacturers produced a line weighing 160 grains and called it a #5 line. Well, they almost did just that, but they couldn’t because AFTMA had formulated the definition, and it just didn’t fit, and there was no way they could unilaterally change it. So, counting on the “intelligence, or lack thereof” of anglers, creativity to the rescue.

The answer: Abandon the AFTMA Integral Standards and create a new system of numbering in which the old 150 grain line is defined as being “5.0” and a new line having a weight of 160 grains is “called 5.5” or described as being one half a line weight heavier—or something like that.

Of course the logical extension of this is the creation of a 5.9 line which actually weights 165  grains.  If it is worked perfectly, we might be able to entirely eliminate 6-wt rods. Who would care? Personally, I wouldn’t, as the problem has already been solved by the ELN system.

Best wishes,
Bill

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