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Hardy Rods

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windknotz88
Posts: 64
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2015 10:12 pm

Hardy Rods

#1

Post by windknotz88 » Mon May 20, 2019 4:02 am

“Wire isn’t cutting it”

Hardy has been a staple of my club (affectionately, the Elk River Pirates) for ten years. The smooth, progressive taper and unparalleled power and feel of the Zenith has sent us searching for its blanks for years after the blank was discontinued for reasons we still have yet to ascertain. Yet despite this manufacture’s flawless taper design, we have come to understand its failings: the guides absolutely suck.

Of the four or five rods we’ve owned among the Elk River pirates, (a 5wt. 9ft. Zenith 7wt. 9’6 Zenith, a 7wt. 8’10 Zenith one-piece, and a 7wt. 9ft. Wraith) all of them have developed this flaw in the guides singular to the brand: a marked, audible screeching and failure to take up the slack on a back haul, and a reduction in shooting/slipping ability by up to fifty percent despite rigorous cleaning of the fly line. For example, once, after attributing the line’s lack of performance to filth (in 90% of instances of this issue, this is the case as we all know), we cleaned it thoroughly per the manufacturer’s specifications and tried it again with the same effect. In frustration, we concluded that the line must be defective; we bought a brand new fly line, strung it up, and it produced the same effect! No shoot, no feed on the haul, and that same screeching noise. We concluded, since it was the same type and brand of fly line, that we had gotten a batch of duffers, so we put the reel on another seven weight of a different brand and ZING: it shot beautifully. The haul-feed was perfect, the sluggish shoot was eliminated, it behaved the way a new fly line ought to, and the screeching noise was gone. The problem had to be in the guides.

I obtained a jeweler’s loop and examined each of the guides on two of the rods but could find no issue. I used Brasso polishing solution on each of the guides with a Q-tip and the problem seemed to be fixed, but after an hour, it returned with a vengeance. Imagine executing the haul the way God intended only to have the line go slack on the back cast. Imagine shooting your bass bug towards that pocket near the reedy bank only to have the anticipated length shoot short with a pronounced “SCREEEEEECH!”

We concluded that there is something wrong with Hardy’s guides. We called Hardy, and their rep admitted that they’ve heard this problem before. We asked, politely, if we stripped these damned inferior guides off and put some other guides on the stick if it would void the warranty, they said that it would, but we can’t keep useless rods in our arsenal, so we ate it, stripped the guides off and installed some mudhole ring lock ceramic guides all the way, and the problem has sorted itself beautifully. If anybody out there is experiencing this thing, there’s only one solution: strip those bullshit guides off and install some micro ceramic guides; it’ll void the warranty but it is the only way to get the most out of the blank until Hardy does something to fix this issue. If any of you know anybody in Hardy, tell them what is up. We want to love this company, and we have surely put our money into it, but they've got to love us back with solid components.
MCI Cleveland TN. Lee University Anglers.

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Graeme H
Posts: 1614
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:54 pm
Location: Perth, Western Australia

Hardy Rods

#2

Post by Graeme H » Mon May 20, 2019 4:37 am

"Haul Lock". I attribute it to line being wedged into the "V" made between the wire guide and the blank.

That's the phenomenon that originally pushed me towards making my own rods incorporating guides with ceramic inserts throughout. I've never regretted that decision.

Cheers,
Graeme
FFi CCI

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Paul Arden
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Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:20 am
Location: Belum Rainforest
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Hardy Rods

#3

Post by Paul Arden » Mon May 20, 2019 10:23 am

Hi Brian,

I think they are using titanium Recoils for rings. Personally I really like these rings but they can make a screeching noise, particularly the stripping guides (but from images I can see they don’t use these). A dry line will cause it.

There are a couple of solutions - one is other rings - lined rings really are fantastic but weight for weight they are heavier than recoils. Another is the Shoot product that we don’t currently stock. This is an low viscosity silicone oil - I may be about to buy a barrel of the stuff (200KG!) because I can only seem to buy in bulk. I’ve been testing different viscosities for just over 2 years. I use a lot of this when fishing but even so that would be very many lifetime’s worth so I have to come up with a cunning plan - one which must involve either selling in bulk or wholesaling a product that no one knows about!

Yes it’s a shame that most rod manufacturers don’t allow modifications. We do by the way. I have no problems if you change the rings, handle, finish, real seat. That’s all fine with me and doesn’t invalidate the infinite guarantee.

I’m not sure what causes the screech but I think it has to do with the flexibility of the guides. It’s not a Hardy issue, but a Recoil guides issue. But as I say with wet or preferably silicone oil lubricated lines it should disappear.

Cheers, Paul
It's an exploration; bring a flyrod.

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Geenomad
Posts: 370
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2013 10:11 pm
Location: Melbourne

Hardy Rods

#4

Post by Geenomad » Mon May 20, 2019 11:36 am

As ever mileage varies. I have two Hardy Wraiths, a 5wt and a 6wt. The 5wt is what I practice and fish with most often so over a couple of years I hate to think how many miles of line have been through the guides. Both rods had a screech issue early on but neither has one now.

Yes I'm a bit anal with line cleaning and dressing using various silicone based/included products. Mostly I use Barrio lines - GT90 and GT125. Can't explain the different experience or why my screeching guides went quiet but I'm bloody glad they did.

Adore the 5wt as it has, for me, the perfect balance between power and finesse. Think it has softened a little bit after a gazillion long casts but that doesn't bother me. I've probably softened a bit too. :D

Cheers
Mark
"The line of beauty is the result of perfect economy." R. W. Emerson.
https://thecuriousflycaster.com

Thomas
Posts: 213
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:24 am

Hardy Rods

#5

Post by Thomas » Mon May 20, 2019 1:41 pm

Hi everybody,

I recently changed the guides on an saltwater 8-weight. I went from ordinary - relatively thick wire snakes - to thinner snakebrands and I now have a screeching-problem with some lines. I am convinced the thinner wire is the problem. I wish I had stayed with the same kind of thick-wire guides.

Cheers Thomas

Thomas
Posts: 213
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:24 am

Hardy Rods

#6

Post by Thomas » Mon May 20, 2019 2:01 pm

Hi again,

I guess what I´m trying to say is that this is not only a recoil-problem. The thinner the wire - the more problems.

/Thomas

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sms
Posts: 297
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:12 pm
Location: Southern Finland

Hardy Rods

#7

Post by sms » Mon May 20, 2019 7:47 pm

Thomas, single foots?
I'm here just for the chicks.

-Sakke

Thomas
Posts: 213
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:24 am

Hardy Rods

#8

Post by Thomas » Mon May 20, 2019 8:01 pm

Hi SMS,

No regular snakes. Oh and I changed the tiptop as well. From a regular one with thick wire to a snakebrand one with thinner wire.

/Thomas

windknotz88
Posts: 64
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2015 10:12 pm

Hardy Rods

#9

Post by windknotz88 » Thu May 23, 2019 3:49 pm

Exactly! That is our theory too. The idea that thinner wire diameter will produce less friction has a point of diminishing return, where the diameter gets so narrow that it becomes a knife point that digs into the line, preventing or severely slowing the slip.
MCI Cleveland TN. Lee University Anglers.

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Paul Arden
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Hardy Rods

#10

Post by Paul Arden » Thu May 23, 2019 3:56 pm

Or maybe it’s a screeching because it’s shooting so fast? :D Anyway there bang goes my “vibration theory”!!

Cheers, Paul
It's an exploration; bring a flyrod.

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