Bamboo Fishing Rods - Bamboo Fishing Poles
Benefits to bamboo fishing rods are plenty. They're lightweight, water resistant and durable. When shopping for a bamboo fishing pole, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Tonkin Bamboo vs. Calcutta
The majority of today's bamboo fishing rods use Tonkin bamboo in their design. Calcutta bamboo is considered even better, but it's much harder to find. If you can find it, it's going to be expensive.
Tonkin bamboo comes from the the banks of the Sui River in China. The bamboo cane is cut into strips and heated. The heated, dried strips of bamboo are then shaved down to form angles that, when matched, form a hexagon. Clamps hold the fishing pole together and it is again dried with a heater.
After drying, the new fishing rod is glued together and held with clamps until the glue dries. The final step involves sanding the surface and placing the eyelets that hold the fishing line and then the fishing reel.
Regardless of the bamboo used, it takes approximately 80 to 100 hours to build one bamboo fishing pole. They are expensive because of the craftsmanship involved.
Six-Strip vs. Eight-Strip Bamboo Fishing Poles
While six-strip bamboo fishing rods are less expensive and quicker to make, eight-strip bamboo fishing poles are more durable. Eight-strip fishing rod and reel combos offer a more octagonal shape that is stronger because they do not need sanding like the six-strip models.
Check the Weight of Your Bamboo Fishing Rods and Reels
Some bamboo fishing rod & reel manufacturers add support to their bamboo pole by adding steel reinforcement inside the bamboo reed. Others double the bamboo reed creating two layers of reed when forming the fishing pole. Both of these designs add weight to your fishing pole. Before purchasing any fishing rod reel package, test out the weight and make sure you are completely comfortable with it.
Popular Brands of Bamboo Fishing Rod & Reel Combos
Highland Mills bamboo fishing poles are highly rated with fly fishermen. You can find them at many outdoor sports retailers, such as Cabelas.com.
Orvis.com sells bamboo fly rods. They have comfortable cork handles. They also offer an extensive guide on maintaining your bamboo fishing pole so that it lasts a lifetime.