Date: Wed May 12 7:34:10 1999
Subject: small rod tapers
Below is the taper (action length 5' 2") some of you requested for the
Orvis 6' 6wt one piece. 
1        0.086
5        0.103
10        0.122
15        0.132
20        0.144
25        0.159
30        0.171
35        0.184
40        0.198        
45        0.209
50        0.225
55        0.239
60        0.257
62        0.275

The stress curve for this rod appears very similar to the one for Tom
Smithwick's 5' 6" 5 wt., and the latter is one sweet casting rod. Indeed,
the main difference between the 6' Orvis and the 5' 6" Smithwick seems to
be from the 50" station on down. Tom's rod is heavier in the butt section
than the Orvis, and you can feel the Orvis all the way to the butt
(although it is in no way a "wimp" of a rod). I have cast the 6'  6 wt and
very much like the feel of it. I am building one at the moment, in a
nodeless format, so don't know how much that will change the feel of the
rod. I have also thought about building the Smithwick model using the Orvis
measurements in the butt section. 

Another short rod for those of you so interested is a 5' 3/4wt. I have
built two of these for a couple of Montana ranchers/fly fishers (as gifts)
who seem to think that the rod is "the berries." This rod throws an
extremely tight looped line, and casts very nicely out to 35-40 feet. I was
building an A. J. Thramer taper for a 4'4" 4 wt rod (of which I have built
three and like the taper very much) and at the last moment (in a fit of
emotional frenzy) decided to experiment and extend the rod to 5'. I am sure
you modelers and engineer types will cringe at this type of experimentation
(done with absolutely no forethought) and likely will feel that the taper
reflects such. However, several folks cast the rod at a recent local fly
fishing show and seemed to like the taper. Indeed, I had another request
for this rod over the weekend.

1        0.071
5        0.074
10        0.089
15        0.102
20        0.118
25        0.136
30        0.151
35        0.163
40        0.179
45        0.196
50        0.220
55        0.220
60        0.220

Jerry Snider