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Fly Rod Review


The Temple Fork BVK 7 weight offers BIG performance at a small price (continued)

 

Power:  Casting power aside, I unfortunately was not able to hook into any truly “backbone testing” fish with the BVK.  The small Bass I did catch were handled effortlessly, but they really did not tax the rod at all.  The blank definitely seems to have more than ample power for any fish you'd target with a 7 weight, but it is not so stout that it feels more like an 8 weight.  I believe this would be a fine choice whether tossing streamers for big Rainbows, or casting to a 10lb tailing Redfish.

 


Small pond Bass were fun on the 7 weight, but not much of a test.

 

Issues:  My BVK does not exhibit any severe quality issues, however since really no fishing tackle is perfect, I did have a few minor gripes.  Earlier, I touched on the new tactical series stripping guides replacing the Recoils the original BVK rod had.  I am a big fan of Recoil stripping guides since they are so tough, light, and simplistic.  These new guides seem fine, but personally the diameter seems a little bit excessive.

 


stripping guide on a 7 weight Sage  Xi3.

 

Second, the reel seat up locking rings seem to function fine, but are too small.  Being such a diminutive size makes them slightly harder to tighten and loosen when securing or removing a reel.

 

A close up of the uplocking rings.  A slightly larger size would be great!

 

Third, all you get with this rod or any other Temple Fork fly rod is a protective sock....no tube!  At this price point it personally doesn't really bother me, but there are fly rods on the market costing far less that include a tube!

 


Is this really flor grade cork?

 

Lastly is the cork.  It is advertised to be “flor grade” cork, which is extremely good quality.  While the BVK's grip feels great and looks awesome from a distance, up close inspection reveals what appears to be liberal use of filler.  The 8 weight BVK I had borrowed several months back had a handle that was badly pitted all over, which I assumed was simply from being fished and abused.  Now, I am wondering if it was pitted so badly from a lot of the cork filler simply falling out over time.  At any rate, seeing this brings some doubt in my mind as to the longevity of the handle life.

 

A rod that performs with some of the best on the market!

 

Price, applications, warranty:  From a performance standpoint, this rod is quite simply a bargain for just $250.  It is astounding that a rod costing so little can exhibit better feel and overall castability than some rods north of $600.  Since it is so strong and versatile in it's casting, it would be a great choice for a variety of species from freshwater rivers to saltwater flats.  One of the best aspects of Temple Fork is their warranty.  They offer a lifetime, no fault, original owner warranty.  Whether you break a rod on a hot Steelhead or stick it in a ceiling fan, simply send the rod in with a $25 payment and they send you back the repaired rod or a brand new one within a few days.  I personally used their warranty several years ago, and was blown away to receive my rod back in under a week.  Now that's service!          

 

Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

Temple Fork BVK 9 foot 7 weight Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality A few minor design gripes, but overall satisfied with the construction.  The longevity of the cork handle is the biggest question mark. 7
Performance Performance that rivals rods costing 2-3 times more.  Good to excellent at all distances, with different types of lines.  No accuracy issues at all. 9
Price A rod that performs like this for just $250?  9
Features A few tweaks here and there would make this rod nearly perfect.  A rod tube should really be included with this rod! 7.5
Design (Ergonomics) Light feel in hand and through the casting stroke.  Handle is a nice size and shape. 9
Application Versatile action and capable of targeting many species in many locations.  This is not just a specialty rod! 9.5

Total Score

8.5
Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here

 

Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Great value - No rod tube
+ Versatile performance - Up locking rings should be bigger
+ Lightweight - Cork could be better quality
+ Fantastic Warranty service  
+ Attractive cosmetics  

  

Conclusion: As fly rod prices continue to rise into the stratosphere each year, it is very refreshing to see a rod offer this level of performance at such an affordable price.  People tend to be afraid to get into fly fishing for fear that they need to break the bank just to own a high performance combo.  There are several excellent reels on the market in the same price range, and pairing one up with a BVK fly rod will cost about the same as a mid range conventional bass setup.  If the other rods in the BVK lineup perform this good, Temple Fork appears to have hit a home run.  With just a few minor design adjustments, these rods could be an out of the stadium grand slam!  If you are looking for an inexpensive rod that performs as good or better than the big guns, this is THE rod to check out.  Spending more may get you higher overall quality, but if that isn't a huge concern then look no further.



 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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