WOODLAND, Wa. – Shimano technology and G. Loomis fly rod expertise takes a step in unison to bring a unique concept to fly anglers worldwide in a new series of fly rods called Asquith. Announced this past summer at the International Fly Tackle Dealer Show – held in conjunction with ICAST, these new fly rods have now started to select fly and tackle shops in the U.S. and Canada.
With rods to target trout, bass, salmon, steelhead and also saltwater use, the Asquith line-up includes nine ‘all-water’ rods in nine-foot 4 through 12 weights, and five spey rods offered in a 12’9” #6, 13’ #7, 13’6” #8, 14’ #9 and 15’ #10. Designed with blanks rolled using Shimano’s proprietary Spiral X process at its production facility in Kumamoto, Japan, and then hand-finished at the G. Loomis facility in Woodland, Wash., according to the joint Shimano/G. Loomis product development team, anglers will find the Asquith series to be “the most technologically advanced fly rods in the world.”
“We are making a bold statement with Asquith,” said world champion fly caster and chief G. Loomis rod designer Steve Rajeff. “By collaborating with my Shimano fishing rod associates at our world headquarters in Sakai City, Japan, and our facility in Kumamoto, we are able to bring together cutting-edge manufacturing techniques and materials with proven G. Loomis actions and design.”
With fast actions and generous power levels, “the Asquith rods excel in situations where developing high line speed and making precise casts means success,” Rajeff said. He notes the rods are built and designed for demanding conditions and technical fishing environments – the culmination of these efforts to provide anglers with fly rods that offer exceptional casting distance, pinpoint accuracy, a lighter that expected blank and reduced blank twist.
The proprietary Spiral X technology creates a rod blank utilizing Shimano’s carbon fiber Infinity Tape core layer, a longitudinal middle layer of Musclecarbon to form a base structure to improve efficiency and performance, and then finished with a reverse-axis Infinity Taper outer layer. This patented construction process increases rod rigidity to reduce twist without adding weight. Spiral X also allows for a thin wall blank, and reduces rod ovalization even when under the load of a big steelhead, striper or tarpon.
Within the ‘all-water’ Asquith rods, the trout-focused #4, #5 and #6 feature custom bamboo/aluminum reel seats, while the #7 through #12 come with saltwater-friendly aluminum reel seats with Shimano’s lightweight CI4+ material inserts for both lighter weight and added durability. The guide train on all these rods includes Titanium SIC Sea Guide strippers with REC Recoil snake guides.
Also with the CI4+ insert aluminum reel seats and Titanium SIC Sea Guide strippers, the #6 through #10 Asquith spey rods have with ‘Snake brand’ double-plated chrome snake guides.
Rajeff notes that during the extensive rod development, the Asquith 4 through 6 weights performed best when matched with either Airflo Elite or Scientific Anglers Mastery Trout lines. For freshwater situations with up to the 8-weight Asquith, Rajeff suggests the Airflo Exceed and Streamer Float, while the 7 through 12 weights in the salt call for an Airflo Tropical Punch or Scientific Anglers Mastery Bonefish Taper and Mastery Tarpon Taper lines.
Along with the Asquith fly rods, two Asquith fly reels will soon be available, designed and built by Shimano. A known worldwide leader in fishing reel manufacturing and technology, the Shimano Asquith 3-4 weight and 7-8 weight reel feature Shimano’s Hagane Body lightweight machined aluminum frame, full frame design for less line tangle, a sealed drag system, and a lightweight CI4+ material handle. Both reels have two shielded ARB (anti-rust) bearings.
For more information on the next step into the future of fly rods, view the Asquith section at www.gloomis.com, call 800-GLoomis, or inquire about them at your favorite fly fishing shop.
#4 through #12 – from $1000 to $1200; #6 to #10 spey – from $1200 to $1700