Fly Rod Sage Customised by Tom Regula - Trout Fisherman Magazine

WHILE a mass-produced fly rod will obviously do its job, you may be looking at something different, something that is unique to you.

A "bespoke" fly rod will be an object of desire: just yours and no one else will have it. It can be custom-built to your own exact specifications and requirements. It could even become a family heirloom to hand down to your family.

Intrigued? Then check out the website of Tom Regula who has 30 years experience of making custom-built rods built on quality blanks to exacting standards. He will build you a rod on a top-of-the-range blank from manufacturers such as Sage, Orvis, G. Loomis, Thomas and Thomas, and RL Winston. He will also assist in picking the appropriate model for your own specific needs. You can be as involved in the whole rod building process as you like so you end up with the rod that's perfect for your needs.

The rod that Tom sent me as an example of his work is built on a Sage Z-Axis 9ft 6in 7wt blank and features a bespoke rod handle and reel seat. It comes with a rod bag and rod tube and the cost for this particular rod is £750 plus p&p.

The handle is a stunning piece of craftsmanship and I've certainly never seen anything quite like it before. It marries quality beechwood inserts with high grade Portuguese cork which not only looks beautiful, but also allows you to feel the way the blank works, registering even the softest of takes. This is because the wooden inserts, which are in touch with the carbon fibre blank, are denser than cork, giving this added sensitivity.

Even though this rod wasn't customised for me, the handle was a perfect fit, my thumb and the heel of my hand sitting on the beechwood inserts while my forefingers wrapped around the cork sections giving the perfect grip. It is one of the smoothest, most comfortable rod handles I've come across, and provided an excellent grip even when wet.

The reel seat with its beechwood insert is self-centering and is a single ring uplocking design that has been handcrafted from a solid bar of bronze.

Tom obviously has a real fine eye for detail, and he uses top quality materials including aged wood. Each rod requires weeks of work and the final price will depend on the blank and materials you choose.


This is a beautiful rod and while the wood/cork handle does make it for a heavier outfit, it really wasn't noticeable at all when I was fishing. Quality craftsmanship in a rod that is truly unique.




Price: £750

Weight: 132gr (4.7oz)

Sections: 4

  • Bespoke signature handle with figured spalted beechwood and Portuguese cork; beechwood fighting butt; bronze reel seat with single uplocking ring

  • Dark olive blank with dark green Gudebrod thread wrappings and green metallic highlights

  • One SIC stripping guide, 10 hard chrome coated snakes, big loop tip ring, and keeper ring

  • Tube and rod bag

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