Denver Show

Denver Show

OK, the show is over. Did anyone go? If you did were you able to cast the new B2mx? How was it?

This morning I got a very brief report on the new rod from a dealer friend. He was able to cast the 5 and 6 weight. He liked them both.

Said they retain a somewhat softer tip with a very stiff mid section.

I’m like a little kid a Christmas. What else was new for us gearheads?


51 Comments

Eleonor on March 2, 2013 at 9:40 pm.

The only thing I heard of is the impending departure from RL Winston by Sam Drukman.

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Quiana Crutcher on March 3, 2013 at 3:11 am.

The only thing I heard of is the impending departure from RL Winston by Sam Drukman.

Oh, Oh. That would seriously change my opinion of Winston.

Not good.

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Adell on March 3, 2013 at 9:07 am.

When cruising at 30,000′ and the pilot bails out, it leaves a sinking feeling in your stomach.

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benito on March 3, 2013 at 12:28 pm.

I just posted my impressions of the 7wt -10wt BII-mx rods on the General Discussion blog. I did not cast the lighter line weights, but others who did while I was there were seriously impressed.

I spent over an hour visiting with Sam and was thoroughly impressed with his knowledge and comprehension of rod design and the characteristics of different rod building materials as well as his openess. I would certainly hate to hear that he is really leaving Winston – I think that this would leave them in a real bind.

One of the things Sam mentioned during our conversations was that he predicted that the BII-mx would soon represent 60% of Winston’s overall sales while the BIIt – his favorite rod – would probably only represent around 10% of overall sales. If this proves to be the case, I sure hope that the BIIt will not fall to the short life span of the DL4 rods.

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Yett on March 3, 2013 at 3:47 pm.

Did Sam mention anything about the future of the WT?

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Amand on March 3, 2013 at 7:45 pm.

Did Sam mention anything about the future of the WT?

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Wilburn Luzar on March 3, 2013 at 10:22 pm.

Has Winston already raised their prices? Thank you!

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evelyn on March 4, 2013 at 2:37 am.

I just posted my impressions of the 7wt -10wt BII-mx rods on the General Discussion blog. I did not cast the lighter line weights, but others who did while I was there were seriously impressed. ………..

One of the things Sam mentioned during our conversations was that he predicted that the BII-mx would soon represent 60% of Winston’s overall sales while the BIIt – his favorite rod – would probably only represent around 10% of overall sales. If this proves to be the case, I sure hope that the BIIt will not fall to the short life span of the DL4 rods.

How low in line wts do the BIImx rods go? Trout weights?

60% is a staggering percentage.

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ralph on March 4, 2013 at 5:19 am.

Didn’t an earlier post from FSF say that they would start with the five weights?

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Otto on March 4, 2013 at 7:55 am.

How low in line wts do the BIImx rods go? Trout weights?

60% is a staggering percentage.- David

I wondered about that as well David. Particularly for Winston that has such a sterling reputation in the trout weights. It looked to me like they were positioning the B2t in trout weights, B2x as perhaps a cross over and the B2mx for the larger SW weights.

Now I would be very interested in knowing if the heavy weight SW market was truly that large relative to the total fly rod market or if the trend towards faster rods was that pervasive all the weight down to say 5 wt.

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vit on March 4, 2013 at 8:53 am.

60% is a staggering percentage.

It just goes to show you how far the “stiff & fast” revolution has come. Now, even Winston…the last bastion of those who love “trout rods”…has succumbed to the pressure and will rely on new rods designed for the salt to supply the bulk of its sales and profits…even in trout weights.

I, like Sam, feel the BIIt is my favorite Winston. If you like it or the WT, you may want to snap a few up. If you don’t, you may soon have to go the “semi-custom” route of a TMR or Sweetgrass rod if you want something similar.

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Marcelino Pennachio on March 4, 2013 at 1:01 pm.

My favorite Winston seems to change from day to day, but the BIIt is definitely one of my favorites.

If the BIIMx is projected to be 60% and the BIIt 10% I can’t help but wonder what rods comprise the remaining 30%. The LT probably has a niche as a travel and backpacking rod. I would think they would keep the Vapor and/or the Ascent to fill the lower priced markets.

And what would Winston be without a tradition, so I would think there would be some sort of WT line. It might be scaled down, but I would think they would make some rods in the series. And what about Bamboo?

They probably don’t sell many bamboo rods, but at $3,000 a pop, the revenues add up.

I can’t help but wonder that with the New BIIMx and last year’s new BIIt that maybe it is the BIIx that is the endangered species. There is a lot of overlap between the two new rod series and the BIIx. And if the BIIMx is good for freashwater applications as well as saltwater why continue the BIIx?

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nidi on March 4, 2013 at 3:32 pm.

AG – If Winston projects the BIImx to account for 60% of its sales, and the BIIx is their best selling rod series ever, I think we will see either the BIIt or WT (or both!) go away long before either of those two.

The departure of the BIIt and WT…along with no more Sam Drukman…may mean the end of Winston trout rods as we have come to know them.

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francesco on March 4, 2013 at 4:15 pm.

I don’t know. The 60% for the BIIMx has to come from some other Winston rod series. The rod series that it is overlapping with it is the BIIx.

If the BIIMx is really good there may be some new Winston business from Sage and Loomis rod owners and others. But I think that would be limited because Sage and Loomis owners are pretty loyal to their brand. The BIIx probably makes up about 50% of Winston sales now.

I don’t see the BIImx as a threat to the BIIt or the WT. The BIIt may be a threat to the existence of the WT, but not the BIIMx. And now it sounds like the ZXL might not be as similar to the WTs and BIIt’s as thought.

There should still be a market for the Winston medium action trout rods.

I don’t look for the BIIx to disappear this year, but I bet they won’t offer as many models. I’d be surprised if they continue as many WT models as well. Unless of course there has been a mass hiring in Twin Bridges and expanded manufacturing capabilities.

AG – If Winston projects the BIImx to account for 60% of its sales, and the BIIx is their best selling rod series ever, I think we will see either the BIIt or WT (or both!) go away long before either of those two.

The departure of the BIIt and WT…along with no more Sam Drukman…may mean the end of Winston trout rods as we have come to know them.

I do not know Sam or for that matter what he does at Winston, but as to the B2t my local dealer brought in 8 rods when they first appeared and all 8 are still available at his shop. He has been talking about sending all of the B2t’s back and just add to his B2x inventory. He has a good business in both B2x and WT lines.

Richard Redder

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Les on March 4, 2013 at 6:59 pm.

I have more Winstons in my rod rack downstairs than my local Winston fly shop.

This is the land of the long, fast action rod. My local fly shop has all BIIx rods in it’s rack except for one 9′ 4 weight BIIt and that one lonely 7’9″ 3 weight LT. (Labeled as a BIIx, by the way!) (They may have some Vapors and Ascents, but I don’t look at those or count them as real Winstons). I can’t see a lot of turnover in the BIIx stock.

I bought a 8′ 3 weight BIIt from them and some one else must have purchased a 9′ five weight BIIt.

It’s interesting that I don’t think they sell a whole lot of Winstons there (Mostly Sage and Loomis), but a couple of the guys who work there always tell me about their Winston rods. Maybe they just remember that I bought one or maybe it’s because I always go to the Winston rack, but maybe they are really closet winstonites!!!!

If the BIIx is not selling well here, I wouldn’t think that the BIIMx would either. Most people fish for big fish, often in fast water. There are just too many people here that are happy with their Sage and Loomis rods.

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Kattom on March 4, 2013 at 10:41 pm.

I don’t see a lot of Winstons out there myself, but I think Alaska is probably not a typical market and therefore we can’t judge a whole lot by how many Winstons are sold up there. If I can guess, my guess would be that the goal here isn’t to trade the sale of one model in lieu of another, i.e. 60% BIImx replaces 60% LT, WT, etc. The goal hopefully, is to take market share away from the competition and to add to overall sales.

I have personally had some mild interest in a 6 weight for some time now, but have always disliked the BIIx and have fallen back on my XP 5 weight.

Maybe I can finally add a new rod to the rack, one that would have gone to Sage or T&T eventually.

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Jamie on March 5, 2013 at 12:56 am.

You’ve made an excellent point regarding the migration of the “stiff & fast” transformation of fly rods throughout the industry. I certainly hope that Winston maintains their BIIt and WT product lines for those of us who prefer a “smooth & slow” casting action for our trout rods. Although the industry in general is producing fast-action rods, especially for the saltwater environment, I believe there will always be a market for slow-action trout rods.

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Nom on March 5, 2013 at 5:06 am.

I do not know Sam or for that matter what he does at Winston, but as to the B2t my local dealer brought in 8 rods when they first appeared and all 8 are still available at his shop. He has been talking about sending all of the B2t’s back and just add to his B2x inventory. He has a good business in both B2x and WT lines.

Richard Redder

He is the current rod designer. He did a great job with the BIIx’s and the BIIx spey rods. I see quite a few Winstons in the Upper Midwest, mostly WT’s and BIIx’s.

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Leia Sevedge on March 5, 2013 at 6:43 am.

I see quite a few Winstons in the Upper Midwest, mostly WT’s and BIIx’s.

the WT’s and BIIX’s really compliment themselves well here…spring creeks and like PB and jam

I did find myself wanting a “fast and stiff” rod throwing overweight streamers on an underweight rod into a wind in Montana…but for me, that’s the exception rather than the rule. I too hope winston can stick with some slower models for the likes of people like me…

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Kennith on March 5, 2013 at 10:05 am.

One of the things Sam mentioned during our conversations was that he predicted that the BII-mx would soon represent 60% of Winston’s overall sales while the BIIt – his favorite rod – would probably only represent around 10% of overall sales. If this proves to be the case, I sure hope that the BIIt will not fall to the short life span of the DL4 rods

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Shannon Grefe on March 5, 2013 at 12:08 pm.

I don’t see a lot of Winstons out there myself, but I think Alaska is probably not a typical market and therefore we can’t judge a whole lot by how many Winstons are sold up there. If I can guess, my guess would be that the goal here isn’t to trade the sale of one model in lieu of another, i.e. 60% BIImx replaces 60% LT, WT, etc. The goal hopefully, is to take market share away from the competition and to add to overall sales.

I have personally had some mild interest in a 6 weight for some time now, but have always disliked the BIIx and have fallen back on my XP 5 weight.

Maybe I can finally add a new rod to the rack, one that would have gone to Sage or T&T eventually.

Alaska is definitely not the typical Winston market. But it is a fast action rod market and that is the marketplace that the BIIMx will be competing in.

I’m sure that the goal of a new line is to increase Winston’s market share of sales in the overrall fly rod industry. But Winston is a small company with asset limitations. They have limited assets for manufacturing equipment and for manpower and for inventory. If 60% of those assets are going to be devoted to the BIIMx they can not be devoted to other Winston rod lines.

Therefore, some rod lines and/or models within the lines must be discontinued. Sure, if there are increased revenues some of them could be used for production costs. But that is down the road.

And all of the cost components of manufacturing rods are going up each year too.

I agree with you on the six weights. I love my seven weight BIIx, but am not that impressed with my six weight. As a result, I have two six weight Z-Axis rods.

The six weight is one weight that I would be looking at in the BIIMx. And possibly the eight weight too.

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Dorris on March 5, 2013 at 3:52 pm.

the WT’s and BIIX’s really compliment themselves well here…spring creeks and like PB and jam

I did find myself wanting a “fast and stiff” rod throwing overweight streamers on an underweight rod into a wind in Montana…but for me, that’s the exception rather than the rule. I too hope winston can stick with some slower models for the likes of people like me…

Maybe I’m wrong but it seems like the majority of Winston owners who post to this blog are the users of the medium action trout rods. There are some who use both the trout rods and the faster action rods for other species, but most of the posts seem to be related to trout fishing.

That is also probably where Winston has the largest portion of the sales percentage in the industry. I wouldn’t think that Winston would foresake those current customers in search of new customers in a very competitive market. That’s like leaving fish to find fish.

I would hope that Winston would continue to offer options for the medium action trout (and other species) fisherman.

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Gaylord on March 5, 2013 at 8:17 pm.

Vickie, your point about capital equipment being fully utilized is well taken and was one I overlooked. In regards to the BIIt, I just can’t see the abandonment of that product line so quickly as you can’t possibly spend so much time designing and developing a new blank and then abandon it after such a short period. That would make the cost of production on a per rod basis thru the roof.

What is the BIImx made of? Is it pure Boron or is it a composite like the BIIx? Is there a press release on this rod?

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Hazel on March 5, 2013 at 9:46 pm.

I had the pleasure of casting the 9′ 8 wt BIImX rod at the show. (Disclaimer – I am not the best caster)

The rod shoots line without a problem. The pick-up was the most impressive part – I could lift lots of line effortlessly. Keep in mind that is not like traditional winston action. The rod is stiff and was difficult to cast at first since I am not use to a stiffer rod primarily b/c most of my fishing involves a 4 wt WT.

But in the matter of 5 minutes I felt more and more comfortable with it.

Immediately after, I walked over to the Sage booth and took out their 9′ 8 wt Z axis (probably not the fairest comparison) and the Winston was superior in casting ability, line feel, and asthetics in my opinon.

In short, the mX is a gun suited for salt. I think it will be well recieved in the salt market.

I will most likely purchase one.

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Wendell Choules on March 6, 2013 at 1:18 am.

Vickie, your point about capital equipment being fully utilized is well taken and was one I overlooked. In regards to the BIIt, I just can’t see the abandonment of that product line so quickly as you can’t possibly spend so much time designing and developing a new blank and then abandon it after such a short period. That would make the cost of production on a per rod basis thru the roof.

What is the BIImx made of? Is it pure Boron or is it a composite like the BIIx? Is there a press release on this rod?

Didn’t Winston discover in the first generation boron rods that 100% boron made the rod too stiff?

The percentage of boron in the boron-graphite composite of the BIIMx is probably higher than in the BIIx which would make the rod a little stiffer. But it is probably less than the first generation boron rods.

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Aracely on March 6, 2013 at 4:20 am.

Guys don’t get hung up on BIImx cannabalizing their own marketshare. In perspective they have no significant salt marketshare, so it’s all additional revenue. Plus, fresh water in general is no growth, so of course a COMPETITIVE salt rod could easily grow to eclipse fresh rods in a small company.

I think he would have meant taking such a big hunk out of Sage, Scott and T&T salt marketshare that it would grow the Winston overall business and salt would then show 60% of it. It’s an addition, not a subtract like the BIIt was to the WT, or the BIIx to the LT. What Winston could the BIImx salt really cannabalize?

Now you Sage and Scott diehards…I know, the marketshare bite would be a gnat on Sages A$%^, but to Winston, that is all they need prosper!

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Billandfawne on March 6, 2013 at 8:51 am.

Guys don’t get hung up on BIImx cannabalizing their own marketshare. In perspective they have no significant salt marketshare, so it’s all additional revenue. Plus, fresh water in general is no growth, so of course a COMPETITIVE salt rod could easily grow to eclipse fresh rods in a small company.

I think he would have meant taking such a big hunk out of Sage, Scott and T&T salt marketshare that it would grow the Winston overall business and salt would then show 60% of it. It’s an addition, not a subtract like the BIIt was to the WT, or the BIIx to the LT. What Winston could the BIImx salt really cannabalize?

Now you Sage and Scott diehards…I know, the marketshare bite would be a gnat on Sages A$%^, but to Winston, that is all they need prosper!

Very well thought out and IMO right on the money,

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so on March 6, 2013 at 1:42 pm.

I can see a lot of people seem to get excited over the BIIMx as saltwater rod. I would really like to hear from anyone who may have tried an 8 wt BIIMx with a 15 ft sinktip at the show. This seems to be an area where Winstons gets less than great reviews generally due to the softer tip and which is one of the main holes in my rod collection.

Did Sam mention anything about the future of the WT?

erasmo – Sam and I did discuss the WT some, but not at length and I did not ask him how long we could expect it to remain in the catalog. He did say something in passing, now that I think back on it, that I did not pay much attention to at the time. And I believe that it COULD be interpreted to imply that the BIIt would be a good replacement for the WT.

Now, before any of you go off half cocked, Sam did NOT say that – this is a POSSIBLE interpretation that I have made of something he said that did not even catch my attention at the time. I am not tryiing to put words into Sams’ mouth and he might disagree with me energetically if asked this question directly.

I did get the feeling that all the Winston staff with whom I spoke at the show were not only committed to Winston but were also very passionate about Winston. These are people who I think I would love to work with if the opportunity arose.

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Boisenurse on March 6, 2013 at 4:41 pm.

I’m curious. How is it that you were invited to the Denver show? Are you associated with a fly shop?

Thank you very much for your reports on the show and all of the information that you have provided. As you can tell, there is a lot of interest in the new Winston saltwater rod and the future direction of Winston.

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Darrick Lykens on March 6, 2013 at 9:04 pm.

I help out in my local shop from time to time and since neither of the owners were able to attend this year me and our casting instructor got to go in their place. It was a very enjoyable three days and I hope to be able to attend another show in the future.

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Fiona Gushue on March 6, 2013 at 11:00 pm.

That’s great! That would be a great experience!

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Antwan on March 7, 2013 at 4:26 am.

I’m curious. How is it that you were invited to the Denver show? …

Look, AG is SOOOOO jealous!!!!!!

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Nicky on March 7, 2013 at 8:19 am.

You’d better believe I am!!!!!

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Santiago Mabee on March 7, 2013 at 1:36 pm.

Some videos from Denver

Best regards,

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CarolCF on March 7, 2013 at 4:52 pm.

nice. That B2MX is gonna look good in my hand.

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Caregiver on March 7, 2013 at 6:18 pm.

The ZXL has a nice cast. It is stiff compared to either Winston. I would not want to fish 6x tippet with the zxl. The 8′ #3 Biit would handles 6x tippet very well. We are currently fishing a 9’6″ #3 that is a prototype we ask for from Sam at Winston.

It has one small design feature that needs tweaked and it will be great. It will be a tail race rod and fish 7x tippet extremely well.

The best thing at the show besides the BIIMX was the new line from SA. I have fished with it for two months and it is easily the best line I have ever used. It stays clean in Indiana water, shoots great, fishes nicely in warm or cold water. I have not had it in air temperatures below 40 degrees but I think it will be fine. The price tag will be $100.

They will come in 3-8 weight. Put it on your Christmas list!

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Kristian on March 7, 2013 at 7:49 pm.

Put it on your Christmas list!

I’ve been very, very good.

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Bill Homesley on March 8, 2013 at 12:56 am.

Greetings,The 8′ #3 Biit would handles 6x tippet very well. We are currently fishing a 9’6″ #3 that is a prototype we ask for from Sam at Winston. It has one small design feature that needs tweaked and it will be great.

It will be a tail race rod and fish 7x tippet extremely well.

Did you mean 8’6″?

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Isaiah on March 8, 2013 at 2:33 am.

Did you mean 8’6″?

Now that would be an Alaskan 3 weight!!!

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Stephane Awad on March 8, 2013 at 3:55 am.

Did you mean 8’6″?

Nope. A 9’6″. They let me mess with Winston prototype blanks when I visited Indianapolis a few weeks ago.

Or maybe that was the Winston 10 footer 2 3/4 weight. For real.

Aimed at catching super tippet-shy BIG trout on a three weight. Way cool.

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Marylouise on March 8, 2013 at 6:37 am.

I am not interested. Way too specialized…and I really can’t see much use for a 9’6″ 3wt.

Ironically, I’ve often thought an 8’6″ 3wt could be the ultimate expression of Sam’s (and Winston’s) greatest creation: The BIIt.

I guess “The Staff of Moses” will remain the reference standard for the foreseeable future.

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Tanek on March 8, 2013 at 7:56 am.

what about that Wilber # 3 5’6″!!!! 2 piece!!

thats a rod Im very interested.

Did you mean 8’6″?

It is a 9’6″ rod. It is soft, but will shoot 70′ of line with ease.

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Wally Kepley on March 8, 2013 at 10:17 am.

Now that would be an Alaskan 3 weight!!!

It is a 9’6″ rod. It’s purpose is catching large trout in tailwaters on 6x and 7x tippet.

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AlumaRs on March 8, 2013 at 2:08 pm.

When will they be available?

Will they have a cork handle?

Are they graphite or a boron/graphite composite?

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In on March 8, 2013 at 3:39 pm.

Susann:

When will they be available?

Will they have a cork handle?

Are they graphite or a boron/graphite composite?

Ask him about the handle.

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Francis on March 8, 2013 at 6:18 pm.

Susann:

When will they be available?

Will they have a cork handle?

Are they graphite or a boron/graphite composite?

I do not know when they will be available. There is a small correction to the present rod that needs to be made. They will not have a cork handle. The KY guy knows that. That is all I will say about the handle.

I expect they will be a boron/graphite composite. They may just make the blanks for us, that is yet to be determined. We will get the rod done one way or the other.

I am going out to Montana for two weeks in October so I will keep you posted on how things progress.

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Shavon on March 8, 2013 at 9:26 pm.

Perfect adeline midge rod.

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Raymon on March 8, 2013 at 11:25 pm.

Ask him about the handle.

What is up with the handle?????????????

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Rashad Erlenbusch on March 9, 2013 at 1:49 am.

What is up with the handle?????????????

Since FM didn’t want to tell, I won’t let it out. Just what FM said, it ain’t cork, and although radical, something you would want while midge/nymph fishing.

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Buford on March 9, 2013 at 3:45 am.

Since FM didn’t want to tell, I won’t let it out. Just what FM said, it ain’t cork, and although radical, something you would want while midge/nymph fishing.

They used dry corn cob?

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Nicki on March 9, 2013 at 5:23 am.

It’s a custom adeline trophy trout rod they are creating that will have a devoted if local following. Enough new features to make it radically unique and highly functional. Any more and FM will have to tell if they want to.

Just wait and see, or visit their shop in Indy and buy something.

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