Sage One owners: Rio Gold or Rio Grand?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Rob Hardman, May 11, 2013.

  1. Hey all,
    Picked up a Sage One 905-4 recently and think it deserves a shiny new floater for summer. Should I go for the half-weight heavier Grand? I'll be using in both stillwater and streams.
    Thoughts? First hand opinions?
  2. I was surprised when reading the type script for the current RIO Grand.

    The RIO Grand is a full line size heavier than the industry standard, and features more weight distributed towards the front of the line to easily load faster action fly rods. The line has a short head that is easy to cast, and is built with "MaxCast" Technology, RIO's ultra-sophisticated line coating that actively repels water for higher floatation, longer casts and greater durability. The RIO Grand is the best choice of line for the modern, fast action fly rod.
    Kent Lufkin likes this.
  3. Wow. I could have sworn when I read last week it said half-weight heavier. Maybe I was readin a description of it on a retailer website. Did this just change this year? Well what's the point in going a full size heavier? They're just marketing a 6wt Gold as a 5wt Grand?
  4. I've fished my ONE (509-4) for about two years now (I got it as a pre-production review rod), in six states and two Canadian provinces. I've used both Gold and Grand and absolutely prefer the GOLD for its presentation and touch.
    SpiffySteve and Porter like this.
  5. In the past they were always listed as 1/2 weight over. It states weight distributed towards the front of the line and lines are rated by weight of first 30' not the entire WF - Head portion.. which is noramally over 40'. Possible the Grand taper & weight is still exact same one they've offered for years, I should write and ask. Just struck me as me as odd, was there a weight change ..or not.. I've had / and still fish several, fine lines that have treated me well.

    The taper of the Grand & Gold are certainly different.
    gbastian likes this.
  6. I have been impressed with that line on several rods regarding wether fast or medium fast action rod...;)
  7. Same here, I am currently using it on all of my 3-6wt rods :)
  8. I have fished my 9' 5 wt one with the gold thus far. I am not crazy about it in close - it will do the job, but I just don't like the feel. I am tempted to upline it with a 6 wt gold line and see how that feels. Would be curious if others have tried that.

    I have the 8'6" 5 wt and the 691 as well. So far I tend to enjoy the action when I have uplined them by at least 1/2 wt, but I seem to cast them ok with their stated wt as well so who knows.
  9. I own both.

    My experience is that the Gold line rolls out of the forward cast smoother and with less effort. In other words, it's takes less line speed and is much smoother casting. Very nice for drys and smaller nymphs. I like the Grand for short line nymphing and tossing bigger bugs. But it takes more aggressive strokes to deliver the line. Hence the "fast action" line designation. Both are awesome and have lasted for years.
  10. In my opinion , if you have to over line a rod to get the feel you want. Then I would choose a slower rod for the same acquired feel. I mean think about it.
    Steve Call, Kent Lufkin and Lugan like this.
  11. Does anyone else think it is bizarre and a little maddening that the industry markets 6wt rods as 5wts, and 6wt lines as 5wt? Thanks Sage, but I am experienced and smart enough to know what I want, so please label your products accurately according to AFTMA standards so that I can make purchasing decisions accurately:
  12. Would someone weigh the first 30 ft of these lines and post the results here. Let's get some data from other than the box and website.

    (grains per first 30 feet)
    Line Rating​
    Ideal Weight (grains)​
    Acceptable range (grains)​






  13. According to, the Sage One 905-4 ERN has been measured at 6.5 and 7.0 from two different submitters.
    Only one of my other rods is listed on that database; a Loop OptiStream 9.5" 7wt. It too has a higher ERN than it's rated weight at 8.3. (not nearly as off as the Sage)
    Wonder why rod manufacturers don't publish these numbers?
  14. Think there are a couple of rod makers that use a grain window, not line weight, for labeling their rods. (cant remember who at this moment).
    Regarding the ern statistic....there are a lot of discrepencies in the findings, or perhaps there are a lot of descrepencies within the line of rods being evaluated. If you took one rod, and passed it around for evaluation to all the testers would they come out with the same numbers? Or would we have different findings among the testers? Right now from what I can tell is that you have several testers and they are testing their own samples. However I do have a 6 weight TCR and the erns ratings other TCR 6 weights have received rates it as a 7/8 weight which I believe to be true based from my experience. It is interesting for sure, but I would never buy a rod based on its statistical ratings...but by feel, and that is a personal thing.
  15. AFTMA is not dead.. but definetely standing much more on the side lines these days. Something I don't see changing.

    I did write to RIO, hopefully recieve a reply soon.
    Kent Lufkin likes this.
  16. I really don't get the ratings and find that the action of the rod plays more of a roll that the numbers on it

    If you take a stiff 5wt fast action rod designed for distance and a soft 5wt slow action rod designed for presentation, two totally different rods, two totally different lines excel. The stiff 5wt rod will handle a much wider range of lines than the soft rod and handle lines that are weight forward including sink tips. Soft rod will like the weight spread out over the 30ft more evenly, like double taper lines. The rod designation almost becomes meaningless, at least for me anyways. I owned a 5wt Sage TCR and used a 7wt RIO Salmon/Steelhead line on it!
  17. I have fished both. They seem to fish pretty equally up until about a 30' cast, then I much prefer the Grand as it loads the rod better IMHO. I can feel the load on the backcast better with the Grand, but the Gold is great as well!
  18. The ONE is so stiff that you need an extra line up.

    It's a bit maddening, but I've wasted some cash buying the "right" line weight for the ONE only to find out that it won't even flex the rod without an insanely fast double haul presentation. One I stepped up a line weight it was great.
    Dan Nelson likes this.
  19. I think Jesse's findings compared to mine illustrate that the casting characterists of the caster have as much to do with line selection as the rod itself does. I found the GOLD's weight-accurate rating well suited to the ONE. However, Jesse seems to suggest overlining (or going with the GRAND) is the required route to take with the ONE.

    I tend to be an aggressive and strong caster (that is not to suggest I'm a great or even good caster -- just my style leads to fast tip / line speeds). On the other hand, my spouse HATES my ONE with a Gold line (she uses a Z-Axis of the same weight/length with the same GOLD WFF line). She has a more measured, smoother stroke with somewhat slower tip speeds/line speeds. When I overline the ONE with a 6 wt line, she is okay with it. But in that situation, I hate the ONE's stroke speed -- it feels sloppy and unbalanced to me.

    So my suggestion is to try different lines. To avoid the cost of buying multiple lines, ask your local fly shop if they have any reels/spools loaded with different lines you can try. Or hook up with others out on the water who would loan you a reel for a few casts. I have reels loaded with 5 wt Gold and 5 wt Grand and 6wt Gold (as well as 4 wt Gold and Grand -- and a couple 5 wt Orvis lines) I'd be happy to share if I'm out and about near you on any given day.

Share This Page