man fishing


Today’s anglers are spoilt for choice with fishing rod options. Fishing rod blank action, rod length, line weight, and lure casting weight are just a few of the variables that can be tailored to your chosen fishing application.

Use this quick guide for guidance on rod varieties and applications. It will help you avoid becoming bogged-down in all the nitty gritty details and promptly point you in the right direction.


There are three general rod blank options:

Fibreglass rods are a cheap and robust option. They are exceptionally flexible and durable but have a lower degree of sensitivity that is not ideal for lure fishing or casting light offerings. Fibreglass rods are perfectly suited to general estuary and boat fishing with baits.

Graphite or carbon fibre rods are high-performance casting rods that deliver fast and responsive actions. Graphite rods are ultra light and are the first choice among contemporary lure and bait anglers demanding cutting-edge casting and fighting characteristics. Graphite and carbon fibre rods are typically more expensive and less robust than fibreglass rods.

Composite rods are a compromise between fibreglass and graphite rods. Composite rods blend the best properties of both rod types to provide functional and affordable rod options. Composite rods typically retain the casting performance of a graphite rod but incorporate the robust qualities of fibreglass.

Question to ask yourself: Do you need a robust general purpose rod, a lightweight and responsive rod, or a something in between?


Most conventional fishing rods vary in length from about 1.2-3m (4-10’). Shorter rods are generally designed for more power and leverage while longer rods have greater casting capacity. The vast majority of general purpose and lure fishing rods are in the vicinity of 2m (7’) in length. Boat and game fishing rods are usually shorter because they favour fighting ability over casting performance. Surf rods are much longer in order to punch big casts beyond the breakers.

Question to ask yourself: Will you primarily be casting lures and baits or just dropping baits off the side of a boat?


Lure or casting weight is usually a very loose estimate by rod manufacturers to indicate what size lures and sinkers are suitable for the rod. The suggested value will generally vary with the thickness of the rod or rod tip. For example, bream anglers will require a low casting weight to achieve the best casting performance with ultra light soft plastics. On the other hand, anglers targeting Giant Trevally will need a high lure or casting weight to throw huge poppers.

Ask yourself: What size lures or baits will you be casting?


Like lure weight, line ratings provide a general estimate of a rod’s fighting capacity. Line rating will vary with blank thickness and a trained eye can estimate a rods capacity or application just by examining the blank. Use the guide below as a quick reference for common Australian target species.

Ask yourself: What size fish do you intend to target?


fishing rods

Narrow down your fishing rod parameters to suit your target species or fishing style. Once you’ve got the performance attributes defined, you can then pick the components and aesthetics that enhance the look and feel of the rod. Fishing rod technology has advanced so rapidly that you can now purchase top quality rods at very accessible prices. It’s a winning situation.


Is there anything you want to add to this article? Add your knowledge and experience through the comments section below.

Peter Hollingsworth

Peter has been fishing all around Australia since he was a boy. He loves camping, fishing and kayak fishing.