11 months ago

Fly Punk - Issue 4

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  • Fishing
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  • Custom
Fly Punk - No tweed, wicker baskets or trousers tucked into socks. Just a free digital magazine aimed at the fly fishing punk ... Read on and join the party ...


V-STICK CUSTOM RODS ― Renato Vitalini ― M y Name is Renato Vitalini from Switzerland. I was first introduced in fly fishing by one of my very best friends I grew up with. It was around the year 2002, since that day I have not touched any other rod than a fly rod, I’m regularly obsessed about fly fishing. It opened up the world for me and without it I would not be the person I am today and would not have reached the state of mind I have today. I run a custom fly rod business (V-Stick Custom Fly Rods), to be honest there are two main reasons. First I am world champion in breaking fly rods because sometimes I’m a fairly inattentive fellow and I also push rods to their real limits. I was sick of the very long gaps in (so called life time warranty disaster) which in my mind is just a money and marketing instrument that sucks a lot. I wanted to get rid of it and stop losing time and money for service costs for overpriced rods on the market. I was thinking to fix the rods by myself but had not the knowhow. I always was thinking of building my own rod but only the thought about that seemed to be out of this world in terms of being very very difficult. On a nice winter day in Austria, while fishing for the giant Huchen also called Danubian Salmon (or in Mongolia it is the Taimen), with another very close friend, the subject came up about custom fly rod building. He was fishing one super-sexy switch rod he had built himself. This was the first custom fly rod I have ever seen, it was in the year 2012. For Huchen/Taimen fishing how it’s done in Austria, they need rods that are very specific and not available through normal outlets. I told him “hey man” you are the master, and he said “boy listen up this is not rocket science, if you can tie flies you can also build a flyrod”. I was looking at him with very big eyes like a child standing before the Christmas tree. This was the one moment when the fire started to burn in me. The second main reason for me to start building my own rods was that I was a bit sick of all those super dusty style fly rods on the market, I was looking for something different. A bit more funky, fancy, colorful and more outstanding than all the normal stuff out there. I don’t want to suggest names but for sure you know what I mean! I wanted to stand apart from the rest, as I also do in my normal business as hotel manager owning my own little hotel in the resort. As with everything I’m not dancing in line with others, if you see my work you will understand what I’m saying. I was also a bit sick seeing top of the line manufactures building their rods in the factory in my eyes a bit crappy and not really top workmanship, and then selling the rods for too much money. I knew that it should be possible to make this work better! So I started with my first rod and damn she was ugly, and I soon realized that I need to practice. So as I am very ambitious, and tried and tried and tried, rod for rod for rod until I was a bit more satisfied with the results. Initially all this was just my personal interest, but soon it was in 2014 I started to build the first rods for clients and made my first little business. I did not realize what happened from then. It almost exploded and one customer to the next came to me wanting a v-stick. So three years later right now I can say it’s a business and it just needs a bit more so I can make a living out of it. Overall the last year was explosive and I can’t believe that after three years of business I’m on this point I am right now. This is super motivating. My rods are not like the others out there, you can see it in the pictures, they are real eye catchers and you can be sure if you fish along your home river there will be at least one other fly fisher coming to you and asking what kind of rod it is and who has built it. I hear this from all of my customers and that’s the goal. If they like the rod or not, is another story, but my goal is reached to wake up people and show them something a bit different than the rest. To like it or not is a question of taste but it should be said the quality is outstanding and so is the look of the rods. Lot’s of people say they are a piece of art…….. https:// 14 | 15

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