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"Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: jim spooner (---.direcpc.com)
Date: May 08, 2017 02:27PM

This subject came up in another thread (http://rodbuilding.org/read.php?2,467692), so I thought it may be worthy of a new thread.

It seems that whenever the RDA (Rod Data Analysis) measuring system is brought up, the proponents of CCS begin to hyper-ventilate, and unless there’s a viable copyright infringement, I don’t get it. I can’t imagine referring a rod builder to the “Big Picture” article as a means to rate a rods “working” or “effective” length. The poor guy’s eyes would glaze over after reading the first couple of paragraphs. I’m not suggesting that the RDA is a better system than the CCS, but it may be appropriate, depending on a rod builder’s perceived requirements.

I’ve read the “Big Picture” portion of the CCS and eventually recovered from the resulting headache (Ha). I don’t believe the author had any intention or suggestion that it be used as a means to rate completed rods. If it hadn’t been previously pointed out there was an inference in the “Big Picture” to the “RDA (or vice versa), I wouldn’t have seen the correlation. Perhaps it’s buried somewhere within the article and I’m not intellectually astute enough to see it. He is certainly to be given credit for the length, divided by three equation (overall length, or any part thereof) used in his lengthy technical dissertation, but I don’t see any problem with someone else coming up with the straight-forward (no scientific hoopla) “RDA” as a viable method to rate rods…..even if it adapts part of the CCS/Big Picture in its methodology.

Most rod builders don’t care about getting into the weeds of a political argument or worry about who first came up with a good idea. If a method or a means of measuring/rating their blank or completed rods helps them in any way, they’ll be grateful.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Geoff Staples (---.wavecable.com)
Date: May 08, 2017 05:19PM

I think the issue folks have with RDA is that it introduces more variables in to the system of measurement making it harder to establish a baseline for comparison of other blanks or rods. The measurements it provides may be more robust based on a particular build type, but the more factors that are considered, the more specific, and less useful for comparison that set of measurements become. Thoughts?

Geoff Staples
www.batsonenterprises.com

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Spencer Phipps (---.hsd1.or.comcast.net)
Date: May 08, 2017 06:57PM

Like Geoff said, I don't see where he improved on the existing system, and the posts I've read really don't explain what was wrong with the CC system, other than he didn't like it and it didn't fit his needs. No reason why it doesn't work, why his method is a more viable method for measuring bass rods. It appears to me like he couldn't get past the numbering system in fly rod powers, but I see nowhere where it said I had to use fly rod powers to value the blank, I could just use grams, grains or ounces depending on the blank and still be able to measure and compare blanks.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 08, 2017 10:48PM

There is no doubt which came first - the CCS and Big Picture. The supposed "inventor" of the "RDA" simply took this aspect of the CCS and its nomenclature and coped it as if it was his own. It isn't hard to establish the baseline for when these things were published - the "RDA" did not exist in any form, shape or fashion until well after the CCS and its related parts were published. I would defy anyone to offer proof that the RDA came before any aspect of the CCS and Big Picture.

Beyond that, we go back to that fact that manufacturers are selling rod blanks and all measurements provided are based on the rod blank as it is sold, not as it might be built, extended, cut, used, etc. To know where you're going to wind up you have to know where you're starting from. If a manufacturer were to state their listed lengths and weights were based on a specific amount of the blank being trimmed, or specific components added to it, or a reel seat located at a particular point, then those measurements would have no use unless you built the blank exactly as the manufacturer supposed you might. What is the RDA length of a 72-inch long blank if the manufacturer bases his measurements on a reel seat placement of 12 inches from the butt? Does he list the blank length as 60 inches? If you're going to measure action and power 12 inches from the butt, why not length as well?

Conversely, by measuring the entire blank as it is manufactured and sold, you have not only a solid basis for across the board comparisons of rod blanks, but any astute rod builder can look at those measurements and ascertain how his handle length, trimming, extending, component additions, etc., are likely to affect the original numbers. Again, to know where you're going to wind up, you have to know where you're starting from.

The only way to have across the board comparisons is to have all measurements taken, on every blank, from the same standpoint - the blank as it is sold, not as one out of a hundred different ways a builder might choose to assemble it.

Regardless of opinion, I like what Dr. Hanneman said about his system quite often - "It you find it of value, use it. If not, don't." I'd say the same about the knock-off RDA - if you find it has value to you, use it. If not, don't. But the manufacturers need to provide all measurements based on the entire rod blank, not just a portion of it. From there, any decent builder can deduce how he builds and uses it may change those numbers. The important thing is to know what you're starting with and it is the CCS that provides that.

................

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 08, 2017 10:49PM

Geoff Staples Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I think the issue folks have with RDA is that it
> introduces more variables in to the system of
> measurement making it harder to establish a
> baseline for comparison of other blanks or rods.
> The measurements it provides may be more robust
> based on a particular build type, but the more
> factors that are considered, the more specific,
> and less useful for comparison that set of
> measurements become. Thoughts?


Dr. Hanneman would completely agree with you and he won't mind me speaking for him in this instance.

..........

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Mark Higgs (---.static.hvvc.us)
Date: May 08, 2017 11:24PM

I would agree. If the mfg’s specs for length and weight are for the entire blank, then action and power should also be. Granted the RDA effective length of a 72” one handed casting rod with the seat mounted 12” from rear could be considered just 60” but I would not want to see it listed that way in the catalog. Give me the total length, action, and power and let me decide how that might or will change based on where I choose to mount the seat or use the rod. I may not put the seat where the maker thinks I will or should. IMO I think it is important to be consistent in where you take all the measurements from. Plus I get a gut feeling that the portion of the rod blank behind the reel seat is not immaterial even if you cast and fight the fish one handed.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: jim spooner (---.direcpc.com)
Date: May 09, 2017 08:39AM

I agree with all of the above….most of it anyway. And I don’t dispute Tom’s proclamation as to which system came first…..for those of us that care. His reference to RDA being a “Knock-off” may be a bit irrational.

Although I think CCS is the most effective way to make relative blank comparisons, I think it’s unlikely that all blank manufacturers will provide it any time soon, and even if they did, rod builders would have to understand that because of the manufacturing process, the Power and Action can differ from blank to blank within a specific model blank…..sometimes significantly. It could be that blank manufacturers are hesitant to adopt more stringent specs that they’d have to conform to.

What Geoff said is correct; the RDA does introduce a lot of variables. Specifically the different “working lengths”, which depending on how the rod builder configures his (or her) rod, changes the measurements. This obviously results in many combinations of setups, which the rod builder may have to interpolate in order to make comparisons.

Although I don’t think the RDA is practical for blank comparisons, I do think it tends to reflect the actual application of power in the way a rod is used dynamically and makes rod (not blank) selection for specific tasking easier. The 10% of a blank that is “immobilized” using CCS may not necessarily reflect the way an angler applies energy to a rod. At one time, I measured using CCS and also RDA for that reason, but since they required different set ups, I seldom make the CCS measurement any more. By referring to my rod spec sheet, the RDA provides me with fast/easy way to make rod comparisons.

For those that harbor an irrational animosity toward RDA or its author(s), a variation of CCS could be adapted to a method of finished rod measurements by changing the 10% provision to whatever the builder felt was the “force” location (3rd order lever) along the rod (reel seat, foregrip, etc). The overall length of the rod would still be used for the 1/3 equation. This “system” wouldn’t necessarily be a practical means for comparing other rods or blanks (no more so than RDA), but it could be useful for an angler that had numerous rods and needed an easy means to compare the relative Powers and Actions.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Rob Hale (---.triad.res.rr.com)
Date: May 09, 2017 09:04AM

I don't think disagreeing with something makes one irrational. The RDA is really just the CCS with a different or variable support point so I don't even consider it a system unto itself. I would agree that it is a knock off and even uses the same deflection equation and terms like "AA." Doing that probably only adds to the confusion among new builders. So having said that now I guess I also have an irrational animosity towards the RDA!

A poster said that he thinks the part behind the reel seat matters and it does. Even if you hold the rod one handed at the reel seat to cast or work a lure, the portion of the blank behind the seat is still being used because it affects balance, swingweight, and when fighting a fish most fishermen will put the rod butt under their forearm. I am sure there is an argument against my thoughts and that's fine. I will just consider them irrational.

I am guessing this is not a poll of any sort but if I had a vote for what the factory blank people should include I would use the CCS and base the measurements on the entire blank or as much of it as is possible in order to take the measurements. Just my irrational .02 worth.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 09, 2017 09:26AM

The specifications which manufacturers list for rod blanks are target specs based on what the blank is supposed to match. Due to the many steps involving hand labor, few will be absolutely verbatim. Witness the common slight variance in actual tip diameter size from what is listed in the catalogs. However, these specs do not vary widely if you are dealing with a quality product. When I was preparing the data for the article on rod breakage and later for the rod strength piece, I measured all the blanks of a particular model which we were utilizing to perform the tests. I was shocked at how close they all were to each other (not necessarily to the target specs, although those were pretty close as well). It occurred to me at that time that the manufacturer of those blanks was maintaining excellent quality control on their products.

My comment on the "irrational" comment would be this - for a person to take Dr. Hanneman's system, shift the forward support point and then claim to have come up with something new or different based on the "working length" (a term that I coined in an article years earlier for another purpose) is not exactly the hallmark of good ethics. But, I really don't care about that nor do I care if people want to use the RDA if they find it helpful. No one is telling them that they can't or shouldn't. My only objection is along the lines of what Geoff mentioned above - that of introducing so many variables that across the board comparisons become very difficult to make. For instance, even if you take the measurement at the point where you will locate the reel seat (which may be different from where the next guy will locate it), what happens if the angler's point of effort changes as he grasps the rod ahead of the seat? Or behind it? If we're going to talk about "dynamic" use of the rod, we have to understand that these measurements are in constant flux as the angler applies effort to various points on the rod with one or both hands. I don't find this to be an irrational argument. But again, if you find the RDA to be helpful for what you're doing, by all means help yourself.

..........................

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Mike Ballard (167.114.170.---)
Date: May 09, 2017 11:06AM

Defining the working length as being between the reel seat and rod tip is still a static measurement point. Dynamic would be from the furthest point of the angler’s point of effort to the rod tip and that dynamic constantly changes depending on where the angler is supporting the rod. No way for anyone to provide that.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Gib Portwood (---.lightspeed.rcsntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: May 09, 2017 11:18AM

I think the CCS is great. I have started a data base for listing the CCS data on blanks. You can see it here [1drv.ms]

This system allows you to compare blanks! Apples to apples. Not builds to builds. The RDA information contained from a build could be useful, but that factors in the uniqueness of each build. I would think a rod builder would want to know the blank information more importantly since he can use that data to help decide the components (blank) to use. Much like they use ring size, guide height, grip length, etc. Blank power and action are important too! But the CCS gives objective data the rod maker can use... not subjective data.

So, with that in mind... please send me any CCS data you have on blanks you measured and I will add it to my database!

Thanks,
Gib

Father to William (14 yrs), who I hope has found his passion in custom rod building!

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: jim spooner (---.direcpc.com)
Date: May 09, 2017 12:57PM

Okay, now I get it. So I guess there’s a sense of moral/ethical consternation because of the use (theft) of some methods prescribed in the CCS article. Evidently there’s a contentious history of debate regarding the subject, so I’ll refrain from giving further reasons why I think RDA can be useful. Obviously it’s not a subject open to discussion and no sense risking being banished from the web-site over it. As they say, go along to get along (Snicker).

I think I’ve already stated that I’m part of the consensus that CCS is the recognized and/or preferred standard for rating blanks, but at the same time, I recognize there are other methods to make rod comparisons.

I concur with you Tom about the manufacturer’s “target specs”. Any product has an allowable deviation (tolerance) and as you point out, there are hand labor processes involved, so it’s not surprising that CCS values can differ from the nominal. I was surprised to see just how much the measurements can vary for what I consider a manufacturer with one of the best quality control and most consistent product. I just think it’s something a rod builder has to be aware of if he’s trying to select a match for an existing rod.

As to the effects of the portion of the blank that Bob H. mentioned, we can agree to disagree….at least in some context, but I’d be irrational to argue the point here.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 09, 2017 02:20PM

No one has ever been banned from this site over the sort of thing you mention. The subject is obviously open to discussion as this thread proves. But there is no need to become angry because not everyone agrees with you. Not everyone agrees with me but I don't call them irrational or ban them because they have a different opinion than I do.

And I have said repeatedly that if you find the RDA useful, use it.

.............

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Mike Ballard (---.ip-192-95-56.net)
Date: May 09, 2017 02:30PM

My objection if you want to call it that, to the RDA is that it does not make sense to me. Nothing to do with moral consternation. The idea that you are measuring the actual or dynamic portion of the blank that is working or effective or whatever is flawed if you use that portion from the reel seat to the tip. You would have to use the fisherman's forward point of effort and that changes constantly. Others have pointed this out too. If I can get the numbers for the naked total blank, I have built more than enough rods to know what I'm looking at and how my assembly is going to affect it as a finished rod.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: jim spooner (---.direcpc.com)
Date: May 09, 2017 03:04PM

Disappointed maybe, or disgusted, but not not angry. When petty animosity precludes open discussion, no one benefits. I think there’s credible pros and cons for both CCS and the so-called RDA, but perhaps they’d best be debated on more of a one-on-one venue. I did question your rationale for the cheap shot “knock off” label, but your explanation as to what you see as plagiarization of the “Big Picture” may justify it…..or at least explain it.
Anyway, moving on.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 09, 2017 04:08PM

If you're going to be objective then you should be able to see that the insults here have been completely one sided. The comments about being irrational and now about petty animosity did not come from me.

Calling the RDA a knock-off is neither a cheap shot nor a personal insult. It was, in fact, knocked off from the CCS.

............

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Geoff Staples (---.wavecable.com)
Date: May 09, 2017 05:11PM

I had a feeling that this string might take this type of direction when reading the original post. To be honest, I'm completely ok with it. As long as no one slings profanities or is being disrespectful on a personal level, what's wrong with some heated debate? It's usually an indicator of a topic worth reading. I'm not trying to moderate here, just expressing my opinion that there's nothing wrong with stating your case, even a contentious one. It helps everyone learn. I have read some discussion about this topic on other forums that was clearly over the line.

Geoff Staples
www.batsonenterprises.com

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: bill boettcher (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: May 09, 2017 05:20PM

Use the system that -- YOU LIKE -- and that gives you the best performance of your rods

Bill - willierods.com

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: jim spooner (---.direcpc.com)
Date: May 09, 2017 05:46PM

I consider myself suitably chastised.

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Re: "Big Picture"/"RDA"
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: May 09, 2017 06:13PM

Well, on the other hand, you have certainly brought much good discussion and insight to this forum over many years. I'd say you're still on the high side of that hill so no harm done.

..............

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