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Matthew goes On-ki

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The fast and the furious


Fun, Fun, Fun. This rod is a fast action, very lightweight rod. The light green colour is identifiable on the bank instantly to any angler, making it a flashy looking piece of kit; although I doubt it will impress the fish! Although it is as flashy as a Christmas Tree, it’s light green colouration means that the wild brownies in a shallow stretch of river aren’t scared like they would be if it had not of had its anti-flash matte blanks and camouflaged colouring. 


This rod is made as a four-piece fly rod. its fast,40 tonne blanks are stiff to start with but as soon as you get 10 -15 yards of line out they become effortless and an absolute joy to cast. I was given the 9’#5 to try and it was the perfect companion to nymphs and the presentation on dries was amazing. The handle is an AAA grade cork half-wells up to the 9’ #6;anything bigger than this gets you a full-wells handle and a small fighting butt.

The Onki has a weight of 83g in 9’#5 and weighs125g in the 10’#7. The Vipu is heavier as the 9’#5 is 96.4g and the 10’#7 is136g. Both rods are fitted with 1 stripping guide on the #5 and 2 on the #7.The rest of the guides are snakes in a lovely silver colour. These popular lightweight guides are one that many anglers trust and prefer over the other designs out there.


I paired it up with an Orvis #5 line and an Orvis clearwater classic Mk III, the leader was 13 feet of 6lb Rivage GrandMax. It worked brilliantly, firing the fly miles, laying it beautifully on the water surface. This rod is at home on a river with and a size 16 dry right through to a Stillwater and a size 8 lure and pulling techniques. This is a totally versatile rod which I loved for fishing Crud Y Gwynt (R.A.S.A.A), Tan Y Mynydd,and the Nant y Wern stretch of the River Clwyd (V.O.C.A.C).

The top three flies I fished on this rod were– 

A skinny red superglue buzzer – size 14. It turns over well and is my favourite stalking fly.

A Greenwells parachute-size 16. Given to me by Eoin Campbell, a deadly river dry, especially on the Dee.

A red holographic Diawl Bach- size 12-14. A great variation on the deadly welsh nymph. A fly I fish with confidence.


I Tried the Onki side-by-side with the Vision Vipu,in the same 9’ #5 classification (I won this one at the Junior Troutmasters in July). I found the Onki action to be noticeably faster, reacting faster to the tap on my forward cast; a trait I expected this from a rod around £150 more expensive.

With a fish on, the softer Vipu can sometimes feel a little “bogged down” under heavy load, whereas the firmer Onki action allowed for more control under tension. This saved a leader or two! This is not saying that the Vipu is a rubbish rod when playing fish, it’s just if light leaders and delicate dries are your cup of tea then the Onki would be a much better choice . While on that note the beginners out there, or those who prefer a heavier leader would get on better with the Vipu. This does not mean that beginners won’t like the Onki it is just different people have different casting styles and
nobody wants to get into a bad casting style and have improvable casting forever.


If I were being selective, I would have liked a second up-locking ring on the reel seat, or at least a rubber O-ring to stop it slipping, you can feel it when your reel comes loose, it becomes slack and untidy. This is a minor gripe, and doesn’t take away from what is otherwise a great stick.


The Onki is an outstanding rod with a whole host of great features, and it’s stiff nature is brilliant for accurate placement of dry flies. It is also great for pulling, or for nymphing. I wouldn’t recommend a novice choose this as a first rod; there are better, slow-action rods available (the Vipu for example), but for more experienced anglers, it is a brilliant bit of tackle for a day on the water. The Vipu is slower and a better 1st rod.

TIGHT LINES From Matthew Davies . Age 12

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Vision Onki


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