How short is your rod?

“Did you order more fishing crap?” called out the very supportive Mrs. UA when recently an anonymous gift arrived by one of my favorite brown delivery vans.

Honestly I had not, and I admitted as much. I had no idea what it might be: the box wasn’t long enough to be a fly rod, nor was it small enough to be a reel. I was perplexed. Upon opening said box I was still perplexed, for inside was a short plastic tube containing what appeared to be a two-piece fly rod from Redington. A very short, two-piece fly rod (insert short rod jokes here; get it out of your system now).

Longer than the inseam on my Redington Sonic Pro waders, but not much.

Called the “Form”, this diminutive stick is just 50 inches long. Unlike many who exaggerate the length of their rods, Redington actually tells it like it is, although truth be told the Form may even be a just a tad longer than 50 inches. Kudos to Redington for their conservative honesty and self-confidence.

Tale of the tape.

As one might expect from a rod this size, it has a proportionately small cork grip (a mere 6.5″ long) and just 4 snake eye guides (there is no stripping guide). Like other Redington sticks, the Form has alignment dots to help ensure the sections are placed together properly (I wish all rods had alignment dots). It looks just like a small fly rod, except for the lack of a reel seat.

There’s a fly line and a strike indicator, too.

It even comes with a 30-foot length of specialty Rio fly line with a very thin tapered tip. Tied to the tip of the line is a chunk of orange yarn, which may or may not be a strike indicator.

I will say that despite what it lacks in size the Form makes up for with good looks and castability: the one I received sports a handsome, crimson-colored blank (Redington also offers it in blue); the reliable old wiggle test suggests that it’s a slow to medium action rod; you can feel it load down to the cork but it recovers nicely. As for line weight, I’m not sure what it’s rated for because the blank isn’t stamped with a numerical designation. I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest it’s probably not a steelhead rod.

I was curious to learn more so I jumped online to Redington’s website to see what the Form was all about. Turns out it’s not really a working fly rod, but rather a “game play” tool designed for having a little fun off the water. However, just a toy the Redington Form is not: it can be used to practice your  casting and improve your form. It could also be a great tool to help beginners and youngsters develop their casting stroke, so keep all that in mind when you’re shopping for your favorite angler this Christmas.

This informational video does a better job of explaining things than I could ever hope to do. What it doesn’t tell you is that the Form costs only 79 cents per inch (that’s just a tidbit of data I calculated—no charge for that).

I suppose the lack of a reel seat should have been an early indication that this was not an actual rod to be used for fishing, because anyone who’s anyone knows that you do not go angling without a reel. That would just be ridiculous.

Then again, perhaps this is Redington’s entry into the Tenkara market.





  1. aileen

    McKenzie had a chance to try some sort of practice rod in LA last year, not sure if it was a Remington, but she loved it.
    I would have gotten a better visual if you had stood with the Remington Form next to you…but then again, maybe not.

    • Kirk Werner

      Probably was not a Remington. Last I checked, they only made shotguns 😉

  2. Whatthekarp

    Soooooo, I do not understand why it has guides if it doesn’t have a reel seat. Would you just practice stripping and shooting line? I just read a book on Tenkara, it was called “Tenkara, radically simple, ultralight fly fishing.” I learned more about fly fishing from this book than I had from just about any other fly fishing book. I really want to get a Tenkara rod.

    • Kirk Werner

      The guides are so that you can practice shooting line/hauling, etc. I’ve accidentally left my reel at home before, but that’s as close to Tenkara as I’ve come, so far.

      • aileen

        I think you should see if you can actually catch fish with it! Replace that orange fluffy thing with a bug~

        • Kirk Werner

          All that orange fluffy thing needs is an articulated hook and I have no doubts it would catch fish. Oh, how many times I wish my strike indicator had a hook…

      • Whatthekarp

        Hahaha, I was scouting a creek in West Michigan one time and for some stupid reason, I didn’t bring a rod. I started seeing brook trout, so I made a rod out of a stick from a maple tree and some heavy monofilament with a rusty old hook and a spawn sack that someone had lost in an overhanging branch the year before. Scrounged up a worm under a log for bait. I didn’t catch anything.

        • Kirk Werner

          Impressive McGyver-ish ways, and very unaccomplished as well.

          • Whatthekarp

            Yeah, I knew it was a stretch. The mono looked like it was 20 pound or more.

  3. The River Damsel

    That indicator looks a lot like Bozo’s missing hairpiece! Lol. So unaccomplished in this purchase. Hmmmm… I can just think of better ways to practice casting…like in a river with a long rod! = ) Sorry… I’m going to have to side with Mrs. UA on this one.

    • Kirk Werner

      You would be surprised at the castability of this little stick. It’s a game, it’s a practice tool, it’s…fun.

  4. Howard Levett

    Maybe I missed it, but who sent it to you. You can’t just tell a story and leave off the punchline.

    • Kirk Werner

      That is a mystery that shall remain a mystery…

  5. Joe Lendway

    I have one of those rods. It’s not from Redington though. I use mine to cat fish, literally. My cat makes a great target and she loves chasing the orange fuzz ball. My wife also thinks it’s great that I am playing with the cat. Little does she know I’m working on my cast.

    • Kirk Werner

      There you have it…a little casting practice disguised as fun and frolick.

  6. Kev

    To me these rods are just a marketing ploy. Why wouldn’t you just practice with your own rod? It’s more practical to use your own rod because that’s what you USE on the stream. These rods might be fun for practice but not for the price.

    • Kirk Werner

      A gimick? You bet. Nothin’ wrong with that. Something to do in the back yard instead of playing croquet or horseshoes.

  7. Blake Harmon

    Very cool product, and great review. I just snagged one. Cant wait to get it around a campfire after a day on the river for a little drinking game or three! good on ya!

    • Kirk Werner

      Thanks, Blake. Another idea might be to rig a marshmallow to the end and…wait, no. That sounds like a horrible idea. Strike that.

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