A pole can be made of aluminum
pipes, plastic tubes, fiber glass,carbon.
The most convenient and not too
expensive is the fishing pole. There are two kinds, the
telescopic ones and the put-over ones, and two materials,
fiber glass and carbon.
With the telescopic pole,
the sections can collapse each inside the bigger one next
With the put-over pole,
one section is set over the outside of the one next under,
so it cannot collapse.
The fiber glass poles are
heavier than the carbon ones. They are also very flexible.
It's limited to use under 4m length.
The carbon poles are usually
made lighter. Sometimes, the wall thickness is so thin than
the pole is not as stiff as expected, and it is also more
fragile. Because of that, such thin poles are easy to crash,
just by pressing it too strongly in the hand. A heavier
put-over carbon pole is more suitable for pole photography.
Available now are composite
carbon/glass poles which are convenient to use
up to 6m at reasonable price.
About the fishing poles
When short, less than 3m, they
are called rods; usually when length is between 3 and 6m
they are called poles; when length exceeds 7m, they are
called long poles.
Fishing with long poles is a fishing
technique which has been tuned by fishermen in North of
France near Roubaix city. This particular technique is known
as "La Roubaisienne"or "pole fishing".
It needs a put-over long pole, and the pull is moderated
with an elastic running through the last sections. There
are no eyelets outside the pole.
Mainly used for fish such as carp,tench,
perch, crappies, these poles are often named "carp
poles". However, there are also in the catalogs another
"carp poles" category which are shorter with eyelets
Italian fishermen have usually
longer rods than other fishermen, because they practiced
soon the Roubaisienne technique. It is now well known in
Belgium, Germany Great Britain, Ireland, Netherlands.
So it is mainly in these countries
where long poles can be easily purchased.
Long poles are not designed to
be rigid under a load. Flexibility is variable. For pole
photography too much flexibility will make the pole tricky
to hold when in vertical position as the load will be continuously
moving. Get it in quiet position is almost impossible.
The experience shows that when
moving along the pole, the maximum load is reached when
the load is still on the ground when the pole is held at
1,5m in its middle and the toe kept on the floor.
Length of pole and possible
This depends of the use you intend.
Whatever is your choice, the tip of the pole will be discarded
where diameter is lower than 8 to 10 mm. Thus about 1,5m
The forecast elevation can be calculated
without belt-pouch elevation = length - 1,5m
with the belt-pouch
elevation = length - 0,7m
For photography 8 to11m are convenient
It is a good practice to tape the
bottom end of each section to avoid some longitudinal cracks.
The good quality poles are made thicker at these locations.
The toe of the lower section shall
be reinforced outside. It can be a pipe which will fit and
then pasted with epoxy glue. Or it can be fiberglass clothe
rolled around and pasted with resin. More simple is to open
and paste the plug, and get a wider one to replace.
Section length varies from 1,4m
up to almost 2m depending on the trademarks. Shorter ones
are more convenient to carry. Furthermore, a greater number
of sections gives the pole more stiffness because there
is double thickness at each joint and it also prevents each
section to become oval when bending.
The carbon quality and thickness
are variable. Avoid those which seems soft under finger
pressure. Cheap poles under 6m are often black fiberglass,
but there is no information on it.
My actual poles
All my long poles are put-over
type, carbon made.
A SERT 9m pole has been
crushed. It is a good one. A Vercelli 9.5m is still
used but more fragile than the SERT. Its section is164cm
Last is a Roubaisienne Sensas
X40 11m pole. Usable length is 9,4m in 8 sections, the
8th one has been cut at Ø9mm (external). It holds
600g including the whole cradle and photographic gear. The
toe diameter is Ø46mm.
I also shortened 4cm at the toe
of the bottom section so the package is 146cm long.
Bearing the pole
The long pole is set in a belt-pouch.
This is easy to make. It shall
be resistant because you will use it a lot and for many
A 9m long pole weights about 800g.
A 11m long pole weights about