Selecting Fishing Rod Guides Based on Rod Blanks

Selecting Fishing Rod Guides Based on Rod Blanks

Learn how to build the best performing custom fishing rod by selecting the optimal rod blank and guides for your application.

Pairing Guides and Rod Blanks

Tailoring each custom rod to the intended fishing application is one of the best parts about rod building. But to build a rod truly tailored to your fishing, it's important to understand what components bring the perfect performance on your custom rod.

Let's start with the basics.

Fishing Rod Guides

Determining the type and size of guides for your rod building project can be confusing at first if you don’t understand some of the basics.

As technology has evolved so have the rod guides for custom fishing rods.

Rod guides come in many shapes and in a variety of materials. The quality of a guide depends on the composition of both the guide frame and the ring. Guides are measured by the outside diameter (OD) of the ring in millimeters.

Like rod blanks, guides work best when chosen according to your specific fishing application. From Casting and Spinning to Offshore Trolling Rods, MHX offers rod blanks to pair with your guides setup to maximize your performance on the water. 

See more rod blanks engineered for your application at Fish MHX...

Fly Rod Guides

Wire guides are available in both traditional double foot, commonly known as snake guides, and single foot styles. These guides also come in a variety of finishes. Wire guide sizes generally include 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 1/0 and 2/0 with 6 being the largest.

There are also single fly rod guides with inserts that can be used in place of wire guides.

As with stripping guides, the quality of single foot fly rods depends on the composition of both the guide frame and the insert ring. Single foot fly rod guides are generally available in sizes 10, 8, 7, 6, and 5.5. These sizes give the diameter of the guide ring in millimeters.

Whether getting into rainbow trout, redfish, or even leaping tarpon, check out the MHX Native Series Fly Blanks and bring proven performance to your waters. 


There is also more to choosing a tip top than many anglers may think.

A Closer Look at Insert Rings & Loop Sizing

The first measurement in a Tip-Top is the OD of the ring (eyelet) in millimeters. Generally, the inside diameter (ID) of the ring will match the smallest guide on the rod.

Standard sizes are 6, 8, and 10mm for conventional rods, while heavier saltwater rods may go as high as a 16mm ring.

Tube Sizing

The second measurement in a Tip-Top is the ID of the tube, measured in 1/64ths of an inch. The tube size should correspond to the size given by the manufacturer of your blank.

Tube sizes generally range from 3.5 to 12, but they go all the way up to 32 (.500″) in Big Game roller tops.

Insert Rings

Sizes can vary depending on the manufacturer, and are measured in millimeters.

On guides with insert rings, the measurement is taken from the OD of the insert ring.

While for wire guides, the size measurement is taken from the ID of the loop.

Guide Spacing

When it comes to your guide spacing requirements for your rod blank, it is always best to refer to the manufacturer’s spec sheet.

MHX offers a Guide Spacing Chart to make laying out guides fast and simple. 

With a better understanding of guides, visit Fish MHX to pick out your high-performance rod blank!