It used to be that if you wanted real quality in offshore fishing tackle, your best bet was a custom built rod. Back in the 70's and early 80's companies like Fenwick and Sabre were building rods that, by today's standards wouldn't get more than $50 off the rack. Then, some west coasters started upping the ante' by building "production" rods with custom quality. Star Rods came into their own at about the same time and saw mammoth success with this formula. As a matter of practicality, I don't see much of a reason to buy a custom rod anymore (other than for looks) when you can buy factory rods with the same top end components that were an upgrade years ago on custom sticks. I was at FTU the other day, fondling a factory Calstar for my Trini40n. While examining the rod, I thought to my self that this rod at $200+ would have been a much more expensive custom rod 20 or more years ago. What say you?