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  #1  
Old 04-09-2008, 01:55 PM
robalo robalo is offline
 
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Default Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

I recently bought my first fly rod, a 5wt TFO pro 9' rod for trout and bass. I am trying to select a WF floating fly line that would be good for the action of this rod.

I have read a lot about matching rod action and fly line. I am currently using a level line that came with my Pflueger reel. Although I can get the fly in the water, and some times, make good casts (~20 to 35'), I feel that do not have consistency and accuracy in my casts. Besides my mechanics being inconsistent, I feel that part of the problem is due to the line I am using.

I wonder if anyone could suggest some brand/model combinations that would be good to get me started. There are a several line manufacturers with literally dozens of line models available and I am a bit confused. Clearly, I would not like to pay for features that I would not appreciate of my fly fishing "career" ;-). Plus, I am already way!!!! over my budget... ;-) I got a spool of Cortland Fairplay Floating Rocket but I was told that the action of my rod is incompatible with this line... As you can see, I do not know much about the sport yet.

Thanks,

Robalo.
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  #2  
Old 04-09-2008, 08:05 PM
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

If you bought it at a shop they may have different reels loaded with various wt lines and you may be able to try casting a DT line or a WF 5wt, on it, see how it feels even try over loading it with a WF 6wt it will slow it down and you may like it better.
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  #3  
Old 04-09-2008, 08:44 PM
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JoeSixpack JoeSixpack is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Yup. A fly shop should be able to let you try something out back, or in the parking lot, see what's happening and point you in the right direction.
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  #4  
Old 04-10-2008, 12:00 PM
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sprattoo sprattoo is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Thats the bonus of shopping in a fly shop rather than wally world, Dicks, or any of the other big guys.
They will help right out by picking your line, showing you the knots and letting you get a handle on your new gear. Whenever someone comes in to pick a new rod, and hasn't fly fished much or at all, I try to include a knot tying guide and a few minutes on the grass getting the hang of a cast.

I personally like Cortlands 333 line to start with (its 35 bucks well spent and will last a long time). Just stick with regular weight forward. Unless you are fishing in high winds or something.
Overlining (meaning spooling up a weight heavier than the rod is made for) Rocket taper weight forward line can lead to some casting issues without a lot of practice. For instance the line will drop and move faster than expected and can cause a lot of tail looping, especially to a newer caster who tends to drop their arm on the forward stroke and what not.

you can get cheap line from Crystal river, but its never consistent. Some batches are fine, while others have bumps and are over pourous, or under floated... making them sink. I am selling my CR line off and not ordering it anymore at all.
Cortland line has always been consistent for me. 3M Brand is also a decent starter line.

So to shorten this long winded stuff up..... If you can't find a local small fly shop, grab some Cortland 333 5 weight forward. I will be listed something like WF5F on the box. Meaning Weight Forward 5 weight Floating line.

After that its casting mechanics. Theres a million resources, and youtube videos on the topic. But pretty much remember what Lefty Kreh says on casting:

It doesn't matter at what angle, or place you stop, as long as the rod travels in the same arc forward as it did backward.
Some other quick casting tips I like to impart to beginners:
80% of your casting issues are behind you - Watch the back cast, it should look about like your forward cast.
The casting action is... accelerate to a stop, accelerate to a stop (generally about 10 and 2 postion - about) If you say zzzzzzip .... zzzzzzzip to yourself as you move the rod, you will have it. start the forward zzzzzip just as your line is about extended and you feel it starting to pull or load the rod.
Cast with the forearm not the wrist. - Tuck the reel into your sleeve if you have to.

But keep in mind.... I am by no means a pro, nor claim to be, and have been working on new casts and line control myself daily. These are just things that really help me iron out the bugs in my own experience. Fly fishing can have as much or as little education and time involved as you want.
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  #5  
Old 04-11-2008, 08:36 PM
robalo robalo is offline
 
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Thanks for the valuable suggestions. So I went to a fly shop near where I live. They do not have any lines to try. They suggested the Rio Mainstream and indicated that this line is similar to the Corland 333 and the SA Headstart. I was ready to buy the Rio Mainstream when the sales person realized that my line wasn't really level but rather a WF that had been tied backwards...(not by me though). I did not realize this myself, even after having to respool the reel (I posted about that). He switched the line around for $10. I took it fishing and the casts improved about 5' or so . The line still jams in the guides. I was told that is due to memory, not sure I really know if it is the line or my mechanics... ;-). My line is fairly floppy unlike the Mainstream and a lot thicker as well. In any case, I think that I may still like a line that casts better so I will try another fly shop to see if they let me try them. The problem is that in the MA Metro West area I do not know of too many. Can you guys suggest any?

Thanks,

Robalo.
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  #6  
Old 04-12-2008, 07:20 AM
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onDriver onDriver is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

I'm not familiar with that area for shops, but if you can take the leader end of the fly line and tie it off on a fence post and try stretching it abit 15 20 pounds of pull to take out the memory. Then try casting it again.
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  #7  
Old 04-12-2008, 08:57 PM
robalo robalo is offline
 
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Stretching the line worked like a charm, thank you. I went fishing today and did not have any problems with the line... some with mechanics though. Most likely, because the taper was attached to the backing, this area was pretty coiled when the line was turned around. The line is cheap and all but it works as it should. In any case, I found a very good deal on a top of the line Airflo line, which should be better. I think that I am going to give this one a try as well, unless somebody suggests otherwise.

Thanks,

Robalo.
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  #8  
Old 04-13-2008, 07:35 AM
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onDriver onDriver is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Another thing folks do at the end of a season is take all the fly line off a reel and make a two foot diameter coil tie it off with the kind of ties you get at the super market and store it over the winter that way.

I don't do it though, some brands just seem to have more memory.
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  #9  
Old 04-15-2008, 12:20 PM
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sprattoo sprattoo is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

The Airflo lines are sold to tackle shops by Rumpf I believe and a couple other suppliers. I have some of this stuff on order for myself. I think it should work out for you.

It is hard for a shop to unpack and let you try a line they aren't sure you are going to buy, because once its unpacked and tied on, its not sellable as new line anymore, and has to be spooled onto a reel and sold as a complete setup.

When you get a new line it should have a tag on it that says, attach this end to reel or backing.

Also when you nail knot your line to the backing, or however you attach it, try covering it with few layers of head cement or superglue. This way if you get a big critter on that pulls out line, when this section goes ou through the eyes it will go smoothly and not hang on the eyes, breaking the fish off.

Take a look at some of the Youtube videos with Lefty Kreh, and others, they will help with mechanics. I also gained a lot of good casting mechanics info from "Fly fishing for Dummies" Its a great book anyway, and worth having on your shelf.

How far are you from Cotes Fly shop?
http://stores.ebay.com/Cotes-Fly-Tying-and-Rod-Building
They are a GREAT family business with some of everything and terrific folks. Just tell them that Lloyd From the Fishin' Hole sent you. We meet every year at Pelham N.H. fly show. They will treat you right no matter what, but maybe will go an extra mile or two if they know we refered you to them.
I need to get down there an build a rod with those guys.
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Last edited by sprattoo; 04-15-2008 at 12:27 PM. Reason: forgot a link
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  #10  
Old 04-19-2008, 08:03 PM
robalo robalo is offline
 
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Thanks sprattoo!!! Leicester is close enough. I will visit their store and let you know my impression. I got the Airflo line and have been using it for a couple of days now. It was pretty hard at the beginning but I am getting more familiar with it. Initially, it had a bit of memory, but it went away after stretching and using it a couple of times. The main thing was that my previous line was heavier than the Airflo. Somebody suggested that perhaps it was a 6wt instead of 5wt. Given all the issues that I had with the reel and line, I would not be surprised... ;-) My only "complaint" with the Airflo is that the line burned my index finger stripping line. It was pretty cold and my hand was pretty numbed so I did not feel it. I wonder if there is anything that people do to prevent that. When I go surf fishing, I use some tape in my finger to prevent burns. It also has been pretty windy around so I cannot say much more about the line.

Found the tag!!! Actually, I did not tie a nail knot on it because it has loops at both ends so I went with an Albright Special for the backing end, tied a perfection loop to the leader, and viola!!!

I currently have a copy of the Fly Fishing for Dummies (FFFD) that I borrowed from the local library. I also have read the Orvis and the McNally's books. I will check the videos online though. One thing that I found pretty helpful from the FFFD is chapter on fly tying. My wife has tied a couple of flies already... ;-)

Thanks,

Robalo.
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  #11  
Old 04-21-2008, 03:05 PM
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sprattoo sprattoo is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Rockin'!
I always felt its way more satisfying to catch fish on your own fly rather than someone elses.

Also one of the most famous fly tiers from Maine was a lady - Carrie Stevens known for tying the gray ghost..... and she didn't use a vise!

If you treat your line with some silicone lubricant or line slick it might make it less abrasive. It will also add a few yards to your cast.
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  #12  
Old 04-25-2008, 11:47 PM
RJC RJC is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Some of the newer lines do not take kindly to lubricant.

The Orvis Wonderlines start to lose a lot of their slickness.

A soaking in warm lightly soaped water for 10 minutes and then pull the line thru a wash cloth and let it dry.

That is a safe shot with all fly lines.

Lefty Kreh has some video's out that will teach you the basic motions and then it is just a matter of practice.

Start working on your accuracy early. I used a hula hoop and started trying to put my flyline end with a short leader and a little bit of yarn tied to the end.

25 feet is far enough to begin getting accurate.

By focusing on the target, your casting will improve because you are not worrying about each mechanical movement for the cast.

Once you are a killer 25 foot caster (More than enough for most trout streams) move the hoop out to 40 feet. and then as you improve to 50 feet and beyond.

It isn't going to happen in an afternoon. But over a period of a couple of weeks you will be amazed how accurate and effortless the casting practice has become.

Building muscle memory takes practice in any sport.

Good luck and look around, there probably is a Trout Unlimited Chapter near you and the smaller fly pro shops usually have a couple fly rods rigged up or Will be willing to let you try out some of their lines.

I like Airflow, SA, Orvis and Cortland.

Enjoy your self and practice. You won't regret it.

What kind of water will you be fishing. Fresh or Salt?
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  #13  
Old 05-03-2008, 01:58 PM
robalo robalo is offline
 
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

Thanks sprattoo and RJC for the comments and suggestions. I will try to find lefty Kreh's videos to improve my casts. Since I last posted, a lot has happened. I spent the weekend in VT and caught 5 and 6 lbs smallies on 14 prince and pheasant tails. They were so big that the first 3 broke my line and "ran away" with my fly. I took revenge right away by making adjustments in my fighting skills. After that, it was easy. I avoided abrasion on my index finger by taping it. Also, not being in the water past my waist, and keeping the line out of the water also helped. I am starting to work on keeping the line in 10' loops in my line hand rather than keeping it floating on the water. In the lake where I had done all my fishing before, other than the abrasion problems, it does not matter as the water does not move but in a stream, leaving the line on the water can be a problem.

The Airflo Presentation is a great line. I can shoot more than 60% of the spool (90") under the "right" conditions with ease. One thing that I noticed is that the tip does not stay afloat very well, I wonder if this is normal. My cheap orange line is better at this than the Airflo. I am not terribly accurate at the moment but I am starting to work on that. I noticed that casting is all about being relaxed and focused. I am also starting to haul the line a bit and I can get more line acceleration, and more distance that way. This works well when it is windy. While I was in VT I found a couple of guys all geared up but their casts were not nearly as good as mine. This is not to say that I am a good caster but I am getting better. One thing that I need to work on is false casting. I am not very good at it because my timing is not always perfect so I end up letting the line touch the water. I have not used dry flies yet but I read that false casting is a must when you use dry flies. It is a process as you say RJC. It is going to take awhile.

I normally fish at a lake near my house but I will start taking my act to trout streams in NE. Really in the streams that I fished in VT the distance is not all that important, accuracy is. Eventually, I will try saltwater fishing if I can, but not right now, and probably not with this setup.

Thanks,

Robalo.
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  #14  
Old 05-05-2008, 01:57 PM
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sprattoo sprattoo is offline
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

The new lines and the lube was something I wasn't aware of. I just spooled up my airflo line myself, and was thinking of lubing it this afternoon....
I'm glad I checked. Thank RJC for the info.

Do you know which lines specifically break down with lube? Or what it is in or on them that would make them less lube friendly?

Anyway Robalo, I can't remember who is was who said... Maybe Lee Wulff, or Lefty Kreh.... could have been in an old Field and stream.

"For most fishermen count your number of false casts and cut it in half." So while the false cast is a necessity to fly fishing, when you are closing in on your target think about the line shooting out to get to the target as well.
False casting over spooky trout or other fish, just well, spooks them.

For myself, for some reason, this line has stuck with me. For standard short casts on a stream I try to stick to one or two whips to get my line where I want it. Or a roll cast, which still causes me some frustration sometimes.

I have been fishing with guys who spend more time with their fly in the air than on the water I swear, and they think I'm lucky.

Nope, just fishing instead of casting.
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  #15  
Old 06-02-2008, 06:09 PM
robalo robalo is offline
 
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Default Re: Not striper related but probably easy for guys with experience

sprattoo,

Following your and RJC's suggestions, I have been looking into a lubricant for my Airflo line. It turns out that Airflo manufactures a product called: "Line Lube", which should be perfect for us. I have, however, not been able to find it advertised anywhere. I wonder since you are a dealer of Airflo, whether you could get it. Provided that it is not terribly expensive, I may be interested in a bottle of it.

Yeah, I am trying to reduce the number of fly casts. It becomes a bad habit, especially when you are fishing dry flies.

Thanks,

Robalo.
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