With the array of spey lines on the market it is a little baffling to know which one to choose. One very simple fishing set-up is a reel loaded up with either SlickShooter or a floating Powerflex core shooting line and have a wallet with a couple of AFS heads (floating, slow intermediate and Sink 4 for steelhead fishers and floating, slow intermediate and intermediate sink tip for Atlantic salmon fishers) and a Skagit shooting head with some tips. Weight Forward fly lines, on the other hand, are specifically designed for casting over long ranges. The WindCutter does not have as much lifting power as the Skagit line so will take a lighter Big Boy tip than the corresponding Skagit line. T-8, T-11 & T-14 are level shooting head materials. Or a seagull sized pike fly is impossible to cast even with a #9 line! Read on and you’ll get the best synopsis we’ve ever seen on modern spey lines from the man himself, code named ‘SpeyBro’. For instance, just like their classic taper cousins, most specialty taper fly lines are floating lines and, they are divided into both freshwater and saltwater specialty tapers. But, when casting to fish in turbulent or turbid water, the delicacy of the presentation is less of a concern and thus, heavier fly lines can be used in these situations. Consequently, you will often see a given range of fly line weights recommended for certain fish species. Okay, so how confused do you want to be? Your email address will not be published. In a spey cast the “D-loop” (from A to B) loads the rod and needs to be the heaviest part of the line. You may need to go up a size if conditions are very windy or you need to throw a heavier fly. Practically all fly reel manufacturers offer fly reels for specific line weights. There are four other factors that influence your choice of head length: 1. This is an excellent choice for cooler water conditions when fishing for Atlantic salmon. In addition you can purchase T-8, T-11 or T-14 and cut to the desired length and weight. These three sections are: 1. a body section In the table below if you look at 5X tippets it suggests that 5X tippets could be best fished on a 1 or 2 weight fly rod with size 14 to size 20 flies. Like the AFS head, these lines will cast even better with one of RIO’s Spey VersiLeader. RIO makes five 15 ft tips to choose from: 1. fly rod for saltwater use is like choosing a 2 wt. 2. In addition, you also need to be aware that the smaller an artificial fly is, the less wind resistance it will have and, the larger it is, the more wind resistance it will have. And since it is the weight of the line that we cast and not its diameter, using diameter alone as the indicator of line size was no longer acceptable. #12 650 to 750 grain lines. Generally, if you start with a WindCutter line and, with practice, get to a skill level where you can cast the whole head at the tip of the rod, without stripping anything in, you are ready to move up to a PowerSpey line. Consequently, Double Taper fly lines are primarily designed for casting at relatively close ranges while Weight Forward fly lines are primarily designed for casting over longer ranges and, the reason this is so is that Double Taper fly lines will not “shoot” as far as Weight Forward fly lines will. A full sinking head with a sink rate of 4” per second. dry fly rod size (ft) line weight tippet rod action; delicate presentations. Now if you are throwing large flys like salt water 8 & 9 wt work well. While these lines are exceptionally easy to cast and give incredible presentation, the very best results will be achieved if a Spey VersiLeader is attached to the front end. However, both Double Taper and Weight Forward fly lines cast very similar to each other until the running line is reached. Again this is ONLY a suggestion. In other words, if you put a regular WF8 line on a #8 two-handed rod you will never get close to loading it. Thus, when a fly fisherman casts and lands his chosen fly in a chosen location, he is said to “present” his fly to the fish. RIO DirectCore Bonefish | $120. Thus, unlike a conventional fisherman who depends on the weight of his lure to bend, and thus store energy in, his rod during casting, fly fisherman instead have to depend on a weighted fly line to cast their artificial flies. It is a very easy line to learn to cast with and also extremely useful for casting in tight situations. 3. and the front tip (Tip 1). As there is no need to strip the line in between casts, the rod guides do not get iced up. – WindCutter, ‘M’ is for Mid length belly lines and is measured at 65 ft – PowerSpey. 300 7.3 ips Not much fun to use for small fish. Intermediate (1.5 inches per second) A fly rod is matched to a fly line weight. 6. Type 6 (6-7 ips) 14-24: 6.6-7: 0-4: 4x-8x: slow-med: delicate cast at a distance. Super fast sink (7.0 inches per second). 7/8/9 350 to 450 grains Now that everyone is clear on that, let’s look at the AFTMA Standards (the numbers represent the weight in grains at the “weigh point”)! Here’s a brief explanation of what fly line weight should be used for which size and type of fish. 5. This exceptionally short head length allows the fly caster to make long casts in extremely tight situations. Furthermore, in addition to being aware that each fly line weight is designed to cast a given range of fly sizes, you also need to be aware of the concept of “delicacy of presentation”. fly rod for freshwater use because both fly line weights (and thus both fly rods) would be considered ultralights for their respective environments and thus, they would provide extra delicate presentations. The head length needs to be shorter than for spey casting so that the back loop does not drop and line speed is retained to shoot big distances. Rio Grande/Tierra Del Fuego Equipment List, Catch & Capture Guide Service – Hayward, WI, On the Fly Fishing Charters – Mako Sharks On the Fly, Winter Steelhead on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, Rio Gallegos Sea Trout, Las Buitreras Fly Fishing Lodge, BACK IN STOCK and Keith approved!!! RIO also sells the 5 ft floating cheater on its own. Stripping flies – Some fishing techniques require you to strip the fly in to entice a fish to take. Its head length is long enough to effectively stack mend for better drifts. Conversely, you can’t shoot a Double Taper line as far as you can a Weight Forward line because of the extra friction it generates when sliding through the fly rod guides and through the air. Thus, all a fly angler had to do was to choose between a Double Taper, a Weight Forward Taper or, a Level fly line. Last, for fly anglers who want to cast over extremely long distances using conventional length fly rods, there are Shooting Heads which consist of a short, heavy, body section combined with a front taper and a level tip section but no rear taper or attached running line. Longer belly lines, like the PowerSpey, really need plenty of room behind them to create a big enough D-loop for the line to load the rod – say 30 ft of room for an effortless cast. Type 8 (8-9 ips). The system also established a tolerance level that is acceptable." When it comes to selecting fly line weights, the most important thing to consider is the type of fish. An ideal line for overhead casting a two-handed rod is RIO’s OutBound®. By lengthening the sinking portion of the line, the current has much less “lift” effect and ensures that the fly stays deep. On the other hand, fly fishermen who commonly pursue large fish species on large creeks, rivers, ponds or, lakes using large flies can choose from such lines as Rio’s Big Nasty or Cortland’s Big Shot lines. Nothing will pick up big flies or T-14 or LC13 style sink tips as easily as a Skagit line will. The PowerSpey VersiTip line does not have a Tip 2, so there is only one loop in the line. 5. It maybe 3 times the rod length, it may be 4 times the rod length, and each caster will find their happy ratio. This fast sinking head is a great line for early season and back-end Atlantic salmon and particularly good for winter steelhead. 250 6.4 ips These tips are too long to simply replace Tip 1, so when using longer sinking tips like this, again remove Tip 2 and attach the long tip directly to the body. The 690-4 Die, Our favorite Fiberglass Rod is back in stock!!! After size 2 on the large end of the hook spectrum hook sizes go to 1/0, 2/0, and so on. 15 wt for tarpon and large fish. And let’s not forget the enjoyment and excitement of learning new skills that add to your proficiency on the water! How do Freshwater vs. Saltwater Fly Line Weights Equate? Rio’s Skagit VersiTip Kit Since this line is so versatile you should think about what type of fishing you plan on doing. Then, once you have determined the proper type of fly line and an appropriate fly line weight, you can then progress to choosing one of the many different specialty tapers on the market which best suite your needs. Your email address will not be published. 2. Well, the answer to that question is displayed on the following chart: Fresh Water Fly Line Size Saltwater Fly Line Size. Save 50% on, We’ve got all our Leland Packs & Bags at 50% off, A great treat to yourself at the end of the weeken, This is BIG!! 2. a middle section (Tip 2) Suggested rod weights, tippet ratings, and flies. Each line weight is designed to catch specific species of fish depending on their weight and skills in the water. 2. Thus, all fly lines start with a thin core made from braided Dacron which has a very little stretch and, by controlling the diameter of the Dacron core, fly line manufacturers can control the tensile strength of the finished fly line. It is great on the end of a Skagit line, or a WindCutter, but remember to remove both Tip 1 and Tip 2 if you are attaching a Big Boy to the WindCutter. In the last 30 feet is where the taper starts and contains the bulk of the weight of the fly line… Therefore, there are freshwater fly lines that are specifically designed to cast small flies with an extra delicate presentation and, there are others that are specifically designed to cast large flies with no regard to presentation and, the same is true of saltwater specific tapers. fly rod for saltwater use is like choosing a 6 wt. Most of the Skagit line sizes will not have a problem with 15 ft of T-14, but attaching it to the lighterWindCutter and PowerSpey lines can result in poor turnover and inefficient casts. You’ll need to match the weight of the line to your rod and reel so that you can have a balanced setup. This means that theSkagit line has almost twice the weight per inch of the WindCutter line. Thus, while choosing a Double Taper fly line is relatively easy, choosing a Weight Forward fly line can be quite complicated! It is also available as a VersiTip Line, packaged with a wallet of tips including a floating tip, a 15 ft clear intermediate tip, a 15 ft Type 3 tip, a 15 ft Type 6 tip and a 15 ft Type 8 tip. Hook Size vs Leader Size – How to Pick . Since there are so many styles of spey casting and corresponding spey line designs, who better thanSimon Gawesworth, RIO fly line designer, former Captain of England’s World Fly Fishing Championships team, author, all-around nice guy, and one of the world’s leading authorities on spey casting to explain the ins and outs of modern spey lines? 2. Let’s start with a look at spey line weights. Fly Line Weight. When choosing a line for overhead casting a two-handed rod there are two important considerations. This same process can be applied with smaller nymphs and insects that are flying around in the air. Thus, the purpose of the taper is to transmit the energy stored in the fly rod during the back-cast to the tip of the rod during the forward-cast and, from there, to the fly line in a manner similar to that of a bullwhip. AFS OutBound® Integrated Shooting Head – NEW for 2008 Built with a thin, hard running line this line is the integrated version of the AFS head. Works ok for small fish, but some of the fun goes out of it. It is available in 6 densities: Floating, Hover (1” per second), Intermediate, Sink 3 (3” per second), Sink 6 (6” per second) and Sink 8 (8” per second). There are other factors to consider with the fly line, however, the most commonly used and most versatile line is a WF5F (weight forward 5 weight floating) line. The piece of line from C to D really has no effect on the load of the rod. All rights reserved. (Note: I would also highly recommend the floating Windcutter, or Windcutter Versitip with floating tip, as the best all-around spey line for dead-drift nymph and dry presentations to trout and steelhead. Until recently, two-handed rods were used almost exclusively in the pursuit of steelhead and salmon on the rivers of the British Isles, Scandinavia, and Canada. I, Our EPIC savings continue on our Sonoma series fly, Not a typo!!! 4. If you’re targeting salmon or steelhead, it’s smart to use a heavy weight fly to make sure that they aren’t bent out during the fight. Sizes 7/8 to 10/11. The length and power of these rods are great for throwing big flies out against a wind and over incoming surf. This does depend on the rod, current speed, fly size and caster’s skill! If you look at the spey line recommendation chart and decide on a Skagit line for your rod, make sure you use the weight of the Skagit body. Rio’s Windcutter VersiTip Linesare unique in the fly fishing world. Therefore, fly fishermen choose floating fly lines when fishing with artificial flies that are specifically designed to float on the water’s surface (aka Dry Flies) and sinking fly lines or sink-tip fly lines when fishing with flies that are designed to sink beneath the water’s (aka Wet Flies, Eggs, Nymphs, and Streamers). A short head line means that the sink tip is closer to you and easier to get out of the water. Therefore, they are an excellent choice when fishing with wet flies or streamers. An In-Depth Guide to Choose a Fly Reel: Everything You Need To Know. The Skagit Floating Tip is a 15 ft floating tip designed to be added to the Skagit lines to make a full floater, it is also a good replacement for the WindCutter floating tip. And on larger rivers, you can reach areas that would be virtually unfishable with single-handed lines and rods. RIO’s new PowerSpey has a medium length head between 57 ft and 71 ft (depending on the size) and with its revolutionary taper design is the easiest mid to long belly line to cast. A heavy-weight fly is best used for some of the large streamer patterns. A floating line with a 15 ft intermediate sinking tip. The reason for this lies in the fact as a fly lines weight increases, so does its diameter a 9-weight fly line is much thicker than a 4-weight fly line. 8/9/10 450 to 550 grains 12-22: 7-8: 4-5: 3x-7x: medium: for fishing under various circumstances A typical spey line design will have most of the weight in the back end of the head and a long, fine front taper to make the most of these casting requirements: Within the basic spey line design are numerous variations, but the main one to compare is the head length. Therefore, when casting to wary fish in crystal clear water, most fly fishermen prefer a lightweight fly line in order to prevent spooking the fish. Here is a guideline of which Cheater to choose for which Skagit line or shooting head: 6/7/8 300 to 350 grains TheVersiTip line is available in 5/6, 6/7/8, 7/8/9, 8/9/10, 9/10/11 and 10/11/12 sizes, though the 5/6 VersiTip does not have a Type 8 sink tip, a sink tip compensator or a floating Tip 2. To help choose the right line for your rod, we have compiled a chart that recommends the right lines for spey rods. So, if you have a 5 weight rod, choose a 5 weight fly line. 4. Added to the shortness of the line is the fact that the head weighs about the same amount as the corresponding WindCutter, but at half the length. On the other hand, works ok for average sized bass and virtually all trout. Each sink tip in the wallet will weigh the same, which ensures the casting is not affected and the line remains balanced. The system uses the weight in grains (a very small weight measure) of the first 30 feet of fly line as a standard. Also, most fly fishermen are aware that the larger the number is, the heavier the fly line is and thus, the larger the fly it can cast. There needs to be weight in the back of the belly to load the rod effectively as a “D-loop”. These heads are available in 350, 400, 450, 500, 550, 600, 650, 700 and 750 grain sizes. For example, a large and heavy fly takes a heavier line and a strong front tapering (which equals a higher line weight), in order to be able to cast and present the fly properly. But, also due to the lack of a running line, Double Taper fly lines provide fly anglers with greater control and increased accuracy when casting over longer distances because they lack the “hinge effect” that occurs where the small diameter running line meets the rear taper on a weight-forward fly line prior to transitioning into the body section. The Skagit lines are, quite simply, the easiest way to cast large flies or fast sinking tips. S1. The hook size only really applies to the gape of the hook, which is the distance between the point and the hook shank. These are the the AFS, (Advanced Flight Spey) line, both as a Shooting Head and as an integrated shooting head, with a head length between 31 ft and 40 ft, the Windcutter, with a head length of between 45 ft and 56 ft and the PowerSpey™, with a head length of between 57 ft and 71 ft. Most spey lines follow a simply designed taper. 5. Next, the thin Dacron core is coated with a liquid plastic which has been infused with miniature glass balls (aka Microballoons) in order to create a floating fly line or, infused with Tungsten powder in order to create a sinking fly line. Assembling a balanced fly fishing rig is as easy as matching the numbers on the fly line to the numbers on the fly reel and fly rod. Thus, fly anglers should instead first determine the range of fly sizes that they intend to cast depending on the size of the fish species that they intend to pursue as well as the degree of delicacy that they require in their presentation. Fly rods are sized according to the weight line they will use. Copyright © 2020 Luremefish. Therefore, rather than allowing yourself to become confused and thus, get bogged down in the process of choosing the best fly line for your intended purpose, you should instead focus on deciding whether you need a floating fly line, a sinking fly line, or a sink-tip fly line based on the type of flies that you intend to fish with. fly line is considered to be the classic fly line weight for salmon and an 8 wt. S4. The intermediate OutBound is made up to a WF14 (600 grains) size and is perfect for the larger rods of #10 and bigger. Thus, if you will again closely examine the diagram shown above, you will see that weight forward fly lines have a head section that is shaped very similar that of a double taper fly line which then transitions to a far more narrow section called the “running line” which is specifically designed to minimize both friction and wind resistance. If you don’t need to strip line, the short belly lines are more of a problem and a good caster will have to manage the slack coils of running line hanging in the water before each cast. In addition to choosing between Double Taper and Weight Forward fly lines, experienced fly anglers may choose to refine their presentation by choosing one the many different weight- forward specialty taper fly lines available because each one is specifically designed to for a given purpose. Typically, the weight of the rod is determined by the line weight that is paired with the rod. This style of spey casting utilizes an even shorter head length spey line than the WindCutter – something in the region of 27 ft. ; Fly Line Weight 4: This weight works just fine for panfish, too.But also works well for all but the largest of trout. The PowerSpey is available in 5/6, 6/7, 7/8, 8/9, 9/10 and 10/11 sizes and either as a full floating line or as a VersiTip version. The longer the head of the spey line, the more line there needs to be outside the rod to make a cast. The “Anchor” (B to C) lies on the water. F/I. As mentioned above, there is also a sink tip compensator, which is a sinking Tip 2. These tools enable an angler to cover more water with less effort and less fatigue. Because anglers are doing a lot more with Spey techniques these days, Spey fly line designs are evolving so rapidly, even experienced spey folks have trouble keeping up, let alone beginners! Well, as the name implies, Double Taper fly lines have the same taper design on both ends whereas, a Weight Forward fly line is only tapered on one end and is level on the other end. Glass rods will handle a couple of different line weights, depending on your casting style. As a simple guideline, use T-14 for the spey lines of #9 and bigger, T-11 for the #7 to #9 sizes and use T-8 for the lighter line sizes. Next, we need to discuss fly line tapers which, these days, consisting of Double Tapers and Weight Forward Tapers. And the thicker a fly line is, the more space it occupies on the reel. being the heaviest and, this is determined by weighing the first 30 feet of each line in grains (440 grains = 1 ounce). A #8 two-handed rod will take between 450 and 600 grains to load for spey casting. Size Weight(grains) \tTolerance \t 1--- 60---- 54-66. 2--- 80----\t74-86. Fishing takes us to s, Join us for a special Leland LIVE this coming Mond, The Fly Rod Company & Red Truck Collaboration Bamboo Kits. Sink-tip fly lines on the other hand, combine a floating line with a sinking fly line and they are available with sinking tips than range from 5 feet to 15 feet. Following is a description of each line we make and their particular advantages: Outbound® The sink tip compensator is a sinking Tip 2. a 9wt will throw a small popper as well as a 3 wt. However, if you want to get your fly down deep then for the best sinking 5 weight fly line, or the best sinking tip 5 weight fly line. I think I'm somewhere in the middle. RIO Gold – This is the best all around trout line in my opinion – It will fish streamers, indicator rigs, and will lay down a dry delicately at 45 feet.It’s a great mid-weight line, and its a “true” line size fly line – meaning that it weighs in at an actual 5 weight for example, rather than a 5 1/2 weight like many lines. However, each sink tip has a different sink rate from the clear intermediate tip, with a sink rate of 1½ inches per second, to the Type 8, density compensated tip which sinks at 8 inches per second. Specialized Fly Lines: As eluded to above, this rod size really starts to bridge the gap from lighter freshwater pursuits to casting bigger flies and chasing bigger game in all waters. The weight of T-14 makes it pretty heavy for the lighter lines to lift out. The most recent style of spey casting is called Skagit casting (pronounced ska-jit) and named after the Skagit river in Washington. A size 4 is a fairly large fly and a size 24 is a very small fly. is often chosen for muskie. However, in order to fully understand this, you also need to understand the concept of shooing a fly line. 4. The short head is very easy to cast and particularly useful in tight situations and the long front taper gives a beautiful presentation. So, to keep the same casting stroke, the caster needs a total head length around 49 ft. A 27 ft Skagit line, plus the 15 ft sink tip is only 42 ft. Plug in the 7½ ft Cheater and the head length becomes 49½ ft and much closer to the required ratio. On really windy days, or with big, cumbersome flies, remove Tip 1 and attach the leader directly to Tip 2. With the short to medium head length of the Windcutter, you may only need around 15 ft of room behind and with a short head line like the AFS, even less; perhaps only 8 ft of space is needed. If a caster likes this ratio and uses a 12 ft rod, they are going to need 42 ft of line to feel comfortable. With a weight forward fly line, you will have the end attached to your backing. Replace the floating tip 2 with this compensator when fishing in strong currents. Floating Fly Line Weight 5: Another good all-around fly line weight. Fly line Weight 6: A heavier version of 5. 2. In addition, you should also be aware that sinking fly lines are available with different sink rates in order to enable fly fishermen to target fish at different water depths. Fast sink (5.6 inches per second) Thus, as the name implies, a floating fly line is one that is designed to float on the water’s surface while a sinking fly line is designed to sink beneath the water’s surface and the manner in which each type of fly line is constructed is described above. The AFTM number is based on the weight (in grains ) of the first 30 feet of the fly line. 4. is considered to be the classic bonefish line weight while the 10 weight is considered to be the classic general purpose fly line weight with line weights 11 and 12 are generally preferred for Tarpon and line weights 13 and 14 reserved for pelagic fish species. Sizes 7/8 to 10/11. Consequently, the smaller an artificial fly is, the lighter the fly line required to cast it and, the larger an artificial fly is, the heavier the fly line required to cast it. But, in order to understand why fly lines are available in different weights and different tapers, you first need to understand how fly lines are made. is consider to be the classic line weight for largemouth bass and pike and, a 10 wt. These lines are only available with a floating head and in sizes 4/5 to 10/11. This line starts at a 7/8 (460 grains, 30 grams – 37 ft, 11.2 m in length) and goes to 10/11. The piece of line from C to D really has no effect on the load of the rod. But, how do you equate freshwater fly line weights to saltwater fly line weights? Most fly fishers are familiar with the rating of a single handed rod – choose a #5 rod for trout, a #8 rod for bonefish and a #12 rod for tarpon. Flies out against a wind and over incoming surf weight from 1 14. 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