A Slight Glimmer of Modern Scandi Hope - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 05:24 AM Thread Starter
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A Slight Glimmer of Modern Scandi Hope

After very little progress since last spring and almost giving up I finally recognized a slight glimmer of hope in my scandi technique and have a few casts that at least look a little different than every single, troubled cast I've made since I started. It may seem trivial to the non fanatical casting types, but to me it is the beginning of the light comming on. I'ts taken almost a year and they are not very good casts, but I now know what I need to do to improve. Also, I wrote some funny stuff about my casting and monkeys and footballs and you really should read it.
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... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 10:04 AM
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I'm still on the dark end of the tunnel with my Scandi casting. Hopefully, this year, I can make it a little closer to the light at the other. Good to know it can be done!
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 11:53 AM Thread Starter
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I'm still on the dark end of the tunnel with my Scandi casting. Hopefully, this year, I can make it a little closer to the light at the other. Good to know it can be done!
It is a great learning experience and I wish I had started my spey journey with scandi because it forces me to use my bottom hand.

I've had so many years of casting using poor technique and overuse of my top hand that its very easy to automatically default into top hand mode.
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... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 12:42 PM
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I don't really know what I do- some mash-up style, bottom hand dominant. I'm a much better student watching someone and adopting the motion, than of the verbal descriptions of such. But thinking you know what you are doing, verses seeing it played back in video is often eye-opening.

I'm contemplating addressing my complete lack of left handed casting this year, and I'm sure the struggle will feel much the same. My left hand peaked chasing fly balls in highschool, and since is called upon largely to balance my right and carry my watch.

I enjoy your learnings and vids. Thanks for sharing.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
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I don't really know what I do- some mash-up style, bottom hand dominant. I'm a much better student watching someone and adopting the motion, than of the verbal descriptions of such. But thinking you know what you are doing, verses seeing it played back in video is often eye-opening.


I enjoy your learnings and vids. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks! We are very much alike in that regard. Your above statement says a mouthful! Its a great way to learn and the video does not lie. I get great feedback too, which has helped immensely.

... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 06:46 PM
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Originally Posted by SkagitMiester View Post
It is a great learning experience and I wish I had started my spey journey with scandi because it forces me to use my bottom hand.

I've had so many years of casting using poor technique and overuse of my top hand that its very easy to automatically default into top hand mode.
I know just how you feel!

After over 20 years of long heads (DT lines originally then Rio Accelerator / Grand Spey & other long Spey heads) & big rods (15' 6" & 16 footers generally); &, whilst not wishing to brag, I got pretty good at it. Then I decided to transition to Scandi heads -which I think is probably down to a masochistic streak seeking further challenges!

So my casting went down the plug hole for a while as I used too much top hand, too long a casting stroke, too much power - you name it & I did it!

But (& I admit because of my instinctive learned muscle memory it probably took me longer than if I'd been a newbie) eventually I started to learn to shorten everything up, keep it all very compact, & "flick" the rod rather than "driving" it forward & it is finally coming together.

I can still cast further with a big rod / long line combo (there's a reason they use these in competitions), but I can cast all day with less toll on my body with the Scandi set up. I'm going to be 57 shortly & have more than half of those years worth of wear & tear with big rods & lines on my shoulder joints & muscles. I don't intend giving up any time soon (at least not voluntarily) & thought that the swap would allow me to keep fishing for longer without problems; I hope that in 10 years time when I'm retired I'll fish more than I'm able to now.

So I still dig the big guns out now & again when needed but most of my time I fish Scandi heads & I'm still on the learning curve compared to what I'm used too - but isn't the acquisition of knowledge what got us out of the caves to start with?

So stick with it, it will come together - honest!

Regards, Tyke.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
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True Story

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Originally Posted by Tyke View Post
I know just how you feel!

After over 20 years of long heads (DT lines originally then Rio Accelerator / Grand Spey & other long Spey heads) & big rods (15' 6" & 16 footers generally); &, whilst not wishing to brag, I got pretty good at it. Then I decided to transition to Scandi heads -which I think is probably down to a masochistic streak seeking further challenges!

So my casting went down the plug hole for a while as I used too much top hand, too long a casting stroke, too much power - you name it & I did it!

But (& I admit because of my instinctive learned muscle memory it probably took me longer than if I'd been a newbie) eventually I started to learn to shorten everything up, keep it all very compact, & "flick" the rod rather than "driving" it forward & it is finally coming together.

I can still cast further with a big rod / long line combo (there's a reason they use these in competitions), but I can cast all day with less toll on my body with the Scandi set up. I'm going to be 57 shortly & have more than half of those years worth of wear & tear with big rods & lines on my shoulder joints & muscles. I don't intend giving up any time soon (at least not voluntarily) & thought that the swap would allow me to keep fishing for longer without problems; I hope that in 10 years time when I'm retired I'll fish more than I'm able to now.

So I still dig the big guns out now & again when needed but most of my time I fish Scandi heads & I'm still on the learning curve compared to what I'm used too - but isn't the acquisition of knowledge what got us out of the caves to start with?

So stick with it, it will come together - honest!

Regards, Tyke.
Thanks Tyke, I appreciate the encouragement. Great to hear your story and glad to hear a fellow 50 something spey caster continuing to learn new things!

... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

www.linespeedjedi.com
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 12:28 AM
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Yup, the lower hand is everything.

After this past week of being socked-in I finally got out today for some casting. I was using a Sage Z-Axis 7100-4 and a 35 foot Bonefish taper at around 200 grains for anchored casts with around 12 feet of tapered leader. The weight does well overhead also but... those anchored casts sure go off better with enough emphasis from the lower hand. And you know - it can be in the form of a haul as was for me today, or plenty of pull or push of the lower-cork on a spey rod. Occasionally - I would put my my thumb and index of my non-casting hand on the fighting butt to form that loop as if t was double-handed. Not really going for distance - just forming loops and the cast would carry a good 20 feet of running line still asking for more from the reel. It would be good to practice more with the proper spey rod if I could just fit them around here.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-20-2017, 03:25 AM
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The video that helped me in my Scandi casting was Henrik Mortensen's video on Youtube. I really started to develop a lot of power in the cast by using my legs. I was able to use a very short stroke (rotation) but developed a lot of line speed with the legs. My problem with my singles is the water always seems to grab the line differently from cast to cast, and it really screws up with how my pickup and back sweep feels. I compound the problem by using a 360 grain Compact Scandi with 1/0 blind-eyed spey style flies. I can get some great casts but not consistently.
The one thing I did notice with Mortensen's cast is that he doesn't follow his own advice. I watched a different video of him fishing and his rotation was much longer than what he preached in his instructional video. Maybe he was doing it to adapt to some fishing situation; I don't know, but the cast was definitely different.
The only criticism I have with using the legs is you don't always have the luxury of a stable footing to perform casts. There are times when I'm Skagit casting and it feels like I'm doing a balancing act from an awkward postion. If I tried to use my lower body in those situations I'd be in trouble.
Tight lines,
Keith
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-20-2017, 01:42 PM
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. My problem with my singles is the water always seems to grab the line differently from cast to cast, and it really screws up with how my pickup and back sweep feels. I compound the problem by using a 360 grain Compact Scandi with 1/0 blind-eyed spey style flies. I can get some great casts but not consistently.
The one thing I did notice with Mortensen's cast is that he doesn't follow his own advice. I watched a different video of him fishing and his rotation was much longer than what he preached in his instructional video. Maybe he was doing it to adapt to some fishing situation; I don't know, but the cast was definitely different.

Keith
It seems there is kind of consensus that a closed stance where top hand side leg is forward makes Spey casting easier in the beginning in instructions and among the current casting instructors as well.

The importance of the initial lift can not be emphasized enough! Slooooow but try not to pull line back much and then look if the current still tightens line more. When line head is short the back cast and whole cast becomes easier when it is done using very upright rod using about the same angle the lift did end. However then there is a need to Drift in the end of back cast to make forward casting stroke longer and wider.

When line head gets longer rod angle must be lowered during the back cast because there is need to have more centrefucal force to the line but same time the initial lift comes even more important. What I have found to improve my consistency when casting long lines is to look line, which after lift "sacs" there between rod tip and water surface, where line is about two feet above the water. When the back cast is began it should not rise too much or get lower either so I adjust the beginning of the back cast and "the rod dip" to keep line there constant height. If the back cast starts too fast the line tightens and rise and there comes a wave this wave and makes the tip of line jump airborne and there can come more waving which increase inconsistency to anchoring so because the back cast lifts the line airborne rod tip needs to be lowered. On all this there are many variables like line and rod length and rod stiffness and obviously personal things too but it might help to improve your consistency as well.

Then during the back cast (sweep) rod plane can rise but in the end there should come an upward rod tip lift which has positive effects. It directs the D-loop more up so the anchor becomes lighter and this also compensates D-loop lowering which gravity cause. It also suppose to send a wave to the line which then "slaps" the leader to water consistently. This last I read only few months ago and I have not test it yet and I have knowingly done lift in the end just to improve the D-loop. To test it I will exaggerate the end lift when I am able to cast in water.

It is bit sad but funny as well when Mortensen lecture the importance of the bottom hand use and same time intentionally casts bad using top hand style and then when he speaks other things he naturally casts his normal style where his top hand is more dominant. He is good showman and an excellent caster anyhow. Speaking casting styles is fun but in the end it is insignificant. It is possible to cast beautifully using any style but when DH casting it is smart to use both hands if possible.

Esa
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-21-2017, 01:06 AM Thread Starter
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It seems there is kind of consensus that a closed stance where top hand side leg is forward makes Spey casting easier in the beginning in instructions and among the current casting instructors as well.

The importance of the initial lift can not be emphasized enough!
Esa
I have discovered that for Scandi Casting that I have to have my , top hand side leg forward to get correct body rotation. And yes, I do need work on my initial lift, it is too easy to overlook because there is so much else going on, or about to go on!

... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-21-2017, 01:19 AM Thread Starter
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Interesting post greenie. Good stuff and a lot to think about. My best anchoring technique seems to be when my bottom hand is completely extended and still and body rotation alone completes the sweep.

I've had good success with pushing out and down with the bottom hand and extending it firmly to plant the anchor but sometimes it leaves the rod in too much of an upright position afterwords- might be more of an underhand move than what I am focusing on but it sure works.

As for the legs, I've still got a long way to go.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 9140greenie View Post
The video that helped me in my Scandi casting was Henrik Mortensen's video on Youtube. I really started to develop a lot of power in the cast by using my legs. I was able to use a very short stroke (rotation) but developed a lot of line speed with the legs. My problem with my singles is the water always seems to grab the line differently from cast to cast, and it really screws up with how my pickup and back sweep feels. I compound the problem by using a 360 grain Compact Scandi with 1/0 blind-eyed spey style flies. I can get some great casts but not consistently.
The one thing I did notice with Mortensen's cast is that he doesn't follow his own advice. I watched a different video of him fishing and his rotation was much longer than what he preached in his instructional video. Maybe he was doing it to adapt to some fishing situation; I don't know, but the cast was definitely different.
The only criticism I have with using the legs is you don't always have the luxury of a stable footing to perform casts. There are times when I'm Skagit casting and it feels like I'm doing a balancing act from an awkward postion. If I tried to use my lower body in those situations I'd be in trouble.
Tight lines,
Keith

... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

www.linespeedjedi.com
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-21-2017, 01:57 PM
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Interesting post greenie. Good stuff and a lot to think about. My best anchoring technique seems to be when my bottom hand is completely extended and still and body rotation alone completes the sweep.

I've had good success with pushing out and down with the bottom hand and extending it firmly to plant the anchor but sometimes it leaves the rod in too much of an upright position afterwords- might be more of an underhand move than what I am focusing on but it sure works.

As for the legs, I've still got a long way to go.
I have noticed and already written earlier that your anchors land very precise to correct place although you use quite powerful back cast and sometimes don't bother to lift line much either. No doubt using the body the power control comes smoother than using arms because there are more muscles involved and also more mass to calm down the back cast.

It is not easy to see in most casting videos but do you finist the back cast to a fast rod acceleration? Using very short top arm biceps pull, bottom hand triceps push or whole body twitch or pethaps all three? It think it is what I unintentionally use which kind of begins my body to move forward or at least stops leaning back.

Basically there are no right or wrong ways but there are some general guidelines which casting instructors have found out to help. For instance I am sure you can cast a closed and an open stance and feet side by side but if platform allows what do you prefer and has it perhaps changed?

In Scandinavia the influence of Göran Andersson was big 20 to 30 years ago and although there are much more "casting gurus" these days the closed stance is basically only what we see so it naturally also comes to newcomers. But when fishing there come a need to change so ecerything needs to go easy.

Same thing with the use of bottom hand which generally seems to have a bit bigger role here. However we do not mind it much and there is hardly any discussion about it. I think because rivers are wider here and an average casting distance is longer using mostly only the bottom hand is not the best way to cast and both arms are used. Perhaps the bottom hand use stays the same and then the top hand begins to push more and more when more distance is needed and then finally in the end of a very long cast the bottom hand needs to be rised to the top hand arm pit.

Esa
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-23-2017, 12:56 AM Thread Starter
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I have noticed and already written earlier that your anchors land very precise to correct place although you use quite powerful back cast and sometimes don't bother to lift line much either. No doubt using the body the power control comes smoother than using arms because there are more muscles involved and also more mass to calm down the back cast.

It is not easy to see in most casting videos but do you finist the back cast to a fast rod acceleration? Using very short top arm biceps pull, bottom hand triceps push or whole body twitch or pethaps all three? It think it is what I unintentionally use which kind of begins my body to move forward or at least stops leaning back.

Basically there are no right or wrong ways but there are some general guidelines which casting instructors have found out to help. For instance I am sure you can cast a closed and an open stance and feet side by side but if platform allows what do you prefer and has it perhaps changed?

In Scandinavia the influence of Göran Andersson was big 20 to 30 years ago and although there are much more "casting gurus" these days the closed stance is basically only what we see so it naturally also comes to newcomers. But when fishing there come a need to change so ecerything needs to go easy.

Same thing with the use of bottom hand which generally seems to have a bit bigger role here. However we do not mind it much and there is hardly any discussion about it. I think because rivers are wider here and an average casting distance is longer using mostly only the bottom hand is not the best way to cast and both arms are used. Perhaps the bottom hand use stays the same and then the top hand begins to push more and more when more distance is needed and then finally in the end of a very long cast the bottom hand needs to be rised to the top hand arm pit.

Esa
Thanks Esa, sorry it has taken so long but I've been out on the water after work and too pooped to reply.

As of right now I am trying to slow everything down, use a higher, slower lift more relaxed sweep, a higher drift, a lighter anchor, and less raw power on the bottom hand forward stroke.

I think with the lighter anchor, the flat powerful V loop is not that necessary with the shorter heads. Body rotation is where its at for the sweep.

For longer lines especially I try to use a shotgun lift because I can be in good position to first push with the bottom hand so all I have to do is rotate my body and keep my arms kind of locked. But for Scandi heads Im working on a higher lift with mostly upper arm but some bottom hand too but keeping the rod tip more vertical and less power on the sweep.

I can pretty much plant my anchor where I want it by pushing with the bottom hand but it puts me out of sequence, I will check my videos tonight and see If I have anything worth posting. Its one two steps forward and one step back at this point. (that's just an American saying, it has nothing to do with footwork)

Anyway buddy, thanks for the questions I will have more answers the more I practice.

... the pseudo-science of running-lines and matching heads has now devolved into such a miasma of obfuscation that it is a wonder that people are even not more confused....Erik Helm

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