Hi from a struggling new Spey caster - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 07:02 PM Thread Starter
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Hi from a struggling new Spey caster

Hi everyone from Vancouver BC via Ireland. New to the forum I have been a single hand fly angler for years but recently have decided to drive myself crazy on a whole new level.

I am hoping to gain some knowledge from more experienced casters on here. I have been putting the time in trying to gain a consistent effective cast and I can get a fishable amount of line out there but it isn't the prettiest or the most consistent.

I was practicing yesterday and got some help with recording the cast to see if I could see where my faults are.

One thing became apparent when I actually started concentrating on what was going wrong, that I was blowing the anchor. Throughout the day I could continuously hear the fly fizzing past me (not too close) as it got ripped from the water on my forward stroke. Try as I might I by slowing the cast etc it kept occurring so I got a few clips of myself casting to see if I could figure it out by looking at the issue after. I am still a little unsure of what I'm doing to pull the anchor so badly so if anyone would like to throw their two cents in on the video I am all ears.

Thanks

Eoin (Owen)

p.s you can actually hear the blown anchor on every cast

https://youtu.be/ZweOEbDiJ4c
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 07:17 PM Thread Starter
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Setup is an Echo TR 8136 with a Rio Skagit max short 24ft 575gr with 10-12ft t11 and t14 in by the way
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 07:21 PM
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Blown anchors are from 2 things, improper achor placement(a rod tip away) and rushing the fwd stroke. Watch your back cast, let the loop form then fwd stroke. Also on your D loop you are kicking your rod tip down behind you, think of throwing the D loop up high. If you watch your back cast you will see where your rod ends up as well.

I also suggest going to some clinics put on by local shops, they will be a wealth of help!

Tight lines! B K Paige
"Occupy Skagit"
Wishin I was fishin the Sauk!!!
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 08:27 PM
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OK. A few issues with this cast

First, the landing point of the fly should be about a rods length downstream of you and off your right shoulder. Yours is much too far downstream

Your second movement is to take the rod from the upstream position directly to the casting position. This shortens the length of the "D" loop. You should sweep the rod, parallel to the water in the second movement, and only take the rod high to the casting position once it is at 90 degrees to the river flow.

There should then be a pause - milliseconds - while you allow the "D" loop to form before making the final cast.

Finally, your hands are too low at the casting position. Your right hand should be at least level with your right ear. When you deliver the cast, pull down with your left hand, which should be delivering about 60% of the power. All your power is being delivered from the right hand.

Hope that helps.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies they are definitely things I will work on and try to sort out. One question about the Skagit head I am using. Could it be a little on the short and light end to load the rod. I used the Rio line selector to pick the line which is 575gr Skagit max short but the grain window on the rod itself has 570 to 650 if I remember correctly also I had read recently that the Skagit shorts are for rods12'6 and under. But that's what was suggested

Thanks again
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 10:04 PM
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Go see Tim Arsenault at Michael and young fly shop downtown location and arrange a private lesson.....will take literally years off of your learning curve!
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 12:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bromium View Post
Thanks for the replies they are definitely things I will work on and try to sort out. One question about the Skagit head I am using. Could it be a little on the short and light end to load the rod. I used the Rio line selector to pick the line which is 575gr Skagit max short but the grain window on the rod itself has 570 to 650 if I remember correctly also I had read recently that the Skagit shorts are for rods12'6 and under. But that's what was suggested

Thanks again
I think your outfit is fine. I agree with Bruce, a lesson with Tim A. is a great idea. I left a comment on your youtube video that will help you. Your casting looks pretty decent really, you might just need to slow down.

... 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 #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 01:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks again for the comments and suggestions both here and on YouTube. I will definitely get some tuition as it may be the best way to move forward.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 08:10 PM
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All of us

Hey Bromium,

Please remember that all of us were frustrated newbies at some point. We feel your pain!

Blown anchors (for me) almost always seem to be a case of too much power too early. BTW, we all blew them with amazing regularity as we were beginning.

It seems natural that we would: You're swinging a longer rod than your ever used before and you have 30-60 ft of head, tip and leader beyond the last guide. It makes intuitive sense to rush everything.

But a smooth forward stroke (which is much easier to do if you have a smooth set-up stroke, too), hitting the gas pedal late, not early, is a good place to start to fix blown anchors. Of course, you'll end up with too little acceleration and a line that goes nowhere, but that is part of the learning curve.

My suggestion is to start with a short line and very smooth movements.

But, of course, I wanted to try to bomb something out there, and ignored my own advice.

All the same, it is still good advice.

Welcome,

Where on Vancouver Island, btw? Will be there this summer for a family wedding.

Keith

Last edited by moethedog; 02-06-2018 at 03:17 PM.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-05-2018, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice Keith I will definitely try to back off the speed the next time I am out.

I'm actually in the City of Vancouver BC rather than Vancouver Island BC. The island is pretty great though no doubt you will enjoy your time there.

Eoin
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-06-2018, 03:21 PM
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Eoin,

Spent part of every summer as a kid on the Island. My dad is Canadian by birth, so we were there visiting family annually.

A wedding to attend this summer.

Good luck,
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 10:25 PM Thread Starter
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Hi guys back again after a couple of practice sessions over the weekend. I tried to take on some of the advice that was given here such as not cutting the corner and allowing the d loop to form as well as using the bottom hand (which I wasn't doing enough) and aiming for a high stop.

So as I was practicing I really tried to use the bottom hand to do most of the work but I am finding it tough to generate any sort of power using the bottom hand. As far as the high stop to get the line to turn over higher and tighter, I cant seem to get the stop right. Do most of you use the top or bottom hand to make that high stop. I recorded repeated switch casts shooting no line just to get the feel of the bottom hand pull and the high stop and they had little power and did not turn over high. But at least I actually feel as though I am using the bottom hand and not just punching it out with the top.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pm1OQBV6tyI

Thanks

Eoin
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2018, 03:32 AM
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Welcome Eoin!

Your line seems very heavy! What is it and your rod?

The water anchor comes too strong and when you begin the forward cast rod too upright the rod bends a lot and sends a Wave to the line. Also when you try to stop early the rod straightens too early and there also comes a Wave which cause line loop rise towards the end. This phenomenon is called a Tailing Loop and it seems like there come TL because of both.

Forward stop is not necessary! When everything before is right the stop narrows the line loop but it also does not accelerate the line at best efficiency. Later begin to experiment using longer overhang to keep line loop narrow without sacrificing line speed. Narrow line loop looks cool but for fishing it is not necessary!

You should use lighter or even better lighter and shorter line head and use at least rod length mono leader and anchor comes stronger and it blows less. Anchor blows less when the line in anchor comes lighter because there come less line loop energy to the leader which is very light but its water resistance comes relatively higher.

Scandi line is easiest to cast any Spey style but if you have a Skagit line you can leave the tip away and use rod length or even 1.5 times rod length leader. Line loop comes but erratic because there comes big weight difference between Skagit belly and the leader but technically it casts OK.

Esa
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2018, 11:52 AM
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To make anchor light the back cast should be directed slightly upwards. The stop on back cast is good because it directs the line loop better and D-loop comes a V-loop which is slightly more efficient. There are two ways to do a Spey back cast. Sweep which is done using rising plane or more level sweep which is ended using upward move in the end. Both work and there can be some of both elements but it will come so natural that if someone asks what you use you might need to think and mimic the cast to find out and that can be different to different casts and line lengths.

But Spey back cast is a cast and D-loop is a line loop so same principle apply there.

When D-loop forms comes important move which is called Drifting. Its purpose is to position the rod so that following forward cast comes longer and it increase casting distance. Drifting also lessens Tailing loop when rod angle comes lower and rod bend in the beginning comes smaller.

Drifting is worth searching i-net. Most of it is explained using overhead casting examples but it is the same for Spey casting.

When line head is short there is not much time to Drift but no need either. Then the back cast is ended close to where the forward cast will begin.

Esa
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2018, 12:41 PM
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I think from the little I have seen you are on the right track. The thing that is missing is you are not doing a the best stop. Close, but not quite the most efficient. You are dropping the rod tip too soon on some of the casts. I realize that if you simply keep uncritically doing a roll cast (most of those don’t really qualify as a switch cast, make sure you get the whole head airborn at some point) with just the head out you might slip into this fault from not wanting the cast to be too powerful and jolt against the reel, and trying to set using up for the next cast with rod already extended, etc.

The immediate fix is to stop lowering your arms DURING the power stroke. Keep your upper hand up near your shoulder height and you lower hand at the sternum level. This will automatically take much of the ‘too much upper hand’ out of your stroke.

Later you can drop the tip AFTER, but not not until you have drilled into your muscle memory the correct stroke. Since you have experience single hand casting you can do a few overhead casts first. It’s the SAME stroke! What I suggest is the following drill: repeat what you were doing in the last video this time stopping high, with the rod at no more than 1 o’clock. Keep it high and leave it there until the line hits the water. Practice aiming high. Pick a spot at tree height where you want the line to go. Even gradually work to up a few practice drills releasing the line and stopping the rod high in order to angle the line up. You upper hand needs to stop and STAY more at chin height until the line hits the water in order to feel this. Face down stream when you do this and let the current take out the slack. Don’t do throw away casts like this over and over where you unconsciously are setting up for the next throw away cast and are in effect practicing the imperfect form. I had a mentor early on that emphasized treating even the roll out and setup like a real cast. If you can’t get the line to cast doing this initially so much the BETTER. Do this drill and it will force you to learn a crisp power stroke, regardless of how short you cast, not to mention force you to get more precise with the proper anchor position and setup.

Next concentrate on what your loop looks like when it starts rolling out pretty tight you will know you have the right stroke. One of the secrets to this is overhang. The longer the overhang(the amount of shooting line out the tip when you cast) you use the tighter your loop will be and the further the cast will go with minimal effort. Up to the point of diminishing returns. Practice with more and more overhang. This will make it harder to do a throw away cast, and when done correctly will do wonders for you loop. You can’t get away with TOO much overhang, but the “right” amount, even for a skagit head, is closer to 3 feet than most people use. You should be able to use 3’ with no issues provided you are using the right stroke.

Lastly do try left handed rather than cac handed. You don’t have to stick with it but a lot of people find going off-handed very enlightening about the problems they are having over powering the top hand with their dominant hand up.

Ultimately the beutiful combination of ease and power you see from experienced casters come from the economy and precision of the power stroke, once you learn to get the line in the right starting position. Unfortunately nearly everyone subconsciously compensates in the parts leading up to the power stroke when that proficiency is lacking. Do the drills and when you are ready lef go of the running line and the cast should fly with BOTH ease AND power. Hope this helps a little. Good luck.

“Gravity is a harsh mistress!”, The Tick

Last edited by Botsari; 02-15-2018 at 01:26 PM.
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