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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 10:55 AM Thread Starter
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more running line issues

I don't know what it is, but I seem to have a curse when it comes to running lines. I just haven't yet found one that's worked out well and held up. Admittedly, I've had a somewhat limited sampling of them but so far I'm coming up disappointed. My first running line was a Rio powerflex which fell appart in very short order, and seemed to tangle very easily (the tangles could also have been in part due to my lack of experience in managing them). Tried an Airflo ridge next and found it a big improvement in the tangles department, and overall really liked it. No complaints on that one, however subsequent ridge running lines have all failed prematurely on me. I think I'm now on the 5th line in about 2 years that has had the coating start to bunch up and separate from the core. I have tried the Opzt lazar running line, but to be honest I've found it to be more of a hassle to work with (some of the most wicked tangles I've ever had as well), though perhaps I might like it better in the heavier weights.

I am curious if others have had similar issues with their running lines separate. I'd spring the extra cash for the Rio Connect Core if I thought it would hold up better. I'm a bit hesitant to spend much on the running line at this point though, and I'm just about coming around to embrace full lines ...
Is it just me???
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 11:18 AM
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You may want to try a mono running line; these obviously don't have the problems with core & coating separation, but as a 'test' you could try out Sunset Amnesia in 40lb strength, or, if you could get some, some Penn Shock leader in 40 or 50lb. I have used both these, and also the Sawada flat beam mono. Slick shooter is also recommended by many.

Testing out mono as a running line can also work out quite cheaply, the main drawback being that mono is quite slick and therefore not as easy to handle in winter fishing situations.


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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 11:23 AM
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Might be running line management issues as well? Does the running line ever touch rocks on shore? Are you imparting a twist in the line on every cast? Are you stretching the lines out before you fish with them?

I mostly use integrated running lines now, however when I did use a lot of heads I was partial to Monic GSP and more recently discovered Guideline Compline/Ken Sawada. The former had zero stretch which was nice to feel everything and the later has very good shootability and fantastic durability. Both would twist when I wasn't realizing my skagit casts were putting a twist in the line on every cast.

I'd rather be chasing mykiss or salar...
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 12:44 PM
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I agree that the Compline is very good, but now favor the RIO Connect Core. Excellent!!!!
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Jason View Post
I don't know what it is, but I seem to have a curse when it comes to running lines.
Is it just me???
Yes, it's just you. Maybe you should fish less?

Hmm, it does sound like you are awfully hard on running lines. Trying to speculate on possible causes:

Do you favor one particular cast, that would add twists rapidly? Do you untwist your lines regularly?

Is this mostly with one rod, or, lots of rods? Have you checked your tip section, it is unusually thin/sharp, or any other aspect that might cause premature wear? What is the angle of your rod to the water when you strip line in?

Do you leave your lines in the car in the valley sun? Does your cat have access to them?
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 05:56 PM
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Wow, you've gone through a lot of running lines in a short time. I think the main culprit here is probably twist. Twist will cause tangles as well as all kinds of funky damage to your line. The best way to avoid twist is to vary your casts throughout the day, or better yet in each run. If you can occasionally switch your casts from an upstream anchor to a downstream anchor if the wind allows or even just switch from something like a single spey to a snap T to a perry poke if wind keeps you casting off your upstream shoulder, you can avoid a lot of twist. I don't know if this will solve your tangling and self destructing running line problems, but it has worked well for me and my running lines have lasted for years with no issues like you have had.

"Perhaps fishing is, for me, only an excuse to be near rivers." - Roderick Haig-Brown
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 06:10 PM
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Maybe the problem started with the way you spooled the running lines on to the reel. If your fly reel is perpendicular with the running line spool then you'll immediately have twists. Doing the same repetitive casts will give you twists, and repeatedly not shooting all of your peeled running line can introduce twist as well.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback and the suggestions. One point to be clear on, the twists and tangles aren't really my main concern. I have had more issues at times with that, mostly when hip deep in swift waters and trying to shoot a lot of line. The thing that has me concerned is the line falling apart (the ridge lines that is). In seeking to replace them I've been in a bit of an uncertain mind; as so far nothing really stands out of the pack for me. I don't think I've been overly hard on them, though they are certainly not babied either (I do like to fish!). Had one of them warranted, but showing the lines to a few shops had everyone perplexed, when I asked if there was something in my casting that could lead to such damage the responses were unanimous in saying no. Dunno? Sounds like some others have had some issues with both Rio and Airflo, but no one I've heard from has had so many go south.

I'm hoping to stop by the shop tomorrow, and if I hear anything new I'll share it here.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-07-2015, 10:54 PM
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I have Steve Godshall's running lines on most of my setups these days. Minimum tangles, nice handling, good shooting. You can reach him through Bob Meiser's shop.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-08-2015, 12:22 AM
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Jason, when I first started casting I had the twist problem, very badly and obviously, but it mysteriously went away almost entirely after about 6 month of practice. I'm not sure about the durability problem. That has not been my experience with the airflo ridge lines. The twist, if bad enough might be causing the durability issue, especially it the problem gets escalated to serious knots. I can't imagine how the durability issue would arise otherwise, unless you have to regularly yank it out from under a rock or are fishing in a fumarole, but that doesn't mean there isn't a way. But I suspect the issue may be connected.

As I mentioned, twists were a major issue for me once. I mostly use airflo ridge running lines as my favorite, but have tried many others. While I think maybe some lines might lend themselves more easily to getting twisted, I'd say it is a symptom of you and not of the line. The ultimate solution for "the twists" is going to be casting style and "line maintenance", and probably not in finding a new running line. The new running line thing never really helped with me, and the fact that many, if not most, people using the airflo ridge don't have the problem you are talking about does seem to strongly indicate it is not the line per se. OTOH, switching to a solid shooting line like mono will by default get rid of the separation problem. :-)

Your problem might not be twist, but I agree with some above that it might be. The twists will definitely lead eventually to tangles (and maybe even the separation from the core you experienced) as the line twists over itself. I do know that if you twist a flexible solid cylinder it will create shear forces between inner and outer layers. Why twists happen - short answer is I don't know. At various time I have heard, or figured out the following (full disclosure I have a PhD in Physics and I still don't fully understand it):

(1) Certain spey casts apply a net torque to the line. (2) When some people strip in they unconsciously apply torque to the line - check and see if you rotate your hand when doing this. The twist get trapped behind the stripping guide and eventually chaos ensues. (3) One of my instructor's opinion is that twists can come from the motion of the rod tip in the air together with the friction on the water as you strip in. He believes if you strip in with your tip in the water (also a sign that you are a bad-assed "serious" spey caster, according to him) then this will get rid of the twisting. (4) If by chance you practice on still water then that will increase the problem ten-fold - the reason being that both the avoidable and unavoidable twists in the line should work themselves out on the swing if all your running line is out and your rod is pointed directly at the line. Was a big one for me once, but the still water part doesn't sound like the issue in your case. If you line is still has a net twist after the swing and stripping in then of course when you rinse and repeat thing are going to get worse. But the issue resolves itself as long as all the accumulated twist untwists by the end of a swing. If you leave a net twist on the reel when you go home I suspect this might also have a cumulative effect in the line durability over time as well.

I'm sure on here we could add at least 1/2 a dozen more of these theories from other folks without trying hard. How did I get rid of them - not completely sure. I implemented attempted fixes for all of the above theories, and about that time I also started systematically making loops of running line in my left hand - line management. I realize this is a bit like the famous far side cartoon where the scientists are looking at a chalk board with the problem on one side, and the answer on the other- in the middle are the words "and here a miracle happens".

I do know that when my twist went away, my tangles went away too. If the tangles are causing the durability issues then maybe that is something to look at. But I could be completely off here.
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Last edited by Botsari; 07-08-2015 at 01:49 AM.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 12:17 PM
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Like Botsari says It could be the way you are handling the line. Try Airflo's Miracle Braid. I have it on my reels and I fish almost every night all spring, summer and fall for 4 years now and it is just starting to look rough. Some say it hinders casting distance but I cast 80 to 90 feet, plus leader, with a 5/6 -12ft 6 inch rod deer creek rod with no problem.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 01:29 PM
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Just a thought, you haven't got a damaged guide/ ring on the rod have you? the worst is a cracked ceramic liner as this can wreck a line in short order.

Similarly inspect any line guides etc on the reel & for any coils of line catching equipment such as landing net zingers, wading stall clips etc when you shoot line.

My personal favourite is with a sinking running line when I accidentally tap dance on it whilst wading over rock; with new cold cutters fitted that can just slice it in two.

These seem obvious, but at some point or other I've sufferred from all of them; so it's worth checking guides [particularly the lined ones] with a magnifying glass every so often [especially if you are experiencing excessive wear problems] to ensure this isn't the cause.

Regards, Tyke.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 02:14 PM
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Jason. Where on the running line is the coating bunching up and separating from the core. Is it in the same area on all of the lines. Is it behind the factory loop, where you normally place your overhang on each cast.

I've been using Ridge running lines since they were first introduced. Both for my single hand, striper fishing, and two hand. In that time I had one wear out, and separate behind the factory loop. I also had one show some wear in the same area. Both were on my single hand, striper setups, and both saw very heavy(lots of hours with 30' of T14) use. No issues with my spey setups, but they don't see the same amount of use.

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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 01:58 AM
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Airflo's polyurethane running lines are great and last well. When they get rough, cut a couple of feet off and weld a new loop. Mono will cast further, but the thicker running line is much easier to work with especially in winter. Take a pass on running lines made of PVC, much less durable.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 02:03 AM
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That sounds very similar to my experience with shooting lines. I really feel if one fishes hard and/or has an unorthodox style that is actually useful for ones own waters, said angler will eventually wear holes in stuff.......sometimes in ones own skin. Wear points seem unavoidable in my reality. I am so often cutting back and re-looping all types of lines in efforts to repair damage. It gives everything that custom feel. I won't try to brag about throwing a line to the backing because most my shooters end up half as long as they started.

still wading too deep
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