Spey Pages banner
1 - 20 of 32 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A very good friend of mine is thinking about getting back into fly fishing after getting his new company well on the road to success. He has never fished with two handed rods, but he is very interested in using them.

He will be fishing the rivers of N California and maybe the coast lines. The main targets will be big trout, shad, half pounders, small mouth bass and maybe carp.

He is one big guy @ 6' 6". He is an excellent athelete and played semi pro Rugby in Australia. He has a couple of banged shoulders from his football and Rugby days.

We would appreciate feedback and comments from other Gentle Giants re rods. He is very interested in the Skagit systems. I have a Sage 5120, 6126 and a 7141 for him to try, and I have Meiser Switch Rods. I have Rio 450, 550 and 650 Skagit lines and a couple of Out Bounds for Skagit use with the 5120 and Meis's 5/6. So we should be able to match a good line with most smaller rods.

Would appreciate feed back from the really tall guys on this board.

What rods would be the best for this gentle giant to try or buy?
 

·
JD
Joined
·
3,641 Posts
rods, reels, lines

Grampa Spey said:
I have a Sage 5120, 6126 and a 7141 for him to try, and I have Meiser Switch Rods. I have Rio 450, 550 and 650 Skagit lines and a couple of Out Bounds for Skagit use with the 5120 and Meis's 5/6.
Dave,
You have a better selection than most flyshops.:whoa:
Just take it all to the river.:chuckle:
 

·
Mr. Mom
Joined
·
625 Posts
I'm 6'3" and the only thing I would say is to make sure he doesn't get into too much body rock in the casting stroke. With my naturally longer stroke, I find it too easy to rip my anchor loose with skagit length lines if I use much body rock. Other than that, I use a switch rod all the time and love it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You should see when Bob Pauli and I go to a river!

JDJones said:
Dave,
You have a better selection than most flyshops.:whoa:
Just take it all to the river.:chuckle:
When Bob and I go to a river to cast, we definitely have more rods than most fly shops.

Of course we have nothing when compared to Fred, who lives in your area.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Philster, thanks re watching the body rock

Philster said:
I'm 6'3" and the only thing I would say is to make sure he doesn't get into too much body rock in the casting stroke. With my naturally longer stroke, I find it too easy to rip my anchor loose with skagit length lines if I use much body rock. Other than that, I use a switch rod all the time and love it.
Thanks. If and when he starts, we will watch out for the body rock. I think that I did this on my local river this Tuesday, with my TCR 9129-4 casting some good size striper flies with a Rio 650 Skagit and a floating 15' tip with 10' leader and a couple of feet of tippet. When I first got there, the wind was minimal , and the tide was still flowing downstream, and I was putting a crease fly out easy with 3-4 rod lengths of the green shooting line.

About an hour later, my old shoulder was feeling the TCR, and the wind had changed and the Tide was running up stream. I was trying to hard to overcome all of this and my casts were barely going one rod length of shooting line past the tip. Looking back on it after your comment, I was breaking my anchor loose on the casts.

As luck would have it, on one of my worse casts a couple of stripers went after the crease fly and damn near chewed the finish off of it. This happened at about 50' past the rod tip. Earlier, I was casting 20=40' over that area.

One last question. What lines are you using with your Switch Rods.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,027 Posts
Custom made rod for your fellow?

Good suggestions all above; to add a couple. Major 'error' I see with new casters is keeping the elbows too low and too close into the body. Elbows (part of the mustle(sp?) memory thing) should be at about arm pit height and out from the chest.

This gets the upper body out of the casting motion and really helps with getting the 1-2-3 timing down.

Once your fellow picks a rod action he likes he may very well want to purchase a custom rod rather than 'one off the shelf.' Reason being is many now come with fairly short handles (cost of cork rings??). This tends to force the hands too close together and makes for more of a 'chopping action' on the forward cast/stop.
Fred
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks Fred

fredaevans said:
Good suggestions all above; to add a couple. Major 'error' I see with new casters is keeping the elbows too low and too close into the body. Elbows (part of the mustle(sp?) memory thing) should be at about arm pit height and out from the chest.

This gets the upper body out of the casting motion and really helps with getting the 1-2-3 timing down.

Once your fellow picks a rod action he likes he may very well want to purchase a custom rod rather than 'one off the shelf.' Reason being is many now come with fairly short handles (cost of cork rings??). This tends to force the hands too close together and makes for more of a 'chopping action' on the forward cast/stop.
Fred
This guy has huge hands, so a custom grip might be better for him. I have thought about Meise or Gary Anderson custom fitting a name brand rod for him later on. I have X-Large hands, and the Grips on my 7141 and another brand name 9 weight were too big for my hands. Meiser thiinned the grips and the rods became easier to hold and cast.

It is that old problem of someone starting out. Do you have them spend a lot of money up front and get a custom fitted or made rod? Or get them an off the rack medium priced rod to see if they like the two handed rods.
 

·
loco alto!
Joined
·
3,109 Posts
I'm 6'5" (the "alto" in loco alto). My long arms lead me to a naturally wide grip, regardless of whether I am using a short or long casting stroke. Some factory rods (in fact every Sage rod under 14' and many other brands too) have cork grips that are too short for me overall.

When casting most any spey rod, I hold the bottom ball in my index and middle finger, and have my upper hand positioned at the top of the cork. This opens my grip to a comfortable position.

So have your friend try different grip positions, tight, or open, on your different rods. He may gravitate naturally to a more open grip, like I do. This is an important consideration for me when selecting either a custom build or a factory rod. Similarly, I like grips that are a little fatter than many other people prefer because I have large hands.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Steve thanks for your comments.

Thanks for your comments.

Since you are about the same height as my friend, your comments are very valuable.

I have some mental image problems re him even trying to hold my favorite rods the 5120, 6126 or my 5/6 Switch rod, and even my TCR 9129-4 with the shorter handles. If and when we go out, I will bring my old Sage 7136 with it's longer handles. Who knows, the 7136 might end up as his light rod and the 7141 as the heavy rod. The 7136 does a good job with a Rio Skagit 450 and nothing is better re dry lines with it and the MS 6/7 Floater and a 15' leader and a couple of feet of tippet.

Your suggestions re the lower hand positions/holding will be passed on.
 

·
JD
Joined
·
3,641 Posts
Be carefull

When I lived in So Ca, I was helping a fellow club member learn Spey casting. This man was hugh! His belt was about level with the tops of my waders. XXL hands. He had custom grips the size of a baseball bat on all his rods.

So he wants to learn about Spey casting. He goes out and buys what must have been at that time the smallest lightest Spey rod on the market. A Loomis GLX about 11'-6" or 12'-0" long. And has the fly shop build it up with one of these baseball bat grips before he ever cast it. Can you see where this is going?

He shows up at the club pond one day when I am there. Frustrated because he can't seem to get the hang of it. So I'm trying to help him. Don's M.O. had always been, if it doesn't work, put a little more oomph into it. He had plenty of reserve, and I think he used pretty much all of it that day.

It was way too much for that lil' ole' baby Spey. That thing split open from the top of that oversized grip all the way up to the ferrule. Sounded 'bout like a .22 in a canyon.:eek: And, like they say, the look on his face,,,,,priceless.:chuckle:

Don had the rod repaired. And he did learn to Spey cast. His favorite Spey rod became a St. Croix 14' 9wt.:D
 

·
Mr. Mom
Joined
·
625 Posts
Grampa Spey said:
As luck would have it, on one of my worse casts a couple of stripers went after the crease fly and damn near chewed the finish off of it. This happened at about 50' past the rod tip. Earlier, I was casting 20=40' over that area.

One last question. What lines are you using with your Switch Rods.
Good news regarding your crease fly. I've never found the finish mattered that much :hihi:

The last couple of weeks I've been playing with lines on my 7/8 and I've landed on a great combo. A 10/11/12 windcutter backbelly (378 or so grains) and the tip from a floating 8wt single hand versitip. With this combo, I wasn't even putting any energy into the Dloop. Just got it behind me, throw a nice tight underhand stroke, and it was laser loop time. Mike Kinney threw it a couple times, turned to me with a smile on his face and said "Yuz Scandinavian now!" The only downside is that if you over muscle it, the energy hits the tip and the tip just says "No Mas!" and the whole thing falls apart.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
JD, maybe I should try to get him down to the Speyorama

JDJones said:
When I lived in So Ca, I was helping a fellow club member learn Spey casting. This man was hugh! His belt was about level with the tops of my waders. XXL hands. He had custom grips the size of a baseball bat on all his rods.

So he wants to learn about Spey casting. He goes out and buys what must have been at that time the smallest lightest Spey rod on the market. A Loomis GLX about 11'-6" or 12'-0" long. And has the fly shop build it up with one of these baseball bat grips before he ever cast it. Can you see where this is going?

He shows up at the club pond one day when I am there. Frustrated because he can't seem to get the hang of it. So I'm trying to help him. Don's M.O. had always been, if it doesn't work, put a little more oomph into it. He had plenty of reserve, and I think he used pretty much all of it that day.

It was way too much for that lil' ole' baby Spey. That thing split open from the top of that oversized grip all the way up to the ferrule. Sounded 'bout like a .22 in a canyon.:eek: And, like they say, the look on his face,,,,,priceless.:chuckle:

Don had the rod repaired. And he did learn to Spey cast. His favorite Spey rod became a St. Croix 14' 9wt.:D

Funny that you should mentioned this. I had just got out my old 7136 and looked at the grip and thought how much smaller and maybe more fragile some of my smaller rods are.

Maybe I can get him down to the Speyorama to practice with their rods.?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
Be a girl!

I am an average Spey Caster, at best. Though not as tall as your friend, I am very thick and have always adhered to the "if it doesn't work, use a bigger hammer" philosophy. My main problem casting single and double handers is using too much power. It is all about timing, not power especially with two handers.

I have had a lot of great casters give me advice but the two things that helped me most in the last couple of years are this:

Prescott Smith on double hauling in the wind on N Andros: "You shouldn't hear the rod, only the line running through the guides"

Rick Stahl in the Queen Charlottes: "You need to accelerate the rod throughout the stroke and reach maximum acceleration right before the stop. You are reaching full load in the first 12" of tip travel. Quit using so much power"

So for me, I think of myself as a female caster i.e. no muscle, because if you can hear the rod (probably more applicable to single hand than double hand, but still applicable) you are over muscling it.

Works for me, but I have felt the need to buy a lot of shoes lately. There may be certain side effects to my concept that are not completely known.

Mark

PS: The larger grips are a good idea so that your friend’s hands don't cramp. Other than that they don't matter. He shouldn't be gripping the rod tightly anyway. Have him cast your rods with a bit of underwrap (a thin open cell foam tape that you use to underwrap fighters' hands and athletes' ankles and wrists before applying white athletic tape-available at drug stores and sports shops) on the fore and aft grips held on by a wrap of athletic tape on the top & bottom of the wraps.
 

·
JD
Joined
·
3,641 Posts
Mark Vegwert said:
Rick Stahl in the Queen Charlottes: "You need to accelerate the rod throughout the stroke and reach maximum acceleration right before the stop.
You would be surprised how many people confuse acceleration with simple speed. Speed is expressed in terms of distance over a period of time. ie: feet per second. Or ft/sec. Acceleration is expressed as ft/sec/sec. As in start slow and gradually increase your speed. Like slow, medium, fast, faster and fastest.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Phil, is the 7/8 your Switch rod

Philster said:
Good news regarding your crease fly. I've never found the finish mattered that much :hihi:

The last couple of weeks I've been playing with lines on my 7/8 and I've landed on a great combo. A 10/11/12 windcutter backbelly (378 or so grains) and the tip from a floating 8wt single hand versitip. With this combo, I wasn't even putting any energy into the Dloop. Just got it behind me, throw a nice tight underhand stroke, and it was laser loop time. Mike Kinney threw it a couple times, turned to me with a smile on his face and said "Yuz Scandinavian now!" The only downside is that if you over muscle it, the energy hits the tip and the tip just says "No Mas!" and the whole thing falls apart.
Re the chewed up Crease Fly, yesterday afternoon while shopping for the evening's groceries, a fellow shopper asked me if I had been casting on our local River Tuesday afternoon, (White hair can be like a flag!). I said yes, and he said that I had two Stripers hitting and smashing the Crease fly. He said that they will do that to floating targets sometimes. They will hit and maim/stun the smaller fish and return to eat it. Turns out this guy was on the bridge just down stream wondering who the nut was casting a fly in the river. He is going to our local fly shop to buy the few Crease Flies left in their stock.

Is that line combo being used with your 7/8 Switch Rod? I recently found a "how to email re underhand casting" that Bob sent to me years ago after I bought a couple of his switch rods. I use that technique in a boat while striper fishing. As you noted, if you over power it, it just collapses out there. My fly outruns my not that great of a loop, :( and gravity slams all of it down.

The Outbounds and Bob's switch rods can be scary if you do everything correct. If you over power them, the failure is even more dramatic.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,027 Posts
Mark Vegwert said:
Prescott Smith on double hauling in the wind on N Andros: "You shouldn't hear the rod, only the line running through the guides"
Good point: As I discribe it to folks I'm 'instructing' "A whoosh is a push." Rather than coming forward with a crisp motion/crisp stop at 10:00 a whooshing sound indicates you pushed you upper hand forward. The upper hand ends up at 'arms length' rather than a few inches forward of your chest. The forward push allows the rod to almost completely unload and the only way you can get the line out is to over power the rod.

To 'demo' this (as well as other rod tip location faults) I'll tell 'my student' that I'm going to yell "FREEZE" and I want you to instantly stop. It takes a few passes at that before they get the idea right, but at that point the rod tip too low, arm thrust out, etc., becomes very apparent. Then it's back to re-building mus. memory.

But again: "A whoosh is a push."
Fred
 

·
Mr. Mom
Joined
·
625 Posts
Grampa Spey said:
Is that line combo being used with your 7/8 Switch Rod?

The Outbounds and Bob's switch rods can be scary if you do everything correct. If you over power them, the failure is even more dramatic.
Yup Grampa, the 7/8 is a switch rod. I started messing around when I saw that bob recommended the 450 skagit for the 8/9 switch rod, so I just went down from there for the 7/8. I throw an 8 wt outbound on it for overhead casting off the beaches up here on the sound, but at 330grains, it's too light but all for emergency underhand casting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The Rio Skagit 450 works very well with Meise's 7/8.

Philster said:
Yup Grampa, the 7/8 is a switch rod. I started messing around when I saw that bob recommended the 450 skagit for the 8/9 switch rod, so I just went down from there for the 7/8. I throw an 8 wt outbound on it for overhead casting off the beaches up here on the sound, but at 330grains, it's too light but all for emergency underhand casting.
Last December I posted a thread re Meise's 7/8 switch rod and the Rio Skagit 450. It worked great for me and a friend who had never Spey Cast nor Skagit Cast. In fact it worked so well for him, he made me an offer for the rod that I couldn't refuse.

The 8 Wt Outbound Floater didn't load my Meiser 5/6 Switch Rod for Skagit and Double Spey casts and Snake Roll Casts. Bob Pauli and I discovered that the Outbound 10 Wt Floater did a great job with the 5/6 Switch rod.

Casting from my boat with the Switch Rods and the OB intermediate with type 8 sinking tips, it becomes a different game. The OB intermediate type 8 - 6wt line overwhelms the 5/6 rod, unless you pull in about 7-8 foot of the head past the rod tip. Then, it fires a sinking fly like a laser. The 7/8 switch rod in the boat was the same way with the OB intermediate type 8 - 8 weight line. We had to pull in about 7-8 foot of the head to set up the underhand cast. Then it was like a laser launch. In fact at my usual anchor spot in a marina cove, I hit a boat that never moves twice ( I have never hit it with my 9/10 switch rod and a 350 grain head, Rio Striper Line). We pulled anchor and went away about 30' and dropped anchor, and the casts with the 7/8 rod and OB intermediate type 8/8wt were falling about 3-4 ' from the boats side, where the stripers like to hide.

I need an engineer to explain to me :Eyecrazy: why we can cast heavier OB floating lines versus the OB intermediate type 8 with the same rod.:confused:
 
1 - 20 of 32 Posts
Top