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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What do you cast now?
540 gr Airflo skagit compact.
The rod has a range of 447-478 gr, but went with the 540 gr on the recommendation of the fly shop when I bought the rod. It casts well but the line is worn out and ready to be replaced. Just curious if anyone has an opinion on whether to stick with this or go with a different line or gr weight.
Thanks!
 

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Pieroway MD510, MD400
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I’m a huge fan of Vision lines. I use the Hybrid on my switch and the Hammer on my Spey. Beautiful lines, made for Vision by Airflo. The Hybrid is an integrated line and can be set up for Skagit, Scandi, Overhead….it’s very versatile.
 

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Why not try another brand Skagit (pick your preference) in the same grain window, so you can compare and see if you prefer it to the one you were using? Just a thought. There aare many different ways of looking at this...
 

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I have three favorite winter lines for throwing tips. The Nextcast Zone is either a refined skagit or a burly scandi- either way I really like it. t11 is easy, but I prefer replacement tips- 12 ft on a 12 1/2 ft rod, 15 on a 14 ft.

Another is the Bridge Wintertide. A longer head that is somewhat similar- refined skagit/burly scandi. It won’t haul as much freight as the zone, but what a joy to cast with up to 11o grain tip.

Finally the new Rio skagits are a massive improvement over the old variation. If I need to throw t14 or heavier I go with those.
 

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If you like that head and it works for you, stick with it. As the saying goes, "If it ain't broke then don't fix it".

I've never tried that particular rod so I can't say what it might like. To me, 540 grains is about an 8 weight line anyway and the rod is a 7/8. There's really no standard for how lines, rods and grain weights match up. You just have to try different things and fish with what works for you. But I think that the fly shop didin't steer you wrong.

A lighter head will feel a bit more lively but it may not turn over the flies that you're used to. The point being if you like your current, sort of, heavy Skagit and you are throwing big winter flies, you might want to stay there. You may find that a 450 grain head doesn't do what you were doing before. By changing your casting stroke, it's quite possible to throw a very heavy Skagit head that far exceeds the published grain window for the rod. I was loaned a rod once that was set up that way and it worked very well for the conditions that we were fishing. The heavy head will definitely turn over large chunky winter flies (think gigantic prom dress or 5" intruder) but at a certain point, it'll feel like you're throwing a log instead of a fly line. Sometimes that's what you need, it takes some mass to move mass.

Buy some used heads from the classified section here and experiment a bit. There's always someone here selling off their projects that didn't work out. It's fun but takes some time. I'd save that exercise for the summer. With the rains that we're starting to get, it's time to go fishing. If you are close to the Yuba, send me a PM. I've probably got 2 or 3 heads that might be interesting for you to try. I could loan them to you or meet you down at Parks Bar. I forget what I've got in hand and I'll have to dig around to see what's left.
 

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540 gr Airflo skagit compact.
The rod has a range of 447-478 gr, but went with the 540 gr on the recommendation of the fly shop when I bought the rod. It casts well but the line is worn out and ready to be replaced. Just curious if anyone has an opinion on whether to stick with this or go with a different line or gr weight.
Thanks!
Try a rio 525 which is what I fish on my Winston B3TH
 

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Sounds like a 1st generation Airflo. The newer tapers on the Skagit lines are much nicer.
Usually. 7/8 is right around 540 or at least for me.
I would stick with the 540 Airflo. Or perhaps a 525 or 550 Rio
 
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