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Discussion Starter #1
I learned so much at the Sandy Clav that I can't sleep. I'll ventilate on all that in the Clav section. I took my 7/8 Traditional to the Clav and talked with the Airflow rep. He had something on his mind but didn't want to tell me until after I tried a 8/9 on the Scott. I took it to the river and started casting and was impressed
by how it loaded the rod at 50, 60, and 70 ft.. Past 70, my previous range limit, it seemed to me to start dying. I didn't trust my judgement and looked around for a really good caster. A gentleman from Co was making beautiful long casts with what had to be a long belly since he wasn't shooting and I asked if he would cast the line and let me know his opinion. He did and stated that he felt the rod didn't want to go real long and he would limit it to a mid-spey lenght. I went back to the rep and told him that I thought he had thought that I would find out that the Scott wasn't well suited to the long belly and he said yes! He graciously gave me a long delta for my GL3. I started talking with others about the long/short thing. I have concluded that long bellies are great if, 1. Your a pretty good spey caster; 2. You have a fast action 14ft or even better a 15ft. rod; 3. You get or study advanced techniques. The previous debate in these pages was great but didn't really talk about matching rods to long bellies. Elite casters can do anything with anything but thats not the real world for 99% of us. I'm really happy with the Long Delta on this rod and will become a long belly man when I get the proper gear. I don't even think the 14ft. GL3 would perform for me like I would want with a long belly. WPK
 

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You do not need a fast action rod to cast long belly lines. but you do need a rod that has enough power in the butt to lift and cast 80+ feet of line (with the exception of 8 weight or smaller rods, where casting 70+feet of belly is a lot), and a tip that will not collapse when you put the load on it when casting the full belly of a long belly line.

I like fast-action rods like T&T and GLX's or Loop Greens; but not everyone likes a fast-action 2-hander. However, each of these rods is fast with a progressive action that loads the rods further down the blank as you put more power to the rod. These are not the only rods that cast long belly lines well though. The CND rods come readily to mind as very capable rods with the long belly lines, and they are more of a moderate to medium fast rod. The Loop Yellow, Black, and Blue are also fine rods to cast long belly lines with, and they are in the moderate to medium fast action too. The new Hardy's are also very nice long line rods. And the older Hardy and the B&W are rather slow rods that cast the long belly lines, albeit with the need to slow down your casting stroke.

That said, there are rods that do not have the butt power or the tip strength to cast these lines well. In fact, some of the rods on the market feel like they might break if you really put some butt to the line on a long cast with a long belly line. You are correct, there are rods that are not suited to casting the long belly lines.

You are correct about it being easier to cast long belly lines with rods of 15 ft+ than with shorter rods. But that doesn't mean that you cannot cast them with 14 ft or evern 13 ft rods, you just have to adjust your "D" loop formation slightly with the shorter 2-handers to cast them. And yes, they are not lines for beginners.
 

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Curious which Scott rod you have as I think most of their rods should handle long belly lines. Regarding length of rod, I have a Scott 1287 that loves the 7/8 xlt and it is only 12'8" long. It can pick the entire head though not all that easily unless you really have the technique down. But it will easily pick 75+ and shoot out to 95 or 100'

However, I also love the Airflo long delta on that rod. Little less effort to cast but more stripping effort at long distances.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the clear and useful information, flytier. Rick, I tried the 1287 at the Sandy Clav and thought it was a terrific rod. It is much faster than the 1308. I tried it with a sink tip and it performed beatifully. I tried to talk the rep into swapping with me. I may sell the 1308 and go for this terrific rod. WPK
 

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WPK, you've hit on exactly why the Sandy 'Clave was "invented."

:devil: Too find out just how 'deep' your wallet is vis a vis spey casting. All kidding aside, where else could you walk up to a total stranger, and have him/her hand you a thousand bucks worth of equipment and say 'give it a try, bring it back and I'll give you another one to play with...' ?

Mark, Patty, Bob and Laura's production this year was beyond mortal words to describe.

fae
 

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Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
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It regret that I was unable to bring any of the CND Specialist Spey series rods to the clave. These rods are exceptional at handling long lines, as was seen with the 100' Speydriver line at Marlow's Clave on the Skagit. However we found that the Expert 1409 threw the Airflo Traditional 8/9 beautifully and the Custom 1510 was also put into it's full potential by the gentleman from Colorado with a Traditional 10/11 which he felt was a perfect match. I also hope to go through the Grandspey lines with CND rods over the next few days, I'll post my opinions FWIW.
 

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Juro,

As a further note to the CND Custom 1510, I used it this spring with a 10/11 Accellerator, with the tip section removed and replaced with a 10' section of level belly from a #10 DT, followed by a 15' Type IV sinktip and a big ole Intruder on the end - it cast like a rocket.
 
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