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Discussion Starter #1
Just wondering what kind of lines people use for this rod and what they think of it? I currently use a Rio midspey 8/9 and want to try something different!
Thanks
 

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For some real fun...

...buy a Rio Skagit 650 and install any tip--from 8' of T-14 to a Big Boy 500. You will be amazed. I also recommend you buy the Rio Skagit Cheater lines as your powerful rod will probably work best with a 5' Cheater. [The 8.9.10 or 9.10.11 Cheater]

Three of us at the Golden Gate Angling and Casting Club plus a Napa Valley Fly Fishers buddy have been testing Rio Skagit 450, 550, 650 and 750 Spey lines with:
T-14 from 8 to 25 feet, and in one case 28 & 30 feet [8 different lengths]
15' Rio tips from 129 to 205 grains [5 different weights]
BigBoy 300, 400 and 500 grains [3 different lines]
With and without Rio Skagit Cheaters [5' & 10" Floating & Intermediate]

The possible combinations for each rod are [6+5+3][4]=360. Oy vey, why did we begin?

We have completed testing 14 rods to date with the above combinations. It is important to note that we are not Skagit casting or testing Skagit casts, rather the purpose is to determine how heavy a tip can each Rio Skagit line/rod comfortably cast, WITH a 5-inch long tungsten bead head steelhead streamer tied to the leader.

If you want a revelation, line up a Rio Skagit and go for it.
 

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Can't speak to the 9140, but the 9132 Green seems very happy with the 9/10/11 Windcutter, which is the "B" rating from Rio. I think the 8/9/10 WC (Rio's "A" rating) would be too light, but I can see where the 8/9 Midspey might be OK.

The other line we have that is a good match is the Airflo Traditional 9/10. These are discontinued, but you might be able to locate one. The 8/9 Trad is too light, but some top casters agreed that the 9/10 Trad matched the rod well.

--Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks alot for the response guys. I'll try out your suggestions and post my results.
SpeySeb
 

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peter-s-c said:
This sounds more like lobbing than casting -- chuck & duck, spey style.
Rumor has it that a large wooden cross has been erected atop Mt. Rainier. I also heard that "P-S-C" is carved into it. :tsk_tsk:
 

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Speyngineer
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CraigSC said:
Rumor has it that a large wooden cross has been erected atop Mt. Rainier. I also heard that "P-S-C" is carved into it. :tsk_tsk:
Well well, I think Peter was merely pointing out that casting a 1150 grains/50 ft head with a 9/10 wt rod is somewhat extreme business. Have to agree with Peter, while I have casted a 850 grain/30ft Deep Water Express with a 10/11 rod, and thus know that it is possible, but has absolutely nothing to do with fly casting :eek: . IMHO.
 

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I have recently been playing with the skagit heads. The taper on these (or lack therof) allow you to turn over very heavy tips with a nice looking speycast.

I can't comment on the 500 grain big boy but I can say that I have cast the 7/8 skagit line with 15' of T-14 and it unrolls in a pretty loop above the water without any problem. That comes to 660 grains of line and sink tip combined on a 12'6 7/8 weight.

If this performs this nicely I'm not so sure that a 9/10 couldn't handle the 1150 that's being talked about.

One of the proposed benefit of the skagit heads and the skagit system is that the weight of the sink tip has less influence on the cast than with traditional lines. At least for the 2 weeks that I have been fishing one this seems to be true.


I don't have any desire to cast a big boy 500 grain tip so I may never know exactly how it performs.

Gillie
 

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peter-s-c said:
...This rig came in at about 850 so you can see why casting 1150 over the same length, with the same profile of grain weight distribution and taper, has me wondering.
I have no problem seeing this... :chuckle:
 

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Interesting...

...that the two persons posting affirmatively about the ability of Rio Skagit Spey Lines to carry heavy tips have actually cast the line in question.

Those questioning that ability have not.
 

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Peter,
I don't think it is level, but it doesn't seem to have much of a taper either.
As far as how they work; my limited understanding is that the concentration of the grains in the head help to propel the sink tip. I know with the shorter sink tips (15' and less) my anchor point is the sink tip floating junction with the sink tip remaining in the water. Hopefully someone else can explain it better.


Bob,
Myself and the shop that I'm trialing these lines for were a little skeptical at first, but I spent the last week and a half fishing them and am just wowed at how they turn sink tips over.

I have read things from skagit casters that the weight of the sink tip does not have the effect on casting with these lines that they do with other lines. I have found that to be true with these. I have fished 15 'tips with ease. Yesterday I put 5' of cheater and 5' of T-14 to fish some cold 3-5' runs and it was such an easy casting system that I was blown away. Also very effective. I don't know that I am entirely prepared to attribute it to the line system but I have hooked a lot of fish in the last week with this set up and feel that I am fishing very effectively.

The biggest shortcoming I have found is the need for stripping in very cold weather and I don't think I personally would choose them for water where I consistently have to fish greater than 70' out.

Guys should try these before making attributions about them. they cast unlike any line I've ever worked with.


I think this line set up is the future for swinging flies on the GL's.

Gillie
 

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Peter,
Your right, I can't comment on the 650 + 500.

But just to clarify the 450 plus cheater and T-14 or all T-14 was on a 12'6" 7/8. It was from that perspective that I was saying that if my little 7/8 throws all that with pretty tight loops the 650 + 500 on a 9 or 10 wouldn't be too far of a stretch.

Luckily, nothing I fish right now would require that heavy of a tip.

Gillie
 

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Bob Pauli said:
...that the two persons posting affirmatively about the ability of Rio Skagit Spey Lines to carry heavy tips have actually cast the line in question.

Those questioning that ability have not.


More interesting is IMHO, that actually we are not discussing about the Rio Skagit Spey Lines, or their ability to carry what so ever at all, but about the ability of a 9 weight rod to cast a 1150 grain/50 ft line :devil:
 

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Bob Pauli said:
You have it right. Fun, isn't it?
Yes, I am sure that you have had it right, and the most fun is to cast a 1150grain/50 ft line with a 9 wt 14 ft rod. That must be all about the the SPEYCASTING there is to be. Be happy with the road you have chosen. :cool:
 

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Peter,

In my lack of experience, water loaded casts need far heavier grain weight to get things moving than touch and go casting. The skagit head I cast on the 5 wt sage would break the rod if overheaded and is waaay too heavy for the rod when singled speyed or snake rolled, yet flies very nicely when poked or doubled. None of what has been said above by Bob I find hard to believe. Maybe you should give give one of these lines a whirl?
 

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peter-s-c said:
To put a finer point on it -- I have a problem with bandwagons. A while back, every newcomer who asked a line question here was barraged with, "Get a Windcutter, Get a Windcutter." Now it's, "Get a Skagit head. Get a Skagit head." I've been fishing the same concept now for two years so I have an idea how these lines work -- I don't have to own one to know how they work. Hell, for all I know, I might've even given Jim Vincent the idea from the reversed Windcutter email exchange we had. That profile has since shown up in a few Rio lines (SSH, Pike & Bass). There's nothing magical about these lines -- the concept is simple.

For short range work in pocket water or dealing with long, deep channels, sign me up. There's a spot on the Maitland and on the Saugeen where this rig is ideal (and where I've already fished mine). It sounds like it's tailor made for the Niagara -- I've used BigBoys and worse there for years. But it won't do everything and it won't work everywhere. Making overweight Skagit line recommendations to people who don't Skagit cast and who don't need the capability, not only doesn't make sense but it wastes their money and worse, could break their rod.

EOT for me

Ok, Makes sense. I missed the part that Bob WASN'T skagit casting so I can definately understand your skeptisism. I do agree that skagit lines are not a fix all or the only way to fish, though if I were back in Michigan I would by all means fish with one, at least part of the year.
 

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Peter,

The skagit head is not the answer to everything. However, I have fished WC and MS for 4 years on the GL's. Specifically Lake Ontario tribs. The water is cold a lot of the year and the fly needs to be swung deeply (something you already know). The majority of GL's steelhead are caught in 60 - 70 feet range.

For this fishing the Skagit head is incredibly effective.

They also allow the use of lighter rods which maximizes the fight of smaller fish.

Depth is not always a requirement, but a skagit cheater and a peice of T-14 will let you fish from 3' to 10' by varying lengths.

If you want to fish 80 - 100' out with gresed line techniques or waking flies then they aren't a good choice. Unfortunately there aren't a lot of opportunities for this in the GL's. I'll never give up my WC and MS for the Deschutes or the Umpqua. I even want to work on my long belly casting this summer because it is a technique that requires a lot of skill that I want to master.

If someone is trying to get into swinging flies on the GL's these lines will get them fishing and catching faster. Sharing that with them is not jumping on the bandwagon. It's telling them there is a way to fish effectively rather than placing barriers in front of them. I know quite a few guys who overline there WC by a size or two to have enough grains outside the tip when fishing in the 50' range to turn over nicely. This line does that for you. I also know that quite a few guys in NY have been using Rio clouser or pike lines on there spey rods for a number of years to accomplish this. This isn't a bandwagon just a spey line designed to do what a lot of people were already doing.

As far as homemade lines; I had tried a number of homemade lines in the area over the last year that different guys have put together. None performed like these lines.

Gillie
 
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