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Discussion Starter #1
I practiced casting my two-handed rod and found it so simple and elegant that I didn't even bother to wear a hat or sunglasses. I wore my "Darth Vader" motorcycle helmet - and I'm glad I did.

Nevertheless, I found my initial casting attempts to be so satisfying I started thinking about one handed Spey casts for trout. The season on the rivers near me aren't long enough to justify a trout Spey setup, but I have a 10'0" single hand 4wt that could do the trick.

I searched here and didn't find any answers to questions about Scandi lines/heads for one-handed casting that were newer than 2015 (I admit I didn't look at every single answer, but I looked a whole pile of them). Surely there have been changes in lines and heads since then.

Online, I can find all kinds of information and videos about Skagit heads and lines to use for Scagit casting on one-handed rods, but again, information about single hand Scandi casting is hard to find.

I'd appreciate suggestions about lines to use for Scandi casting with a light single handed rod.

(P.S. Is there a way to return Search results in chronological order?)
 

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I'll call but I just know I'll end up with a new rod, too... Thank you.
 

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What flies are you planning to throw? Big water, small water?

I fish small eastern water with small flies (little unweighted streamers, wets, etc.) by using a line at the rod's rating, or uplining 1-2 line sizes on my short glass 3, 4, & 5 weight rods. You can haul just like overhead casting for carrying slightly larger flies or to carry more line. This works well for me with WF/DT floaters and WF intermediate lines. You may already own a line that will work for you. You will have to play with different lines and leader lengths to find your happy spot. Just because a given line isn't labelled as a "spey" line does not mean it can't be spey cast. Doing this will NOT replicate the shooting head casting experience, it will reasonably replicate the traditional (fixed length of line) spey experience though. If there's a chance of dry fly fishing, this way works nice as all I have to do is change a leader and a fly, no extra spools, heads, tips etc to carry.

Again for smaller water, if I want to throw bigger flies, fish polyleaders for some additional depth, or need some (not major) distance, OPST Commando Heads get it done for my short glass rods.

On bigger water with my trout spey outfit I use longer heads... Rio Trout Spey or Rio Scandi Short depending on water level and fly size.

Your 10' 4wt should be able to do just fine with a shooting head or uplined standard single hand line depending upon your application.

I don't have a euro-nymphing rod, but other members here may. If you could state the particular rod you're using, it may help you get some specific line or head weight recommendations. Someone out there has your rod and has already done this.

Good luck!
 

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Even though for several years there have been scandi short heads and others that are fine on lightweight spey rods and SH rods used for spey casts, Maybe the reason why there isn’t a lot of “talking” about the context of SH rods is because they have kind of already existed for a very long time - a regular trout taper is already a good line for SH spey and has pretty close to a scandi front end, and you can up the wt rating as appropriate. Just because they have different names for marketing doesn’t mean that are in reality very distinct things. Let’s hope if SH spey ever become becomes a fad they will not go overboard on the marketing, but I’m not hopeful.

The Rio SH spey line is basically a longish scandi type taper that is at the same time a trout taper beefed up a bit in the butt section. It doubles very nicely as a real dry fly line.

I agree about the recomendation for Steve. The thing to get from him may be a custom scadi that uses light tips - you will get the versatility of the tips along with the delicate presentation and ease of a scandi. Plus you can get short as you want to taste for ease of the casting transition. In the past half decade or so companies started coming out with similar offerings, but Steve was making them back before there were many (or really any) out of box solutions marketed for lightweight spey, and for Gary Anderson’s rods back when they were some of the first very lightweight spey rods out there. And yes, he makes some beautiful deep flexing SH blanks perfect for such things. I would avoid “Nymphing” blanks as “real” ones are not just longer but have a very weak tip for sensitivity with a stiffer lower end for playing the fish. Most people would say a more uniform taper is better for spey casts, or really anything other than pure nymphing, and there are plenty of 9.5-10.5 foot blanks out there that aren’t specifically designed as “nymphing” rods. Steve’s blanks just happen to be $250 less than the Burkheimer equivalents. ;)

Smoothly tapered lines are a real joy after casting skagit heads for a while! Highly recommended is Simon Gawesworth’s single hand spey book. There is currently nothing like it out there in book form. When you start doing hauls with your spey casts it becomes a whole new thing. Jeff Putnam also made and sells a whole series of of videos on SH spey casting.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Cap'n, I don't know what flies I'll be using. Spey-anything is a whole 'nother universe for me right now, but these are small coastal streams, I don;t need a lot of distance - just 15 or 20 more feet than I can roll cast to reach the big rainbows I can see from above (on a bluff). Since I've never landed a fly anywhere near them, I don't yet know what they might find interesting.

Thanks for asking me all the questions. It shows me how much I haven't even started to consider...

Botsari, as always, a wealth of information to sort through. I absolutely agree with your hope that single-handed Spey casting doesn't become overloaded with a bewildering array of options. I had less trouble understanding basic, one-handed overhead casting when I got started fly fishing than I'm having sorting through two-handed Spey casting (and understanding it).

You've both given me a whole lot of things to think about before talking with Steve. Guiding me to the right line will be interesting enough without me having to ask him to translate what he knows into newbie-speak. Thank you, both. I really apprecaite the time you spent answering my question and guiding me along the path.
 

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I'll call but I just know I'll end up with a new rod, too... Thank you.
Is that so bad? While your on it get me one too please. Your choice :)
 

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Yeah man! The full action botsari mentioned is why I mainly do this with glass rods. I have tried my OPST heads on graphite rods (all were med-fast action, but I have yet to find a match that performs as well as my glass rods do.

The single hand setup I would use to fit your situation is...
Rod: Cabela's Prime 7' 3" 5wt (I believe these are E-glass, which is slower than S-glass. This has a beefier tip to it that works well with spey casting.
They've been out of production for a couple years now, but you may be able to find something vintage with a similar action in your dad's basement)
Shooting line: 25# Amnesia mono
Head: OPST Commando 175
Tips: 10' floating or intermediate Rio Scandi Versileader, or 7' sinking Trout Versileaders (OPST's micro tips should work too, but I haven't tried them yet)

This setup is good for fish to 20" or so. The glass really bends very deep when you have a nice one hooked, but it puts them to sleep quickly. With a haul on the forward cast you can send it unbelievably far with almost no room for a d-loop.
 

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Discussion Starter #9

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Isn’t a wulff triangle taper essentially just a scandi? Maybe it’s a simple as getting a 4wt triangle taper for a 4wt single hand rod? Probably best to call the folks at royal wulff and ask what they recommend. Every time I’ve called them they’ve been nothing but helpful..
 

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Isn’t a wulff triangle taper essentially just a scandi? Maybe it’s a simple as getting a 4wt triangle taper for a 4wt single hand rod? Probably best to call the folks at royal wulff and ask what they recommend. Every time I’ve called them they’ve been nothing but helpful..
I might call them. It's hard to tell if the TT lines are Scnadi-like because there's so little information about them available online, but if the Wulff folks are chatty, I'll ask them. Thank you.

SA Spey lite Scandi 150 grains!
https://youtu.be/gG3RWcxzsY0
I would never hesitate to take your advice, and I shall take a closer look at the Scadi Lite, but I need to ask Botsari if this is what he meant about a dizzying array of options? Thank you, it's all good.

I really shouldn't be all that particular about a line or a head. At my level of proficiency ("None") I couldn't tell a good setup from a weasel's butt.

Nonetheless, I appreciate everyone's suggestions. I know a lot more now than I did before I asked.
 

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I really like a 1h or switch for skating dries equipped with a OPST Commando and a 12.5' floating tip which kind of mellows out the commando head into more of a scandish setup. It works well and is extremely fun to fish.
 

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You should be somewhat picky. Mainly about what head style will handle the flies you want to throw.

The 5 wt glass/175 Commando/7' Versileader outfit I mentioned before has a limit of about a 2-2.5" bunny strip fly (no lead eyes). Any bigger/heavier of a fly and the ability to dig the fly out of the water during the forward cast gets difficult and successfully completing casts becomes inconsistent.

Matching this same line setup and fly to a faster/longer graphite rod may yield more consistently successful casting results. But this also depends on the caster's ability too.

Velocity's post has important info. You can use the Commando Head to tow any tip... even floating ones for dry flies. This is what I would recommend to you since you're unsure of what flies you need to throw.

Skagitmeister has some other good vids on micro spey showcasing a few different lines. I stumbled on to his videos just looking at random trout stuff... and my spey addiction took off from there. He's got some good casting tips too. I learned alot from him. Thanks again Tim!
 

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Poor Tinker, started a thread partly inspired by discovering how much he enjoyed the elegance and pure joy of casting a scandi over a skagit, and very quickly he is getting funneled back to a commando, like his parents wanting him to get serious and become a lawyer. Give the guy a chance! Let the bird fly free for a bit! Commandos are very useful and easy to cast, but they are the white chocolate of casting - for those that want the texture of chocolate without being distracted by the flavor.:chuckle:
 

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Cap'n, I don't know what flies I'll be using. Spey-anything is a whole 'nother universe for me right now, but these are small coastal streams, I don;t need a lot of distance - just 15 or 20 more feet than I can roll cast to reach the big rainbows I can see from above (on a bluff). Since I've never landed a fly anywhere near them, I don't yet know what they might find interesting.

Thanks for asking me all the questions. It shows me how much I haven't even started to consider...

Botsari, as always, a wealth of information to sort through. I absolutely agree with your hope that single-handed Spey casting doesn't become overloaded with a bewildering array of options. I had less trouble understanding basic, one-handed overhead casting when I got started fly fishing than I'm having sorting through two-handed Spey casting (and understanding it).

You've both given me a whole lot of things to think about before talking with Steve. Guiding me to the right line will be interesting enough without me having to ask him to translate what he knows into newbie-speak. Thank you, both. I really apprecaite the time you spent answering my question and guiding me along the path.
There really isn't THAT much difference casting overhead and spey-casting, so whichever line you learned with previously - you can now use to learn the various ways of setting the anchor for a spey cast. "Drift" is slightly different, obviously since the line is anchored.

Right-off: Keep the anchor to a minimum. The smaller the anchor - the larger your D loop will be and the cast will come-off with more ease and power.

Other than that - it is basic stuff; Straight rod/line, 180˚out, smooth acceleration to stop and "follow-through." I'd suggest setting yourself-up with plenty of room tot he rear for the largest dloop your line will build and not have to worry about adjusting anchor placement to avoid sweeping the line into obstructions at this time. That will gradually come to you as you become more and more comfortable.

Cheers,
Vic
 

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Poor Tinker, started a thread about discovering how much he enjoyed the elegance and pure joy of casting a scandi over a skagit, and very quickly he is getting funneled back to a commando, like his parents wanting him to become a lawyer. Give the guy a chance! Let the bird fly free for a bit. Commandos are very useful and easy to cast, but they are the white chocolate of casting - for those that want the texture of chocolate without being distracted by the flavor.:chuckle:
Going to have to disagree here. The commando with a floating tip is basically a micro scandi, call it a skagit all you want but its not. I can touch and go snake roll this setup with extreme ease and it shoots like a damn laser beam. The head with the floating tip lends itself to the touch and go scandi style of casting, not the slow anchor peel water born skagit cast. This is reason he is being steered towards that particular head is that with a floating tip. It does exactly what he want's, and they offer head grain sizes compatible with rods down to like a 2wt. Additionally, being able to swap out into a sink tip with a loop to loop rather than changing the entire head out I feel is invaluable.
 

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I agree with tinker here... it depends on the application... with a float tip, the Commando Head is just a driver, like the heavy rear end of a scandi head. I am not particularly fond of skagit heads since I went to scandis.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Botsari, you had my vote locked in with "Poor Tinker". :)

About Commando heads: not yet, please. I've never used one but I'm still not sure I like them - the font face they've adopted offends my aesthetic sensibilities. And yes, that is entirely tongue in cheek...

I'd like to start with an integrated line. I have absolutely no experience or facts to support my decision; I simply figured it would be easier to recognize what I'm doing wrong if I minimize the number of loop-to-loop connections and bits-and-pieces that make up the line. Experience suggests I'd waste half a year trying to troubleshoot the line rather than the cast.

I could be wrong, but I'm sticking with that choice for now.

HOWEVER, I like what I've learned about how to use a Commando head like a Scandi head. That's stuff I wouldn't have figured out on my own for years, and when I take off the training wheels (so to speak) I'll definitely give it a try. Thanks!
 

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I can't blame you for wanting to stick with scandi... that's all I want to use! I hope you find one that works for your SH rod. When you do, please let us know how it works for you. I would be interested in one myself. Integrated lines really are nice too.
 
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