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chrome-magnon man
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Discussion Starter #1
Just completed three days of casting and fishing with the new RIO GrandSpey and I'm working on my review for the lines page on the Spey Pages.

Wow. Exceptional turnover at all distances, easy to cast, and when you need to you can really reach out there with a long cast and still have confidence that the line will turn over nicely.

While I wasn't a huge fan of the Accelerator (the power hinge turned many of my beautuful Spey casts into tuck casts! :chuckle: ) I'm lovin' the GrandSpey!

More to follow on the Spey Pages...
 

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Pullin' Thread
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Dana,

Like you, I think this is an incredible line. I took my 16 ft T&T to the nano-clave on the Skyomiah today strung up with the 10/11 GrandSpey. Several of the folks there gave it a go and liked the line as well. Their comments were nearly identical to yours herein. I absolutely love this line.

Once again Simon, thank you for designing it, and Jim, thank you for letting simon loose and then putting it in production.
 

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Power Hinge

Has anyone tried removing the power hinge and resplicing the line ?

I keep thinking about it but as the Quad tip Accelerator is close to £100/ $150 here I would like to know if it is a good idea.

Malcolm
 

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chrome-magnon man
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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Hi Malcolm!

The GrandSpey does not feature a power hinge so there is no need for surgery. Although I have cut the power hinge out of Accelerators and prefer the line respliced in this way, the GrandSpey is a superior line to begin with so if you are deciding between the two I would nudge you toward the GrandSpey.

Hey flytyer!

The 10/11 is the only GrandSpey I haven't tried yet--I have used the 8/9 and 9/10--so I am interested to read your comments about that line weight and rod combination. Did you try that line weight on any other rods? I will be casting some longer and more powerful rods over the next few weeks and I'm thinking that the 10/11 line will be the ticket for these rods. I used the 8/9 and 9/10 on the Loop Blue 10150 and the CND Custom Spey 15ft 10/11. I liked the 9/10 best on the Loop but it was a toss up with the CND.
 

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Dana,
I bought the Accelerator this season so I am a little ticked off that they have brought out the new line now. But that is life so I thought about cutting out the power hinge this winter.

Thanks for your advice

Malcolm
 

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Pullin' Thread
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Dana,

I've not tried the 10/11 GrandSpey on any other rod. I own and love the 1611 T&T and that is the only rod I've cast with it. Nooksack Mac cast it on my 1611 T&T and liked it as well. He said (which I already knew because I had cast the 1511 T&T before I settled on the 1611) that except for the extra foot of length, his 1511 T&T feels the same with a little less line lifting ability.

I have sevearal friends who have 10/11 Sages, but they don't feel right to me with a 10/11 accelerator, so I've been very reticent to cast them with the 10/11 GrandSpey. I have a very good friend who wanted to cast it on his 1st generation Sage 10151, I was afraid the rod might break with it because it broke with a 10/11 Accelerator and Sage repaired it once before.

I'm sure the G.Loomis 15 ft 10/11, and 15 1/2 ft 11/12 (both rods that I have cast and like) would be superb rods for the 10/11 GrandSpey as well. The Winston Derek Brown 10/11 comes to mind as another superb rod for it. The big B&W's, such as the 18 ft 10-12 that Fred recently acquired would be a good choice with it too. Wish I new someone who owned one of the new Sage 16 footers to cast this line on, unfortunately I don't. It is a line that should work well with all of the big powerhouse 11 weights and the powerrful 10 weight 2-handers.

That said, the 10/11 Grandspey cast well on my 1611 from about 50 ft of line out the rod (note this is line, not line plus leader) to as far as you can cast. It is a superb spey casting line with very dynamic turnover. I love not having to shoot line to cast 90+ ft.

The 10/11 GrandSpey is a very long line, over 100 ft of belly and front taper, but it is a very forgiving line and when you get in the habit of keeping that much line aerialized to form your 'D' loop, it just zings out to your intended target. Snap-T, Snake Roll, Double Spey, Single Spey, Switch are a breeze with this line. Also, this line lets me throw 70-80 feet of line with almost no 'D' loop (i.e. the line is kept almost completely in front of you, usefull if brush is right at your back). It casts well in wind as well, as I found on the Skagit the second day I was using it. The color change from the belly to running line is also a nice touch. One that I'm told is being incorporated into all of the RIO Spey lines for 2003.

It takes a huge reel to hold the 10/11 GrandSpey. I have it mounted on a Redington AS 13/14 ( truly huge capacity reel) and I could get 250 yds of 30 LB dacron backing and the 150 ft of 10/11 GrandSpey on it. Lessor sized reels will not hold much backing with this line, if you could even get the whole line on the reel. It defintely requires a reel that one could use a 14 weight line on for huge saltwater fish. Despite this, I will be using the 10/11 GrandSpey nearly exclusively on my 1611 T&T.

This is a great line for the big sticks!
 

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chrome-magnon man
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Discussion Starter #8
Ed, I'm not certain if the GrandSpeys are in general release yet but they should be soon. I had a look at the Fly Shop site in Welches and they aren't listing the line yet. Flytyer, where did you get yours?

And thanks for the detailed notes, Flytyer! I have a friend who tried the 9/10 on his new 10161 Sage and quite liked that combination, although Simon recommends the 10/11 for this rod. Note that Simon does not recommend the 10/11 for all rods rated 10/11--for many of these rods he recommends the 9/10. Exceptions are the Sage, the T&T, the Loomis GLX, the Redingtons, and the Derek Brown rods. My experiments with the 8/9 and 9/10 indicate that with these lines you could move around a little in line weight and still have an excellent casting combination (Simon recommends the 9/10 only on the Loop Blue 10150, for example, but I also thought that the 8/9 was very sweet on this rod).
 

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Coednakedspey
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168 Posts
Dana,
Michael and Young now has the Grandspeys in, the order of them arrived this past Friday October 18th/02.

I have cast the 9/10 Grandspey on my Sage 9140-3 Euro. First thing I can tell you is I concur with the above thoughts, it is an awesome line. Damn does this line every have grains though! It loads and turns over well at all the distances I could cast it, and it loads well close in out to far out. I think the 9/10 might not be the best match for the 9140-3 though, and the 8/9 will probably be a better match if you want some more distance taked on.

The one thing I like about this line from what I have seen is it turns over with authority primarily due to the grains in the front section. Now I haven't cast tips or heavily weighted flies on it yet, but just by how much authority (but it doesn't "over" turn over or "tuck") it has when it turns over, I can tell it will be a formidable line to work with winter fish where tips and/or heavily weighted flies are called for. It doesn't fake the authority and then wimper out with a flimsy tip like other lines I have tried. It lets you know what it wants to do. The line does eat up space on the reel though, probably even more so than the XLT, due to the Grandspeys less dymanic taper. What I mean by that is it doesn't have a thick belly which tapers down to a wisp (which I would describe as dynamic). It has a thick belly which tapers down to some meat in the tip/front section.

Thanks Simon, I appreciate your efforts in helping me choose my long belly line.

Scott
 

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chrome-magnon man
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5,375 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
My experiences with the 9140-3 (the brown gIII blank, right?) and a variety of lines would make me reach first for the 8/9 GrandSpey, Scott. Simon recommends the 8/9 for the new 9141 as well as the Loop Blue 9140, and I've cast all 3 rods and would say that the newer Sage and the Loop are close enough to the 9140-3 that the 8/9 would be a good choice. Also the head length on the 8/9 is a little shorter (@91ft) which would make it a touch easier to move on a 14ft rod than the 9/10.
 

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Coednakedspey
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168 Posts
Dana,
Yup, the Graphite 3 brown blank, the same one Tyler Owns.
I found out the hard way exactly what you just recommended when I had about 80-85 feet of the line plus leader outside the tip, or around there. I reasoned though after as well, on top of a recommendation from Tyler, that the GS 8/9 has an 1100 grain belly @ 90 feet, and the 10/11 Accelerator which has 1000 grains belly @ 80 feet (considered to be a great match for this rod) so that also suggests that the 8/9 is the best match as well as yours and Simons recommendations (he recommended it to me at the time, but stubborn me wanted to try the 9/10 for some reason). The 8/9 will definatley give me some more line on my Evotec 9thirteen, something I don't mind considering the 9/10 filled it up with not much backing room (I would definatley need GSP, and even then I question whether I could have gotten 100 plus yards of 50 # GSP on there with the 9/10!).

My one concern with this line, and it's nothing to do with how it casts, is the line ratings; it really puts a spin on the whole system considering how much more "grainy" these lines are compared to the accelerator and other Rio lines and how the line ratings are much different to that of the accelerator, even though Simon pointed out that if you continued the taper of the Accelerator 10/11 back 20 feet to make it 100 feet it would weigh around 1460 grains. The 10/11 Grandspey 100 foot belly weighs 1500 grains.

Dana, my question to you and anyone else, and this is an entirely different topic, has there been any strides set up for spey line ratings versus the AFTMA system? Or are we gonna stick with the sort of trial and error system where we ask around which line might be the best match for a particular rod, etc. ?? Considering how diverse spey casting is, I wonder if that is how it will have to be considering a 9/10 traditional action rod an a 9/10 fast action rod will usually cast different weight lines on average. And then factoring in the style of line (IE shooting head, midspey type line, or long belly) as well.

More to think about I guess.

Scott
 

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chrome-magnon man
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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Scott, there's been talk of a formalized system for rating spey lines and rods, but I haven't heard of anything firm yet. I do know that some manufacturers at one time looked at @ 70ft or 80ft of DT line out (from the reel) as something the equivalent to the 30ft of line used in the AFTM scale when designing and testing their rods, and in the UK dual rated rods are rated for a DT line in the lower weight and a weight forward line in the higher weight (similar to single handers) but this is a fairly loose system when you consider the power of most two hand blanks. The best we have is a system like Simon's where rods get tested with a variery of lines and then recommendations are made based on the feel casters like when throwing lines of various head designs.

I think when we are considering the purchase of an extended belly line like the GrandSpey we really need to carefully consider our skill level. For example, I think that the 9/10 GrandSpey might not be a bad choice for an intermediate caster who won't be picking up and throwing the entire head. For 50ft - 70ft casts the 9/10 GrandSpey will probably be just fine and give the caster a good rod load and casting feel, plus turn over quite well even with less than perfect technique. For someone capable of lifting and throwing the entire head and shooting line, however, the 9/10 would be too much line for the average 9 weight rod. So when looking at a GrandSpey for a rod not listed in Simon's recommendations, I think a safe way to go for highly skilled casters would be to use the higher number of the line to match the line with the lower number on your rod--for example, on a 9 or 9/10 rod, go with the 8/9 GrandSpey.

What I'd also really like to see is these lines given a 3 line weight designation similar to what RIO has on the Windcutter, and some indication of how to line the rod based on one's casting skill. Thus the 8/9 GrandSpey becomes the 8/9/10: beginning-to-intermediate casters could use the line on 8 or 9 weight rods, while more experienced casters would opt to use the line with 9 or 10 weight rods depending on the "A" or "B" feel they like (see Simon's receommendations for more info on this). As I mentioned I found the 8/9 quite pleasant to use on 10 weight rods as well, which got me thinking about how best to classify these and other extended belly lines.
 

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Willie Gunn

Willie, I'm right there with you. I bought a new Accelerator this August to go with my Sage 10151.

The Power Hinge should end up in the Hall of Shame!

A friend emailed and was excited about the Accelerators being on sale. I told him that he might better off just flushing his money down the toilet. Rio would not be dropping the Accelerator lines if they worked for most of us.

He, also, has the Sage 7141 which is a orphan rod re the Grand Spey. I told him that Mark B. recommends the Delta Spey with the interchangeable tips as the best line match with the 7141. Mark has a lot of experience with the 7141, and he would not recommend the Delta Spey if it didn't work.

My Mid Spey 6/7 floater works great with my 7141 for dries, skating flies and when using the Boles Indicator with a nymph or an egg fly. The 2002 Spey recos from Rio didn't include the Mid Spey 6/7. Fortunately our local Sage Rep told me to try the MS 6/7 and my WC 678 with my new 7141 when I upgraded from my 7136. He was right on target.

The 7141 with tip two removed from the WC 678 and the sinking tips attached directly to the body/shooting line can really fire the tips out.

Too bad that Rio doesn't allow a good trade in for buyers of this year's Accelerators to the new Grand Spey.
 

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origins of the new Grand Spey

I would like to explain how the Grand Spey came about. In 1992, I was experimenting with different tapers of spey lines to market under the RIO brand. Most folks know about the WindCutter. The Accelerator was a line that I developed from input from Mike Maxwell of B.C He really deserves the credit for the "power hinge" It was a little tricky but I was able to cast it, if I delayed the forward stroke and made this really late. It was not for everyone, or every Spey rod but we enjoyed fairly good acceptance in the U.K. I personally loved the Accelerator for my own grease line type of fishing. I do not like it for sink tips.
The one disadvantage to the Accelerator is its fine 18' tip. A few years ago, I developed the Mid Spey which is my all around line for most situations. In January of this year, Simon and I started working on beefing up the tip for the Accelerator to get a more positive turn over. We actually made several prototypes of the accelerator with a tip that would cast into the wind with a large fly. And it worked great, but the Accelerator was still not satisfactory. I remember years ago, reading Jock Scott's Fine and Far Off, and Alexander Grant's amazing 66 yard cast performed in 1896. He talked about using a constantly tapering line, and having two different tips. I actually got to look at one of these square silk spey Lines years ago, but I did not like the thin 20' tip area. So, Simon and I started experimenting with a step taper design, that would allow the Grand Spey to be cast at short 50' distances as well as make the mega cast. I supervised the project and added .02 once in a while on taper philosophy, but Simon did yeoman work on getting the grain weights right for each rod size. I am also trying to teach Simon and a couple of other people here at RIO about tapering a line, so he can take over if and when I retire, or if I ever become a full time fishing bum again. He certainly has the casting talent and he did a fantastic job on his first assignment. We actually used the front tip design that we were going to up grade the Accelerator with the new stepped taper design. Here is my honest impression of the Grand Spey. I took the line to the Dean this summer. I was camping and had a fantastic week. I got lucky with the run, and had sixty one steelhead landed in six days of fishing. During the first two days I used the Grand Spey and loved it. However, after two days on any fishing trip, I start to get tired and my shoulders felt like they are made of rocks. I no longer had a good snap at the end of my strokes, and the Spey casting started to fall apart. The Grand Spey is so heavy it was beating down my 52 year old body. I went back to a WindCutter, because it was easier to handle, more forgiving, if I did not do things right. I believe for very expert Spey Caster's and younger men and women, the Grand Spey is a great line...but for most mortals I will still recommend the Windcutter, and the Mid-Spey.
 

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Jim Vincent

Thanks for your comments.

If your young 52 year old body which is built like my soon to be 64 year old body took a beating with the Grand Spey over a couple of days, I can only grimace and imagine what my soon to be 64 year old body with bad shoulders and knees would be like after a day with the Grand Spey.

Your Mid Spey 6/7 floating line on my Sage 7141 in light to moderate wind works very well with my old body. I can cast for a couple of hours with no problem. Heavy upstream winds are a problem for me with the Mid Spey 6/7 and my 7141. Then, I go to your WC 678 and remove tip 2 or the upgrade and attach your tips directly to the shooting line part of the WC.

Bob Meiser recommends this for his two handed rods, and your WC 678 works very well that way with his 7/8 S2H106 rod. Bob is a big fan of your WC lines and his S2H106 rods.

Do you know where I can get a good trade in for an Accelerator 9/10 with tips to a Mid Spey for my Sage 10151? The Accelerator has barely been used by an old man.
 

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Speyshop's Speybum
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462 Posts
NOW THIS IS A SPEYLINE

DANA WAS RIGHT.
I spent two days playing with the new Grandspey in the 9/10 and 10/11.
The rods choose for the work was Bruce and Walker Kola 15’3” with the two tips one tip for 9/10 and 10/11 ,Flylodgic 1409/4 for 9 and Loop Green 1409/4.
I will start by saying that this is not my father spey line meaning this is new.
I have yet to cast the xlt’s but that will be another thread.
No matter where you started or the rod ended it would cast.
It is just that simple the works and these days this is the best testimonly you can have.
I like the front taper. You could turn over a hummingbird for hell in gale force wind with this line.
I do not think many people will be casting the whole head.
What fun it is going tries though.
I can even flip the egg with it.
:smokin:
SPEYBUM
 

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Pullin' Thread
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4,694 Posts
Dana,

Cutting a friend's spey line with cleats is worth at least 2 more to replace the ruined one and one for the pain and suffereing of losing a line you like.

That said, I wholeheratedly agree with your comments on this line. And you summed it up perfectly when you said that it was the extended belly line you have been waiting for. Hugh Falkus would rpbably have loved this line based on what he wrote about the lines available before his death.
 
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