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Discussion Starter #1
Today was my first attempt at fishing on the surface. I took a guess and used a 10 foot floating poly leader on my 510 gr. Skagit switch. I was having trouble with the poly and my leader/fly not turning over well. I had some decent casts where I slowed my casting stroke to a crawl and changed my angle a touch. So I was just curious if the poly is the right choice and if not should I maybe look at the mow tips? I'm sure just getting used to casting without a sink tip in general will help. Any suggestions would be a huge help.
Thanks
 

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A polyleader is far too light to be attached directly to a Skagit head. Remember, it's a leader not a tip. So you're missing a tip, which in this case would be a floating tip (the full floating MOW would work just fine). Then to that you would add the polyleader.
 

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I only have 2 hands
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I have had success with a tapered floating tip 12-15 feet with a standard 9-12 foot tapered mono leader. I don't know what brands you like but there are tapered floating tips out there,not too spendy. I have a 25 ft. 560 grain skagit that I was doing dry line work with a tip around 140-150 grns. I could make it land quite softly with nice straight turnover.Have since added scandi and short to mid length spey lines to the quiver much easier to make a gentle presentation.... but if the wind comes up.................
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ok that makes a lot of sense actually. When I pulled the poly out of the package I knew there couldn't be enough mass to work properly. Well thanks I'll grab a mow tip and give it a whirl.
If there's any other tips and tricks someone new to targeting steelie on top I would greatly appreciate them. I have a June trip on the NU coming up and plan on focusing on surface techniques.
Thanks!
 

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just my opinion but buy a scandi line for your rod and some mono leaders..

actually i believe that skaters fish a LOT better on a single handed rod and shorter casts...

there is a difference between being able to mend a lot of line and being able to actually being able to control the swing..
fish short, cast accurately and control your swing better those are the keys to successful skater fishing in my opinion. ohh and fish where there are actually some fish:)
 

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roballen is on the money. Skagit is not the greatest for dry work.Scandi is very fun to learn and great power still. A nice soft presentation is easier with scandi. I wouldn't bother with multi tips or polys with scandi though....just a nice scandi head with a long gentle taper.Leave the tips b.s. to skagit power. One could bargain hunt and find a scandi head for little more than the cost of a new tip.The NU is a legend I have always wondered about that one:rolleyes: ,gotta get there soon myself.
 

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Yep as everyone has said lots and lots of options for floating heads. Might think about a rage if your comfort zone is in the skagit realm.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I do think that I'll be staying with skagit for the time being more so because I'm finally at the point now where casting has become effortless. After bouncing through different rods and lines I'm now balanced out perfectly on my current set up. I'm using an echo sr 10107 4. I have to admit that most of my motivation and knowledge of surface presentation comes from watching Scott howell in skagit master 2. lol. So I was planning on trying his low tip cast to achieve as soft a landing as possible. Not that scandi lines will be off the table for me entirely, I just want to fish as efficiently as I can for now without having to worry so much about my casts. But thank you all for the suggestions. I'll definitely look into them for the future. Say maybe when I start heading towards the deschutes this fall.
Thanks!
 

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I understand wanting to stick with what you've gotten comfortable with, but casting a floating tip on a Skagit is so much different than a sink tip that you might as well just go to a scandi anyway. Assuming you plan to spend much time fishing near the surface.

Mark

I do think that I'll be staying with skagit for the time being more so because I'm finally at the point now where casting has become effortless. After bouncing through different rods and lines I'm now balanced out perfectly on my current set up. I'm using an echo sr 10107 4. I have to admit that most of my motivation and knowledge of surface presentation comes from watching Scott howell in skagit master 2. lol. So I was planning on trying his low tip cast to achieve as soft a landing as possible. Not that scandi lines will be off the table for me entirely, I just want to fish as efficiently as I can for now without having to worry so much about my casts. But thank you all for the suggestions. I'll definitely look into them for the future. Say maybe when I start heading towards the deschutes this fall.
Thanks!
 

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Scandi plus poly or handmade custom mono leaders definitely the way to go. I think you will find the casting much more enjoyable and perhaps easier than trying to use a skagit for something it really wasn't designed for.
 

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I like both the Compact Scandi and the Rage, depending on the size of the bug- the scandi for smaller stuff, the Rage for a couple larger-headed things I've been playing with. I use a hand tied leader with both, about 15 ft on the scandi, about 18 on the Rage.
 

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I like both the Compact Scandi and the Rage, depending on the size of the bug- the scandi for smaller stuff, the Rage for a couple larger-headed things I've been playing with. I use a hand tied leader with both, about 15 ft on the scandi, about 18 on the Rage.
this exactly
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm definitely looking into the Rage now, but if I do go the compact scandi route for my rod I would want to go lighter on the grain weight? Or stick with the 510? Same question actually for the rage. After reading through all the suggestions I'll probably grab one of each to see which is more comfortable for me.
 

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Dom
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Generally if you want scandi then you drop down by the weight of your polyleader which is about 40-80gr for 10'ers, so in your case 430gr scandi will do. Rage is known as a hybrid and usually if used as skagit you want it to be tad lighter than your 510gr skagit.

I disagree that poly tips are just leaders. They have a bit of mass, in fact some are heavier than some multi tip line tips.
 

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Dom
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By the way... if you like skagit aka water born casts then using scandi in same grain weight will also do a good job to satisfy you. ;)
 

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I weight the scandi on my 6 wt about 30 grains lighter than my skagit. So a 420 scandi, 450 compact skagit. The Rage I run the same as the skagit- so I'd probably go 510, though you might find a 480 sweet, depending on your rod.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Ok. Good to know. I pulled out the airflo catalog and was surprised to see that either the rage or the compact scandi really isn't all that much longer than the compact skagits I learned on. So that takes away some concerns. I guess I was expecting the scandi to be 50 plus feet long. I do like the idea of the rage however and being able to loop a leader to the head without the need of buying a floating tip. That is if I'm understanding that right. Seems a lot easier than using my floating skagit head plus tip and leader. Thanks again for all the help. It'll be good to diversify my gear and be able to fish whatever situation comes. Now I just need the fish to do their part!
 

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I disagree that poly tips are just leaders. They have a bit of mass, in fact some are heavier than some multi tip line tips.
With a Skagit head a polyleader is just a leader. The mass of the polyleader, while heavier than a straight mono leader, does not affect the cast. It's the head that loads the rod for the forward cast, not the leader.
 

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A polyleader is far too light to be attached directly to a Skagit head. Remember, it's a leader not a tip. So you're missing a tip, which in this case would be a floating tip (the full floating MOW would work just fine). Then to that you would add the polyleader.
Huh? Add a floating tip to the skagit head and then the polyleader to the floating tip? Of what grain? I've never done this. I don't even have a floating tip. I use polyleaders/versileaders all the time (65-140 gr) on several rods using one head, a Compact Skagit 420! Use this head and various polyleaders on a z-axis 5110, 6110, 6126, TCX 6119 and Beulah 6/7 classic. So I'm not getting what you're saying about the poly leader being too light.
 
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