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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Are there any suggestions for Spey Rods (weights and lengths) and lines for use in the THCCI testing? It seems the requirements will allow two rods; one for floating line and one for sinking line. Are there any suggestions on whether to have two rods or just have two lines on reel and change during the testing?

Casting requirements of the test are casts of 80' without shooting line and casts of 100' with a shoot. It would seem that long belly lines would be necessary.

I am beginning to prepare for the THCCI, and would like to acquire the appropriate equipment to practice with prior to testing.

Thanks for your help.

Mark
 

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akcaster,

A long-belly line (XLT or GrandSpey) is not necessary for the FFF THCI. For example:

-a 15' rod + a 54.5' head (WindCutter, Delta Spey) + 3' overhang + 15' leader equals an 87.5' foot cast (distance measured from caster to fly). You will have a margin for error of 7.5' for line squiggles, etc.

-to be a little safer, you might choose a mid-belly line (65' head), which will give you a safety margin for the 80' distance of approximately 17.5' assuming that you lay everything out straight.

-one rod should do you for the test, but you will need a couple of lines (floating + sink tip); if you have an interchangeable-tip Spey line, simply switch tips and you're in business for the test.

Good luck, tb
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Topher,

Thanks for the information.

Is there and advantage in the testing to a 15' rod vs. a 14' rod? Any suggestions on weight of the rod: 7, 8 or 9?

I also watched your DVD last night. I enjoyed the presentation and insights. I now better understand the difference between the three styles of spey casting. Aslo Way's discussion of the transition from overhead to spey was insightful. Awesome production and editing.

Three cheers to the three amigos.

Tight loops,

Mark
 

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Hi Mark,

Thanks for the kind words.

As an all-around 2-hander, I like a 14' #9 wt.

Two things to keep in mind:

-All other things being equal, a longer rod will give you more distance.

-Assuming quality loops and similar line speed, heavier lines have more mass than lighter lines and will fly further.

So, longer rods and heavier lines will cast further, providing you are handling them and they are not handling you.

But that's not what the FFF THCCI test is all about. The distances in the THCCI are not outrageous. The examiner will be looking for loop control not hero casts. While you must reach the required distances, you don't need to blow by them by twenty feet. Choose the kit that allows you to make comfortable smooth casts with good loop control, and the distance will come.

Cheers, tb
 

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Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
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Excellent advice above.

Keep in mind that the most important skill you need to bring to the test is your ability to teach, given you can make the prerequisite casts.

Best of luck in this worthwhile endeavor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the assistance.

I am hopeful to be at a point to test for the THCI next year. I need to smooth out my spey cast and spend time studying and organizing my thoughts around teaching the spey casts.

Mark
 

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Speyladdie
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Hi Mark.
Juro,Topher,myself and all the others boys who have passed the test know it was long road to the final day when we were tested.Man was it it ever a long road,2 years in my case.
A ton of hours practicing on the water,talking to guys like Juro,Simon,Andy and many others certainly helped me in my preparations.
I am sure I speak for us all when I say, if you have any questions,trivial as they may sound to you dont be afraid to ask.
Myself and the other guys will be more than happy to help you out,I'm sure.
Another thing to consider if you are fortunate to have any air miles saved you may want to think about taking a trip to spend some time with one of the guys who have passed the test.Assuming you get an offer.
I for one would be more than happy to offer a room at my house and a few days on the river going through the test with you.
One bit of advice I can offer is to practice all the casts the correct way,and also,more important, the incorrect way.
Screw up on purpose.This will help you understand the mechanics a lot better.
As far as the oral part of the test,practice your explanations to be short and as concise as possible.
Watch as many of the video's that are currently available as often as you can and listen to the different analogies different people use,then try and come up with some of your own.
That's my 2 cents worth for now.
Good luck and practice practice practice.
Man,how many times have you heard that one.!!!
Regards Neil.:smokin:
 

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God I Love It

I am an absolute novice to Spey fishing / casting.Having retired from Corporate North America and it's eating of it's own; it was easy compared to learning to Spey Cast.HOWEVER-where in the real world are you going to find a group of guys like I have just seen here????.They are professionals and in a way competing for business but they absolutely go out of there way to help each other.Is this the way life should be or what??Maybe all of our politicians and so called "WORLD LEADERS" need to take up Spey Casting with mandatory lessons from these folks! Cast on.You have made my remaining years.God bless you all.
Keith
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Neil,

Thanks for the advice and offer for coaching. While Alaska has some incredible fishing one thing that we are lacking is good casters and especially Spey casters.

Last year I worked and was successful in testing for the CCI. My current challenge is the THCI. I am hopeful of attending a couple of spey claves over the next year to learn more from the proficient spey casters.

I have many of the current DVD on spey casting and several books. At this point between the internet, DVD and books, I am self taught. This works to a point and I am just about at the point now. I have many hour casting to get to where I am today. I would benefit greatly from some one on one coaching to considerably increase the efficiency of my cast and better understand the mechanics and the physics of the different variations in rods an lines acting together.

My plan is to spend this winter reading and researching spey casting and developing teaching points and lesson plans. Then next spring really work hard on improving my spey cast and hopefully this time next year test for the THCI.

Thank for the advice and encouragement. Casting and instruction has taken my passion for fly fishing to a higher level.

Drop me a note if you have some interesting in fishing Alaska.

Tight lines and loops,

Mark
 

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Rick

Hi Mark,

Good luck with your journey to the THCI. I just passed my THCI a few weeks ago, and it has been a 2-3 year journey, ending with about 2 months of near absolute obsession, which these tests seem to require to get your mind and skills where they need to be. It's a fun trip along the way though, not the least of which is meeting the community of dedicated casters and instructors along the way.

I took my test using a T&T 1409 3-piece with a Delta 9/10 line. I took along a second T&T 1409-3 (a back up in case of breakage) that I had set up with another reel and the sinking tip line (Type 6 tip, Windcutter 9-10-11). Using the first outfit with a 2' leader butt section and a 15' tapered salmon leader, the yarn fly sits at 83' from the reel with the rear taper of the line 1' placed out of the rod tip. Delta lines come with a thin black tube that is run up the running line from the back of the line and then snugs tight on the rear taper of the head. It's easy to see and the system performs nicely with the black section 1-2' out of the tip. From there, I went back 20-23' on the running line and placed two heavy black marks on the running line, so when that came off the reel, I knew the yarn fly should be 103-105' out, assuming a straight cast.

I thought for some time about getting a 15' 10-weight system just for the test, but after practicing and realizing I could hit the distances most of the time with the 14' 9-weight, it didn't seem necessary to go to the 15' rod. Once your technique starts to come together, the distances start to come easier and don't seem so daunting as they did initially.

Others in this thread have given very good advice and I wont' repeat it, other than to note the importance of a couple of items. Everyone worries about and works hard (as they need to!) on the performance part of the exam, but it is an instructor certification exam, so the teaching and the fault recognition and correction are also very critical. More folks fail the Masters single hand and the THCI because of deficiencies in teaching and fault correction than due to casting performance failures. These areas deserve equal attention in your preparation for the THCI.

Another thing that may be useful - Kirk Eberhard has an informal spey discussion relative to the THCI exam going by email that is very useful - particularly in working out the short and concise answers the examiners are looking for. I"m sure yu can join in that disucussin by email. Kirk should be listed in the Spey Pages THCI Instrucotr list or on the FFF website.

Best of luck with your efforts. If you make it down to Idaho and I can help further, please write,

Rick Williams
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hi Rick,

Thanks for sharing your experience preparing and passing the THCI exam. I am looking forward to the journey to the THCI.

My experience with the CCI is similiar to what you describe for the THCI. My understanding of casting and ability communicate that understanding has doubled again since taking the exam a year ago. I find it gratifying that the certifications are only a point in the journey and not the end of the journey.

Thanks also for the tip on the email discussion.

Would you share with me your leader formula for the 15' leader? I lengthened a 12' leader by adding 3' of tippet and found that it did not much for my anchor and was difficult to turn over at the end of the cast.

Tight loops

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Rick and group:

Following up on your suggestion to contact Kirk about the email group, I sent Kirk an email today.

Thinking about this THCI preparation group, Would anyone be interested in starting a new thread for this purrpose?

Mark
 
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