Posts Tagged ‘Fishing reel

28
Sep
12

Your Reel’s Drag System

For many of us, we fish for smaller fish as is often said the reel is nothing more than a storage place for the fly line. This implies the reel’s drag really won’t be used by those 6″-12″ trout.

So, assuming you infrequently catch fish that will pull line from your reel to test the drag…that is all the more reason to test a few things about your drag: how is the drag set now? too tight…too loose? You will usually know this as you strip line from the reel to make that ever longer cast. Which way do you turn the drag knob to loosen or tighten the drag? It is good to know this before you are stumbling about playing a large fish.

Also, develop the habit of reeling line up onto the reel in a somewhat uniform manner.  Loops and loose coils on the reel will potentially cause a problem when the large fish (yes this is that fish of the season for many of us) makes its run. The line is streaming off the reel, the drag is working and then you come to a loose loop, coil or tangle. The reel can hesitate, or shoot line out too quickly (when a loop of line shoots off the reel) or come to a complete halt. All these create jolting forces that make the line/rod tip move about with a movement that is not smooth and threatens to snap the tippet. Smooth and consistent is the goal.

So, periodically check that spool. Is the fly line a jumbled mess? Strip out the tangles, loose coils and loops and reel the line back on nice and neat. Also, have some familiarity with that drag knob…in advance of that big one.

01
Sep
12

Knot: The Perfection Loop & Coils on the Floor!

I just noted, I bought a new fly line, the Rio AquaLux Intermediate Lake line. A couple things to not do first of all (I always share most of my mistakes….I can’t share them all or I’d risk total neglect by my visitors)….when you buy a new fly line, it will almost always be on a two piece plastic spool and inside a box.

Now when you take the spool out of the box there will be a tag end sticking out that may have a sticky label noting it is the butt end of the fly line, which should be joined to the running line on your fly reel. Usually, a nail knot is a good choice on joining running line to the butt end of the fly line.

You will also note there may be one or more twist ties wrapped around the coils of fly line. Ideally, you remove those ties but do not separate the two halves of the plastic spool which the fly line is wrapped neatly around. Attach the butt end of the fly line to the running line with the nail knot. This will require unwinding the new fly line just a bit to give you room.

Now you are ready to wind the new fly line, some 100′ of nicely coiled fly line, onto your reel. You may or may not have help. This would be nice as you wind, someone holds the plastic spool and the fly line gently rolls off the spool as the reel handle is cranked. Use your off reel cranking hand to guide the line back and forth onto the reel so the layers are  nicely spaced.

Now if you don’t have help, DON’T DO WHAT I ACCIDENTALLY DID! DON’T SEPARATE THE TWO HALVES OF THE PLASTIC SPOOL AND ALLOW A HUNDRED OR MORE COILS OF NEW LINE TO TUMBLE TO THE FLOOR ATOP PENNY THE CAT! SHIT!

A good 45 minutes later of the most exasperating unraveling of a new fly line and devilish efforts by the cat and loving intrusions by Emma the Lab and I had the new line onto the reel. I used the damn, two piece plastic spool to house the old intermediate line. I decided to keep it just in case. I wrapped it on the spool tip/leader first so the butt section is last. I grabbed a marker and wrote on the spool ‘old intermediate, ok but ‘coily’, Cortland, 2012′. I put the spool back into the box the new line had just arrived in and stuck it in a drawer in the garage to be re-discovered years later.

Ok, the new line has a loop at the end. I usually nail knot the butt section of a stout leader to the end of the fly line. I have not been a fan of loop to loop connections especially for lake fishing. But, I am going to give it a shot, once again. But, I have noticed that after tying some of my loops the line (leader) tends to slightly angle off at a less than true direction. I offer a few versions of loop knots here (PERFECTION LOOP) and two other over hand knots.  

12
Jul
12

Fly Fishing: Line Management Onto the Reel

Regardless of the type of reel (level wind, spinning or fly reel) it always important to watch how the line is going onto the reel whether fighting a fish or quickly reeling in to re-rig or cast. Reeling in a tangle onto the reel while playing a substantial fish is a possible disaster.

Here I was playing a substantial fish off the reel and I had reeled that mess down through the rod’s guides. When the fish ran, the tangle did come off the reel but failed to make it back up through all the guides. Fish gone. Fortunately no damage to the rod’s guide(s).

Normally, I would use my right hand fingers to tuck the fly line, above the tangle, behind my forefinger/middle finger and against the cork. From there I would attempt to use my off hand to untangle the mess by allowing some slack to the line around the tangle. If the fish is sizable, you may only get one shot at this. In the photo above, I never noticed the tangle as I fought the fish.




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