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Re: Smallmouth set up

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2006/9/11 12:00
Posts: 275
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I was recommended an 8 wt. And I have one. And I have another fast 8 wt that I have up-lined to a 9 wt. That being said, I also have a fast 6 wt that I bought an extra spool for a 7 wt line. I think a 7 wt. is good for most river smallmouth situations. I think I could get away with one line lower than when I use the 8 wt. That An 8 wt. makes handling and heaving smallmouth flies over 2 inches much easier. Some people use smaller flies for smallmouth. That's fine. I use bigger flies; more matched to what I use with spinning tackle. I don't know that a 7 wt is any more *delicate* than the same line in an 8 wt. There really isn't much delicacy. I really don't think there can be much of a difference in what I'll say is the spook factor between the two.
It also could matter if you are fishing more heavily weighted flies or sink tip lines. You'll want an 8 wt. probably, I mean, depending on the fly you throw. Packing a bunch of lead or beads or cones on a fly with rabbit strips and you'll want the 8 wt. not the 7 wt.
Distance is a consideration. I just will be easier to throw a sz. 2 clouser or conehead bugger or bunny fly a good distance with an 8 wt. If you will not be trying to get deep and fishing moderate sized flies, like 6's, 4's and 2's and not too big poppers, gurglers or sliders, a 7 wt would be good.

Length isn't much of an option. 9 ft. is standard. My smallmouth river is a fairly BIG river, the Middle Allegheny. Cover is subtle and spread-out. I throw larger flies far, so a 9 ft. 8 wt is my standard. Echo rods make a Pat Ehler series that is 8 ft. 4 ". That would be great for a 9 wt flinging junk from my kayak to largemouth. If you don't have to carry or mend much line, they might be a consideration for you. I want a 9 ft.

Posted on: 1/29 21:53


Re: Smallmouth set up

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2010/4/17 8:10
From Ransom, Pennsylvania
Posts: 757
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I'm a it of a hoarder when it comes to rods, so I own both a 9'6" 6-weight for larger waters and an 8'9" 6-weight for smaller streams...but I guess a 9' could cover both fairly well.

Posted on: 1/30 16:18
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Re: Smallmouth set up

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2010/7/12 17:48
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Typically I believe these topics are viewed from the wrong end, and answered in the same manner. It's not really so much a question of what rod at all. That's really the last question to answer. No two lines or rods are created equal; even in relation to length. Also no two people cast the same, or like the same "feel"in a rod tapper. That being said; as you can see by now it's like asking everyone "whats the best car to drive"? You get 10 different answers from 10 different folks.

Smallies are my favorite query, and I guide a lot of clients for smallies in western PA. Therefore I get to cast a lot of set-ups. There is no one set-up to rule them all, but there's some good places to start. Lets start with what is truly important casting! It doesn't matter what gear you own; you got to bring your cast to the water. "Trout purest" love to dog smallmouth fishing, and I can't count the number I've met that can't hold a loop over 40'! Smallies require more period, so lets start with whats really the question here; What helps us cast smallmouth flies? Learn and practice a good single haul, and then a double haul. This will help you cast any wind resistant or heavy weight fly easier with any set-up as well as deal with the wind. Second:LINE: In all depth ranges I recommend using a heavy front taper line (like Rio cold water Clouser as an example). These tappers make ease of heavy flies and load a rod quickly which equates to less false casting, and less time for error. Thirdly; LEADERS: Fish will be at different depths depending on conditions and time of day, so we need to get a presentation to the fish without spooking them either. Therefore use a leader for the situation. I suggest tying your own. It's cheaper, easy, and more effective. The issue here is turning over a fly without your loop collapsing. When fishing a 2' or shallower target range I recommend a 9'-10' mono leader starting with 3'-4' of 50lb; 2'/40lb; 1 1/2'/30lb; 1'/20lb; 1'/15lb; and 2'/8lb-3X tippet. This will turn over any fly with a good cast behind it, and is long enough not to spook fish on those low clear summer days. For a 3'-5' target range I recommend a intermediate line with similar taper, and I do shorten my leader recipe to around 6' of Fluro. Anything deeper I like the newer steamer lines with a floating running line, and 15'-30' of full sink. These come in a lot of options these days, and again I shorten my leader to about 4' of Fluro. Usually 20lb-15lb-8lb tippet.

In my opinion the last part of the equation is the ROD. I like a fast action rod for dealing with these sort of flies, but that's my preference. Others may hate that feel; but the rod is merely a tool; so choose one that best suits the job. 9'; 9'6"; 8'4" it doesn't matter. The cast-ability matters. My Echo "84" 6wt cast just as well and as far as my Sage 596 Zaxis; they're just different. I do think an 8wt is over kill unless you're catching 3lb+ fish all day, but something LINED correctly in the 5-7wt range will handle the work load and keep the catching fun. Again for example My Sage 5wt 9'6" Z Axis will cast anything my 6-8wt rods will with the right line/leader combo. Rio Gold will not throw a steamer as well as an outbound short with the same rod. It's night and day! Again it all really comes back to your casting. $900 rods don't catch fish better than $150 rods, but your ability with it in hand is what matters. Well.... I know it's a bit of info, but it comes from a lot of years of experience; time on the water; and trial and error. I hope it helps, and feel free to PM me with any more specific questions!

Posted on: 2/14 20:28

Edited by cricketontherun on 2014/2/14 21:03:07


Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
12/7 0:10
From SE Pa
Posts: 269
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Thanks for the information. I think I'm going to go with a 6wt. I never met a rod I couldn't cast. I never paid more then 150.00 bucks for a rod and usually I pay less then a hundo for one.

Running Cricket, I like to furl and fish thread based furled leaders. What's your thoughts on furled mono leaders. That's a tapered furled leader made on a jig not a hand twisted leader.

Posted on: 2/15 16:14


Re: Smallmouth set up

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2010/7/12 17:48
Posts: 86
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You know; I've never really fished them. I understand that there are some benefits like turning over flies well; less/no memory; and also cheap to build. Maybe a little more time consuming to make, and not as stealthy as mono or Fluro, but they make sense. I may have to give it a try just to know! What have you got to loose. If you find they spook fish make sure you have another style leader on you. That would be my only concern.

Posted on: 2/15 23:12


Re: Smallmouth set up
Moderator
Joined:
2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 8854
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Quote:

poopdeck wrote:
Thanks for the information. I think I'm going to go with a 6wt. I never met a rod I couldn't cast. I never paid more then 150.00 bucks for a rod and usually I pay less then a hundo for one.

Running Cricket, I like to furl and fish thread based furled leaders. What's your thoughts on furled mono leaders. That's a tapered furled leader made on a jig not a hand twisted leader.


PD,

I make and fish hand twisted mono leaders. Actually, I will demonstrating how to make them at the newbie Jam on March 15th.

Anyway, I like the hand twisted leaders made from mono because they are supple and do not coil up. When you're talking furled leaders made with a jig and twisted thousands of times, I would stick to the thread furled leaders you now use. They are a lot less stiff than mono and certainly fluoro leaders made on a jig.

Posted on: 2/16 8:49


Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
12/7 0:10
From SE Pa
Posts: 269
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Afish, I have read your post on mono twisted leaders, I think. If I am correct you tie different lb test together and then twist the different legs together. If this is correct, aren't you making a tapered furled mono leader just with more knots in it?

I have furled mono leaders and they do seem a bit stiff so I have also been experimenting with thread leaders with a single strand mono core. All the snow keeps me indoors so I have yet to put the mono or mono core leaders on a rod to try out.

Posted on: 2/16 16:07


Re: Smallmouth set up
Moderator
Joined:
2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 8854
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Quote:

poopdeck wrote:
Afish, I have read your post on mono twisted leaders, I think. If I am correct you tie different lb test together and then twist the different legs together. If this is correct, aren't you making a tapered furled mono leader just with more knots in it?

I have furled mono leaders and they do seem a bit stiff so I have also been experimenting with thread leaders with a single strand mono core. All the snow keeps me indoors so I have yet to put the mono or mono core leaders on a rod to try out.


PD,

Single diameter mono line twisted together and over each other to get a taper. Easier to actually do than explain.

Attach file:



jpg  Furled leaders Afish MOD.jpg (99.15 KB)
53_53012c255254b.jpg 720X540 px

Posted on: 2/16 16:22


Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
12/7 0:10
From SE Pa
Posts: 269
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Yep that's what I read. No matter how many times I read it, I can't seem to make sense of it. It has to be easier to learn by watching then explaining.

Posted on: 2/17 8:31


Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
2/19 19:02
From Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 33
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I use either a 8 1/2 foot 5 wgt or 9 foot 6 wgt built on Cabela's moderate action blanks. I have 3 spools for the 6 wgt with a WFF, and intermediate sink, and fast sink tip lines on them. I've been using furled leaders for about 12 years now and won't go back to the mono or fluorocarbon one. Don't make them but have managed to acquire enough of the thread ones by swapping flies or tying materials for them. I use a 6 to 8 foot fluorocarbon tippet, usually 8 or 10 lb test. When I'm on vacation in Canada I bump that up to 25 or 30 lb because you never know when a pike will show up.
As far as flies go I prefer poppers, sliders or crease flies but with today's materials it's not to hard tie up a 4 to 6 inch fly that can be cast with a 6 wgt. I try to avoid heavy flies and use either the intermediate or sink tip to get my flies down if I need to.

Posted on: 2/20 22:20


Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
12/7 0:10
From SE Pa
Posts: 269
Offline
with the 6 - 8 foot tippet how long is your furled leader?

Posted on: 2/21 9:35


Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
2006/9/13 22:36
From Tioga co. formerly of bucks co.
Posts: 5440
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I prefer the jig for furled leaders with mono, depends what mono you use how stiff it gets.

Posted on: 2/21 9:59
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Re: Smallmouth set up

Joined:
2/19 19:02
From Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 33
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poopdeck
Three to five feet. They were specifically made for bass fishing.

Posted on: 2/22 22:45



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