fly line shoot out

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  PurpleMayflyHatch 2 years, 2 months ago.

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    Scotty MacFly

    I stumbled across this and it was helpful to me. You may enjoy it as well.


    Dry Fly Guy

    This is interesting to me, and concerning, simply because I like to know that when I buy a line it is actually the weight that I am expecting. So one thing you may want to pay particular attention to is the actual line weight chart they have posted there.

    Keep in mind that these were all “5 weight” lines they tested. And the AFFTA Standard for fly line weight is derived from weighing the first 30 feet of fly line. The actual standard for a 5 weight fly line puts the ideal grain weight at 140 grains. And the acceptable “margin” for a 5 weight line is a grain weight between 134 to 146 grains.

    Now look at the column that directly applies to this standard on their chart (30 feet). How many of the lines listed actually fall within that grain weight window? Yet they are all marketed as 5 weight lines. (Though a few do disclose and are marketed as a “heavy” line.)

    ~ DFG


    Scotty MacFly

    I see. Airflo river and stream is 159.9. That’s out of the column from 134 – 146. If a line is said to be a heavy line like the river and stream, or even other lines as well that are half size heavier, why don’t they just put them in the higher weight, as being a 6wt. line?

    So if I was to buy the Airflo river & stream in a 5wt, I’m actually buying a 6wt, am I correct?


    Dry Fly Guy

    You are correct.

    And I don’t know why the line manufacturers are doing this. About the only explanation I can come up with that makes any sense to me is that the average angler isn’t casting 30 feet of fly line. So if they’ve only got 20 or 25 feet of fly line “out there” it is still able to load the rod properly because the line is “heavy”.

    So if you are fishing “short” distances, a heavier line could be an advantage.

    The thing that irks me about this is that it is supposed to be a “STANDARD”. So we should be able to switch from one manufacturer’s goods to another, and know how the line will load the rod. But as you can see, there really isn’t a “standard” at all.

    ~ DFG


    Scotty MacFly

    Wait a sec. All but a few are within the margin to be a 5wt line. Orvis seems to be the one company who stays pretty true. This is where I wonder about the integrity of their chart, or the integrity in the line manufacturers.

    I think I’ll just use what feels good to me while casting.

    It’s like going to the supermarket and seeing all the different flavors of Ketchup and mustard. I don’t know if I like those flavors in my ketchups & mustards, and it’s the same with fly line to me.


    Dry Fly Guy

    I think you meant “aren’t within” not “are within”.

    And I will add that my own weighing of lines would suggest that their chart is correct, and it is the manufacturers you should be suspect of.

    Certainly go with what feel you like. It would just be nice to know that you could get that “feel” with a variety of lines without purchasing two or three of a model trying to find the “right” weight. Because even if you know you like the rod with a line that weighs X, you don’t know which line weight X is from manufacturer to manufacturer (or even from model to model within a manufacturers line). And that’s what I take issue with. I don’t care if it says 5 or 2, or even if it matches what is on my rod. I’d just like a standard to be a standard.

    And I agreeā€¦. Kudos to Orvis. They weigh what they say they weigh.

    ~ DFG



    Too bad they chose to ignore the Cortland Peach line. No surprise. It always gets shunned by the shops. Let’s see if those other lines are around as long as the Peach has been.

    At least Cortland is smart enough to not discontinue it.

    btw I’m sure the Peach is the correct weight for 30ft. No tricks. Just a solid good line that is made for bamboo, glass, and med action graphite rods.



    There are no standards in the fly fishing industry, or even the fishing industry, as a whole. Look at line “tests” (4 lb., 2 lb., etc.). Or “X” diameters. The one that cracks me up is rod actions. “Light, “medium heavy”, “medium light”, etc. And ever look at several different “size 16″ dry fly hooks? What’s a “dry fly” hook anyway? One manufacturer’s 16 is another’s 14 or 18. The weight ratings on many fly rods are subjective too. I don’t use the recommended line weight on over half of my rods. Some a weight or two up, others a weight or two down. But then again, what weight line is that anyway?

    Its all smoke and mirrors. Brilliant marketing.

    As for lines, I too mostly stick with 444 peach.


    Scotty MacFly

    I talked with the builder of my bamboo rod, and he’s in the same boat as we. He agrees to whatever feels the best. He told me some manufacturers build rods with a specific line in mind to work best with the rod. He believes that’s bad business because fly line companies are always changing their lines, and adding new lines.

    He also prefers Cortland Peach.



    I too love Cortland Peach. Although I’ve been using Rio Gold on my 5wt Orvis Recon for the past couple seasons and I can’t say I like one more than the other. They’re both awesome in their own way. The Rio turns the fly over at distance and casts so well, does not coil; the Cortland has great presentation.
    Cortland makes a phenomenal pike line too. If at any time you’re rigging up a pike Rod, go with Cortland’s pike line in the proper line weight, it’s good stuff.
    Fly line specs can be pretty confusing. In my opinion, Cortland’s Peach line on everything, and Rio Gold on quicker rods is a safe bet when matching lines with rods (for trout).

    Cortland peach sink tip is what I have on my salmon reel (matched to a BVk 8wt) and it has performed excellently for the past several seasons.

    Out of all the rods I’ve lined up the only one that needed to be up lined was a cheap Superfly combo that casted a 7wt line better than a 5, in standard line weights.

    The best thing you can do is find a line that works for you and stick with it. And see if the shop will let you try different lines on your Rod before buying.

    Hope some of that helps.



    Scotty MacFly

    That’s a good idea PMH. I was online last night looking around to see who has the Peach, and none are carrying it. I was at Cabelas looking at the CGR and noticed they don’t carry some of the lines anymore at that store. On my faster rods Like my A4’s and Radian, I use Airflo, and that line is worth it’s weight in gold as far as I’m concerned. But they are not meant for slower rods like the Peach.

    Not to change the subject, but on 9 news they just showed a 47 pound muskie caught in Iowa. They harvested the eggs and released it. What a monster!

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I’ll try different lines and see what I like best, but I believe for the A4’s it will end up being the Airflo Xceed. It feels better than the Elite, but I am curious about the River and Stream by Airflo. It’s a whole line heavier. Then again, why not just go up a line weght, right?

    Pmh, how do you like the Recon? I have been interested in them since they came out and I’d like to compare them against my A4’s.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 2 months ago by  Scotty MacFly.


    Here’s a new line out that I might try. It appears to be a good replacement for the Peach.

    Their web site.



    What a beast! 47 pounds is ridiculous!

    I LOVE my Recon. its light, versatile, casts tiny dries well and I’ve used it for pike and bulls, and surprisingly I was able to cast 2/0 clousers with it just fine with a proper leader.
    It’s not super fast, but it feels just right.
    It’s durable too, both my dogs, and a fishing buddy have all managed to step on it, I’ve dropped it a few times while climbing some sketchy spots, and it’s held up great. And in my opinion, it’s a beautiful rod.
    I don’t think you can find a better rod in that price range. And at half the price of the Helios, a guy can “justify” buying two!

    I’ve casted the Helios, and while it is a sweet rod, I’ll take a Recon any day. I just can’t say enough how much I like that series, it’s an awesome Rod for a really decent price. You need to go cast a few Recons!

    I’ve never used Airflo, but I did have two Elites come back a couple weeks ago for defective coatings, and the lines breaking. Cortland is getting tough to find, I’m sure a guy could get a hold of them though and find out where to buy it from.

    Rio makes some great lines too, they’re new InTouch lines are pretty sweet.




    I tried to figure out beast and 47lbs, but i’m lost?


    Scotty, and Creek,
    Sorry, meant to type to Scotty there trying to type at the same time as bringing the hounds inside and missed typed the wrong name! Sorry guys.

    That 47 pound musky must have been a monster!


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