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first spey rod!

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Ok Mike, I am afraid you do not have many faster TH to select smile.gif


Perhaps TCX Spey is faster. Sage TCX SH rods are lighter, especially on tip section and have higher Action Angles.


Your rod is capable to at least 130' Single Spey cast with suitable long belly line and even longer when casting OH.


Salmon fishermen use up to 750 grain Skagit Heads with 14' and 12.9' #9 TCR when Skagit casting in strong wind.


For shooting heads up to 640gr are fine and I believe they are optimal for wading Striper fisherman casting OH and/or Spey. I believe it OH casts it 120 easily with mono- or ridged PVC running line. And 100' Spey casts are effortless with ~40' head.


I have not fished using Skagit head but on couple short practice sessions with 600gr head it seems to be promising technicue. When I strip almost all head inside rod I just wave the tip sideways and release head out. Then one slow forward cast to straighten head and then continuous back- and forward cast and shoot at least 60' of running line easily. Not pretty but 100'+ cast is just a flip and that head is perhaps too light and tip needs to be slightly longer to anghor better.


But I am further learning Spey and I really like how fluent Spey casts are.

"Game fish are too valuable to be caught only once" 1939 Lee Wulff
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This thread started as "how economical Spey rod would perform" against more expensive when Spey casting in salt.


My opinion is than any long TH rod (13' and longer) is more efficient caster than most expensive SH rod is. We do not necessarily need rods you promote and I do not deny they might be more efficient when you need to cast really far (150' and more)


I believe with mid prize Spey rod ~15' it is possible to Spey cast fly farther than with any SH rod which most of us is able to use all day fishing and with less wear of your casting arm and shoulder.


What is what makes Spey rod unsuitable for OH casting?


Some bend all the way and some more at the tip so you may select what type you like.

"Game fish are too valuable to be caught only once" 1939 Lee Wulff
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Good afternoon Crunch.

Sorry about not answering the question.


"how economical Spey rod would perform" against more expensive when Spey casting in salt"


The answer is easy,

As with single handed rods today,


99% of all rods can out cast 99% of casters, no matter the brand or cost of the casting tool.


Which then adds a question as to what level of skill the caster has, as this is the only way to judge a rod ?


Today, the average fly rod is far, far ahead of 99% of casters.

And therefore instead of all the talk that goes on about this or that rod, the talk should be about improving the average caster's skill level.


Kind regrads,


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Crunch I would have agreed with you that most any 13 foot TH could out cast the best SH until I obtained a 14 foot TH that was totally useless in any sort of head wind.


The skagit cast sounds interesting. I mostly fish from ocean beaches that take the full impact of the wind so I am looking for aggressive rods that can really (with the casters help) dominate a heavy line. Some TH will just not unplug a heavy line well from breaking surf. Even that Sage TCR 14 no 9 bends too deeply when loading. I want something that behaves more like a fast action SH.


I would love to be able to Spey cast on inlets and say the CC Canal where that is feasable. Great way to cast heavy flies and a lot of fun for them that can do it well. I do not Spey cast right now.



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What lines you have had? Perhaps you are too strong and able to overload this rod shaky.gif


Do you want to give her another change? I was lucky and won 15' #10 on eBay and searching components to start building it. I dream on attending competition next summer.


If you are in GB search " anglers-lodge.co.uk " They have Hardy Mach II lines on clearance for £29.99. You seem to like fast action so for good overall buy WF10. Floater if better for Spey but intermediate is not too difficult when short. It has 55ft head with really long front taper and short rear taper so it loads rod great and is easy to turn casting direction. I guarantee it OH casts longer than you are able to handle that running line not tangling. Mach II Spey casts smallish flys to 100' easily and 20' longer when everythinh matches


Why 10wt for Sage TCR 14' #9? It is one of the strongest and fastest Spey rods so with slightly heavier head it is easier to load and timing is not too challenging. At least for less experienced casters. Also there seems to be slight difference between European (lighter) and USA weight rating.


For pure long OH casts WF9 PLUS with 65ft head would be better but perhaps PVC running line will limit distance but in calm it propably shoots whole 40 yards. But fly size cannot be large because of light taper.


In USA you can get 750gr Rio Skagit head for 49.95. I recommend Ridged running line and at least Guideline LRL is one and perhaps Airflo. It does not tangle easily and shoots well yet is nice to handle and it has core so nice loops can be made. On Rio pages there is a list of line succestion for many TH rods.


I have not fished in Cape Cod canal but it is like huge river. Perhaps it needs sinking line most of the time and I guess there is not much back cast room most of the way. So Skagit should work great there.


I find sinking Spey lines difficult and therefore use Shooting Heads. I like Vision ACE because they have three different lenghts and in GB they might be better buy. In USA perhaps Rio AFS is better buy. They also seem to have great tapers for Scandi / Underhand casting.


If you search " perry poke " in YouTube there is fine example of most usable Skagit cast in still water with slight modification on start. Usually we strip line all the way in so it is necessary to get head out. I do it waving rod tip near water surface between 12 and 3 a'clock so most of the head collects in front and to casting arm side where I start cast. First really easy forward and then like in that video accelerating back- and forward cast with high stop. If that isn't easy then nothing is tongue.gif


Skagit head does not have tremendous speed but it pulls running line like a treight train. I have not used it in heavy head wind but I believe there it performs better than any other fly fishing technigue. I think Perry Poke cast is not critical of wind direction either.

"Game fish are too valuable to be caught only once" 1939 Lee Wulff
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Guys and gals. I thank you all for this fantasitc thread which I have started. lol

First off for me. I did NOT know there is a difference between a Spey rod and a TH rod. thanks. I made an ignorant thought that a TH rod is needed for a spey cast.biggrin.gif

Right before I made this discovery on this forum I did manage to purchase a Cabelas TH rod from their "traditional 2" Line. 99.00. Perfect for my endevors. (I think) and perfect for the budget.

So I ask you guys, can I learn a spey cast from this rod? I have no intention of using this for an OH cast in the surf. I have my SH rod with a sinking line for that. Which do pretty good with. (Note pic on bottomwink.gif )

My intention is to learn a beautiful Spey cast on such rivers as the Warren, the Barrington, Which I live near and Narrow River in Narragansett. As I already fly fish these rivers very often. I do not hit the surf too often, may two to three trips during the fall run.

So which type of line do think will go with this type of "cheap" rod? I do want a floater. Could care less about stripping. Just wanna learn those beautiful casts. At this point not to sure about the SKagit and modern casts. Plus I think I need a faster rod for those?confused.gif


Again I really am enjoying all this info I am learning from all of you. Later tonight I am going to visit the links posted.


Thanks again!!!!heart.gif

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I think RIO Windcutter has good taper for first line and at 55ft head it is not too long. Check their webpage / Spey lines if yout rod is in Spey line recommendations. There are three Cabelas. If not buy weight which is middle so if your rod is #10 buy 9/10/11 line. When you improve you can "lenghten" head slightly with polyleaders.


I like Spey because it feels cood, looks cool and it is challenging but revarding when casting flows. First I took fishing trips to salt as a practice but soon found out that fishing with Spey casts using TH rod was easier. Then I started tuning Spey heads for my SH rods and again there isn't much loss in performance but some advantages.

"Game fish are too valuable to be caught only once" 1939 Lee Wulff
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Yes your rod should be well suited to Spey casting. Just make sure you get a Spey line for it as Spey lines have much longer head sections than std fly lines sold to work with SH rods.


The length of the head varies with how long your rod is. Try googling up snowbee who have some intresting stuff on spey lines and head lengths. Best of all seek out a spey casting teacher and all this stuff will be much easier to digest.




Ok with my Sage TCR 14 foot no 9 I have maily cast Rio Out Bounds in size 11 and 12. These are overlined lines by 2 and have 37.5 feet heads. I got them to Overhead cast only of course as they are not spey lines at all. Now I am not a big Guy at 5 feet 8 and I could not describe myself as powerful, but that Sage is just soggy. I have cast std 10 wts and it will throw them quite well but I still do not like how far the blank bends and into a wind it has some shortcomings. Or it is me probably. I don't hate the rod hell it took me long enough to build it. LOL I neeed more time with it and also with someone who is a really good caster.


Whilst deemed a fast rod of course it does spey cast well for them that cast this way. In the UK it was the fastest rod blank I could get my hands on. I do have a very rare one off protoype from CTS 14 foot probably 1000 grain which is considerably stiffer than the sage and maybe even lighter to which is comong very close to what I feel I want. I wanted to get into making these things but health and cash issues got in the darned way plus market size over here is tiny and the cost of these toys is stupidly high for most including me right now.


It is good to see the odd TH on the beaches though. I love them same as my SH. Horses for courses.


TD if you do a search of posts with Jim DE in them and Jay Horton you will dig up lots of good stuff on TH. Go back at least two to three years. For salt water the TH scene is still in it's infancy. Many "Names" do not like them I am told. I just ignored that and went and found out for myself. Masses of fun when it comes together and before that it's fun trying to get it right.



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It was wrong line. Outbound taper is not good with high line speed and long distance. It has short head and front is thicker. This makes head roll out too soon which wastes energy. It is good with large flyes close distance.


RIO AFS and Windcutter has good taper for really long casts. Not only for TH rods but SH as well. Weighting head gives idea of it's use. Just fold head in two so you find middle and weight both halves. Rear should be almost twice as heavy as front and then it is good for distance.


When this type of head lands to the water it has tendency to fall to bundle or pile, (I don't know correct word). This can be avoided using slightly too much force so running line stops abruptly or stopping it running with hand while head is in the air. Then energy straightens head and leader. While fishing in clear water is is not necessary to use stripping basket and then water friction to running line straightens head but it wastes some distance. There are not many Stripping Baskets among river flyfishers.

"Game fish are too valuable to be caught only once" 1939 Lee Wulff
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Good morning,

"tendency to fall to bundle or pile, (I don't know correct word)."


Dump, is the corrct term.

This way of ending a cast, completing a cast is very useful when the caster wishs to use a heavy sinking line or tip and then drop it fast into current.


T14 will do this most times mainly because there is taper build on the forward section of the head/line. (without careful casting).

Kind regards,


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View PostCrunch the OB certainly did dump horribly especialy when casting into a wind. I will try some different lines.




Mike, I had the same problems...I recently went back to longer head lines that are rated for the rod, maybe one size up...I use a regular 12wt SA striper line( 42ish foot head I believe) on my TFO 1212...works fantastic...no more dumping or overloaded rod in the wind.

It has always been my private conviction that any man who pits his intelligence against a fish and loses has it coming. ~John Steinbeck
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Hi MO.

A suggestion to help with the sage rod's loading or your feel of its loading.


Myself, I would not have over loaded the rod by two weights/line classes.

This is killing the rod's action by making it feel bogged down, sloppy as you say.


Therefore, to be fair and reasonable, mate, please don't blame the rod when you 'done it'.


To correct the situation and try and obtain the best performance from your selected rod and you application, surf fishing, as a suggestion,


Do not use a Spey type line as they are designed for a given application and thats not overhead casting in the surf or anywhere.


Use a Head and running line, with the advantage you can change the head from floating to intermediate or different speeds of sinking within minutes and carry the lot in your pocket.


If you wish to use a common head/running line type of line, maybe an Airflo +40 type would be ideal and easy for you to obtain.


Then find a load around around 500grains and learn to cast this combination.

And being aware that leader size, length AND fly size and air drag can or could change the loading on this casting tool, your sage rod.

Therefore you must adjust to suit the above combination to cast beautifully.


BUT..... give away the water loading with its straight back and 'let it fly' forward ideas !


Because in most cases you WILL NOT obtain high line speed that is of course required for casting distance and importantly for fighting the never ending wind.


In its place you could retrive the leader back into, say half way down your guides, back cast and clear the leader, then a forward false cast, back and shoot line into the back cast... this will generate a deep load along the rod, then a drift backwards, deeping the load further, where the real power of your rod is locked away, and also straighting your leader and line/head, then a movement forward and release.


Now what you have achieved is loading the load and changing the loading to suit, your leader, fly size or type and very importantly the weather condition by simply releasing line into the backcast and drifting backwards.


AND with very little effort, increasing line speed without bogging down or making that rod soggy.


The above is only a suggestion, it works for me and others I teach, therefore it just may work for you and make what you think is a soggy rod a beautiful casting tool.

Its also called trying to get the best out of your rod, by changing your casting ideas.


Kind regards,



ps, as I said somewhere before, we all should be talking about improving our casting and not about the brand of equipment as 99% of this casting gear available today is far, far better than 99% of casters.

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