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Need a little help.

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I fish 80% of the time on sand flats. The best line I've found for this is a shooting line with a super fast sink tip. Problem is almost all fast sinking lines have dark coloered tips. This stands out against the sand and I'm sure it spooks some fish.I need to find a 350-400 grain shooter with a clear tip that sinks fast. Is there such an animal ? Any help will be most appreciated.:)

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How deep is the water. Even with a super fast sink tip unless your leader is dead short and in which case you will spook fish by crash landings of fly line your fly will lag some way behind. Most clear tips are I lines which are slow but you might get a solution by joining a section of the front end of an I line to your 300 grain dark fast sink line.

 

I think you maybe overly concerned about spooking fish with a dark line. Fish will see a green , brown whatever colour line you use. If line is lying on the bottom it will be less of an issue. Your leader is your best friend here. The fast sink line will pull it down and if you put some weight in your fly you will be able to achive a fast presentation if indeed that is what you are looking for. I take it you are sight fishing. But In shallow flats water sight casting a wf I line should be the line of choice and you can get clear I lines. There is a missmatch for me over not spooking fish becuase of colour and yet you are bombing them with a 300 to 400 grain line. It does not make clear sense to me.

 

Mike

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I'm fishing stripers in three to seven feet of water. I'm using crab and small sandeel flies,dragging them acros the bottom.As you say a short leader is needed so I use a three to four foot 20 # leader.Its due to the need to keep the flies on bottom and the short leader that makes me wish for a clear tip.Tidal currents make using a clear intermediate line difficult.

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I use a AirFlo 400 grain dark colored line to fish the Flats with no problems on Cape Cod. What will spook the fish more than the line is you if you move too quickly and spook the fish.

FishHawk

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3-7' is a lot of water. I wouldn't worry about spooking a striper w/ the color of your line. multiple back casts, moving your feet side to side as you cast and lining the fisha re much more likely to spook them (in as much as a striper actually "spooks", they're a pretty dim fish).

 

As an aside (not directed at anyone (of course));

I was really hoping that the "cool new thing" in salt water fly fishing was going to be teasing them up to the boat with a plug and then casting the fly. It got a lot of good press early on but has kind of fizzled. Unfortunately "flats fishing" is poling very strong this winter. Unless a super PAC starts a negative ad campaign quick, it's going to be a very obnoxious spring in my neck of the woods.

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Insofar as getting a fly down on the bottom, there are three elements: 1) the rate of sink of the fly (which is controlled by their own variables, 2) the rate of sink of the leader, which is somewhat different, nylon to fluoro (fluoro is faster), and the rate of sink of the tip of the fly line.

 

A "small sandeel fly" SHOULD, if you tie it for the fishing you are describing, unencumbered by a leader, drop like a ROCK. Throw one out there and it should be on the bottom in seconds, MUCH faster than either the line or leader. A crab pattern is a 180 degree opposite, typically bigger and bulky, and for its size and water resistance, light even if weighted. So...from the start, you have two diametrically opposed problems considering those two flies. The best solutions are not likely to be the same.

 

Leaders IMPEDE the sinking of a fast sinking fly...and to the degree of water resistance of the leader itself....controlled mostly by the thickness (and strength) of the leader. A long leader with especially a long(er) light(er) tippet will impede the drop of a weighted sandeel pattern the LEAST. A short, heavy leader even with a fast sinking tip will actually slow the fly down. Going in the direction of long and light(er), the sink rate (AND COLOR) of the line becomes almost irrelevant EXCEPT for the effect of fast stripping....which for awhile until the whole leader and line also reach depth will lift the fly a bit and "bounce" it jig-like. In 4-7' of water, one can easily fish a weighted sandeel pattern near or on the bottom with a floating or Interm. line with a long leader, long light(er) tippet. Give it a bit of sink time, stip slower at first.

 

On the other hand, getting a crab pattern rapidly on the bottom in 7 feet of water is, to my experience, impossible. I can vividly remember agonizing. slow moving seconds watching a McCrab slowly dropping as the big hunking shadows approach in deep water. What WILL they think of a crab dropping out of the sky? Turns out THAT seems to bother them not a wit. Not sure about the NE but in FL and the tropics there are actually a number of crab species that live near the SURFACE, since, I suppose, not a lot of fish are looking for them there.

 

For getting a crab down, your fast sinking line and short leader will probably pull it down faster than it's natural sink rate. But then you have the confidence erosion of wondering if the slow periods or non hits are because they are spooked by the short leader, dark line.

 

You can't have it both ways. Since I never know when the bottom debris dictates when I CAN'T drag a fly across it, I opt for the more versatile Interm. line and then play with fly design/weighting, leader length/tippet size and length, and strip speed to control the water depth I am fishing the fly.. In general, I'm not thinking crab in 7 feet of water, but when I have, even fishing an intm. line, long leader, I have been rewarded.

 

PMP

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I'm fishing stripers in three to seven feet of water. I'm using crab and small sandeel flies,dragging them acros the bottom.As you say a short leader is needed so I use a three to four foot 20 # leader.Its due to the need to keep the flies on bottom and the short leader that makes me wish for a clear tip.Tidal currents make using a clear intermediate line difficult.

 

Looks to me like you are blind casting then. Honestly I would have no worries about fishing a dark ultra fast sink line when its down there on the bottom. I would be happy to do this with a 12 inch leader. A Rio OutBound std length in their S8 sinks like a brick and it will take down with it a Clouser or a Deceiver pattern and once down keep it down. To assist in maintaining depth shove your rod right down under the water as far as you can to reduce the lifting tendancy. Bass can see black, green, orange brown and yes even clear lines. Hell if we can see them so can they Why if thye can see clear or opaque should one scare them more thgan another I think it is a perception we Fishers have the Bass don't seem to share it.. One has to have faith that their focus of attention is the fly somethimng to eat, chase or kill. Why would a bass have any notion that an opaque fly line is a threat to it esepcially when its down deep and running along the bottom.

Now I don't know why but I don't get my Clousers to sink as fast as Peter's when I use a longer leader say 10 foot and down to 15 lbs test. Maybe its because I use small 5/32 eyes but they hang too high and take too long to get into the hit zone when fishimng for bass sighted just 3 feet down. Great if you are blind casting and have the time to let the fly sink down but to fast moving fish sighted on a flat not so good. Sometimes the fish will come up and grab the fly more so if in a school but if a single or double often thye want it at their swimming level or they pass up on it.

Lets face it, it is stuff like this that makes fly fishing so damned interesting and fun.

Just don't fret over your fly line.

 

Mike

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In 4-7' of water, one can easily fish a weighted sandeel pattern near or on the bottom with a floating...

 

That has been my experience. I use a floater to present on the bottom all the time. It certainly takes the line color out of the equation. And if there's current, a floating line will allow you to mend, which will help keep the fly where you want it.

 

 

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... .I need to find a 350-400 grain shooter with a clear tip that sinks fast. Is there such an animal ? Any help will be most appreciated.:)

 

From a chemistry perspective, I don't see how it would be possible to make such a thing. High density stuff tends to not be transparent. One of my peeves is that the so-called clear tip on Rio's intermediate OBS is not clear at all; it's milky white.

 

Steve

 

Been thinking about it more. It might be possible to make a clear high-density solution of something like lead acetate in a monomeric solvent, and then catalyze polymerization, trapping the dispersed lead acetate in the polymer matrix, and--by some miracle--have the resulting substance possess the right properties necessary for a functional fly line coating.

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