Ajefferslyon

Two hand fly lines for the salt

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SMS - Is this line in photo (Leviathan DC 36ft sink tip line) exactly 600g, or more if measured at 30ft?  Or is it 600g plus the intermediate handling line section, so even heavier than marked?

 

If the head is actually closer to 34ft (33.5ft) then it could be a solution for some of us.  It's going to cast like a set of keys on a rope, and sink like a beach unless the retrieve is super fast.  Also it's a $100 investment - the Leviathan lines seem to never be on sale.  The running line looks like a coated mono core.

 

Have never seen a Leviathan Intermediate.  Will have to look around.

Leviathan600g.jpg

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Killie

Following our posts whilst fishing today with a 13 footer and 33 foot head at 530 grains in a Straight with flat water I decided to revisit the head lenggh question. I found that if stood on dry ground just above water level then  it wS pretty much Ok to get the line and fly unplugged with just a foot of line inside the guides. A taller guy would be able to work with a bit more head. This is with an Intermediate line. A floater and medium sized fly a bit longer still.

I then waded to waist deep  and found for me I had to pull in around two to three feet of head inside the guides.. A 14 and 15 foot rod would allow a longer head. I only know of one person RedGreen that currently fishes a 14 footer and who is interested in going longer  to 15. He is tall and strong and a very good TH OH caster. Longer heads will kinda suit him I think.

Older design spey lines had very long heads but of course are mostly spey cast and did require more skill. Spey lines have reduced in length which make them easier for the majority of Anglers.

For the ocean there are few rods which are longer than 11 feet currently. I hope that this will change over time. Until that happens it would not make sense I think for a line maker who actually understood the requirements to build heads any longer than 35 feet. Again speaking generally and from a bit of experience 11 feet  Rods and 35 feet heads will be in most guys doable comfort zone.

There will as we have discussed be personal preferences and guys liking longer heads will be out there and in the main  will have higher casting skills than most of us.

I am coming at this from the angle of a lift,  roll cast forward one back cast and deliver as time is limited in a surf. Night time surf or flat water this type of cast is safer. But if conditions allow for one false cast to feed a longer head so it is put outside the tip of the rod then longer heads are doable and cast nicer. This needs additional skills.

Sometimes even with my short 33 / 35 feet head if I have time I like to put in a false cast to tidy things up and get the line loop sorted out better.

Each Guy has to work out what works for them. Initially If asked for advice I would suggest kicking off with the shorter head. I have never cast less than 33 feet so do not know how they will work out in practice. I can guess but would rather not as it would not  be helpful.

Biggest problem we face as we both know is getting heavier lines across the spectrum from floating to fast sink. One day maybe. Until then we will have to cut and splice.

 

Mike

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Yes, that makes sense.  I am not wading, am on a steep beach not flat, am close to 6ft tall.  I seem to do better with shorter TH rods (11.5' to 12.5') and heads in the 33ft to 35ft length ranges.  With a 35ft head I'm keeping several feet of the head inside the tip-top.  With a 33ft head maybe none or 1ft. The best casts I've gotten have been with cobbled together lines weighing in at 560 to 630g on a very powerful 11ft rod.  Then again I'm not a champion caster like ESA.  My best casts are in the 90-110ft range, less if windy.

Edited by Killiefish

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Why do these have to be integrated?  Honest question.  Is not some thread and aquaseal good enough for smoothing out the bumps while also serving as a head indicator?  This lets you choose your favored shooting line, too.  
 

 On most all integrated line-head systems that get fished hard, primarily in a shooting capacity, eventually the running line gets cut off for any of 10 different reasons ... the same reasons that integrated spey lines have been mostly phased out, too.  It took me a while to make the switch, I understand that change can be hard.  

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I use an SA extreme head of 600 grains with my 14-foot 10/11. I attach a variety of homemade tips that weigh about a 100 grains between 10'-15'. With SA braided mono running line I can blast out a 100 feet of running line in good conditions. On another spool I use about 32 feet of t-18 attached to whiskerseeker catfish mono, which is great stuff with little stretch. More than 30 feet or so of level T becomes tough to aerialize. I was lucky enough to have great advice from some long-time saltwater spey anglers when getting started with saltwater spey, and skipped a lot of the headaches.

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For me the annoying thing is having the loop-to-loop connection inside the tip top at the initiation of the cast, and also later when pulling the line back into the tip top on the retrieve.  It's much nicer when there isn't a bulkier, clunkier connection going through the guides.  I don't think there's a loss in distance on the forward cast because I usually try to feed the few feet of the head retained inside back out of the tip on the single back cast.  On the retrieve, though, I dislike the feeling that my line and fly are not moving consistently or fluidly in that last 30-35 or so feet.  I do have integrated lines for floating and float/int (sink tip) applications (up to 630g). but not for full sinking or full intermediate lines.  That's why the 600 -630 grain full integrated intermediate Leviathan line is somewhat appealing.  However, I am not willing to pay $100 for the convenience of an integrated line. At that price, I can live with a running line and heads - b/c the heads are only $20 to $30 or so on sale and T-14 or T-18 is only around .85 per foot. Also I can't always get along with the coated mono core tropic running lines b/c they tend to hold their coil even when stretched.

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Leviathan 26ft sink tips that I have:

 - 600gr full head weight 680gr 9,75m head (the point where the diameter reaches 1,21 [max was 1,62mm] until the final running line diameter of 1,16mm is reached. If you count in this ”holding line” you get head of 13,06m  and 760gr)

- 500gr full head weight 560gr 32.5ft head (the point where the diameter reaches 1,19mm [max was 1,54mm] until the final running line diameter of 1,16mm is reached. If you count in this ”holding line” you get head of 13,55m and 645gr)

The above I bought 2010 and have used the 500 version quite a lot.


Re-measured my oldest (bought 2011) Intermediate. 630@10,00m where diameter reaches 1,23mm. If counted that ”level holding line” before reaching the final 1,17mm it would be 700gr@13,40m. 2,18mm at the thickest part.

Also measured another intermediate (newer, but don’t know age): 610gr@9,85m. Final diameter of 1,17mm is reached at 13,42m and 685gr. Third one (bought 2019 I) has running line 1,23mm all the way with head of 620gr@10,01m.

 

For reference, the WF11I flats pro (it is really 12wt line which I was after for since the intermediate Leviathans are heavier than I like) I bought early this year has 1,02mm running line. So Leviathans are thick.

 

I prefer Leviathans (and probably flats pro after I get to give it some fishing time) because they are relatively stiff so they do not tangle easily. I did not believe how wide temperature range they really have when the line is made wet the day before fishing and then properly stretched when starting fishing. Some mornings on the Mediterranean were cold and so were some in Harkers Island. The lines straightened and stayed straight. Unbelievable for tropical lines. Most tropical lines are unusable in temperatures that present no problem to me with this lines. No other line I’ve tried lay on the boat deck as nicely as these. No coiling and not lifting any loops. The only problem for me is that intermediate Leviathans are too heavy, too short head and they take unnecessary amount of room on the reel due to thick running line. So, the Flats pro seems to solve it for me - I tried it on snow last winter and I am quite confident about it.

 

I love monocore lines. But only if they are Rio’s. Any other has not been there. Some tropical Airflos were close in hot temperatures but in cold they have a big problem with coiling. Coldwater version is so limp that it is pretty much unusable - and it still doesn’t lay flat like I would like. Cortland tropical is otherwise quite nice, but short (only 90’) and it is not stiff enough so it tends to tangle.

 

For TH OH I would probably make tip lines as I also hate stripping loop to loop connections into the guides. This is how I did also my single handed skagit lines. You can then also choose freely the running line you want to use.

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7 hours ago, SSPey said:

Why do these have to be integrated?  Honest question.  Is not some thread and aquaseal good enough for smoothing out the bumps while also serving as a head indicator?  This lets you choose your favored shooting line, too.  
 

 On most all integrated line-head systems that get fished hard, primarily in a shooting capacity, eventually the running line gets cut off for any of 10 different reasons ... the same reasons that integrated spey lines have been mostly phased out, too.  It took me a while to make the switch, I understand that change can be hard.  

This is a very good question. The flip answer could be single hand lines are usually integrated so why not two hand lines with WF profiles.

How many Anglers are able or willing to buy a decent head and then splice it to a running line of their choice.. If I was a line maker I would build an integrated line with a std fly line type of running line but with a thicker section  of handling to aid grip. We can buy separately running lines like this.

The guys who want different running lines would have to do what single hand line guys do if they want a different running line. Chop it off and fit their own. Or buy buy shooting heads or make their own SH.

The reality is that thin mono or braided mono running lines on powerful TH rods cast OH using heavy lines are a nightmare.  Wet hands , cold hands and slippery wet running line are not happy bedfellows. Even thicker std running line will sometimes slip on either the back or forward cast.

I honestly think that most guys want a line they can take out of the box attach to their backing and go fishing.

The std fly line backing  is not going to cause any significant distance loss over say mono. Mostly it will better it as you don’t get anywhere near so many failed casts. In surf and any kind of wind Mono in a line tray if you can keep it in there is not much fun.

Std fly line running line tangles less easily and is not going to limit your distance  except in your head.

Ok so we could have seperate heads with factory loops and seperate running lines with loops to make an easy and fast connection.  I do not like loop to loop joins passing through my guides. Mostly I have to bring some of the head inside the guides and feed into the back cast. That is just not good.

Running lines do fail over time it’s true and on my lines it is always at the junction with the head. Then a splice is a great solution as it is a great aid for night time fishing as you can more easily find your head on the retrieve.

As integrated lines don’t exist for our needs then we will have to cut and splice   from various lines. Might need at least two splices per line but three is on the cards to. For example. DT line for belly of head spliced to a scandi cut back front taper at front end of line. Rear end a Scandi taper spliced to backend of the DT. Then running line spliced to the rear tapered section.

There  are some good videos on how to do this on U Tube.

Thats my take FWIW.

 

Mike

Edited by Mike Oliver

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Posted (edited) · Report post

I found the taper profiles for some of the lines mentioned.  These are integrated lines in heavy line weights (above 500g).  But they all have issues.  Most are tropic, some are too short, and some too clunky (the sinking portion is plain level sink material so might as well just use T-18).

 

Attached are the profiles.  You can see why none are ideal.  Closest is the Rio GT line but it is only in floating and is tropic variety.  Intermediate Leviathan has nice taper but only 30ft long head.

 

 

line-profile-leviathan.jpg

rio_gt_fly_line_ext.jpg

RIO GT Flylines.jpg

Edited by Killiefish

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For floating, I would try with a cheap spey line like Caimore Voodoo #11 and turn part of the head around (between the red marks) and possibly remove the thin part in the blue box.

The head is 55' and 770gr. If the head is too long, shorten the head from the middle a bit and then a bit from the rear taper's thin end.

 

 

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8 hours ago, sms said:

Leviathan 26ft sink tips that I have:

 - 600gr full head weight 680gr 9,75m head (the point where the diameter reaches 1,21 [max was 1,62mm] until the final running line diameter of 1,16mm is reached. If you count in this ”holding line” you get head of 13,06m  and 760gr)

- 500gr full head weight 560gr 32.5ft head (the point where the diameter reaches 1,19mm [max was 1,54mm] until the final running line diameter of 1,16mm is reached. If you count in this ”holding line” you get head of 13,55m and 645gr)

The above I bought 2010 and have used the 500 version quite a lot.


Re-measured my oldest (bought 2011) Intermediate. 630@10,00m where diameter reaches 1,23mm. If counted that ”level holding line” before reaching the final 1,17mm it would be 700gr@13,40m. 2,18mm at the thickest part.

Also measured another intermediate (newer, but don’t know age): 610gr@9,85m. Final diameter of 1,17mm is reached at 13,42m and 685gr. Third one (bought 2019 I) has running line 1,23mm all the way with head of 620gr@10,01m.

 

Thanks that helps.  It also shows that the currently available (2019) Leviathans Intermediates may have heads that are a bit longer than shown on the diagram (33ft vs 30).  I would use one on my 11ft rods. Would not have to keep much if any of the head inside the guides.  Solves the problem for an intermediate line at least for warmer climates or if stretched.

 

A line that I really like (but only available up to 400g) was the Scientific Anglers Striped Bass Type IV sinking line.  It is no longer available, but the composition of the line is perfect. I think it had a braided mono core.  The running line is intermediate and does not kink.  The head profile is very flat, i.e., level sink.  If someone made a 500 to 600g sinking line with an intermediate running line like that old Sci Anglers Striper Type IV with a head length of 33' I would be happy with that as a sinking line.

 

For floating, I like the look of the Rio GT line alot.  Long rear taper also would help with a floater, and the line looks like it would sail through wind.  But for floating, currently I run with a Rio OBS 12w with an added 5ft floating polyleader or else a short home made poly (made from a section of an older weight forward floater). That gets me to around 35 ft and 550+.  A 5ft tarpon intermediate polyleader also works well off that line, but these are no longer made. They weigh 40g, so again 550g total. 

 

Edited by Killiefish

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A while back when we were fishing for bluefin in CC bay, one of the guys spoke with Monic and they  made a custom run of 100 lbs core floating running line for us.   This was 10+ years ago and the person at Monic said for a run of 50 lines or so they would make whatever you want.  One of you motivated guys could ask them if they would do this again and then come up with with design and you can hash in out amongst your group as to what you want and then take preorders ect and maybe you will have your line in the weights , tapers ect that you want.

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On 10/9/2020 at 3:56 PM, snag777 said:

i make that simple.

i test my 12'  rod for maximum load,if i find my rod can handle 900 grain,i am looking to buy shooting head 25' , 725 grain and 10'  T-14 is 170 grain that is total 900 grain.

now i order line ,has to be 30# or 40# test and any line work for me,mono 40 #,sinking ,intermediate or floating line,i do not pay any atention to taper or not.my work do the shooting head,that is sepert piece,i can atach that to any line and it work fine.

casting

i have all shooting head out off eylets,i make rol lift any fly off water,1 time shoot back one time shoot forvard,i cast simple  90' to 120',not hard work.

snag777, I definitely need to take a page from your book.  As I continue to geek out flylines here I will be sure to keep your simple, practical approach in the back of my mind as a reality check while I steam towards overcomplication.  

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On 10/10/2020 at 8:30 PM, Killiefish said:

1) I think you meant to say 44ft scandi head, not tip?  The Ultimate Scandi tapers are heads, not tips.  Just terminology and can be confusing to many of us.

...

 2) There are now Ultimate Scandi "Short" heads as well.  Here are the specs from the box(es)...

...

 3)  I prefer to use a braided airflo miracle braid running line unless I'm in a sandy or dirty location, in which case I might use 40lb Berkeley Big Game mono as a runner.

...

4) Like you, if I am throwing larger bulkier flies, I go with Skagit heads (mostly Skagit Intermediate) and Intermediate MOW tips (10ft, medium or "heavy"). 

...

5) The advantage to me is that I can at least use the same running lines and just have to swap heads.  I would prefer integrated lines, but ...

...currently very few or none are available in weights above 500g and those that are available have heads that are shorter than 33ft (my minimum now for my shorter TH rods).

 

Killiefish, thanks so much for info.  I edited down your quote above to the topics I'll comment on. 

 

1)  Thank you so much for pointing out that error of mine.  It may be a small typo, but back in the day, small typos like that would drive me mad...(is that true?! or is it a typo?!) and I can't believe I just did the same damn thing.  You are right, terminology is so important for proper understanding when we talk about these lines.  The UST is a head!  NOT a tip!

 

2) Totally forgot to check out the specs on those scandi shorts.  Thanks for the heads up.  I'd probably experiment with adding tips to those UST Short heads even though I don't think they are designed to include tips.  

 

3) I have been meaning to try this running line.  Rich Murphy prefers tropical lines due too greater stiffness (i.e. less tangles) and I had all these used 8wts from the fly shop, so I'm currently using 8wt bonefish lines as running line.  I do like them, though a stretch every few outings is required.   I used to cut off the whole 8wt head, but the remaining running line would be too short.  I have been reluctant to just cut off the 8wt front taper, because I feel that it would promote the skagit head to turn over too quickly...so I just use the whole darn line as my running line.  

 

4) What specific skagit intermediate heads do you use?  I've had trouble fining larger int. skagit heads.  

 

5) I love the ability to change tips, but I think I agree that a seamless, connection b/t running line & head would be ideal.  Wish you could buy fly line coating material only...like a meltable coating to apply wherever.  

 

6)  I'm glad to hear someone state a head length minimum.  I think I would agree.  I forget if the "Head length should be no more than 3 times rod length" maxim only applies to spey?...or if it hold water (broadly) for overhead too?

 

 

Edited by Ajefferslyon
terminology

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