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Author Topic: Skagit Floaters... the "mechanics"  (Read 12347 times)
riveraddict
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« on: July 15, 2012, 10:41:10 AM »

   I have been made aware that there is some misinterpretation "out there" as regards my recommendations for Skagit floating lines/tips. I think that explaining a certain aspect of Skagit casting mechanics may help clarify the situation.
   Skagit casting utilizes waterloading to produce the majority of its casting energies. That water loading is enabled by the resistance-to-movement effects that water tension exerts on the line. Thus, we Skagit casters place the line onto the water in such a way as to maximize water tension onto the line and then afterwards, we actively sweep the line out&around in an effort to pull a certain portion from out of the water and aerialize it. That aerialized segment of line becomes the live and dynamic "vehicle" for transferring casting energies produced via waterloading, from one "direction" to another and it is a CONTRIBUTING factor of rod loading. That part of line that gets aerialized is usually that portion of line that is laying ON or VERY NEAR the water's surface and generally involves the FLOATING part of the line. Conversely, any line (plus the fly) that does not get aerialized during the Sweep, acts as a "holdback", tether or anchor to the water for the aerialized portion of line during the casting process... in other words, prevents the line from "blowing out" during the cast. That un-aerialized portion of line is generally the sinktip or "well sunk" portion of line. Sunk portions of line and fly DO NOT contribute to rod loading and they are in fact "payload" because casting energy must be "burned" to extract them from the water. In other words, on a "usual" Skagit casting line setup, the floating part of the line can be viewed as the "engine" and the sinktip and/or fly as the "payload". Thus, for optimum casting performance, the output of the engine should be aligned with the payload being cast. In other words, the "correct" weight of a Skagit line (belly) for any particular rod can be variable according to what's being cast and considering the previous explanation, an all floating line system has far less holdback/tether/anchor effects than a sinktip system and therefore it should weigh LESS than a sinktip system, not more (this being a reference to "general" floating line circumstances and not the casting of bobbers systems loaded with lead)!
   So, to get to the misinterpretation bit about floating lines/tips... in most cases, when going from sinktip work to floating line work, "we" generally see a corresponding reduction in fly size and weight. Thus, a smaller engine (lighter belly) should prove more effective for casting lighter payloads (floating tip and small fly). My recommendation was and still is, that the weight of the belly, and belly ONLY (NO TIPS WEIGHT) used to cast sinktips and/or big/heavy flies, is a good weight to use as a reference for creating/obtaining an ENTIRE dedicated floating line (this means a line that is in fact all-floating, does not use tips, was/is intended to tie leaders directly onto because it has a front taper designed solely for that purpose... it's skinny on the front part!).
          
« Last Edit: July 15, 2012, 10:47:32 AM by riveraddict » Logged

hyfly
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« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2012, 08:05:09 PM »

Thanks Ed,great stuff. I find that for casting bugs and bombers , a standard lenght skagit head like the Rio Flight helps me get a better anchor on a 12 - 13 ft rod. Must be my lack of experience but short heads or compact ones are harder for me to get a straight line landing on  the water. The sweet spot for me with my 13.2 -7wt is 525 gr and 575 for my 13.6- 8 wt. both are Flights from Rio. I have a few compacts also but tend to use them on my switch rods. Getting a perfect presentation on a salmon river with a big bomber is not an easy task for me but i must say that im getting there , at least a few  salmons seem to agree. The fun part of it all is that wen the wind picks up and everyone goes home im still at it and so are the fish.

Hyfly
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Rick J
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2012, 09:51:48 AM »

Hyfly - think very compact strokes for short line systems - check out this clip of Mike McCune doing an off-shoulder cast and watch his hands/arms for how little movement is needed - just click on the image to watch

« Last Edit: July 16, 2012, 02:44:06 PM by Rick J » Logged

swingman
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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2012, 12:07:53 PM »

The vid really shows how little effort is needed, load the rod and let her spring. Thanks for sharing
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camosled
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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2012, 01:15:56 PM »

Thanks Ed,great stuff. I find that for casting bugs and bombers , a standard lenght skagit head like the Rio Flight helps me get a better anchor on a 12 - 13 ft rod. Must be my lack of experience but short heads or compact ones are harder for me to get a straight line landing on  the water. The sweet spot for me with my 13.2 -7wt is 525 gr and 575 for my 13.6- 8 wt. both are Flights from Rio. I have a few compacts also but tend to use them on my switch rods. Getting a perfect presentation on a salmon river with a big bomber is not an easy task for me but i must say that im getting there , at least a few  salmons seem to agree. The fun part of it all is that wen the wind picks up and everyone goes home im still at it and so are the fish.

Hyfly

Since I haven't seen your cast, I'm only guessing, but it sounds like you're using too much top hand in the forward cast, ripping the anchor and causing an open loop, which piles on itself at the end.  A longer line would help keep the fly and line on the water, but not necessary.  Notice how Mike keeps his hands down after the anchor is set and just switches hands.  Think about making the top hand a fulcrum, which you pull against with the bottom hand.  Just a thought.  The short lines should go out like straight line rockets if the power application between the two hands is balanced and the momentum is maintained during the turnover into forward cast portion.

JM
 

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hyfly
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« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2012, 06:41:30 PM »

Thanks JM, i will concentrate on keeping things low and tight, i have a tendency to loosen up as the day wares on .

Hyfly
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Bill_I
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« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2012, 07:43:59 PM »

 
   So, to get to the misinterpretation bit about floating lines/tips... in most cases, when going from sinktip work to floating line work, "we" generally see a corresponding reduction in fly size and weight. Thus, a smaller engine (lighter belly) should prove more effective for casting lighter payloads (floating tip and small fly). My recommendation was and still is, that the weight of the belly, and belly ONLY (NO TIPS WEIGHT) used to cast sinktips and/or big/heavy flies, is a good weight to use as a reference for creating/obtaining an ENTIRE dedicated floating line (this means a line that is in fact all-floating, does not use tips, was/is intended to tie leaders directly onto because it has a front taper designed solely for that purpose... it's skinny on the front part!).
          

Sounds like a Scandi to me
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swingman
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« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2012, 08:53:21 PM »


          

Sounds like a Scandi to me
[/quote]

Scandi bad skagit good.
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Bill_I
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« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2012, 10:58:57 AM »

Close minded bad,  open minded good.
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Rick J
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« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2012, 01:02:22 PM »

but why buy a whole new line system (scandi) when you can do the same thing by just modifying your skagit lines. I also expect but am not sure that the skagit system even in lesser grains for a floating tip and smaller flies may be a bit heavier than a similar scandi system to obtain the most benefit from the water borne casts rather than touch and go - but maybe Ed can clarify this a bit?
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riveraddict
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« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2012, 04:44:37 PM »

   That is correct Rick... going lighter doesn't necessarily mean as light as, or becoming "Scandi". An interesting note is that when I did the Euro Tour with/for Loomis, I of course had many chances to cast Scandi rigs as set up by some of the most noted European casters in the style, such as Leif Stavmo and Henrik Mortenssen. When trying SA techniques on their rigs, I could not generate/duplicate even a fair amount of power or line speed that a correctly weighted Skagit outfit should. On the other side of the coin, they could not reproduce their tidy, lazer-tight loops when applying their Scandi techniques to my properly-weighted-for-Skagit setups. Since then, on this side of the pond, I have cast a lot of North American "Scandi" caster's rigs and have been able to generate very good, sometimes outstanding, but always at least workable power and line speed with SA technique through all of them, thus my quotation marks around the term Scandi. I have yet to run across a North American "Scandi" caster that is casting lines at the degree of lightness as the Euro casters. Not saying that such individuals aren't out there, just that the majority of North American "Scandi" casters are casting outside the specs of the Euro's. And, to show that it just wasn't just a condition of my personal circumstances, the same phenomena is/was obvious at all of the Spey Claves I attended throughout the years, where the "local" "Scandi" casters would try the outfits of the invited Euro demonstrators after their demonstrations and voila, the local's casts looked like shite because they couldn't load the rod (could the line be too light?!?!)! In my opinion, the largest portion of North American "Scandi" casters are basing the definition of their casting style as being Scandi by the nomenclature of the lines they are using and totally ignoring the line-to-rod-weight relationship and the actual technique being used. The largest majority of North American "Scandi" casters are in fact doing a version of Modern Spey with Scandi lines, or as some call it Skandit. This is why I pretty well consider anymore, Skagit-Scandi comparisons/discussions, as being an endeavor in futility. I believe that you are experiencing some of this yourself over on Spey Pages, eh Rick?! Good luck with that... you're fighting the same old entrenched curmudgeons as always (some have assumed new aliases, but their writing style remains the same).            
« Last Edit: July 22, 2012, 04:51:18 PM by riveraddict » Logged

yuhina
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« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2012, 07:22:47 PM »

Fine observation! Ed.

the same phenomenon comes to the misinterpretation of Goran Andersson's Underhand Techniques. Most of the casters thought they are using their "underhand" to power a rod, thus they call themselves using "underhand casting" technique. well... some even claimed the underhand casting techniques have been invented long before Goran Andersson (because of a century old book has a paragraph called "underhand cast").  The funny part is the misinterpretation become obvious that Goran explained his very own ideas (Underhand Technique) of "shifting casting center", and "only leader kissing the water".

Many hybrid casters, speak out loud, but rarely good at either side. I would say, ignore those "rookie challenges".  

Mark
« Last Edit: July 22, 2012, 07:29:25 PM by yuhina » Logged


Bill_I
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« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2012, 08:45:30 PM »

Just in from fishing-
Rick
"but why buy a whole new line system (scandi) when you can do the same thing by just modifying your skagit lines" -  Thats a good valid point if thats what one wants to do.  

Ed
*I am not going to get into this.  I don't limit to either or / one only,  as I have said before.  My run line has a tact. loop on it.  It does not further read only for scandi or skagit or short belly.
It's VERY EASY to see Euro Scandi rec's as they provide such ON THEIR WEBSITES.   All one has to do is convert to grains and account for Euro rated rods, one up on American.  Goran's preferances are well documented by his self, easily attainable,  Guideline, Zpey-Henrik ditto.  What one will find if they care to is they are very much IN LINE with North American recs. for such.
I don't personally care because I don't label myself this or that kind of caster anyways.  But,  your comment about no one in North America is true Scandi is BS, rude and.......well......I will just leave it at that.  And this from a "skagit master"  Roll Eyes  
* For someone whom readily broke rules, tradition you sure like to make them.  
* Modern Scandi & Scandit are not interchangeable / one.  By others definition , as I don't use scan-dit at all.  It's basically exactly what you did above all float from my understanding.  Modern Scandi - I do know well,  it's not scan-dit at all,  nor heavier grains at all.  Before you blurt out stuff maybe you should find out what it is.  Again,  personally I don't care as I don't label myself but,  as you do and seem to like to define all others also while at it, maybe you want to get it right.
* If you want to take a 500 grain x 24' skagit head - 20 gr. per ft. floating which easily handles 125 grain tip ++ for 625 total.  And take a say 400 grain head x 24',  add 12' of float tip @ 100 grains for 500 total x 36' - 13 GRAINS PER FOOT and still call it a skagit head system, FOR THE SAME ROD - thats up to you,  I know better.  But,  if for you it meets the sustained anchor you seek = great, call it what you want.  I just pointed out "sounds like a scandi to me". Guys bumping scandi's up a bit in grains = "not true scandi" in your book.  Taking skagit grains substantially lower = different story.........what ever Ed.  If you get your "sustained" anchor from it some how and am happy........who cares.


* BTW - the best way you can tell if a Scandi head is traditionally (prefer that term over properly) grained is to see how it two hand over head casts.  That's a Scandi casts also.  It should be smooth and not wanting to crash if all float or sink, heavy tips can hinge.  A traditionally grained skagit won't do this but, it will if you drop the grains substatially in all float.  It should not be clunky yet load and fire effeciantly  as a  two handed , over head, shooting head.  It should not be overly light either as if it needs a single haul to load deeper, etc.  The lower hand is the haul.  It should not want, to false cast , multiple times, non chalet   as if a standard wf-f,  it's not, it's a shooting head and grained as such.  It's real easy to tell traditional Scandi grains by two hand over head casting it.  

* I just came in from swinging river smallies all float with gurglers sca-poppers.  On a 10' x 6wt switch I used a 250gr x 22' head, a 55 grain x 10' float tip and a 10' leader.  I cast it single,snake in flow and two hand over head in frog.  It does all very well and CERTAINLY is on the light side as it will false cast easily over head also.  Bruce Richards/SA - streamer express development days, use to give me 300 grains for a 9 1/2' 6wt graphite.  This a 10' 5/6 s.h. rate glass !  So,  I guess just for this day and possably in all of history I was the only one using a scandi head of traditional grains in North America  Roll Eyes.  Like Skagit Scandi is just so darn tough/hard.  It's easy to see why no one in North America gets it right ever Ed.   Oh......I do bump up a head weight to if I want for bigger tips, weighted flies,wind,etc..  It still singles and snakes well but,  also snaps and doubles well (God forbid) and I do loop on a skagit also.........oh......."true traditionally grained skagit" I mean.........   IT'S REALLY THE MONO LEADER BUILD THAT MATTERS THE MOST FOR TOP SIDE SPEY CAST SWING GURGLING ANYWAYS.........but that is to boring and not of Skagit specific/only label to talk about.

Mark / Mini Me -
Not sure what the little shot was about or for.  Will let it pass this time but,  will assure you I am not a rookie, with lines,  fly fishing,spey,etc.etc.  Your quoting back to me about Goran a schooling you took from another on speypages.  I know because I read it.  I did not have one word in that thread towards you nor in the thread at all - so why you preach'in it back to me lad?  Go state your case back to him you argued with - I REALLY DON'T CARE MUCH ABOUT "TRADITION" WHAT WAS TWO DECADES AGO LET ALONE 200 YEARS AGO GET IT?  I don't wear a badge.  I have no problem breaking age old "traditions".  There are still silk lines available = no thanks.  The Underhand cast is not difficult. Look how simple, factual and so few words Goran explains it and demonstrates it.  If thats all he says,  you don't need to write 15 page essays on it - as if.  And just because you like to make video's of yourself  Cheesy and post them to the world,  standing in a driveway with a black top leader on.......ahhh.......never mind.     Your choice next,  your quite visual, opinionated yourself so,  just say the word.  I did like your 9wt,  16" Trout switch btw.......  Could double for Muskie to.  Oh and Mark - "hybrids" whom you've never seen but apparently "just know"...... and your..... "pure" right....... - got it

Ironic - The creator of this site likes to point out on a S.P.'s thread how all fishing is fine.  How he c-pins,speys,plugs, who cares, etc.  I chuckle at his reply and agree.  Yet, here -----------you must be in the box.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2012, 09:34:55 PM by Bill_I » Logged

riveraddict
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« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2012, 09:40:53 PM »

Bill I,
   I'm going to suggest that to save yourself and me a lot of grief, that you refrain from reading anything that I post from now on. I would appreciate that, as it is very clear that you read and think in "absolutes" and that status, along with your appearing to harbor an agenda against anything Skagit, guarantees that there will be no common understanding for us to reach, even on the most basic level. And, without at least a basic level of common understanding, there can be no constructive discussion.
   I think anyone with an unbiased mind would agree that my use of words and phrases such as - "a lot", "the largest portion", "the largest majority", "not saying such individuals aren't out there" - in my last post, indicates fairly well that I am not indicting ALL North American "Scandi" casters as being "psuedo Scandi"... just "most".    
   Lastly, for someone that "doesn't care", you sure have a lot to say...
« Last Edit: July 22, 2012, 09:44:51 PM by riveraddict » Logged

swingman
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« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2012, 10:18:46 PM »

Bill,

Don't turn this site into the speypages, many of us would appreciate that.
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