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Old 07-31-2009, 12:04 AM
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Default a way to train your self with fly casting?

so i was having trouble casting some flys with my 5 wt earlier this spring but when i went on vacation me and a buddy went fishing and we were throwing around big size 8 to 10 buggers and i got really good shooting them...and now when i cast my little size 18 elk hair i can shoot it way farther then i could before...so im wondering did having the bugggers on my line in a way train me with the are of fly casting?? or was it just practice?


i hope you can make sense of what im asking...:
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Old 08-02-2009, 08:31 AM
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Hi Flylfisher117,

I really have no way of knowing what went on for you between the bugger fishing and the dry flies, but I have noticed the following in my own fishing and it may have a parallel in what you're observing with your casting.

Most of us love to fish dries. They're visible, which makes the fishing fun, and they're easy to cast. But, unless you have a lot of line out, you don't get a whole lot of feedback from casting dries; because there's practically no weight on the end of the tippet to signal you the difference between a good cast and not-so-good cast.

I found that fishing heavier flies (buggers, muddlers, zonkers, etc.) helped me a lot in developing a reasonable cast. When a big bugger turns over on either the backcast or the forward cast, you can feel it through the line and the rod (there's a definite jerk on the line). That's the feedback that I'm talking about. If you're frequently casting buggers or heavier flies, then you're going to be making a series of adjustments/corrections to your cast in order to get a decent cast with the heavier fly on the end of your tippet. If you do that enough times, those adjustments/corrections will become part of your normal casting motion, and that will translate into casting better with almost all flies; particularly dries.

Another thing that has helped my cast is fishing with sinking tip lines. Whether it's an intermediate tip line, a 150 grain (heavier) or a 250 grain (heavier still) line (I don't fish heavier that 250 grain unless I'm fishing saltwater), the feel that you get from that heavier line gives you a lot of feedback that, I think, helps with your cast.

On the other side of the equation; the rod side, as opposed to the line side (which includes the fly), if you fish with a slower action rod instead of a fast action rod, you'll also get a lot more feedback, because tip-flex rods don't deliver that much feedback (at least they don't for me). Joni recommended a 7'6" Eagle Claw 6 wt/ fiberglass rod to me a couple of years ago and I still practice with that rod. It cost $16.00! It's a very slow action rod (some would call it a noodle), but if you can throw a good tight loop with that rod and get good distance at the same time (and you can), then when you go back to a fast action graphite rod, the results will very likely show an improvement in your casting.

Glad to hear that your casting is improving for you.

Pocono
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Old 08-02-2009, 09:50 AM
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I agree with Pocono's assement and will add one thing that I think he was alluding to. That is that with a heavy fly like a big booger you can feel the rod loading on the backcast very easily, while with a small weightless dry it can be difficult to detect. As you begin to get used to the timing of the rod loading with the heavies it becomes more natural for you to anticipate the timing for your forward cast with the light fly, resulting in greater distance. Just a thought.
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Old 12-09-2012, 07:24 AM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocono View Post
Hi Flylfisher117,

I really have no way of knowing what went on for you between the bugger fishing and the dry flies, but I have noticed the following in my own fishing and it may have a parallel in what you're observing with your casting.

Most of us love to fish dries. They're visible, which makes the fishing fun, and they're easy to cast. But, unless you have a lot of line out, you don't get a whole lot of feedback from casting dries; because there's practically no weight on the end of the tippet to signal you the difference between a good cast and not-so-good cast.

I found that fishing heavier flies (buggers, muddlers, zonkers, etc.) helped me a lot in developing a reasonable cast. When a big bugger turns over on either the backcast or the forward cast, you can feel it through the line and the rod (there's a definite jerk on the line). That's the feedback that I'm talking about. If you're frequently casting buggers or heavier flies, then you're going to be making a series of adjustments/corrections to your cast in order to get a decent cast with the heavier fly on the end of your tippet. If you do that enough times, those adjustments/corrections will become part of your normal casting motion, and that will translate into casting better with almost all flies; particularly dries.

Another thing that has helped my cast is fishing with sinking tip lines. Whether it's an intermediate tip line, a 150 grain (heavier) or a 250 grain (heavier still) line (I don't fish heavier that 250 grain unless I'm fishing saltwater), the feel that you get from that heavier line gives you a lot of feedback that, I think, helps with your cast.

On the other side of the equation; the rod side, as opposed to the line side (which includes the fly), if you fish with a slower action rod instead of a fast action rod, you'll also get a lot more feedback, because tip-flex rods don't deliver that much feedback (at least they don't for me). Joni recommended a 7'6" Eagle Claw 6 wt/ fiberglass rod to me a couple of years ago and I still practice with that rod. It cost $16.00! It's a very slow action rod (some would call it a noodle), but if you can throw a good tight loop with that rod and get good distance at the same time (and you can), then when you go back to a fast action graphite rod, the results will very likely show an improvement in your casting.

Glad to hear that your casting is improving for you.

Pocono

One of the first things one learns, tying your own flies, is that if you weight them to heavily with lead, they become like casting a big rock. It doesn't work.

I have made some terrible mistakes in tying. Now I understand why I have seen all of those "feather-weight" Streamer flies. They are large, but very light for casting reasons I suppose. "Keep--it---Light".

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Old 12-09-2012, 11:46 AM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

Good post Pocono!
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Old 12-09-2012, 01:10 PM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

I think it was "practice" as I think of practice.

Dry flies and buggers require different techniques. They are not identical casts.

With dry flies, the tighter the loop, the better. Tight loops with a bugger can lead to a broken rod tip. So the casting techniques are not identical. I think you learned to be more in touch with the fly rod and this allowed you to "feel" what the rod was doing. So is this practice or not?
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Old 01-06-2013, 02:33 AM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

Echo Micro Practice Rod. A great way to practice casting on those cold winter days stuck inside. Or, if you're in college, you can use it to make up drinking games with your buddies. Unless you like to be really drunk, you'll get to be a great caster in a hurry.
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Old 01-06-2013, 02:29 PM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

I think the suggestion of a MPR is a great idea. The Micro Practice Rod is just a version of the original Wulff Fly-O.

I could not afford the Fly-O. so I made my own version by using the same yarn. The yarn is known as "Gift Tying Yarn" and it used to be popular in the 1980's but and can still be purchased on-line with a Google search.

Click the image to open in full size.

Pak it Products Gift Tie Yarn

The MPR uses Macrame Cord tied to Gift Tying Yarn. A 20 foot section of macrame cord alone can be used as the "fly line". Macrame cord is sold also as "craft cord". The most popular brand is Bonnie Craft Cord.

Click the image to open in full size.

Or you can contact Echo rods and buy the preassembled MPR line.

Instead of the MPR rod, you can use the top half of a fly rod or even the top half of a spinning rod as a substitute for a MRP. I used the top half of a spinning rod to practice indoor fly casting.

Click the image to open in full size.

The MPR is a great way to teach children to cast.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.
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Last edited by silver creek; 01-06-2013 at 05:02 PM.
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Old 01-06-2013, 05:25 PM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

The Wulff Fly-O's we purchased were actually a bit lame. The yarn had no mass so you couldn't feel the rods load and a few double hauls rendered the yarn line useless! Thank goodness the Fly-O came out though or else we still might not have tools like that to work with.
During a fly show set-up day we got a chance to try the TFO prototypes of a MCR. These we liked. Because the blank was matched nicely with the line they performed very nice. You could do most any cast with them including roll casts on carpet and you could really feel them load.
The used a thick, hollow paracgute cord-like main line with doubled then single yarn as the leader/tippet.
I'll be using them Tuesday night for an indoor casting class for our club and have no reservations doing so. The thick, colorful line makes seeing loop formation very easy and the relatively slow movement of the line also helps in that.
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Old 01-06-2013, 05:55 PM
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Default Re: a way to train your self with fly casting?

Jackster,

I bought an MPR and agree that they are better than the original Fly-O.

I went to a surplus store and bought about 20 surplus rolls of macrame cord for 60 cents each. I cut them into 20 ft lengths, and used a cigarette lighter to melt the ends so they don't unravel. They are for beginners in our TU class.

Your suggestion to use parachute cord is interesting. I'll try that once my macrame cord runs out.

I wrote Echo about a year ago and they will sell the MRP "line" for $10.

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