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Old 12-21-2012, 06:30 AM
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Default Cleaning fly line

I have a reel spooled with an Orvis Wonderline G3 Striper saltwater line that I must not have rinsed and dried well enough before I put it away last summer, because now it has some black mildew spots on it. It's a new line, bought last spring and used for only a few days so far. Thoughts on how to restore it? I soaked it in some warm water with some dish detergent and pulled it through a sponge to wipe it off, and that helped, but hasn't cleaned it up completely. I'm afraid anything more abrasive will hurt the line.
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Old 12-21-2012, 07:30 AM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

repeating the process is all I can suggest bud, I had a similar problem and just had to do it 3 or 4 times to get it nice and new looking...ish
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

The two big line manufacturers suggest avoiding detergents to clean their lines. Something about leaching the plasticisers.
I have a very bright, Optic Orange Expert Distance SA line that was used for demonstrations on parking lots. It became almost black from the grease and oil on the pavement. In my cleaning drawer was a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I wetted it and rubbed some Ivory bar soap on it, swiped the line a few times and got a majority of the gunk off the line. I did dress it after that just to make sure it stayed slick.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:50 AM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

Make sure the detergent is mild and or diluted, harsh stuff can impact the plasticizers migration in the coating. Once as clean as you can get it, wipe it with RIO Agent X or similar line dressing, allow it to dry and gently rub it down with a soft cloth. Good new is, I have that same line in #9 for 3 seasons now and I really don't care for its taper so if its is a dead duck you can replace it with something better. I am thinking about either SA Textured Saltwater or Airflo Stripper, anybody using these lines for bass?
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:18 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

It was Dawn liquid dish detergent (for hand washing, not in the machine) and it was just a little squeeze in a sink full of warm water, so hopefully it shouldn't have done any harm. (Probably the same reason it didn't clean the mildew as well as I hoped.)
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Old 12-21-2012, 01:18 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

dawn is fine.. they use it on birds in oil spills.. so if it's sensitive enough to a bird.. should be sensitive enough for a fly line
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Old 12-21-2012, 01:53 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

If the mildew does not come off I would not worry about it. The thing I would worry about more is that it was stored in a way that would allow mildew to start in the first place. I have fly fished since I was a kid and have lived in some very humid places, and never had this happen. This can't be good for the backing or the reel.

If you get the line cleaned and properly slicked, it will not matter that it is a little discolored, but I would never allow that to happen again. I would look over the reel and your backing also.
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Old 12-21-2012, 02:18 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diver Dan View Post
I have fly fished since I was a kid and have lived in some very humid places, and never had this happen.
Yeah, me neither. Very peculiar. I had used a couple of other reels on the same last outing before I put them all away and the others are fine.
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Old 12-21-2012, 02:34 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

How did the backing look? Maybe it isn't mildew. Could be something else if none of the other stuff in the same spot had a problem. Most curious.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:03 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning fly line

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Originally Posted by itchmesir View Post
dawn is fine.. they use it on birds in oil spills.. so if it's sensitive enough to a bird.. should be sensitive enough for a fly line
I don't think birds have plasticisers though, like a fly line.
Heed the recommendations of those who actually make the lines or don't, it's your line. All I'll say is that I have some very old lines that work as well today after years of use as they did when new.
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