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Old 12-06-2012, 12:19 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

Line weight doesn't have much to do with the tippet size you can go down to. If you have a good leader that tapers properly, the major limitation to fishing a down to 5X is casting ability.

edit: sorry I didn't mis-read, I thought you were asking about casting a long fine leader, not fish playing. Ignore me, listen to those up above!
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:36 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetandsalt View Post
I'll bet that smallie pulled like heck.
Yes it did. It was really cool the way it worked. I had been there the day before and got three fish in the first three casts that were actually bigger than this one. I knew I could bust the 2 lb. tippet record with any of them. I called my Canadian fishing buddy and we went the next day. Got this one first cast. The grocery store is right behind where I caught this. I had filled a cooler with water before I cast. I got the fish and while I unhooked it Bill got the camera ready. He took two photos and I then put it in the cooler. I ran it to the store. I took it out of the water for about 20 seconds while they weighed it. I gave them the paper work and while they filled it out I ran it back and released it. I doubt it was ever out of water for more than 40 seconds. I doubt it was out of the river for a full 5 minutes. I didn't even have to work it to get it to swim away. I should also say that I used one of Joni's furled leaders. I had Trilene knots at both ends of the tippet so there was never a doubt about knots or anything failing that way.

This is the three from the day before;
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You can see why I was pretty confident I could bust that record.
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:59 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

WOW Dan I though I had pretty good smallies by me but you just squashed that!!!! One thing I don't think has been mentioned yet is how you set the hook. If you're gung ho on the set even with a soft tipped 2wt and 6x you'll pop it, just go easy with. Just raise the rod gently, don't strip strike or yank back.
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Old 12-06-2012, 01:16 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

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Originally Posted by wt bash View Post
One thing I don't think has been mentioned yet is how you set the hook. If you're gung ho on the set even with a soft tipped 2wt and 6x you'll pop it, just go easy with. Just raise the rod gently, don't strip strike or yank back.

Actually in a situation where you need to protect a light tippet on the hook set, it's best to use a slip strike. (not to be confused with strip )
...As you're raising the rod tip to set the hook, let the line that you would normally have trapped against the rod grip with the rod hand ...slip from under your finger.
You'll still exert enough pressure to set the hook, but not enough to pop the tippet.
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Old 12-06-2012, 01:28 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

+1 on the SLIP strike and on Dan's use of the Trileen Knot; far and away my preferred knot for a fixed (non-loop) connection to the fly. Not only is it strong but the twice-through-the-hook eye prevents side-to-side slippage which is good unto itself but additionally limits frictional energy damage to the tight bit of tippet around the metal.
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Old 12-06-2012, 01:49 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

Thank you for the advice -- I came to fly fishing from carp fishing on really long (10-12' rods) spinning tackle and I guess I at least *think I'm decent at playing hard-fighting fish and properly setting the drag, etc.

I get that the size of fly directly impacts what tippet size is generally used...especially since you can't fit big tippet into a tiny hook eye sometimes.

On the other hand, I hear fly fisherman talk about "breaking fish off" far, far more often than I've ever heard from any other fishermen (bass, catfish, pike, carp - including british "bait runner" guys, etc.) and I have to assume it's at least sometimes due to mismatching tippet and rod size (or rod bend, etc. and all the other factors that affect whether a rod can protect a tippet)...unless fly fisherman are just less skilled at playing fish as a group, which I highly doubt.

I definitely broke off a trout several weeks ago using 8x tippet on a #24 dry fly in WV ....but that was on a 3 weight. When you're used to bigger stuff it takes a while to adjust. I did get one a few minutes later.....but I can't promise I wouldn't break that 8x again if I go back out!

I'll probably give 3x a try -- I mostly was asking because I love my 6 weight and if I am able to use it for my smaller flies, I only need to carry one rod out there . I'm laaaazzzy!

Thanks again people! You're awesome --
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Old 12-06-2012, 02:01 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

Quote:
Originally Posted by turbineblade View Post
I definitely broke off a trout several weeks ago using 8x tippet on a #24 dry fly in WV ....but that was on a 3 weight. When you're used to bigger stuff it takes a while to adjust. I did get one a few minutes later.....but I can't promise I wouldn't break that 8x again if I go back out!
I don't even own any 8X and I almost never go the 7X
Just sayin'
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Old 12-06-2012, 03:46 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

I don't even own at 7x.. smallest I ever have needed to go is 6x...

With a good furled leader you should easily be able to handle 5-6x tippet on your 6wt.. unless you got something really stiff like a BVK or Predator
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Old 12-06-2012, 04:31 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

BTW - that's a monster bass -- epic man .

I'd love to hook that sucker.

So far the strangest thing I've caught here in Alexandria, VA (DC basically) is a Nile Tilapia of about 3-4 pounds.

I think I'm going to just tie a leader with 3 and 4x tippet and tied it to an immobile object and then put a good bend in the rod from several angles so I can get an estimate of how much it will take . That seems at least somewhat useful.
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Old 12-06-2012, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: 6 Weight rod, lightest tippet size can I get away with?

Quote:
Originally Posted by turbineblade View Post
Hi - I love my 6 weight and use it mostly with medium flies (6-12) for warm water fishing. ........

What is the lightest tippet you'd use on a 6 weight (given that you have one) without having to underplay the fish due to risk of breaking off?
Thanks!
As I said in a previous post, a fly rod has two purposes. The first is to cast and the other is to fight the fish.

The question posed is not about casting at all. We all know that a 6 wt line on a 6 wt rod can cast a light tippet leader and fly. The question is about fighting the fish and specifically about protecting the tippet from breakage.

I agree with those who said rod action and specifically, how soft or stiff the tip section of the fly rod is what determines how effective the rod is in protecting the tippet.

I do have two suggestions on how to protect a thin tippet on a 6 wt rod.

1. Use a slip strike or go to a furled leader. They have some "give" on the strike.

2. Use Rio shock gum in a standard leader. OR between the fly line and furled leader.

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Last edited by silver creek; 12-06-2012 at 05:19 PM.
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