I bought a Granger "Victory" 8642 in good condition along with a Pflueger Medalist. I'm siked and want to fish ASAP...
I'm new to fly fishing and I need advice and maybe a few suggestions on the following:
The Pflueger I bought was used and came w/ backing and a 5wt. fly line on it already. I want to purchase a Cortland Sylk 5wt. line for the bamboo stick.
Can I reuse old backing that came on the Pflueger Medalist 1494 DA and tie that to the new fly line (Cortland sylk)? Or do I need to get new backing? If so, what brand/what kind???
I also don't know what leader(s) to get? I was thinking these, but I'm not really sure. Is it a good idea to get both or will one do? HELP?.?.
RIO Fluoroflex Trout Leaders 9ft 4X and RIO Powerflex 7.5ft. 5 X Leader
Lastly, tippets? I was thinking these would be suffice.
RIO Fluoroflex Plus Tippet Spools - 30 yds. Sizes 4X, 5X, 6X
RIO Powerflex Tippet Spools – 30 yds. Sizes 4X, 5X, 6X
backing on a 5wt is just backing. If a fish takes you into your backing on a 5wt, god help you. I'd imagine if the old backing is solid it doesn't matter. On the other hand, backing is quite reasonably priced.
I'd say don't spend too much time worrying about it.
BTW - all of that leader/tippet stuff depends on where, what, when, you are fishing. Relax and you will catch fish on whatever. Ask the local fly shop in the vicinity you are fishing and they will give you good advice if they are worth a (expletive.)
"By the time I was a teenager I fit the standard profile of a lifelong angler. I was lazy, shiftless, unambitious and willing to work hard only at things that were widely considered useless." ~John Gierach
Dittoes to the above. As far as the type of leader/tippet it will depend on what size fly you are casting. Smaller fly=smaller diameter tippet. The major difference (well one of them) between fly and spin fishing is that the weight of the fly, whether its a size #28 dry or a 4/0 streamer, determines the outfit, particularly the terminal tackle. For a five weight, if we're talking trout I'd use a 4x leader/tippet as a default and go up or down from there. For bass I'd go 2x and like wise adjust. You need enough ummph to turn the fly over, but not so much that you inhibit its action. Still water bass is a different game than fast water trout.
hope this helps a little, on your backing it depends on how old it is and of what material it is made of, I would change it since you don't know it's history, 50 to 60 yd's is all you'll need, try SA's 20lb test fly line backing from a 100 yd spool.
As for leader, this info comes from Orvis but gives you a base to start with,
Leader Length Best suited for…
6 foot Sinking fly lines of all types, panfish, bass, trout in tiny, brushy streams
7.5 foot Trout in streams from 10-20 feet wide, intermediate and sinking tip lines in lakes and saltwater conditions where the fish are not terribly spooky. Also streamer fishing for trout with big flies or with heavy nymphs and big indicators
9 foot Trout streams larger than 20 feet wide where the water is mostly riffled, or else the fish are not spooky. In salt water, fish in shallow water under bright, clear conditions.
12 foot Trout in most lakes with floating lines. Trout in streams with flies smaller than size 16 when the water is flat, low, or very clear
15 foot Spooky trout in extremely clear water in both lakes and rivers.
I was just going to add that you certainly don't need to purchase leaders or even fly fishing-specific leader and tippet material. A lot of us just use regular mono without any problems whatsoever.
I'll probably catch hell for saying this, but for YEARS (spinning and fly) I've been using the cheap walmart "omniflex" spools of 6 and 8 pound test. I find it to be perfectly fine line and I've caught probably 80% of my fish on it. For lighter stuff (which to me is 4 pound test, I don't really use anything smaller) I like the Maxima green-colored 4 pound mono. Very limp, and if you use a loop knot you get very good action on flies.
To me, it is much more important to check the line frequently for nicks and to check your knots. Retie frequently if you're catching a lot of fish.
There are benefits to tying your own tapered leaders and I do this for certain situations, but often I just use a straight piece of monofilament from 6-12' and call it a day. It's a lot of personal preference -- like anything else .
Welcome to the forum !
Tapered leaders, store or home tied, turn flies over for me better than straight lengths of mono. For smaller dry flies, furled leaders work best for me, and presentation is much better. Experiment a little, and pick the brains of the guys at your local fly shop. If you take that Medalist in for some fresh backing, they will probably spool it on for free, and give you more advise than you can digest in one visit. Take the rod too, and get a recommendation on fly line to match it. They would probably enjoy seeing it. Buy a couple of flies while you're there. They will look more kindly on a buyer than a looker.
There are two "rules" I suggest for determining tippet size for a fly. To illustrate the rules, lets consider a size 16 fly. For a beginner I suggest they start by dividing the hook size by 4 to get tippet size. As they get better I suggest they try dividing by 3. So they would start with a 4X leader which gives them better control of the fly on the cast and then move to a 5X leader as their casting improves.
Second suggestion is to start with a leader length about the length of the fly rod. Use a long a leader as you can handle but as a NOOB, try a leader about the length of the rod.
Third, learn to tie a blood knot. This is will allow you to rebuild your leaders.
Fourth, when rebuilding leaders, you need to know the diameter of the cut back section of leader. If you do not have a tippet gauge, you can approximate the size of the end of your leader by comparing it side to side with some tippet from your spools.
Fifth, ignore the rule that says you can only change the diameter of leader section by 2 X sizes (.002"). This makes no sense since a change from 5X to 7X is proportionally greater than a change from 2X to 4X. The maximum diameter you can go down is 1/3 the diameter of thicker tippet. So multiple the diameter the diameter of the thicker tippet by 2 and divide by three to get the diameter of the thinnest diameter you can use.
Example, diameter of thicker section is 2X(.009"), multiple by 2 = .018", divide by 3 = .06. So you can tie a 5X section to a 2X section. It will work fine.
Fifth, try to keep the tippet section of your leader no shorter than 18 inches at a minimum. I start with 24-36 inches of tippet for dry flies. The longer the tippet you can cast, the longer the drag free float.
Finally, break the above "rules" if you find they do not work in specific situations. Picky spooky fish may require a much thinner tippet and longer leaders than you would normally use. So adapt to the situation.