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Old 04-09-2008, 07:34 AM
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Default Uplining

Long time reader, first time poster...

This may belong under the tackle forum but figured some of you warmwater guys have probably ran into this before.

Basically my question is stemming from a book I read written by Tim Holschlag about "Smallmouth Fly Fishing". Here is a link to his website if you want to check it out: Smallmouth Angler, Bass, Fishing, Book

Anyway, in his book Tim recommends uplining your rods with 1-2 weight heavier line that what the rod is rated for. Tims states that this will help you turn over larger more bulky flies.

I thought that this was a great idea and made sense to me. I was also on board because I am new to the sport and only have a 6wt rod. I thought maybe if I uplined my 6wt rod w/ 7-8wt line I might be able to toss some big flies and not have to buy a new rod.

When I went to my local fly shop and told them my intentions they recommended that I not do this. They basically told me that Holschlag is off base in this aspect of the book and uplining my rod would decrease the performance of my rod and maybe even damage it. The shop told me I would not get as much distance with my casts, and my loop would suffer due to the line sagging below the rod tip because of it weight.

Now I am in a rock and a hard place. I am new to the sport and both explainations make sense to me. I know that Holschlag is well respected in Smallmouth circles, but I also would like to think I can trust my shop.

However, I am sure the shop would love to sell me a new 8wt for bass fishing, but if I can get buy on the 6wt for a season by buying a $60.00 line rather than a $300-$600 rod that is what I would rather do.


Any advice/guideance is appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 04-09-2008, 09:21 AM
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Default Re: Uplining

I tend to agree with the fly shop. 6-weight rods are designed for 6-weight lines. (Though I can't imagine damaging a rod if you upline 1 weight.) Having different weight rods for different size flies (and fish) are a fact of life.

Randy
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Old 04-09-2008, 09:40 AM
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Default Re: Uplining

They make special taper 6 weight lines just for turning over big bugs.
Try a bass taper by SA or Rio. They work.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:04 AM
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Default Re: Uplining

Just to clarify my post a little bit..

I realize that purchasing a heavier weight rod is the best option.

Holschlag recommends uplining ANY rod for bass fishing, not just a 6wt. He would say that an 8wt rod would perform better and turn flies over better w/ 9wt or 10 wt line. I am not looking to throw 8wt sized flies w/ a 6wt rod. I am wanting to throw the biggest size flies I can throw using a 6wt rod.

I actually have been using the SA Bass Bug Taper to throw my bass flies, and there is absolutly no doubt that it performs better than a 6wt general purpose/trout line for throwing the bigger flies.

I guess what I am asking for is some more opinions on uplining. Not being expericenced I do do not know the specific trades-offs between uplining vs. keeping a balanced rig.

I do know that when I am throwing a large size Clouser or a weighted bugger with my 6wt Bass tapper my loop suffers and the line tends to sink where it does not with a lighter fly. If uplining my current rod can improve this that would be great, but would I be sacraficing?
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:10 AM
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Default Re: Uplining

I can't imagine that a 7 wt. line would damage your 6 wt. rod. I regularly upline my 8 wt. to help with wind. In fact, I stopped buying 8 wt. lines because it is pretty much always windy on the ocean.

Uplining is a common practice, but its effects are highly dependent on the specific rod and the person using the rod. The only way to find out if it works for you is to either borrow a 7 wt. line from someone or buy one. It won't damage your rod.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:14 AM
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Default Re: Uplining

Hi Castaway,

Most rods are designed to cast a particular line weight best. If you over or under line a rod the performance is dependent on the rod. Lets say you get an 8wt line for your rod. You don't say what rod it is so we don't know the action. You can over line best with a fast action rod. So your 6wt rod is designed to cast a 160 grain line. You now want to throw a 210 grain line. This is going to slow the action of you rod way down and some rods may not cast it at all. What you have to do is shorten the amount of line you have out of the tip so you don't overload the rod. If you are good at double hauling you might be able to make up for the loss of line outside the tip by shooting more line. That is not easy to do with a big old heavy Clauser. So if you must over line I would not go more than a 7wt. Again it depends on what rod you have.

Now here is my very best advice. If you want to throw big heavy flies for bass you need to upgrade to a 8wt rod or even a 9wt if really big bass are available. Trying to make you 6wt do what an 8wt does is not in the cards. That is why there are different weights of rods. Different rods for different applications. You might be satisfied throwing big heavy flies with a 6wt rod and a 8wt line but it is not something I would want to do.

So here is my next very best advice. Buy an 8wt Bass taper line and give it a try. If it does not work you can buy an 8wt rod and you will all ready have the line. In either case you will be able to use the 8wt line.

Frank

AFTMA Fly line weight ratings (grains)

Weight Grains Tolerable Range

1 60....................54-66
2 80....................74-86
3 100..................94-106
4 120..................114-126
5 140..................134-146
6 160..................152-168
7 185..................177-193
8 210..................202-218
9 240..................230-250
10 280.................270-290
11 330.................318-342
12 380.................368-392

Grains are weighed over front 30 feet of line.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:33 AM
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Default Re: Uplining

Quote:
Originally Posted by Castaway View Post
I guess what I am asking for is some more opinions on uplining. Not being expericenced I do do not know the specific trades-offs between uplining vs. keeping a balanced rig.

I do know that when I am throwing a large size Clouser or a weighted bugger with my 6wt Bass tapper my loop suffers and the line tends to sink where it does not with a lighter fly. If uplining my current rod can improve this that would be great, but would I be sacraficing?
it depends on a lot of things that all interact with one another---your style of casting ---the wind resistance of the fly---the line that you choose---the rod (action and material) ---wind conditions ---and casting distance

ie: if your rod is made of glass or bamboo it will fatigue faster if overlined continuously---(graphite to a lesser degree)

if overlined once or twice or used at short distances---30 or 40 ft---it might be ok

from what you say about throwing a heavy clouser and getting tailing loops ---im not having a good feeling about your rod having the reserve power to overline it
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Old 04-09-2008, 12:09 PM
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Default Re: Uplining

Thanks for all of the helpful advice guys, I appreciate it.

From what everyone is saying it sounds like the best thing to do would be to fish what I can with what I've got and save up for the new rod.
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Old 04-09-2008, 09:52 PM
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Default Re: Uplining

Getting multiple opinions is generally good, but the first two you got weren't much good. (from your original post) A 6wt rod is designed to cast ideally with 30' of 6wt fly line outside the rod tip. A 6wt rod may cast 20' of 8wt line well, but beyond that it's performance will suffer. A snapped rod could be one form of that suffering.

Its true that a 8wt line is ideal for casting bulky bass flies, but these are far from necessary for smallmouth. I've caught more smallmouth on size 6 and smaller clousers and buggers than on anything else, and never on more than a 6wt rod.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:30 PM
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Default Re: Uplining

Quote:
Originally Posted by Castaway View Post
From what everyone is saying it sounds like the best thing to do would be to fish what I can with what I've got and save up for the new rod.
Hang in there and next you can post in the "how many rods do you own" thread
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