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  1. #1

    Default Advice on the proper 3wt line to buy.

    I am wondering what the pro/cons of a double tapered line like the Cortland 444 Classic Peach line are, say in comparison to a straight weight forward line. I am in the process of getting a 3wt rig set up with an Orvis Battenkill reel and a 7'-8' rod. Haven't decided on the rod as of yet. Leaning towards The Fenwick Aetos (I have the 5wt, which is a great rod for the $$) also considering the Reddington Classic Trout and the St Croix Mojo trout. The use will be an all around rig for very small stream fishing. Thick over growth etc.
    I guess what I am really asking is that I don't understand how these two types of lines will cast? My only experience is wf floating and sinking for Bass on my 8wt. Thanks for any thoughts.
    " I have learned that to be with those I like is enough" Whitman

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Northern Colorado

    Default Re: Advice on the proper 3wt line to buy.

    I keep 3wt and 4wt DTs spooled and use them. Not really all-arounders in my book -- dry fly specialists. But that's what you're doing with a 3wt on a small stream mostly right? Maybe putting a lightly weighted nymph on the point now and then? They roll cast and mend well and give good dry fly presentations. Not an inappropriate choice at all for the application you describe but you'd have to get one and see how you and whichever rod you pick like it. But SA for instance has a DT in the mid-range Frequency line -- $50 -- so it's not top drawer money to find out.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Advice on the proper 3wt line to buy.

    Quote Originally Posted by joe_strummer View Post
    I keep 3wt and 4wt DTs spooled and use them. Not really all-arounders in my book -- dry fly specialists.
    I reread my initial post and I think I even confused myself lol. Yes, of course you are right. This set-up will be for tossing dry flies mostly and occasional nymph. I guess it really be an all arounder at all. So a DT is what I should consider for close quarters casting ?
    I can promise most of my casts will be from 10-30 ish feet.
    " I have learned that to be with those I like is enough" Whitman

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    SF Bay area California

    Default Re: Advice on the proper 3wt line to buy.

    If most of your casting is 30' or less it will not really matter. There are exceptions of course but many DT lines are also sold in a WF type line and the first 30' of each line is the same.

    The difference comes in where the DT line never gets skinny and taken from the middle both ends of the line are the same. This allows you to turn a DT line around if original end gets damaged. Some people will actually cut a DT line in half so that it will fit on a smaller reel. Then they can have in effect two lines for the price of one. The other advantage of a DT line is you can mend a long cast easier

    The WF line only has one tapered end and after the taper finishes it has running line for the rest of its length. The advantage with a WF line is it can cast farther due to the use of a narrower running line. This line also fits on a smaller reel or it allows for more backing than a typical DT line.

    To complicate the discussion there is the option of a long belly wf line which carries the taper back further to aid in mending but the long belly line tapers don't usually come in a DT format.

    There are lines that do come in both WF and DT but do not have the same front taper so remember to check out the taper and grain weight when choosing between the two line types.

    The Cortland 444 peach is an example of a line that is the same in either WF or DT format.

    The Rio InTouch Trout LT is an example of a line that is significantly different when in WF or in DT. Grain weight is 5 grains difference between the two with the WF line being 5 grains heavier than the DT and the taper is also different.

    Make sure you check the line specs to get what you want.


    Tim C.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Advice on the proper 3wt line to buy.

    You've gotten all solid answers so far OP, I will just add two things:

    1) The rod will pick the line, different rods prefer, and are optimized with, different lines, get your chosen rod in your hands before you choose a line.

    2) Some may disagree with me, but at casting distances of 0'-30' there is very little difference between a WF and DT (assuming similar grain weight) as there isn't significant line being carried in the air, nor is mending a long cast usually coming into play. What does come into play is the necessity of a taper that will load a rod sufficiently to create a flex profile adequately to deliver a desired presentation in close. We are speaking of utilizing only the first 30' +/- of taper/ head others have mentioned, any variance will likely only come into effect when certain brands of line have a greater grain weight and profile difference between their DT and WF designs. Conversely, I will stand on my opinion, that a line of DT or WF produced by manufacturers that employ designs of similar grain weight and taper design in the first 30' of their lines will fish very similarly at close distances. A caveat is that particular DT's, on certain short rods, will facilitate better close in loading, due to increased grain weight of head replicating an almost over lining scenario.

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