Make Factory Loops

FlymanSJB

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Hey guys, Its that time of year, clean the reels and rods, tie flies and fix and dress lines. If you are a winter fly fisherman like me I`m switching up to my favorite winter lines.

I had two bad loops on fly lines from all the fishing I did last year. I like factory loops a lot, its nice to just change out tapered leaders of different sizes in a flash and keep fishing.

I was really bummed out man, two expensive fly lines with bad loops, until my local guy at the fly shop said, its easy to make new factory loops on fly lines.

Really? Enlighten me, I said.

He handed me a piece of clear heat shrink and said make a loop shove it through, heat with a lighter and use a fly tying scissors and cut off the heat shrink. Could it be that easy?

Got home and that's what I did, I messed up my first loop, because I overheated the line and then pulled on it before it cooled but after that perfect factory loops!

I did find this video, and basically this is what I did, minus the tool, I didn't need it, I got the loop through easily enough.

I`ll share this video because it was helpful. I am happy, new fixed fly lines for winter.

Peace.

YouTube
 

Gimmeslack

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I have a bad loop so timely post!
Am I correct that the heat shrink is simply holding line in place and it’s being fused by heat? Any reason it has to be clear HS?
 

FlymanSJB

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Yes the heat shrink just holds the line in place while being fused. The clear works good because you can see how close to the loop you are and for seeing the tag end fuse together.
 

trev

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You will cut the shrink tube off when the welding is finished, I can't color mattering Edit: I was wrong-"You have to watch through the shrink tube, to see if it is welding." so transparent is important.
If you search there are several versions out there, hair iron, light bulb, heat gun etc suggested as heat.
Welding your own loops in sink tips and fly lines | Hatch Magazine - Fly Fishing, etc.
Welding your loops | Global FlyFisher | A simple 7-step guide will show you how to make small, neat loops on your fly lines. Just like the pros - just neater.
Now you can finally say goodbye to big clumsy loops, acetone, glue and sewing processes. Doing it this way will give you, small, smooth and round loops.


I think I'd rather use this method;
Sexyloops - Welded Loops on fly lines
 

Druunkonego

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The fact that there's no knot concerns me but I like the approach. I currently have a bad loop on my trout rod so I might just have to try this. Thanks!
 

Druunkonego

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I suppose you're right. I guess I just assumed there was some kind of knot under there. (shurgs) How 'bout that?
 

FlymanSJB

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I suppose you're right. I guess I just assumed there was some kind of knot under there. (shurgs) How 'bout that?
I think there is on some big game lines, tarpon ETC but what is trout line rated for? 15-20#. We normally are not using 20lb mono leaders, most coated running lines for steelhead and salmon are 20 and 30lb core running lines. The new no stretch cores have higher ratings I have some salmon runner at 65lb core. Ive never broken a loop, not even one that was worn.
 

ryc72

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I’ve sealed a line and put on one of those braided loops with no ill effect. If anything, with a little floatant the tip floats better than a factory loop.
 

dynaflow

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I must be missing something?....why not just use a factory Rio Braided loop? Then put a dab of superglue at the loop end and dispense with the plastic sleeve,instead using a 8lb.nylon nail knot at the other end.Or of course you could make your own loops with 30lb.Gudebrod braided monofilament or similar product from Cortland.I prefer this method and these loops will not fail you.
 

okaloosa

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I must be missing something?....why not just use a factory Rio Braided loop? Then put a dab of superglue at the loop end and dispense with the plastic sleeve,instead using a 8lb.nylon nail knot at the other end.Or of course you could make your own loops with 30lb.Gudebrod braided monofilament or similar product from Cortland.I prefer this method and these loops will not fail you.
I have used flat dental floss as well as even just 15 lb mono to secure off loops on 12 and 15wt fly line and used straight 60 to 100lb test as leader for tarpon and pacific sails so I know those loops dont fail they dont fail...
 

dennyk

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Hi Steve have you ever tried the braided loop connectors that Ard makes? I tried to find them doing a search but came up empty. These work, the loops on my fly lines show no signs of wear. They would work well for preserving a repaired fly line as well.

Denny
 

flav

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Welding loops is hit or miss for me. Airflo lines are polyurethane and weld very easily, but most other lines are PVC and can be difficult to weld. The lighter the line, the harder it is to weld because there is less coating to weld together, so I usually only bother welding heavier stuff. Be prepared to damage some line the first few times you try it, so practice on an old line, but once you get it down it's not too difficult. There are lots of videos on the technique.
 

sweetandsalt

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Out of curiosity, please describe what you experienced in damaging a factory welded loop and at which end of the line. Splitting, peeling, cutting? And if substituting a blind spliced braided loop beware that they can cause an unacceptable hinge point.
 

flav

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Out of curiosity, please describe what you experienced in damaging a factory welded loop and at which end of the line. Splitting, peeling, cutting? And if substituting a blind spliced braided loop beware that they can cause an unacceptable hinge point.
I've never seen a factory loop fail, but I've seen them get worn and cut a little from the mono leader loop. Mostly I've seen cracks develop in the line at the hinge point where the doubled over section of the loop meets the main line. It's not that the loop is going to fail, the core would have to break, it's that water can get into the core and the tip of the line starts to sink. That's one of the issues you have to accept when you go with a loop to loop connection, and for me the pluses far outweigh the minuses.
 

sweetandsalt

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I have long looped my backing to fly line way before factory loops became ubiquitous. I resisted loop-to-loop leader attachment but have changed my mind as it so simplifies my constant experimenting with differing design leaders. I recognize though that welded loops are a thermo-chemical process potentially weaker than the standing fly line so I mechanically reinforce them with a multi-turn Nail Knot when new (12 - 15 wraps). I have experienced zero failure. On the issue of monofilament leader loops cutting into the coating of the welded loop...I can imagine this happening only if the leader butt diameter is too thin. A properly mass matched butt section is always thick enough to mate well with the line loop, approximately .021" for a #4 or 5-weight line. Since on trout sized lines I am mostly using either Braided or Furled Nylon leader butts this cutting is precluded anyway. But even in the salt where my hard Fluorocarbon butt is about .026 or .028 I am not experiencing coating cutting. Incidentally, on RIO's top DirectCore salt lines they are factory reinforcing the loops to be stronger than the line itself.

T19 073 Braided Butt vsC.jpg
 

FlymanSJB

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I had an airflo line get cut to the core after the factory end on one line after horsing a nice brown out of the rocks and a RIO gold with the coating wore and the core showing in the loop. Both fixed like new.

I have used nail knots, braids, blood knots, all the same stuff you guys have tried, nail knots on the tag end of loops, a good idea for big game and Ive done that on sink tip ends but I just prefer a factory end and a tapered leader for my trout lines.

I think the loop to loop is stronger than the leader because it chokes onto itself, there are charts for rigging loads and normally it comes down to knot strength at the eye of the hook, that is not 100%

Anyway, good discussion guys. If you need to make a factory loop? its pretty easy.
 

Ard

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Hi Steve have you ever tried the braided loop connectors that Ard makes? I tried to find them doing a search but came up empty. These work, the loops on my fly lines show no signs of wear. They would work well for preserving a repaired fly line as well.

Denny
Although I don't push sales here I do still have enough inventory of braid to make some. I do not recommend the Cortland Braid. If ever you get some you may find that the core is filled with a strange granular material which is a type of lubricant. This makes the braid want to slip and slide, you can make it work but I don't trust it for sales.

This is the thread where I offered them.

I do still have some 35 pound orange braid but must ask for an extra 3 dollars for a dozen of that type because they are difficult to make.
 

FlymanSJB

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Hi Steve have you ever tried the braided loop connectors that Ard makes? I tried to find them doing a search but came up empty. These work, the loops on my fly lines show no signs of wear. They would work well for preserving a repaired fly line as well.

Denny
I wouldn't use them on my trout lines but my spey lines, sure! Ard hook a brother up! :)
 
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