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Stillwater Fly Fishing Discuss stillwater techniques, patterns used, ask questions, get answers on the best way to fish stillwaters

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Old 07-07-2017, 11:14 PM
think trout think trout is offline
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Default Level dry fly leaders

I received an email from Snowbee with a video attached on how to fish stillwaters. The man in the video tied 10' of fluorocarbon tippet material onto the welded loop of his fly line with a clinch knot and tied a dry fly on the other end. Has anyone ever heard of fishing dry flies with a 10' level leader?
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Old 07-08-2017, 12:47 AM
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

What struck me as odd was fishing dries on fluorocarbon: I think it tends to sink.
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Old 07-08-2017, 10:15 AM
think trout think trout is offline
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

I thought the same thing. I've viewed several videos of fisherman in England using long level leaders for everything and they all used fluorocarbon.
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Old 07-08-2017, 02:29 PM
bigjim5589 bigjim5589 is offline
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

I recall reading many years ago that some dry fly anglers were using various methods to cause their tippet to sink adjacent to the fly, to eliminate the "shadow" that the floating tippet might create. So, with that in mind it could make sense for the tippet to be fluorocarbon. Plus of course there's that hype about fluoro being "invisible" under water.

I never fished dry flies a lot. Most surface fishing I've done for trout has been with terrestrial patterns, and a light tippet wasn't a necessity. IMO, such a long straight tippet, particularly where an accurate & finesse presentation is required, might make such a presentation difficult to attain. A tapered leader & tippet combination is not always needed, but not all straight leader/ tippet combinations work well, especially if they are long in length.

I've certainly used a lot of heavier straight leaders but more in the 6' or less length range, and not with dry flies.

There's also the possible hinging issue with tying tippet to the welded loop.

Of course, none of this we do is gospel, so if it works for an angler, that's all that really should matter. I know that over all the years I've fly fished, I've done unconventional things as far as leaders & tippet, and gotten some strange looks & comments from other anglers. I've been told "that won't work" and proven to myself that it does. So, as long as it works for me, I'll keep doing the unconventional, and would expect others to do the same with what works for them.
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Old 07-08-2017, 04:46 PM
scotty macfly scotty macfly is offline
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjim5589 View Post
Of course, none of this we do is gospel, so if it works for an angler, that's all that really should matter. I know that over all the years I've fly fished, I've done unconventional things as far as leaders & tippet, and gotten some strange looks & comments from other anglers. I've been told "that won't work" and proven to myself that it does. So, as long as it works for me, I'll keep doing the unconventional, and would expect others to do the same with what works for them.
What you just said is gospel. If unconventional ways work for someone, who has the authority to say it won't work? I applaud those who find strange and peculiar ways to make it work. Some of the best ideas I have seen were so mid-evil looking, but they worked better than the newer technical ways because less things to go wrong.
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Old 07-08-2017, 08:38 PM
bigjim5589 bigjim5589 is offline
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

Thanks Scott! It is after all just fishing. We do sometimes make things in this sport more complex than they need to be.
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Old 07-25-2017, 09:48 AM
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

I know someone who does this. He uses Berkley Vanish in (I think) 4 pound test, which is about the same diameter as a 4X tippet.

He fishes a private club that's all filled-in limestone quarries. Like vertical lakes, not a lot of surface area but 90 feet deep.
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Old 07-25-2017, 10:18 AM
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Default Re: Level dry fly leaders

Flourocarbon leaders will most often float rather than sink.

"monofilament leaders and tippets generally have a specific gravity in the range of 1.05 to 1.10, making them just slightly heavier than water ..... Being slightly heavier than water does not mean that nylon monofilament is going to sink, at least not quickly or very well ..... If pushed or pulled under the surface by a weighted fly or roiling current, nylon monofilament will sink . . . but very, very slowly.

Fluorocarbon has a specific gravity in the range of 1.75 to 1.90. .... But is it sufficiently dense to quickly and reliable break surface tension and sink all by itself, even at zero contact angles, and even in the smallest diameters? No, itís not. Our testing reveals that most brands of fluorocarbon tippet material in 0X to 8X diameters are no better than nylon at breaking surface tension and sinking on their own. Larger diameter fluorocarbon materials do demonstrate a slightly better ability to break surface tension without the assistance of current or other external influences, but for practical fishing purposes fluorocarbon has little benefit over nylon on this measure
."

Fluorocarbon vs. Nylon | Fly Fish America

These leaders are extruded and have a thin shiny oily coating. That is why there are combination degreasers sinkants made for fly fishing.

Commercial degreasers are commonly called "mud", such as Loon Snake River Mud or "tippet degreaser" such as Airflo Tippet Degreaser.

Degreasers do three things. First they contain a cleaner (detergent) that removes any oils or residual chemicals that are on the surface of commercial tippets. These oils prevent the leader from sinking. Secondly, they contain a sinkant that destroys the surface tension of water molecules so the leader sinks immediately. Thirdly they contain fuller's earth compound that dulls the leader to remove the shiny surface so that the leader surface is less reflective. And finally, they contain a substance (glycerin) that keeps the degreaser from drying out.
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