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GunnyJanuary 4th, 2008, 2:05 pm
Northern California

Posts: 1
I received a new St Croix 9' 5wt for Christmas with an extremely slow action, very soft. I fish with three lines; a 5wt Rio nymphing line, a Cortland 5wt rocket taper and a S.A. Aircell DT.

The DT casts like a dream, nice tight loop. However, when I cast the other two lines collapsed loops seem to be the order of the day, nearly every cast.

Last night I had the wife video tape my casting with all three lines. Both the wt forward lines appear to load the rod excessively. So much so that on the forward stroke rod tip dips below the plane of the line and about the first third of the line follows suit. When the line begins to move forward the last third whips below the new plane of the line producing my collapse loops. This happens with any amount of line sufficient to load the rod properly.

I fish with fast action rods so it quite possible that I'm applying too much power to the forward cast but I did vary the power considerable with no real results. That said; I am open to the possibility or probability this is related to my casting technigue or timing.

Is it possible that the 5wt wt forward lines are too heavy for the very soft action of this rod? Would it be worth trying a 4wt line?


The Gunny
It's called Fishing, not catching
Sbman07January 4th, 2008, 5:57 pm

Posts: 8
Hey Gunny

you might want to try a 4wt. I have a 7' 6" 4wt st. Croix and I use it for everything that I fish other then pike or bigger I have caught some big 4-5lb bass and I have had no problem. But I like the 4wt better than a 5wt for most of the fish I go after. It sucks trying to find a line you like because its so expensive to change your mind if you don't like the line.
Three things I am never late for church, work, and fishing.
FlybyknightJanuary 4th, 2008, 7:04 pm
Milton, DE

Posts: 82
Hi Gunny,
With a slow action rod, same goes for bamboo,
you REALLY HAVE TO S L O W DOWN! and I mean slow.
Do not feel bad, that fault happens to just about
everyone who starts with a fast action, and then buys
a slow action and wonders what happened.
It is an easy fix, but a hard cure, so do not get

Lightly on the dimpling eddy fling;
the hypocritic fly's unruffled wing.
Thomas Scott
MartinlfJanuary 4th, 2008, 7:56 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
You might also try loading the rod with a bit less line out with the WF and nymph line. Or sticking with the DT? Or using a 4 weight line?? Best of luck; but I belive you'll find the cure. The rod is probably a sweet wet fly or streamer rod, and may prove fine with dry flies when you get the timing just right. Dick sounds like he knows of what he speaks, as they say.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
DanoJanuary 7th, 2008, 7:51 am
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101
Welcome to the forum, Roger!

Like you I prefer a fast action rod. A few years back I ran accross a Fly Logic 8', 2pc, blank for a 4/5 wt line on the bay, brand new and at a price that couldn't be refused....

Any who, turns out it is a slow action and very "soft". My weight forword and sinking tip lines are 4wt and my double taper is a 5wt. As Dick suggested slowing down your rythem is the way to go, IMNSHO. Whilst I've never thrown a 5 WF or 5 S/F with this rod I can't say with certainty that underlining your rod will help, I'd slow up first then try underlinning, perhaps with a demo line or a friends line.

A slow action rod will provide a more delicate presentation, however, under windy conditions they just don't have enough "backbone" to punch through the wind, regardless of casting style, if you need to get 25' or more of line out.

I wouldn't go so far as to imply that bamboo requires a slow count; depends on the taper. I have an 8', 3pc, bamboo (Leonard) for HEH/HDF (5 DT/5 WF) and it does have the "backbone" to punch through the wind and I use my "normal" casting rythem. FWIW.


Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.
McjamesJanuary 7th, 2008, 9:53 am
Cortland Manor, NY

Posts: 139
I have a 6 wt Orvis fullflex (glass) paired with 5wt line. This was my only rod until this fall. I dont have the tightest loops on the river by a long shot but it has gotten me by for 16 yrs.
I am haunted by waters
KinzuaJanuary 7th, 2008, 4:13 pm

Posts: 20
As you are learning, one can fine tune a fly rod by experimenting with different lines. Some rods are really sensitive to line taper profiles, weight distribution, and line hardness/softness. Unfortunately, these line experiments can get expensive.

So far, it seems that the DT line is a winner for you. I have never been a fan of nymph tapers for overhead casting - some are designed with a heavy head to help rollcast bulky indicator rigs quite nicely, but are a little clunky for longer overhead casts.

Other lines that work well on softer, slower rods are the Cortland 444 Classic "peach" and SA Mastery XPS.

FlybyknightJanuary 7th, 2008, 5:03 pm
Milton, DE

Posts: 82
You have an 8' LEONARD 3 pc. 5 WT!!
I had a shot at one like that 30 years ago,
but could not come up with the kings ransom
at the time.
I agree that a shorter 3 pc. heavier bamboo
will punch a line into the wind, especially
with Walt Carpenter's taper. (the guy who
made most of Leonard's 7&1/2 and 8 footers).

Lightly on the dimpling eddy fling;
the hypocritic fly's unruffled wing.
Thomas Scott
DanoJanuary 8th, 2008, 6:32 am
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101

Yeah, it pays to bump around in antique shops in small towns... I found this one outside of Missoula, Montana a few years back. It was in a ratty cardbord tube and the sock was kinda frayed.

Any who, I checked it out and it didn't have any bends and both tips were in great shape. Some of the windings were a tad frayed and the grip/reel seat was in fair condition. None the less, I restored it, "refurbished" might be the better word. I stripped off the old varnish, regripped with a downlocking Bellinger nickel reel seat w/Maple spacer, rewrapped with nickel Snake Brand guides (agate stripper), and Pearsall's silk (4/0). Refinished with 3 coats of Interlux "Original" varnish. I'm certain that the rod is Pre War, since the original guides were for silk lines which was the primary reason for me to refurbish the rod. It cost me far more to refurbish the rod than what I paid for it (you wouldn't believe me if I told you). But, I'm thinking it might be fairly rare (it's a Model 49) since the only Leonard taper for this model I've been able to find is for a 7'6", 5wt, 3pc, which would be the "modern" 7653.

It has prompted me to seriously consider building my own bamboo rods. I acquired a 1920's era Heddon bait casing rod that is completely original and was in great condition (another "antiqing" find here in K-Falls). Some of the intermeditate wrappings were loose and I managed to find exact matches for the silk and only had to refinish. I use this rod on occasion with the 1920's Phlueger "Summit" that I found at the same antique shop where I got the Heddon. Though, I do confess that I don't use bait with it, lures only...Hehehehe. Restoring those two rods really got me "in the ether" and I've pretty much concluded my research, now it's a matter of putting it to use.


Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.

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