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> > Decreasing line wt

B7styleApril 3rd, 2016, 3:51 pm
montreal

Posts: 1
Hi guys, I have an 8 wt rod and a reel that recommands a 7-8 wt line. Can I decrease the line to 5 or 6 wt?
Thanks!
WbranchApril 3rd, 2016, 4:22 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2506
Yes, if your casting skills are refined enough to recognize it is going to be harder to load the rod with such a lighter line. You are probably also going to have to slow down the casting stroke as the line isn't going to be heavy enough to flex the rod and make it work to your advantage in assisting in laying out line.

Typically I tell people with just modest casting skills that they can comfortably go up, or down, one line weight with any given rod and the rod will still perform well. You however are suggesting going down 2-3 line weights
which is asking a lot from the rod and your skills. I'm assuming you are doing this because of finances? You can get away with it in the short term but believe me the feel of the rod and the actual fishing experience is going to be significantly (adversely) altered by going down up to three line weights on a rod recommended for a #8 line. I'd start saving a couple of dollars a week and by next season you will have enough money to buy a good new rod or a very good used rod.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
EntomanApril 3rd, 2016, 5:45 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Welcome to the Forum.

I agree w/ Wbranch for the reasons he stated plus a few more. Bottom line, it's never a good idea to use mismatched tackle. I can't give you a more in-depth recommendation without a little more info. What is your intended use? Is the rod glass, bamboo, early generation graphite or a newer model?

What I can say is that nowadays, rods rated for that heavy a line are mostly used for steelhead, bass and/or the salt. A 5 wt line on a modern fast action 8 wt rod will cast like a string on a broom handle.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
WbranchApril 3rd, 2016, 6:55 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2506
Entoman wrote;

A 5 wt line on a modern fast action 8 wt rod will cast like a string on a broom handle.


This is exactly the comment I was thinking of using in my response! No kidding I had it in my mind but decided to go my other description.

Now Entoman and I, due to our outstanding casting skill sets, would be able to throw the entire length of string on that broom handle.

Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
EntomanApril 6th, 2016, 2:14 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
:)
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
CatskilljonApril 6th, 2016, 11:57 pm
Upstate NY

Posts: 160
For the past, I don't know...maybe 6 or 8 years we have had a casting contest at the museum during the Catskill Rod Makers Gathering. Every year the specs change, but basically the idea is to build a rod to a specific length to cast a specific predetermined line while weighing no more than whatever the rules for that year stated. For example, the first year I participated the rod had to be 8ft, cast a 5wt line and weigh no more than 3oz.

One year we had a challenge to make a 7'9" rod, any weight that had to cast a 5wt Cortland Sylk line for distance. Believe me, all common sense as to rod flex went out the window in that group of rods. I would say that 11 of the 13 rods entered felt more like pool cues than fly rods and guess what? Every one of them cast over 90ft, some out to 125. I even fished mine that weekend and took photos of the trout caught just to prove it was a capable fishing tool to the guys that scoffed at the entry rods.

Is it more comfortable to have a matched outfit? absolutely. Matt and Entoman are dead on with their suggestions. But...if all you got is a mismatched line and you want to have some time on the water? use it...guys catch fish with a lot less. CJ
EntomanApril 7th, 2016, 2:52 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Years ago I used to teach an intermediate casting class. Many if not most of the attendees were at that stage where they were constantly fiddling with tackle adjustments to "fix" a lack of good casting skills. I would always start with a survey of their goals. While obligatorially mentioning improving their casting skills, most were also looking for the "perfect" tackle combination that would make them better and had hope of discovering it during the course. To counteract this and redirect their focus on where it needed to be, I'd follow up with a demonstration of bare handed casting. I'd lay out about 20-30 ft of line complete with leader and false fly. I'd pick it up, do one false cast and lay it back down. Showing off? A little perhaps, but it made the point far better than any amount of lecturing could have done and facilitated their focus on real improvement for the rest of the course. The natural disposition of human nature seems to always look for shortcuts.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
AfishinadoApril 8th, 2016, 8:10 am
SE PA

Posts: 69
Here's a great article on the subject by Lefty Kreh:
http://www.scientificanglers.com/choose-right-fly-line-weight/

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