Homemade spey for kid

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by Charles Sullivan, Dec 10, 2012.

  1. Ladies and Gentlemen,

    I recently picked up an old lamiglas fiberglass 9 foot 8/9 blank for less than the price of a six pack. My thought is that I can put a switch type shaved down cork handle on it and use it for a tiny spey. The rod is intended to be used by my 2nd grade daughter who is pretty darn coordinated and I think I could teach to get 30 or 40 feet of line out.

    Has anyone tried this approach to teach a 3 foot lady to 2 hand cast?

    Any thoughts on what sort of line? My thought was to by a single hand 11 and try and do some surgery. I wouldn't be opposed to an out of the box skagit short or scandi type line. I'm figuring she won't be chucking a bunch of t-14 any time soon. maybe I could bring it and her to one of Aarons thingys.

    I'm sure most of you are gonna tell me to teach her 1 handed first but honestly 1 handed casting and troutfishing isn't my thing so it's either this or gear in the salt. Feel free to find a creative way to call me crazy though, as long as it's funny.

    Go Sox,
  2. You might drop ww a note. He has made several "trout speys" using light blanks. He may have a tip or two to help you.
  3. Is that the "honey" colored blank? I've got a couple of those, and a regular 'ol #8 air cell for $27.00 will spey cast just dandy.
  4. It's an s-glass blank. It's not a honey blank. I have a honey 8 ft 6 wt blank though.

    Go Sox,
  5. I bought echo geckos for my girls. Has a lower handle just like a tiny switch. Sounds like you are on target. Consider a Wulff Ambush 9 or 10wt. Right head length for single handed Spey casting, or two handed learning.
  6. I use a lot of Ambush lines to teach kids to cast, single and double handed. Used them for some adults too.
  7. What is so nice about the ambush? Head length? Design?

    I suspect I could take off 10 feet from the front and make it a floating tip in case she could cast 10 feet of type 3. Any reason why not?

    Go Sox,
  8. I just went and looked at my supply of blanks and it appears as though I have a honey blank too. It's he same size 9 ft. 8/9.

    Go Sox,
  9. Getting the little one casting on her own would be way more effective. You two could cover 1.5-2 times as much water as you do using the cast-and-pass method. Ed might have some demo lines to help you get it dialed in.

    Good luck!
  10. I'd prefer to buy any line from Ed, so I figure if I can have an idea what I want then I can talk to him. He may have ambush lines. I gotta build it up 1st.

    Go Sox,
  11. Ambush lines are a 20 foot head on a running line, basically a skagit for single handers or weigh the head and match to your lighter double handers.:D
  12. Charles, any lines I have are yours to try once you think the time is right. I do think starting with an ambush line would be a great starting point. The line's super short head allows for easy loading, no real need for backcasting room and shooting lots of line. It really will depend on feel to see which ambush line allows for the best tempo for her casts. On glass I really could not say. It might only take a 7wt ambush to flex that glass rod enough to make a nice double spey or circle spey cast. I'm pretty sure I have an ambush in 7wt and a larger on in 9 or 10.

    She might like a bit longer line in a short time after getting used to casting. They a double taper could do the trick nicely. If she's just roll casting that thing out there 25-30' with two hands in the second grade, she'll be rocking out a whole line by middle school!
    yuhina likes this.
  13. Interesting that this subject would come up. I was playing around with the idea a week ago. I had a Cabelas 8 wt kit that had been sitting in my garage for about five years so I dragged it out and put it together. I added 4 cork rings above the fighting butt that I had glued together and turned down on my lathe. Then I built the kit as normal. The lower handle goes all the way to the bottom end of the handle so it won't break off. It's a Rainshadow blank which casts single handed nicely but I had the idea of a 9 ft switch rod. It worked great. I took it out to Puget Sound fly Co. and we tried some lines on it. I had guessed about 380 grains. After trying it, I settled on a 400 gr. Scandi with a running line. It casts nicely single handed as was expected but the bonus is that it also casts very well with the 400 grain. We were casting it about 60 feet into a very strong wind so I imagine it wil go a far piece better on a good day.

    I can send you some pics if you like. I would just have to take them.
  14. I'd buy an old DT and chop it in half. She can have one line for practicing on the grass, and another for the water. When she figures out a hold point that lets her shoot line, you can chop the remainder off and loop it for running line. It's a cheap, easy way to figure out what works for her on that rod.
  15. Charles,

    I might have the same blank you are talking about... the blank I have is a beast! check the butt section diameter ... if that is as thick as your thumb, then we are talking about the same thing. I have it converted to 10' trout spey and it is really fun to cast! I think you will need a bit more weight to load this rod properly... fiberglass usually have heavier sweet spot than the same weight graphite blank... I run 540 Airflo switch on it and it rocks!

    I also think Ed has good point, Ambush line feel load much easier than other short heads, it is a great line to get kids going... I have teach a 4 feet tall lady to spey cast, and the Ambush is the fool-proof winner... give Ed a shout... and I think you are good to go! Great gesture! Ed... good luck! Mark

    Go Sox! :)
  16. On my girls echo gecko rods I split a DT line. Each got half, and after they are casting the 45' each into the backing I will add a full line to their reels!
  17. I also highly recommend the Ambush. They're now available in heads
    only for about 50$. Poppy has the grain weights listed for each line
    weight. You could use an old line for the running line. If for some
    reason it doesn't work out I'm pretty sure it could find a place on
    one of Dad's rods. I use one for swinging soft hackles in an area of
    steep and brushy banks and love it.
  18. My brother started fly fishing when he was 5 year old. He used two hands on a single handed rod. So yes you can, but it my be a little ezer if the rod was a little shorter. I just got a 8' 5/6wt fiberglass rod that has been made into a switch rod with a 3in butt. I haven't casted it yet. But it is for over head casting and spey casting. If you are interested P.M. me and I will give you the name of who built it. Hope this helps.
  19. I taught my sons how to spey cast when they were 6 years old by buying a cheap 8' 4/5 graphite blank and building it with a 3" long fighting butt on the blank. I simply used a standard beginners WF 6 wt line, but it 10' from the tip so they could use 10' sink tips on it, and taught them how to double spey and Snap-T.

    I did it this way because the longer 9' 8/9 graphite with fighting butt built on the blank was too much leverage for them. The 8' 4/5 was just right. They loved casting it and catching fish on it. Plus, it made it very easy for them to transition to a true 2-hander at age 11 when I got them 13' 7/8 rods. And an added plus was the 8 '4/5 rod with short fighting butt was easy for them to learn normal single-hand casting since they had already learned backcasts needed to be 180 degrees from the direction of where they wished the cast to go.
  20. With this short/light rod I think you're only going to be able to chuck sinking poly leaders to at the most T-8. I've a 11' glass 2hander rated 6/7 and Polly's to 85 grains is its rated limit per Steve Gotshall. Thing you have to keep in mind is these types of rods were designed to cast single hander lines and rating to rating a 2hander line will be up at least two knoch's heavier for rod loading.

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