running lines for compacts

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by Sean Beauchamp, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. Sean Beauchamp Hot and Heavy at yer 6

    Posts: 2,145
    Shoreline, WA, U.S.
    Ratings: +515 / 1
    Just wondering what the latest and greatest is for those dedicated skagiteers in the crowd. Looking for a new running line wondering what you guys are liking these days. I know there are lots of old threads covering this topic but it seems like guys are trying out new stuff all the time. Thanks!
  2. Ian Broadie Flyfishing is so "Metal"

    Posts: 670
    Kirkland, Washington
    Ratings: +57 / 0
    What running line are you using now and what are you looking to get out of a different running line? I currently use running lines by RIO, Airflo, Guideline, SRO, and SA. All of them have pluses and minuses but my two favorites for heavy winter work are the SRO Ballistic .038 and the RIO Powerflex core .035. The Airflo ridge is also good as well but seems to tangle a bit more when it gets cold.

    I also have a setup that is strictly for distance casting and use Amnesia for the running line so I can shoot farther... so for pure distance a mono running line of any sort of quality will add distance to a cast due to the reduced diameter of the line. The biggest draw back to a mono running line I can think of is with shorter head mending can be a pain sometimes at higher distances and if one tangles mono running line it can be worlds of fun untangling it.
  3. Panhandle Active Member

    Posts: 4,103
    Selkirk Mountains, Idaho Panhandle
    Ratings: +23 / 0
    I have monic on my compacts. Reacts well in all temps and good memory.
  4. Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    Posts: 6,501
    Duvall, wa
    Ratings: +1,701 / 2
    I'm runnin a roached out, beat to shit, almost useless Airflo Ridge. Been using it since last fall. Don't think I'll get another one.
  5. LBC nymphing beads with a spey pole.

    Posts: 249
    Ratings: +9 / 0
    I switched from the Ridge to the airflo Miracle Braid and dude, what a difference. Its a little harder to hang on to on those cold ass days on the Penninsula when your fingers can't even grab a chew, but it has far less tangles and I love hearing it rip through the guides. Im outfitting all my speys with this running line skagits and scandi's. Tons of good options out there.
  6. Brady Burmeister Active Member

    Posts: 582
    Ratings: +161 / 0
    I like a tapered one for mending. I can't shoot 100 ft. but I rarely need or want to here in Oh. My favorites are the SA dragontail and the SGS mendmaster.
  7. slippery_whippet Member

    Posts: 229
    Sedro Woolley, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I second that notion, I have been using a couple of the SA dragontail lines and I really like them.
  8. Sean Beauchamp Hot and Heavy at yer 6

    Posts: 2,145
    Shoreline, WA, U.S.
    Ratings: +515 / 1
    I'll take handling over distance as I can't seem to find.many reasons to fish past 80 feet most of the time. I have a Rio powerflex and I hate it. I have friends that swear by amnesia but I'm not too into tangles and if that's a common issue then ill sacrifice some distance.
  9. Ian Broadie Flyfishing is so "Metal"

    Posts: 670
    Kirkland, Washington
    Ratings: +57 / 0
    What do you hate about the Powerflex? Do you have tangle issues? I have used it with any number of Compact Skagit, Skagit Short, Skagit Flight, Standard Skagit, AFS, Guideline, and a Delta Spey that I cut off at the taper transition and the only time I have an issue is when I am pushing with my top hand and not pulling with my bottom hand.

    99% of running line issues can be resolved with line speed and line speed is generated by good casting technique. When using short shooting heads with running line bottom hand pull will flex the rod more, which will generate more line speed, and is essential to an efficient cast. Additionally bottom hand pull is encouraged by controlling the rod with your bottom hand throughout the cast.

    Tinker with that notion and I bet nearly all running line issues will miraculously go away.
  10. Sean Beauchamp Hot and Heavy at yer 6

    Posts: 2,145
    Shoreline, WA, U.S.
    Ratings: +515 / 1
    I hate it because the blue color doesn't match my patagonia jacket. Kinda clashes. It also just doesn't shoot worth a shit and.loves to create a ratnest around my first stripping guide (keep in mind mine is.approaching 2 years of heavy use old). When it was brand new I didn't feel it was anything special but fished it because I'm cheap and it worked. Just lookin to try something new.
  11. Ian Broadie Flyfishing is so "Metal"

    Posts: 670
    Kirkland, Washington
    Ratings: +57 / 0
    It sucks when colors clash, but one must give a long hard look at properly accessorizing color schemes and make sure that all items are in feng shui while on the river.

    If you want to try something new I would give a look at the Snake River Outfitters (SRO) Ballistic running line, it shoots well, doesn't tangle terribly badly, and does not have a long break in period.

    Also I bet controlling the rod with your bottom hand will eliminate more shooting and tangling issues than new running line.
  12. Wadecalvin Member

    Posts: 240
    Redmond Oregon
    Ratings: +11 / 0
    I use Varivas #37 and Berkley Big Game #40 Mono, and Cheap mono on my trout stuff- gonna switch over to something else on a few of them- tired of dealing with stretching and coiling.
  13. Sean Beauchamp Hot and Heavy at yer 6

    Posts: 2,145
    Shoreline, WA, U.S.
    Ratings: +515 / 1
    Ian I will work on the bottom hand. Do any of the shops carry that line? Does Ron have it?
  14. Ian Broadie Flyfishing is so "Metal"

    Posts: 670
    Kirkland, Washington
    Ratings: +57 / 0
    Unfortunately no I don't believe any shops carry it but you can get it at: I will personally vouch for the line and for Lee and Nancy at SRO they are great people who are definitely worth giving your money to. Ron would say the same thing as well.

    If you want we can fish sometime and I can show you what I'm talking about.
  15. Klickrolf Active Member

    Posts: 600
    Klickitat, Washington
    Ratings: +166 / 0
    This is the problem with short heads if you want to cast long. I have 4 fingers and a thumb, therefore I can loop about 3' of line on each of 4 fingers, my thumb is not available, nor is my other, if I try to shoot more than about 12' of running line I could run into trouble. You can turn your fingers forward on the delivery and allow the rod to take the line, but if you drop it all on the water you're looking for trouble. If I strip in more than 4 fingers I'll be lucky with the cast about 50% of the time.

    Sorry for the useless paragraph above.
  16. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,556
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,513 / 9
    I like the airflo ridge and have had many friends have me try other things that they like. I am never concerned too much about distance because I can't shoot line further than the length of that running line. I can get out to where the fish are supposed to be and that works. If you want to try an airflo ridge, let me know...I might lend you one. If you want to try some mono stuff that I've got, I'll send it to you. I hope you are getting some sleep there daddy.
  17. Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    Posts: 6,501
    Duvall, wa
    Ratings: +1,701 / 2
    I'm going to be switching over to a Delta multi tip here soon as an experiment. I think it's going to work better for what I do. I'll let you try it some time.
  18. steve s Member

    Posts: 445
    Issaquah, Washington
    Ratings: +4 / 0
    I've used Airflo ridge, Amnesia, Rio running line and am now using Berkley Big Game 40lb. I prefer mono running lines. I like the way they shoot and how easy they come out of the water. I really liked Amnesia but felt that there was too much stretch. I don't have any issues handling mono and feel that I can mend better with mono than standard running lines because it's so light.
  19. James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

    Posts: 2,785
    Ratings: +88 / 0
    Any of the coated lines of relatively large diameter won't shoot for shit. You mentioned that distance wasn't a concern, but this statement does kinda contradict what you said before.

    If you want good handling stick with the coated lines. If you want mendability, the dragon tail is a good solution. If you want long distance shooting move to one of the braids or a good mono.

    Be forewarned though, the Dragon tail is the worst shooting line I have seen. The taper to it is of huge benefit with the Airflow skagit heads as the polyurethane used tends to stick in the water a bit, and the rear taper is particularly steep.

    As for tangles, I find that mono tangles at the same rate as the coated lines when dealing with significant loops of line (shooting 3 or more rod lengths). Your mileage may vary of course, but tangles are much better dealt with by good line management techniques rather than purely depending on your line to do it for you.

    Personally if it were me, I'd go and buy a flat beam mono (Rio 50lb) and try it out. It costs about $9 and if you don't like it, you can use it as stinger hook material. The other solutions do cost quite a bit more, but as mentioned before do mend and manage just fine.
  20. golfman65 Guest

    Posts: 0
    Ratings: +5 / 0
    You got the wrong powerflex...get the green .030, the blue was too heavy for my liking and didn't shoot as well...I've used just about everything, for a long time only went with mono, from guideline to varivas which is what I would use now if I was running it...Mono shoots like a mother but i've had breakage problems on too many occasions...

    I got tired of seeing how far I could cast everything and wanted a shooting line that I didn't have to check regularly for step marks or snappage issues and found the green .030 Rio cold water floating to be the best of all worlds...Maybe I can't cast it 130' but it still bombs out there plenty far enough and is much easier to handle in all weather conditions..

    I don't forsee my going back to mono anytime soon...