WindCutter Help...

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by Eric Tarcha, Jun 20, 2010.

  1. Eric Tarcha gear whore

    Posts: 1,067
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +12 / 0
    I have an older version of the the WindCutter 6/7/8 line that someone gave me, and he also gave me theTip2. What exactly is the Tip2 for? Seems there is a looped section already attached to the head as well....

    I need some WindCutter edjumacation...

  2. stewart dee Guest

    Posts: 0
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    In the windcutter days people would buy cheaters to add on a windcutter and perhaps this ( Tip2 ) is actually just a cheater. I rocked a windcutter for a while and remember them coupled with a wallet of different tips ranging from full floater to a variety of sink rates that looped to the end of the head. My opinion windcutters where decent although compared to today's standard pretty old- hope this help Eric, good luck.
  3. ralfish Active Member

    Posts: 297
    Ratings: +48 / 0
    First loop is around 17.5' ( tip 1), second one is at around 30' ( if memory serves) giving a tip 2 that may be removed for heavier than normal tips or very windy conditions. They also have a new tip-2 replecement of intermediate sink rate that helps tips get down better.
  4. poirierpro Member

    Posts: 240
    Spokane, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Do yourself a favor and look at other line alternatives...anything Airflo.
  5. FT Active Member

    Posts: 1,242
    Burlington, WA
    Ratings: +102 / 0
    The answers you were given so far, although well meaning, are incorrect.

    RIO Windcutter lines until the last 2 years or so came with two factory loop splices in them. One was 15' from the tip (known as Tip 1), and the other was 30' from the tip (known as tip 2). The full line with both tips in use has a belly 55' long. With Tip 2 removed and one of the sink tips installed, you had a line with a belly/tip length of 40'.

    In order for it to make sense as to what either configuration was used for, we need to delve a little deeper.

    1) With both tips in use, the older Windcutter line, like the new ones, was matched to the rod's liine rating by the middle line rating number. In other words, your Windcutter 6/7/8 is for a rod rated as a 7/8 (or if you like a slower rod or prefer more bend in the rod when casting, it would work well on an 8/9 rated rod).

    2) With Tip 2 removed and a sink tip installed, the line becomes a Skagit line with tip. However, you need to go up 2 -3 line sizes for it to work properly as a Skagit line. I.e, your 6/7/8 Windcutter would make a good Skagit line for a 4/5 (possibly a 5/6, but it would be on the light side for most 5/6 spey rods) rod.

    3) Jim Vincent, who founded RIO and who designed the Windcutter did this in order to accommodate folks using different casting techniques.

    4) With both tips intalled, the line works well for traditional spey casting techniques (and like all the short belly spey lines - i.e. bellies of 55' long) it is a good line for someone to learn traditional spey casting (what Ed Ward calles touch-and-go).

    5) With Tip 2 removed and one of the sink tips installed, Skagit casters have a line that works for them and the sustained anchor used in Skagit casting. Just remember to go up 2-3 line sizes to do so.

    Jim did this because back when he designed and put the Windcutter on the market, there were only double taper salmon lines available from the line manufacturers for use in spey casting. Otherwise, you had to cut and splice your own suitable line. Since most folks are very hestitant (understandably so) about cutting into a line they just paid $40.00-$50.00 for, and then cutting into another such line as well in order to make a suitable WF Spey line, Jim's Windcutter was a success. In fact, I credit it in a big way with the popularity and development of 2-handed rods and spey casting here in North America because folks could now go down to the local fly shop and buy a line that would work off the shelf that would work on their spey rod. Of course, this assumed the man behind the counter understood how the line was designed and that some rods (such as the old brownie Sage 9140-4) were designed to cast the Windcutter line with tip 2 removed. In other words, the old Sage brownie 9140-4 is a 9/10 rod only if used with the old Windcutter 8/9/10 with Tip 2 removed, otherwise, it is a 6/7 or 7/8 rod.

    Unfortunately, this caused a bunch of confusion as well because folks getting into spey casting didn't know thjis about the Windcutter lines, nor do they know about some of the rods being rated for the Windcutter line with Tip 2 removed. Unfortunately, neither did the folks behind the counter at the local fly shop.

    In order to address this problem with confusion about which spey line weight to use on what rod, the AAMFT came up with spey line standards for Shooting head (Scandi lines), short-belly (55'), mid-belly (65'), and long-belly (75' and longer) lines. Skagit lines were left out of this standard. However, since Skagit lines are best matches to the rod via the grain weight (actually all lines are best matched to a given rod by the grain weight of the line's belly and the grain window the rod is designed to cast), Skagit lines came on the market rated by grain weight. Keep in mind that true didicated Skagit lines didn't hit the marker until RIO introduced them a mere 3 or so ago.

    And despite what some other may say, the RIO Windcutter (whether the new one or the old one with 2 tips) works well as a short-belly spey line and unlike the other short-belly lines on the market, the old one works acceptably as a Skagit line if you go up 2-3 line sizes and remove Tip 2. Keep in mind that the Airflow Delta and SA Short-belly Spey came about several years after the Windcutter had revolutionized the spey line market and they all have the same 55' long belly. The Windcutter, Delta Spey, SA Short-belly Spey all have the same grain weight. Granted, the line tapers vary a little from one manufacturer to the other, but they all work in the same line rating on the same rods rated for the same line.

    I hope this answers your question and cliears up any confusion others may have or have caused by not knowing thiis bit of spey line develpment history and how it evolved.
  6. soundflycaster Member

    Posts: 191
    Mossyrock, WA
    Ratings: +11 / 0
    Great answer FT. There is nothing wrong with the older windcutter lines. They are still quite serviceable and will work just fine when matched to the rod of appropriate size. I have this line and still use it on occasion with a DC 13' 7/8. I do like alot of the new Airflo lines and use them too. But do not discount the Rio Windcutter it would be just fine to learn on or for use by the experienced caster.
  7. Eric Tarcha gear whore

    Posts: 1,067
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +12 / 0
    Thanks FT, that helped alot. I do have a couple of more questions though. so the tip2 is directional, ie, there is a taper to it? and for my own visualization, from running line to fly, it would go head, tip2, then tip1 to get the 55' head? I attached a picture I found, is this the older line configuration? Thanks a ton!

    I do have a bunch of airflo and rio heads, but all are scandi or skagit types. I wanted to give a mid belly line a shot and figured I could try this one and not have to buy a line...

    View attachment 32165
  8. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,502
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,473 / 9
    Eric, great question. I have a WC 6/7/8 that I'm trying to figure out too. FT, excellent explanation that after I re-read when I'm at home with the line I'm sure will make me comfortable knowing what I'm dealing with. Thanks for that explanation. I'm sure that I have more than enough lines to fill my needs, but this is one line that has been sitting around as I've scratched my head. I think my two tips are different colors too, probably so that I know which one goes where, or the tips are the same color and the running line is a different color.
  9. Brian Thomas Active Member

    Posts: 808
    Kamloops B.C
    Ratings: +122 / 0
    "The 15-foot tapered sinking-tips include a clear AquaLux Intermediate Tip (1.5 inches per second, or ips), a Type 3 Density Compensated Tip (3 ips), a Type 6 Density Compensated Tip (6 ips) and a Type 8 Density Compensated Tip (8 ips). Also included this year is the new Intermediate Compensator Tip. For better line control, this tip replaces the Floating Tip 2 when fishing the 15-foot sink tips."

    Here is some more info on the 1st generation Windcutters .
  10. James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

    Posts: 2,785
    Ratings: +88 / 0
    Yes, tip 2 is directional and must be installed with the fat end going to the belly and the thin end going to the tip. The taper should be pretty obvious for T2, so just eyeball it. Also, it is a short belly line. If you want to move to mid belly configs, that's where you start to look at midspeys (Rio), Delta Longs (Airflo) which run about 65' long. The windcutter (while not my favorite line) is really a pretty versatile line and works well with pretty good sized bugs while still maintaining an easy to cast stroke.