Casting!

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by James Waggoner, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. hydrological

    hydrological beads are NOT flies and snagging is just ghetto

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    thank the switch rod marketing hype for the confusion. the switch, or jump roll, is a touch and go cast. the roll cast, it would seem, is a sustained anchor cast.
    and i think anymore, when people talk about switch casting, it may not have anything to with speycasting. just a catchy way to describe casting a switch rod with either single hand, or double handed overhead, and roll casts. i dont own a switch rod, only short two handers. and i never use a switch cast, only a jump roll.:D
     
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  2. James Waggoner

    James Waggoner Active Member

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    Yeah, What Klickrolf said....would very much welcome some more long line casting input.

    Fundamental principles gained, in the tread, so far:
    1. The correct lift - Pointed out by Bruce early on. Cure: Watch "Spey Masterclass with Derek Brown. Available at the Red Shed.
    2. Casting tempo - Along with the correct lift, the initial lift should be slow and smooth, the loop formation phase will most likely speed up into the firing position where a slight pause or drift will occur before the forward cast.
    Principlely, that's what I've gained this far. I will add there were countless "Tips" that had excellent value too.

    Did I miss or forget anything? OR do you have something to add? We've touched on it but would like to hear more about "Slack" and "Creep".

    Thanks,
    James.
     
  3. James Waggoner

    James Waggoner Active Member

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    I've got short two handers too! Not a switch, Baby or Junior Spey...just shorter two handers. I will admit, I do call them "Switch" rods when talking to others so they understand and I don't have to have a lengthy conversation about how and when a spey rod becomes a switch. Lots of confussion generated by this term as attested by countless threads...."Can I put a spey line on a switch?" or "Will I be better off starting with a Spey rod not a switch?". If anything they should call them "Indicator" or "Beader" rods as most posts in regards to lining a switch say something like.." use this line because XXXXX and it'll turn over an indicator and large beads." AHA! maybe that's why they call them "Switches" you can switch between flyfishing and gear fishing at will. Okay, I'll get off the soap box and take it to another useless thread.

    James.
     
  4. Greg Holt

    Greg Holt Active Member

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    James,
    My .02 on "Slack" and "Creep":

    Most casters think of slack in terms of it being caused by pausing during a casting stroke. While that can be a cause, a more common one is a lack of smooth acceleration during the powering of a stroke, i.e. jerking (sudden and unrecognized over-powering), which causes slack when the line catches up with the jerked rod. It can happen on the backstroke as well as the forward. Al Buhr does a great job describing "action/reaction" principles related to two handed casting in his book.

    Once a jerking or erratic acceleration has been introduced, it will almost certainly spoil the cast, as your muscles sense the loss of tension and try in vain to correct "on the fly" by jerking again!

    The "tell" of slack is visible shock waves in the airborne portion of the line (though other things also cause shock waves). No slack, no shock waves. Practice casting overhead til you rid yourself of shock waves, then memorize the acceleration pattern that worked, and transfer that to your touch and go and sustained anchor casts. It reminds me of towing another vehicle from a dead stop--slow, steady, gradual acceleration works best.

    In my own two handed casting, slack is most likely to sneak in at the very beginning of the forward stroke, especially if I'm trying to exert too much force (jerking) in an attempt to make a longer cast. Practicing with your stiffest, fastest rods will show the effects of overpowering more readily than softer action rods.

    "Creep" (to me) is starting a stroke too soon in an effort to re-establish tension from an insufficiently tensioned previous cast movement (forward or back, as above). Once again, your hands and brain recognize insufficient tension, and attempt to correct almost involuntarily. If the backcast is sufficiently tensioned, the forward cast is little more than maintaining tension and gradually adding more. This dovetails in with my model of a cast with a "refined" personality.

    Another book with great information on correcting casting faults: Troubleshooting the Cast, by Ed Jawaorowski, who studied under Lefty Kreh. Pretty darn good credentials.

    Sorry, .02 turned into way too many words...

    Greg
     
  5. James Waggoner

    James Waggoner Active Member

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    Thanks for your Two cents, I'll have to check into those books. I definitely know what your talking about, when you say your "Muscles sence the loss" and try to compensate, I try to catch myself when doing that.

    Thanks, James.
     
  6. Greg Holt

    Greg Holt Active Member

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    A few very talented golfers can correct their swing "on the fly" in a way similar to a professional stunt driver keeping a car under control, but for us mortals it's probably better to build on a consistent set of movements and, as James said, bail out when things get out of control and start over.

    The slack that develops from jerking in the forward stroke is often misdiagnosed, since it most often originates out of view of the caster, while the effects of the same error in the backcast are easily seen, thus more often corrected. It will show up though, as shock waves in the lower leg of the line as the forward cast prepares to unroll, sending the caster a clear message that some component is out of proportion.

    Sometimes I have to remember to fish while I'm casting, too...
     
  7. Klickrolf

    Klickrolf Active Member

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    Yes, the shock waves are evidence of something wrong. I see them too...luckily they disappear from time to time. So it's got to be about tempo...variations/deviations. Raising the rod just prior to delivery helps tighten things up.
     
  8. Greg Holt

    Greg Holt Active Member

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    Klick,
    I have no proof to support the following statements, but my gut tells me that:

    The older, slower recovery rods that bounce badly at release exxagerate shock waves, especially when the forward delivery ends closer to horizontal (e.g. early bamboo efforts).

    The use of less elastic shooting lines such as flat mono exxagerate shock waves since they are poor "shock absorbers". Perhaps that's why raising your rod tip helps "tighten things up" (by acting as a brake)?

    Shorter rods with their shorter casting strokes into shorter lines exxagerate shock waves, and require more precise timing.

    Not to disagree with your contention regarding tempo variations being a culprit, but tempo variations combined with sudden increases in applied force and rotational rather than linear rod tip path is the enemy. (I pray the last part of that statement doesn't summon Beetlejuice!).

    A line in flight and under tension behaves somewhat like a chain, in that different segments of it surge at different times and amounts based on (changes in) force input and elasticity related to diameter, core construction, covering, etc.. Too many factors for me to process...

    I see too many casters of long lines failing to adjust their mechanics from their short rod/short line casting experiences. Others have said it, and better than me. Slow down to just above the threshold of insufficient energy input, then increase by bits. Use your larger muscles in the correct order (legs, butt, torso, arms, hands). Give up a little distance in exhange for a lot of style.

    Peace and Good Will,
    Greg
     
  9. Wadecalvin

    Wadecalvin Member

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    Casting the longer belly lines if the timing and tempo is off or slack happens, combined with a sudden application of force etc etc- between the lift and the sweep will cause shock waves that blow the cast in the single spey right off the bat.
     
  10. Greg Holt

    Greg Holt Active Member

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    You're right, Tim.

    In a perfect world, there is no "between" in the sequence of lift and set. I watched a good caster's hands while performing a single spey and noticed a definite rolling of the top wrist away from the body during the lift and into the sweep that eliminated any potential hesistation, and probably increased tension slightly. The bottom wrist probably levered as well, but I couldn't pick it up.

    If I tried to describe the rod tip movement, I'd say the top of the lift "bent over" like the top of tall grass in a strong wind.

    Greg
     
  11. SpeySpaz

    SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

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    Talk about rediscovering the wheel.
    I just got out yesterday with a 15' rod and a multitip Delta, easily tossing a 4" leadeye bunny on a 14' sinktip all day long...
    Easier and more efficient than casting a short head all day, I just had to actually pay attention when casting, instead of going into "winter autohucking mode". Grin
     
  12. James Waggoner

    James Waggoner Active Member

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    Spaz, I agree easier and more efficent. It was this line that really got me thinking longer belly. Even thought it's only 50' - 55' it was still long enough to help me realize the benefits of a system other than skagit. I've never been a tosser of the real heavy junk, so hucking car keys has never been a criteria I needed to meet in a line system. Casting to 70 to 80' without stripping was a benefit worth looking into.

    James.
     
  13. speyghillie

    speyghillie speyghillie

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    Hi All,
    Just wanted to add that a long time ago in the days of Greenheart rods a Switch cast was a fishing cast with change of direction, not as we know it now, in fact a Highland switch cast was used to cast huge distances without the need to strip in any line,much more than we can lift and cast nowadays, in those days a Switch rod was the longest of all double-handed rods, they even had rods with a curve in them for fishing close to the bank and trees.
    Thanks Gordon.
    DTX Pro Staff.
     
  14. Greg Holt

    Greg Holt Active Member

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    Good stuff, Gordon--thanks.

    Keeps ya' humble, knowing everything wasn't discovered in the last 30 minutes, and all this terminology we toss around needs context to be clear.
    Greg
     
  15. speyghillie

    speyghillie speyghillie

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    Hi Greg,
    Well they argued about casting styles way back then too, this style that style, shooting heads long belly and multi tip lines, all argued about.
    So nothing really has changed.
    Cheers Gordon.
    DTX Pro Staff.