Commando head, WF line as running line.

#1
Well after seeing an article online of another fly line being used as a running line, I had to field test this. Shoots adequately, and a bit easier to make a mend. Definetly some loss of distance compared to 40# Big Game. One thing I really liked was the loop to loop connection between the head and line was Much smoother than mono running line, which allowed me to overhead shoot line much easier. With the head and mono, the change of diameter between the two really hangs on the guides. Most of the time I'm casting with the the head below the tip, but sometimes you really just need to get a good overhead going in a tighter spot.

Any suggestions for reducing the hang up on guides with mono?

It was a fun experiment that brought in a decent little trout, but I think I'll go back to mono. I also feel like I can detect strikes better. The whole setup felt a little "numb" vs the mono feels very crisp and light fishing and easy to see the head twitch or hesitate on strikes. I really like these commando heads, and do believe the quality of fish I've been getting into translates to being able to reach water that was hard with traditional casting. Plus I find the sustained anchor casts a blast to cast even when not catching.
 
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#4
This is such a sweet idea! Relatedly, they are about to release what they call Commando Smooth, which is essentially an integrated short shooting head line. Obviously, the above cool hack offers much more flexibility since you can change shooting heads if you like. A totally welded connection would obviously shoot better through the guides. I also know of a local shop that has an airlfo welder so they can weld any airflo line together. I think OPST is made by rio, which would be the other material (not Polyurethane like airflo, which melts and welds much better).
 

Jeremy Floyd

fly fishing my way through life
#5
I use the red Rio Slickshooter, 50# flat mono running line with most shooting heads.. I goes a long ways. Use long loops that the current catches and pulls away from you downriver a bit, with like 15' in each loop. Shouldn't need more than 3-4 loops then.
 
#6
I use the red Rio Slickshooter, 50# flat mono running line with most shooting heads.. I goes a long ways. Use long loops that the current catches and pulls away from you downriver a bit, with like 15' in each loop. Shouldn't need more than 3-4 loops then.
Would it be beneficial to go to a lighter say 25# mono for a 175grain on a 4wt? Or not much of a difference?
 
#7
Would it be beneficial to go to a lighter say 25# mono for a 175grain on a 4wt? Or not much of a difference?
I know you weren’t asking me, but I use 50lb mono for all running lines, even my trout Spey rig, which has a little 275g commando on it. The thickness makes it easier to handle, less tangles, less slips and less of diameter change to the head so I get less Hinging. I also tie a super small triple surgeons loop as the connection in the running line so it stays tightly coupled with the loop at the backend of the head.
 
#8
I know you weren’t asking me, but I use 50lb mono for all running lines, even my trout Spey rig, which has a little 275g commando on it. The thickness makes it easier to handle, less tangles, less slips and less of diameter change to the head so I get less Hinging. I also tie a super small triple surgeons loop as the connection in the running line so it stays tightly coupled with the loop at the backend of the head.
The input it welcomed either way. I may have to try some 50lb since the big game is so cheap. It's actually pretty good once you stretch it out initially realllllllllllly well. I believe I have been doing double surgeons loops.
 

cmann886

Active Member
#9
I use 20 and 30 lb on my trout spey reels and 210-270 grain scandi/skagit lines. I really like how it works with the exception of in cold weather (Dec.-Feb) as i with cold fingers it is hard to grip.
 
#11
I have faced the same dilemma. I like the mono running lines because of the distance attainable but they don't mend very well. I have also used the floating running lines with loop to loop connections. Shorter distance by a few feet but better ability to mend. I'm conceptualizing a line right now that would have a very short head like an OPST but with a welded running line. I wonder if a RIO Grip Shooter might work. It has that section of coated line up front and transition to a mono line. When I work with a head, I never leave the head inside the guides so a bumpy transition isn't an issue at all. The running lines don't load anyway, regardless of whether they are inside or outside the tip.
 
#13
I have faced the same dilemma. I like the mono running lines because of the distance attainable but they don't mend very well. I have also used the floating running lines with loop to loop connections. Shorter distance by a few feet but better ability to mend. I'm conceptualizing a line right now that would have a very short head like an OPST but with a welded running line. I wonder if a RIO Grip Shooter might work. It has that section of coated line up front and transition to a mono line. When I work with a head, I never leave the head inside the guides so a bumpy transition isn't an issue at all. The running lines don't load anyway, regardless of whether they are inside or outside the tip.
A dilemma indeed. Though I've caught some of the nicest trout I've ever caught using mono and an OPST head, so the presentation is obviously workable. I can sort of throw a "mend" after casting, enough to work me through a zone I'm targeting.
 

Jeremy Floyd

fly fishing my way through life
#14
All you need to do, to mend short heads with mono shooting line, is flip the end of the head towards you whichever way you want to mend, after the cast. Then hold just enough vertical lift tension to lift the end of the head out of the water to slow down the swing, and let it drag to speed it up.

When there isn't much water flow, you don't need to worry about this kind of mending.
 
#15
All you need to do, to mend short heads with mono shooting line, is flip the end of the head towards you whichever way you want to mend, after the cast. Then hold just enough vertical lift tension to lift the end of the head out of the water to slow down the swing, and let it drag to speed it up.

When there isn't much water flow, you don't need to worry about this kind of mending.
Yep this is pretty much what I naturally started doing, after spending some time fishing the head. Overall this style of fishing works very well.
 

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