Re-designed SA XLT


Another Flyfisherman
I picked up the new version of the XLT a couple weeks ago and FINALLY got out for a few hours this morning to give it a test cast. So here is my 2 pennies on it. This is a 7wt XLT on a 7141. I cast it on still water with absolutely zero wind.

The head is a bit shorter (since we all fought for the AFTMA spey line standard). To get the weight within the standard the head got shortened. (this has also caused some hard feelings with the new XLT). The new version does shoot better than the old. I am not sure exactly what Way Yin did to the front taper but it turns over sweet. I put on my regular 15foot leader and it was turning over very nicely. I did notice that the turn over would loose some of its authority when shooting alot of line. This became more and more noticable the longer line you shot. I was wondering with the shorter head length if you had to treat this line like its shorter head bretheren and strip it all back in to cast it again.....I didnt really have to. I was picking it back up with up to 10 feet or so of running line out of the tip and it was casting fine and still shooting. BUT, with that......BIIIIIIG, powerful D-Loops were needed and you really had to throw some juice into them. This didnt work very well without the use of continuous load. It does seem like it likes a little higher line speed. I spent 3 hours working with it this morning. I am pleased with it, but it is a bit different than the original XLT. Some like the redesign, some dont. For me, it will still be a joy to fish with. I certainly enjoyed casting it for the little bit today. Now I am going to have to figure out where to cut it and see if the new version likes sink tips as the old one did. This is all just my opinion, which means absolutely nothing. I just thought I would share the experience. Tight lines.
Jay, thanks for the feedback. The situation with the evolution of rating standards that will better describe spey lines in order to make it somewhat easier to buy a line that will fit one's spey rod has lead, ironically, to the redesign of a much-admired line in order to fit it to the new standard. The cost is in the parameter that endeared XLT lines to some of us: that endlessly long belly/head. Kind of like having one's toes shortened in order to match one's feet with a certain shoe size, isn't it?

FWIW, I recently bought an early-version XLT line (they have dual line size designations; the new version has a single line size rating). Brothers of the long line - grab them while they're still available!


Active Member
I too thank you for the update on these lines. I've got all 'the old ones' and they are getting 'long in the tooth' from use. Has anyone had the opportunity to try any of the other 'single designation' XLT's?