Washington Fly Fishing Forum banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
If u know u know
Joined
·
289 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,
I am a young novice fly fisher in the Northwest Washington area. I have had a lot of experience fishing with spinning and bait-casting reels, but fly fishing has always been on my mind. So, my father in law was nice enough to give me all of his old gear from when he went backcountry fly fishing in Idaho in the '80s-90s. It doesn't look quite as outdated as it sounds though. Two rods, several reels with many extra spools, a float tube, net waders, fins, and a solid couple boxes of flies. Being a broke college kid, I am looking to save a few bucks if possible while accumulating the right gear to start landing some fish. I did decide get myself a new 5-6wt TFO rod, as I was told the old rods may not have the life in them that they used to have. But my main concern is all of the extra spools that I now have. They are perfectly wound with various types of fly line, I believe just sink tip and floating. Would these lines still be okay to use as long as I replace the leaders? They seem to work as intended (float/sink/etc.) but I have yet to get out more than a few times, only catching some small brookies last fall. If anyone has an idea on whether or not I should invest in some nicer fly line, I would appreciate the comment. :)

-Brandon
 

·
Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
If they work, they work. Check them for cracks, brittleness, or other damage. And clean/dress them. If they stop working as intended or you find damage, then replace them.
 

·
FISHON206
Joined
·
4,692 Posts
As tkww mentioned, clean the floating line with a wet paper towel, then get a small bottle of dry line floatant and treat the line. If it's not cracked, it should float ok. Another thing since these been on the spool for a long time, stretching them will get the kinks and memory out...hopefully.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
468 Posts
Four or five years ago I bought a Cortland 444 Camo/Clear Intermediate line for subsurface fishing and pretty much retired an SA 10ft sink tip 5wt line I bought around 1995, and one which I fished a lot. Last year I had reason to use this line again and it performed just as good as always. I'd say 21 years is pretty darned good, and it probably has many years ahead of it.
 

·
If u know u know
Joined
·
289 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I will make sure to post some pictures here in a little bit. Steve, I will definitely coat some fly floatant on them just for reassurance. Does anyone have a suggestion on what flies to master? At this point, only fly fishing lakes are open so I am getting started with mostly stillwater fishing. I talked to a guy at Squalicum lake a few days ago who gave me a bead headed wooly bugger, which he said was his favorite fly. Is that alright to cast and strip with floating line? Or will it stay too shallow?
There is much to learn :D
I also met an older fellow who is 91 and still goes out to fly fish as much as he can. Hopefully I can tag along with him soon and hope some wisdom rubs off on me.
 

·
Just an Old Man
Joined
·
35,199 Posts
All good advice here. I would get some fly LINE Cleaner. You can usually get the whole shebang in one wack. They sell kits for cleaning lines, and they do work if you read the instructions.
 

·
Still fly fishing in the PCW
Joined
·
5,371 Posts
...I did decide get myself a new 5-6wt TFO rod, as I was told the old rods may not have the life in them that they used to have.
Welcome, Brandon!

Whoever told you that did not know what they are talking about! As Philonious said, you might be surprised and have some really nice (even collectable) rods in your possession. I have rods from the 40's and 50's and they are just as good as the day they were made. The action back then was different than some rods produced today but many rod manufactures have kept or introduced rods with this softer "old school" action. It is strictly a preference thing but truthfully, the more moderate action rods are much easier to learn on.

As for the lines, keep fishing them! I'd use whatever you have and if you feel a need to spend money, spend it on some casting lessons. That is the most valuable thing you could buy right now.

Well, there is one way more important thing to spend money on and that is a life jacket to wear in that old float tube! The age of the float tube concerns me far more than the age of the other gear. Please check it carefully for leaks, bad seams, malfunctioning valves or zippers, loose stitching, faded, sun-damaged or ripped fabric, etc. If it is a round one, know that these are called "donuts of death" for a reason. If you have inherited a round one, I'd look at upgrading that to a U-shaped one before buying anything else.
 

·
If u know u know
Joined
·
289 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well, there is one way more important thing to spend money on and that is a life jacket to wear in that old float tube! The age of the float tube concerns me far more than the age of the other gear. Please check it carefully for leaks, bad seams, malfunctioning valves or zippers, loose stitching, faded, sun-damaged or ripped fabric, etc. If it is a round one, know that these are called "donuts of death" for a reason. If you have inherited a round one, I'd look at upgrading that to a U-shaped one before buying anything else.
Absolutely. I do have a life jacket, and I also have an angling kayak that I usually prefer to take out. Also, my father in law has been giving me casting lessons in the yard. Hopefully I will have the hang of it enough to not like like a doofus out on the water, but practice makes perfect! I do plan on taking the float tube to a few alpine lakes this summer, so I will make sure to take extra precaution while inspecting and using it.

Thank you guys for the advice, I really appreciate it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,189 Posts
If you do end up retiring the fly lines, if any parts of them are still in good shape, you can make some useful stuff out them, if you are at least a little bit crafty. Which it seems like you maybe.

I have made lanyards, key chains, "croakies," tippet ring holders, etc... someone could.come up with a million ideas
 

·
If u know u know
Joined
·
289 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Okay, I snapped some pictures of some of the gear. The photo of flies in the black tin and also the ones laid out on the white sheet of paper are both from an estate sale I picked them up at for a few bucks! And it looks like the float tube is a donut of death, but I think I'
Bag Sleeve Luggage and bags Personal protective equipment Hobo bag
Automotive lighting Gauge Speedometer Measuring instrument Office supplies
Wood Font Publication Art Electric blue
Wood Cuisine Font Wool Rectangle
Wheel Crankset Audio equipment Circle Tool
Bag Sleeve Luggage and bags Personal protective equipment Hobo bag
Automotive lighting Gauge Speedometer Measuring instrument Office supplies
Wood Font Publication Art Electric blue
Wood Cuisine Font Wool Rectangle
Wheel Crankset Audio equipment Circle Tool
Bag Sleeve Luggage and bags Personal protective equipment Hobo bag
Automotive lighting Gauge Speedometer Measuring instrument Office supplies
Wood Font Publication Art Electric blue
Wood Cuisine Font Wool Rectangle
Wheel Crankset Audio equipment Circle Tool
Bag Sleeve Luggage and bags Personal protective equipment Hobo bag
Automotive lighting Gauge Speedometer Measuring instrument Office supplies
Wood Font Publication Art Electric blue
Wood Cuisine Font Wool Rectangle
Wheel Crankset Audio equipment Circle Tool
m going to give it a shot when the weather cooperates.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,693 Posts
Those reels look in great shape, and will do fine for trout and bass until you're old and gray. Many of those Cortland rods were made with the smooth, excellent J. Kennedy Fisher blanks. You may like them more than modern blindingly fast action rods.

Pull the lines off the reels. They'll be kinked. Hand-stretch them, in five foot lengths, for five seconds, and let them lie for a few minutes. If they've coiled up like slinkies again, retire them. If they're mostly straight, wash them with soap and tepid water, grease them lightly with standard fly line paste, and go fishing.
 

·
FISHON206
Joined
·
4,692 Posts
Another good way to stretch a line is to hold the fly line tip where the leader ties on, wrap the fly line around a pole or tree and walk backwards to the middle of the line. Pull steady for 10-15 seconds, let off then pull again. Really works well when the weather is warm. Do this with the rod strung up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Okay, I snapped some pictures of some of the gear. The photo of flies in the black tin and also the ones laid out on the white sheet of paper are both from an estate sale I picked them up at for a few bucks! And it looks like the float tube is a donut of death, but I think I' View attachment 137378 View attachment 137379 View attachment 137381 View attachment 137382 View attachment 137383 View attachment 137378 View attachment 137379 View attachment 137381 View attachment 137382 View attachment 137383 View attachment 137378 View attachment 137379 View attachment 137381 View attachment 137382 View attachment 137383 View attachment 137378 View attachment 137379 View attachment 137381 View attachment 137382 View attachment 137383 m going to give it a shot when the weather cooperates.
It's all serviceable, especially for a start. Fly fishing need not be too expensive. Remember to stretch the old lines. It may even be beneficial to store them in loose coils after a stretch. A hot day or an iron with a rag may facilitate best results. Also the classifieds here are always full of great deals on good lines and other stuff.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top