Raspberryfisher's Blog

notes on fishing & travel

Guides – Single Handled Rod – 7wt+

with 2 comments

As a continuation from my last post, lets look at a single handed fly rods designed-built for streamers, such as that I use for Pike and Streamers. Though these fly lines are larger than those associated with trout, like trout lines, the fly line diameters (ranging from 0.052″ to 0.070″) are smaller than any guide.  But unlike a trout line, the need to pass a thick junction associated with multi-tip lines and shooting head will often be a frequent event, id est during a cast setup or in the moment of trying to land the fish.

If you know you will never use a shooting head or multi-tip line, use the smallest guide you are comfortable with.  Otherwise, you need to plan for the junction, which I have measured from 0.100″ (using my nail knot) to 0.160″ (an Airflo 7wt Multi-tip).  With a little experimentation (casting on the lawn), I am comfortable using the Airflo on guides with an inner diametere of 0.210″ (but no less), which then leads me to the following recommendations:

  • 7 to 9 wt Traditional Fly Rod:  Hopkins and Holloway Size 1 minimum (at the top).
    • Alternative in Single Foot: Fuji TLSG 8  or REC Recoil Size 2 (at the top).
  • 5 to 6 wt Traditional Fly Rod:  Snake Brand Size 1 maximum (at the top).
  • 3 to 4 wt Traditional Fly Rod:  Snake Brand Size 1/0 maximum (at the top).
  • European Nymph Rod: REC Recoil Single Foot Size 2 (at the top).
    • Also exploring Hopkins Hooloway Single Foot.

As far as Spey Lines, the line diameters range from 0.084″ (SGS Trouter 324 gr) to 0.103″ (Airflo 570gr Skagit).  But again, it is the junctions that drives the need given the use of shooting head, running lines and multi-tips. What is the heaviest junction in my collection? 0.190″on a Airflo Delta Spey Long, 9-10 Multi-Tip. This being the case, what would I plan on using the following guides on a spey rod.

  • 4 to 5 wt Spey Rod: 0.210 minimum, such as Snake Brand Size 2 or H&H Size 1
  • 6 to 7 wt Spey Rod: 0.230 minimum, such as Snake Brand Size 3 or H&H Size 2
  • 8 to 9 wt Spey Rod: 0.250 minimum, such as H&H Size 3.

Whats next?  How do my new standards compare to some production rods that I have in-house.

update line junction_4319 2


Last why am I doing this?  Answer: the lack of a singular unified “driver” from rod manufacturers, guide suppliers and builders has resulted in some diverse recommendations and me trying to define what is right (or best). I think this diversity illustrates there are many good answers, a few bad ones and maybe an occassional excellent answer.  So, I need to spend some time to decide what I believe is right – by collecting some hard data and thinking about it. In this way, I am consistent for a reason I can understand and articulate – I want a light guide that will not inhibit the use of the backing, line and leader.



Written by raspberryfisher

2013/07/24 at 18:35

2 Responses

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  1. I think there better ways to connect the leader to the fly line. I suggest you have a look at the following video, showing how many people do it in France (it’s in French but what the guy says doesn’t matter; really starts at 1’25).

    all you need is a pair of sharp scissors, a needle and some cyanoacrylate/superglue. it’s remarkably strong.

    it wont let you change of leader, but I don’t find it very useful: what needs changing and reconfiguration is mostly the tip (ie the last feet of the leader, where you tie the fly). the leader per se may well stay as is for a whole season (well, for trout at least, maybe not for tarpon)
    if you experiment it, you may find that having a leader-line connection flowing through the guides really changes the game on the river. try it!

    g0ne fishin9

    2013/10/05 at 11:19

  2. The video is a nice.

    I once tried tried a variant of the needle into the fly line, but failed. I think this video may give the additional knowledge to try again, but I probably keep this technique to lines targeting trout and smallmouth bass.


    2013/10/06 at 18:27

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