Tying jigs [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Tying jigs

02-06-2008, 10:30 AM
Just curious, do any of you guys tie on jig heads for spinning? I've only been tying flies for a few years now but this year started tying up some jigs for spinning. I've read great things about this, and I'm doing it for those days when either the wind is killing you or when I just might not feel like casting the fly rod for 10-12 hours in a day. With a 4 day trip out to the Cape planned, I'm guessing one or both of these things has a good chance of happening! I'll have to post some pictures of my efforts when I get home.

02-06-2008, 11:00 AM
Since this is a flyfishing website, and because I believe this entirely - I have to say that I have never had to resort to anything but my flyrod and perhaps some deductive reasoning to catch fish on the cape in any weather.

In fact I once caught over a dozen keepers in a noreaster that you could barely stand up in, casting eastward. The wind was so strong it nearly ripped my car door off the hinges so I had to turn around in the parking lot so I could rig up. The sand from the beach was blasting me and the flaps of my jacket hood beat my cheeks red while the sound of the pounding rain deafened me. I could not hear myself trying to talk sense into me on the way out, a mile hike.

I could have chosen the lee side of bluffs and been fine - but I had a hunch and it paid off. The fish were prowling so thick in this spot that I caught something like 17 over the legal size including a fish of 37" that hit the fly while I was stripping the line out to cast again not 10 feet in front of me. The previous cow was landed on the reel after taking much of my backing so I had to strip line out a lot.

I eventually left because I was overly satisfied, not because the fish stopped hitting.

I know there is as much to spin as fly just different, but I also believe it is a self-fulfilling prophecy to think spin is the way to cope.

In my personal opinion, you learn to be a much better flyfisherman if you don't stop applying it when the going gets tough.


Jim Miller
02-06-2008, 11:16 AM
Juro... I agree (for the most part)
There are places where a spinner w/ a heavy jig is the only option. Thinking of deep rips, Muskegat channel, devils bridge..... just can't get down fast enough or keep it in the zone long enough with the fly.
Quick story
Went fishing with a "famous" local charter capt. We were fishing in Muskegat channel off Chappy. Lots of big bass (15-30#).... but down deep. I started with a 600 full sink w/ a big heavy clouser on my 11 wt. Tried all my tricks to get it deep. After my buddy caught 20 or so bass to my zilch .... I gave up my morals, switched to a jig & pig and caught bass. I could of fished there all day and not caught w/ the fly rod .... just impossible to get deep enough.

02-06-2008, 04:55 PM
To each his own. Guess there is a reason this is called FF Forum. There is a way to get a fly deep in a rip: cast up current with a reach cast, release line to sink in the water column and feather the line for contact with the fly. You can continue this proecdure, e.g. mend and release line.

02-06-2008, 07:16 PM
The point of my post was more to ask whether anybody ties on jig heads rather than to argue the merits of fly fishing when the going gets tough. I've been fly fishing for 20 years and I've kept with the fly rod through all sorts of nasty winds, or when my spinning rod would have caught more fish much more easily, or any number of other things. Sometimes though I like the simplicity and ease of casting a spinning rod.

Fishing for me is all about relaxation, and some days I just want to flick my wrist and throw the jig/lure/bait (not bait! say it ain't so!) out there and enjoy myself. I identify myself as a fly fisherman, but also simply as a fisherman.

These days the lines between what's a fly and what isn't are getting increasingly blurred. Is a gummy minnow really a fly? If you really want to get technical, a clouser is really just a jig with a light head. Some of them aren't so light and could easily be cast with a spinning rod. In the last edition of Fly Tyer I got in the mail, there was a whole article on exactly this! The jigs I'm tying could be fished with a fly rod, though the heaver (1-2 oz sizes) would definitely be chuck and duck! Or simply used for trolling.

02-06-2008, 07:25 PM
Yeah my son did well last year fishing a deep eel on an ultralight spin rod :razz:


02-06-2008, 07:42 PM
I'm tying them in a fly tying vise with fly tying materials and fly tying tools. So does that mean I'm fishing with a fly on a spinning rod?

Technically chuck and duck is not fly fishing according to Maine regulations:
FLY FISHING: Casting upon water and retrieving in a manner in which the weight of the fly line propels the fly.

And things like the gummy minnow aren't really a fly according to their regs either:
FLY: A single-pointed hook dressed with feathers, hair, thread, tinsel, or any similar material to which no additional hook, spinner, spoon or similar
device is added.

So for all you purists on this forum that chuck and duck or fish gummy minnows, I accuse you of not actually fly fishing! Just because you're using a fly rod doesn't mean you're fly fishing! :p

02-06-2008, 09:17 PM
Well then the answer is obvious...

fly fishing, regardless of whether the object is tied or glued, weighted or not, jungle cock and split shot or not :razz: is fly fishing when cast with a fly line and not the weight of the object in free-spool; the action is activated with the stripping of the line in the hands and not by the rod and reel; and the mechanisms are simple and the wit of the angler complex.

Again, spin fishing is no less intricate and can be much more deadly especially when there is bait involved.

But my point is two-fold - this is a fly fishing website so one can (and should) expect discussion about fly fishing to pop up amidst discussions about spin fishing; and secondly it is my personal belief and experience that once the angler accepts that spin fishing is the way to cope then it becomes a self-fullfilling prophecy. Until I sold ALL of my non-fly gear at a garage sale in one day I was unable to realize it for myself.

Jim Miller -

I respect and admire your prowess as an angler per your "Magellan" impersonation at the Boneclave, and I am not placating you when I say that. However on a charter if your buddy had enough fun with 20 cows on leadheads do you think the captain could have found you a different spot where you could catch a few pigs on the fly if you asked?

My suspicion is a charter captain who only fishes the fly would, and the charter captain who does not is much less likely if at all. It sounds like flyfishing where you were was as out of place as casting a lead jig into a pod of tailing bones. The sound of fleeing bones would far out-clamor the kerploosh of even the heaviest jig. Conversely the right jig would do well on a deep channel full of working mudders. Or better yet a fresh shrimp.

In the end it's a matter of preference - but not necessity IMHO.


Jim Miller
02-06-2008, 11:34 PM
I never said I was ON a charter.... only that I was fishing with a "famous" charter Capt. He also happens to be a good friend that I go fishing with (on his days off) :)
Now that being said.... we were fishing were the fish were. And big fish at that. He found a way to catch them.... I could not. But in 40 feet of water with a 2 knot current, it wasn't going to work w/ the long wand.

Later in the day we did fish other areas that lent themselves to the fly. Smaller bass, but also fun. And yes this same Capt. can toss 80 feet w/ a flyrod. I for one have not taken a bass over 25 lbs on the fly. But have caught a bunch of that size and bigger by other means. I am extreamly happy to have had both experiences.

But that's not the point I was trying to make. Point is that there are times a flyrod is not the best tool. I will grant you that catching is not always the main point of the experience and I too enjoy an outing of flyfishing.... for flyfishing's sake. But getting back to the first post of this thread, I don't think Teflon should be dumped on for considering his options to have a enjoyable day OTW.

Btw: my boat has outriggers and a bevy of those nasty gold reels & rods. Nothing wrong with a 300# bluefin on standup gear. And yup.... a 60 lber on the fly is just as much fun.
It's all good brother.:D just my 2 cents

02-07-2008, 12:05 AM
I agree with just about everything that's been said... except for one thing - there has been no "dumping on" anyone here.

Non-flyfishing topics have always been a welcome dimension of the discussion but if a flyfishing perspective is presented (I thought politely no?) on a site designed and maintained for that purpose with all due respect to regard that as an affront does strike me as a tad defensive.

However if offense was taken, it was not intentional and never meant to be construed as such. That being said, expect flyfishing to remain the purpose of this site, and a topic that will never be unwelcome nor ignored.

02-07-2008, 06:23 AM
I've tied a bit of bucktail on a few jig heads. But my preference is to rig a jig head with a pink sluggo. :lildevl:

Jim Miller
02-07-2008, 08:29 AM
Catskill drys, speys and flatwings..... is there anything more in life? :hihi:

here's my pink sluggo flatwing..... think it will catch .... doesn't look much like a baitfish. ;)


Sorry.... I just can't take this all that seriously. For me it's all about having fun. :roll:

Back on topic .... Sorry Teflon
Yes it is easy to put bucktail or synthetics on a jig head. Epoxy the wraps for a durable result. My son caught a bunch of bonefish last summer on 1/4 oz. jigheads that I put a DNA fiber tail on. Did he have fun?.... hell yes

02-07-2008, 04:26 PM
Now that you've gotten your dose of that's not fly fishing.:tongue:

To answer your original question, Yes.

I've had luck tying them deceiver style with plenty of flash. 1/2 oz. does the trick and won't get you any deeper than a sinking line. Move up to 1oz. +++ to go deep if you want to bounce the bottom. The cheap painted jig heads work but will bend on a good fish just like a 3407. If you want the good stuff Kalins makes a good jig head with a super sharp hook. You may want to try some braided line if your not fishing the rocks, you'll detect the more subtle pickups.

When I fish with the family on board the fly rod is just too dangerous most of the time. Alternatives would be to cast perfectly every time to guarantee not taking anyone's eye out, spin, or get a bigger boat. I like to switch it up anyway, the elbow still gives me some trouble throwing a sinker for too long. Now somebody ask about live lining Mackerel.:lildevl:

Jim Miller - Sweet looking fly.

02-07-2008, 10:25 PM
... and just to keep things from straying too far out of context, it would be inconsiderate to fling a fly with family on board indeed.

I was talking about what folks do when there are no women and children around :lildevl:

Oh sure you don't mind impaling your buddies though :lildevl:

All kidding aside: one should do what ever makes one happy.

02-08-2008, 07:23 AM
Tube & worm is the only way to go :smokin:

02-08-2008, 07:41 AM
Umbrella rigs :lildevl:

02-08-2008, 08:32 AM
Umbrella rigs :lildevl:
What size Skagit head would that require :confused:

02-08-2008, 12:32 PM
Oh sure you don't mind impaling your buddies though That is correct:hihi:

Skip the umbrella rig - just go for the 6oz. canal lead strip ~ 200' of line off the old fly reel, put the rod down in the rocks, wind up and throw that lead toward the middle of the canal. Even if you don't hook up you'll have a fight on your hands stripping that sucker in.:lildevl:

02-10-2008, 11:00 AM
Umbrella rigs :lildevl:I've never tried an umbrella rig on a fly rod. That probably produces some good fish. What weight rod do you use? Do you use a downrigger with it?

02-10-2008, 12:12 PM
Jigs - I've always considered a "beadhead" to be more of a "jig" than a "fly". It has the same action as a jig.