Summer Tippet [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Summer Tippet

08-07-2001, 01:17 PM
A question for the board. Last night as I was sulking over breaking a nice metalhead off on the take I got to wondering about summer tippets and what others used.

This is the third fish in the last 2 summers that I have lost due to the fly and tippet parting company. For some time I have fished 8 lb. Techtan; a premium mono that has treated me quite well in the higher poundage tests for salmon and winter steelies. I became sold on this a few years ago chasing chums with a buddy and watching him land fish after fish on 13# Techtan while I was popping off fish after fish on 13# Rio tippet. Once I bummed some from him, the problem stopped. I fish the 13# for most of my winter fishing and love it.

I know that by now, half of you are already typing a response advising Maxima. I agree that maxima is a fine line but I have always felt it to thick and stiff for my liking. The advantage, for me, of the Techtan is a finer diameter and a limper action. Now I know that steelhead are "not leader shy" but with the low clear waters we have had in the Puget Sound region the last year, I will take any edge I can get.

Which brings me back to my question regarding summer runs. What do you all use? I've made up my mind to switch but not sure to what. Right now the leading candidate is the 13# Techtan as it has the same diameter of 8# maxima.

Thanks for your input.

08-07-2001, 02:38 PM
Just curious, S.T., where are the breaks occuring--at the fly or at the tippet/leader junction?

Is the break occuring during head shakes, long downstream runs, or during a jump, or consistently during some other steely manuever?

Sounds like you're already convinced to swing with the 13# Techtan. I've got to try the stuff -- I'm still using Maxima 8# and 10# for summer runs and have had no reason to change -- but you're recommendation has appeal.



08-07-2001, 05:32 PM

Of the three, two have come at the fly and one at the leader/tippet junction. All have come on the strike. I will be the first to admit that I am a "pincher" in that I pinch my line to the cork during the swing rather than allowing the fish to take line off the reel. This undoubtedly is part of the problem but barring vicious hits and violent hooksets, I would not expect an 8 lb. leader to come apart.

The take yesterday morning was not violent at all. In fact, I thought Cutt or dolly at first. It was a sharp hit and then nothing. It wasn't until I pulled line in to check the fly that I saw it was gone. Of course about this time, a nice 8-9 lb. steelie rockets twice eye-level high out of the pool, to show me what I had missed.


08-07-2001, 06:34 PM
Since you ruled out 8# maxima ultragreen, I was speechless ;)

I tried 6# but got sawed off by some memorable buck steelhead with jaws (I saw the headshakes, felt the plinking of the tippet as it sheared). The end of the tippet showed evidence of the abuse it took.

I had similar problems when I used to use a loop knot. Some guys have good luck with it, maybe I didn't tie it right. I lost a lot of big fish and stopped using it.

08-07-2001, 06:35 PM

I would feel bad about the lost chromers but I can't get over the envy to offer any sympathy }>

08-07-2001, 06:58 PM
Thanks for the background. I used to have the problem with fish breaking off on the strike at the fly, but since I started using a double turle knot to attach the fly, the problem stopped. Now if there's a break, it's at the tippet/leader connection.



08-07-2001, 11:06 PM
Well, I'm batting a thousand this season so far. The only problem is that means 3 hooked and 3 landed :-) I'm still convinced broken tippets are the results of bad knots, knicks or wind knots, or a bad spool of material. You just can't apply 10 to 13 lbs of pressure with a seven or eight weight, even with a "jerk on one end waiting for a jerk on the other". I test every spool of tippet material I buy unscientifically. I tie on a fly, hook the fly over something un-moveable, and bring it smoothly tight until it breaks. I also duplicate the test with a sharp jerk. I find about 1 spool in five will consistently snap WAY too easily test after test after test, regardless of manufacturer! 20%! Knots, that's another story! How often have you tied a knot, looked at it with a sour-puss because you know it's not the best you can do, and left it that way? I know I have! I learned and practiced the "Non slip Mono loop" until I could do it reasonably well, and have stuck with it. It's proven very strong for me, as long as I use the right number of turns. For the record, It only tests 100% dry. Drops down to 95% wet according the experts. I use Rio when I can find it. SA, Orvis, they've all worked for me. 8 pound Maxima is some of the best 12lb test out there! :-) Tie good knots and don't be afraid to put the stick to the fish. Fish Hard!