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josko 01-29-2000 08:55 AM

What is LC-13 line?
I've heard talk of LC-13(??). As best as I can make out, it's a heavy (LC for lead core??) line suitable for heavy shooting heads. Am I on track here? I need to make up a couple of 500 - 600 grain fast-sink heads or lines for 15 wt rods. Is this the material to use? What's the thought behind using this material? Thanks much.

trutta 01-29-2000 09:09 AM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
LC13 is indeed lead core with a plastic coating. You can put loops at the end and make short shooting heads. It does weigh a ton and can be a bitch to cast, but it sure sinks fast.

juro 01-29-2000 06:24 PM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
Hi Josko -

LC-13 is a true leadcore flyline that comes in level tapers (oxymoron) and lengths that can be cut to add instant rip-slicing capability to loop system lines. BobD will confirm whether the 13 means 13 inches per second or not... it can't be feet :-O

It's physical characteristics are that it is fairly stiff, in fact it's formable into shapes! That doesn't seem to affect it's performance while being cast, it does form a loop when cast. It has a very good coating material IMO. Things I have noticed - it is good for fishing deep in rips around here. It is used in short lengths for deep winter steelheading applications as well as deep ocean salmon flyfishing out in the pacific northwest. Because it has no taper, the "head" effect comes from the increased density of the material, not the diameter. This contributes to it's sink-right-now behavior.

I use(d) very heavy butt sections off the LC-13 and tapered into three pieces - 50# or more, #35, #20 for off-the boat mooching. There are other alternatives like the next paragraph. Also note that I haven't used LC-13 in a long while...


SA makes a 30' tapers (both ends) shooting head in 450, 550, up to 800 grains called "DEEP WATER EXPRESS". Aye carumba, wear a crash helmet for the 800. These are built in the way of regular shooting head fly lines and have a taper to ease casting and loop formation. Although not nearly as cheap as LC-13, they are still very affordable ($25-30?) because they are only 30 ft long. They are easy to loop, being real fly lines, and sink like rocks.

One nuance is because they are fatter (impregnated fly coating) they feel like casting a fat headed fly line as opposed to whipping a wire (LC-13). You have to feel them both out to see what you like, my preference was for the SA STS taper 550 grain because it casts like a fly line.

I do not have any complete hi-grain heads left because I chopped them all up for steely tips, but if there's anything I can help with (like time-proven loop techniques) I'd love to get together and work on this stuff with you.

Hope that helps,

BobD 01-30-2000 07:05 AM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
The 13 in LC-13 stands for it's weight 13 grains per foot.
Cortland specs it's sink rate at 8 3/4 inches per second and it has a diameter of .043. I have already cut up the bulk spool we got into 30 foot sections and we have about 4 of those left at the shop. I plan on ordering another bulk spool so I can cut custom length. I have already been asked for a 140' for tarpon.

juro 01-30-2000 07:35 AM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
Bob -

What's the application for tarpon that requires such long lengths? Piqued my interest on that one...

BobD 01-30-2000 04:37 PM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
Not sure, it was a phone call I recieved at the shop. He had heard that we might have some and was disappointed to find out that I had already cut it up. I think that he just wanted to be able to build a number of them in different lenghts with some longer than the 30' I had already cut. He was heading to Costa Rica and was going to be fishing for them deep.

marvin 01-30-2000 07:25 PM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
Lefty swore by LC-13 at the clinic last summer. According to him, the combination of 13 grains/ft. and tiny diameter makes it sink faster than anything less than 650 gr. I'm using a ~28' piece as a fast sinking head on my 9 wt in fron of braided running line, and find that it really takes a fly deep- and quickly! Also, for the price, you don't get too upset when you lose it to a rockpile. Given your neighborhood, an expendable fast sinker might not be a bad ideahttp://


wrstern 02-02-2000 08:39 PM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
What are trade-offs versus a Teeny or Depth Charge (other than price)?

juro 02-02-2000 11:13 PM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
Other than price, the trade off is in the casting ease. The T-series, QD (quick descent), depth charge, yada yada are all based on the concepts pioneered by the Harry Lemires and Wes Drains and other Washington state steelhead junkies who were by the way the earliest flyfishermen to wear stripping baskets as far as my research would show. They combined sinking heads with shooting lines of all types - flat beam, braided, mono and floating level line; and eventually combined half floating / half sinking to pioneer the sinktip lines. Nowhere do these lines come into their own like a steelhead river. Anyway, I digress.

The hi-D fly lines are actually tapered lines, skinny on the ends and fat in the middle. This provides some facsimile of loop generation in the cast, as the Cortland 444 QD325's widespread popularity proves. The LC-13 is a true lead core line, level and rigid - yet under an energized cast it becomes flexible enough to turn over, kind of. Summary: lines cast better than LC-13.

The advantage for LC-13 is depth penetration even in fast deep currents. The thin profile and real-lead density can't be matched by impregnated coating technologies. For get-down and dirty efficiency, nothing beats it. Summary: LC-13 gets down faster and further than hi-D lines.

There is a place for both. LC-13 is great to have on a hard rip off Gorilla or Bearses off Monomoy; or the Middle ground, etc. I wouldn't use it for any situation where I really had to cast with grace, accuracy or distance.

Hope this helps,

juro 02-02-2000 11:16 PM

RE:What is LC-13 line?
whoops! I didn't read your question right... the diff between T-series and depth charge (Orvis) and 444 QD and .... others is "not much". I am not knowledgeable about the Orvis but own the other two + SA STS taper heads. They are based on the same principle, impregnated flyline coating in a dense short head attached to skinny shooting line with good characteristics. The price is pretty consistent too.

LC-13 on the other hand is really cheap.

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