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Lenok 09-22-2004 08:00 PM

Jerky casting with heavy flies
Using a 6wt rod and casting a beadhead wooly bugger seems to transform my casts into jerky, idiot-like throws. I don't expect to have the graceful loops that I would have if I were casting a small dry fly, but my casts when using heavier flies are downright ugly.

Any thoughts or advice?

loophitech 09-24-2004 09:10 PM

I usually get fairly good casts by slowing down my cast and creating larger loops to roll the heavy flies out. Try that and let me know you fair.


loco_alto 09-24-2004 09:57 PM

I overline the rod while slowing down the casting stroke. I fish streamers on my 5 wt using a 6 wt sink tip line

juro 10-05-2004 06:26 AM

In addition to the great advice from loophitech and loco_alto...

I use heavy flies, often weighted, when fishing for saltwater species and find these things to be helpful:
  • try shorter compact tapers, like the Rio Clouser line
  • use a more gradual speed-up to the stop with a longer path of the rod tip if not already
  • switch to a shorter / stouter leader
  • cast with more line out of the guides (i.e. the whole head)
  • tie the buggers with a little more tail material to add a little drag to reduce the jerkiness
  • lose the bead head and go to a sinking line to get down

FrenchCreek 10-05-2004 03:55 PM

I'm assuming that the WB's are in size 2,4,or 6, (maybe even 8's but they would not have much excess weight). So with all the prior good advice, if you want to stay with the same line, floater, shorten and stiffen your leader, combined with larger loops in the cast. Shorten is easy, buy a 0X or 2X 7 foot leader and chop off 12 to 18 inches then add back 6 to 8 inches of 2X fluoro. If you want to go deeper, buy a Rio poly leader (7 foot long) with a sink rate of 4 IPS or 7 IPS depending on how deep you want to go. I make a small loop at the end of the poly leader and add 8 to 12 inches or 2X or 3X fluoro in a loop to loop connection.

juro 10-05-2004 04:14 PM

pete -

Is that dapper young man YOU?

FrenchCreek 10-05-2004 11:13 PM

Weren't I purdy 50 years ago?

jimS 10-16-2004 05:17 PM

Belgian Cast
All good advice! One thing that has helped me throwing clouser patterns is to use an oval cast to insure there is no abrupt start and stop. That is, a standard forward/backward cast will result in an abrupt stop and start that willl send shock waves thru the flyline.

If a low back cast with an upward oval forward is initiated, there is no abrupt stop and speedup. This results in a seamless backcast and forward cast. It is my preferred method with a sinktip and clouser patterns. Throw in a double haul with this method, and the whole line flies. Don't forget to tuck the rod with the thumb at the end of the forward cast for good tunrover. If you don't, the line will dump in a pile.


juro 10-16-2004 05:23 PM


Originally Posted by FrenchCreek
Weren't I purdy 50 years ago?

All I can think of is how many fish you must have caught between then and now :cool:


Belgian cast is a winner for this purpose, good point. Works well with a two-hander as well.

jimS 10-16-2004 06:46 PM

Juro, a couple of weeks ago, boats were in tight to S. Beach banging stripers. I could get out a long way with the single-hand rod, but me thinks a two-hander may have made the difference.

Your Atlantis will be in my arsenal next spring. Someone need to develop a compact system to carry two rods, almost loaded. Dave Pearson does carry an extra rod in a sling-type case, but that is a "never ready" case. Comments?


juro 10-17-2004 06:25 AM

Time to go 'telescopic' :smokin:

Trevor 11-02-2004 07:00 PM

I think even more important than than open loops, slowing your stroke, etc... Is controlling the timing & direction of your cast.

If you need to change direction from your pickup, strip in line to do it. Do not try and change direction with a load of line out. You will never establish control of the weighted fly.

When you establish your direction (backcast 180 degrees from target), start shooting line into your cast, but pay special attention to the weight at the end of your flyline. Let your cast extend COMPLETELY. You'll feel the fly hit the end of the line. You have to time your back and forward casts to the exact moment the fly hits the end of the line. That way, when you make your stroke (standard smooth casting stroke) your fly (weight) is already in line with your target and can be smoothly accelerated in that direction. If you start your stroke too early, you are pulling the fly around the corner and it's inertia is not in-line with the rest of your flyline. If you start too late (or over power your cast) the fly will bounce at the end of the line and lose it's ideal starting position. Think of someone standing behind you holding your fly while you load the rod. The fly and line are perfectly in-line with each other, and thus accelerate to exactly the same point. You'll know exactly what I'm talking about when you feel it. You'll also hit yourself in the back of the head a lot less.

Best of luck!

Lenok 11-03-2004 12:14 AM

Thanks for all of the good advice on casting the heavier flies. Some of it I was figuring out by intuition and practice, but its good to hear input from other casters.

Rick J 11-04-2004 02:19 PM

The Belgian Cast that JimS refers to is very well demonstrated in Mel Krieger's casting video. Very effective method for throwing heavy flies

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