Rigging for Tuna - Fly Fishing Forum
Stripers and Coastal Gamefish Stripers, Blues, Inshore tuna!

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Old 07-31-2007, 05:15 AM
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Warren Warren is offline
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Rigging for Tuna

My friend & I are rigging up for Tuna. We have 14 wt rods and big expensive reels, 80 lb Sufix braid for backing, tuna permit for the boat etc....

There does not seem to be much information available regarding line selection for the heavy stuff. My question is what do we use for lines. I have ordered a 600 gr Rio Leviathan sink tip as a starting point, hoping it will be heavy enough to put a bend in the rod.

Will it work or do I need something heavier? The next heavier offering from Rio is a 1000 grain shooting head line which conventional thinking tells me is too heavy for such a rod, but I am also assuming conventional thinking may not apply here.
I did not see where Sci Angler & Airflo have a line targeted to tuna or other large fish except Tarpon and not many lines designed for a 14wt rod
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Old 07-31-2007, 07:19 AM
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striblue striblue is offline
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Warren, Assuming you have the fly line rigged to the backing and the butt section attached to the other end of the fly line all you need to do is get maybe 30 to 40 pound flouro....about 6 to 8 feet. Tie a perfection loop at one end and attach to the butt section loop. Then a simple non slip mono loop to the fly and your good to go. If you don't have, say, the butt section attached to the fly line you should call Nat or Derrick at First Light Anglers who use a 60 pound braided loop tied to the fly line with the use of piano wire and several steps which include a bimini. You should see how that is tied since I can not explain to make it clear. I have the Leviatan also which you saw at CAC. Naturally , there are other ways to make these ties which also work and are preferences for others, But I go with First Lights ties simply because thoase were the first I did..hope this helps...John
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Old 07-31-2007, 10:45 AM
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Warren Warren is offline
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Initially I was more interested in what line others are using on 14 wt set ups, but I suppose I better give some thought to leader connection as well. Thanks for bringing that up. I saw that braided loop on the end of your set up, it looked pretty stout.
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Old 07-31-2007, 10:47 AM
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sean sean is offline
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The 600 grain line will most likely be fine. You may even prefer the light 550 or 500 ones as well, depends on the rod. 1000 grains is way too much for most any single hander I have seen.

Sean has been using my 550 grain rio outbound intemediate on his 14-17wt TFO with good results.

John's terminal rugging advice is great and we had good luck with a 50lb braided sleeve double nail knotted to the fly line and then straight 40lb fluoro from there.

One thing which some may not agree with is the amount of backing one needs. I had 425 on my reel and would say at most 200 was ever out at one time. Seems if you fight them agressively( and have a good guy at the helm that can chase em down for you) you could get away with as little as 300 yards and be fine.

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Old 07-31-2007, 11:49 AM
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Smcdermott Smcdermott is offline
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One additional thing to consider on the line is line management. Here are a couple thoughts I have on the subject.

Personally I have not had good luck with the bluewater type lines from RIO. I have had the Leviathon and Deep Sea lines. I have found the running line core to be very stiff and have a lot of memory. This made it tough to get the line to shoot through the guides cleanly when you need it the most. To that end I have had the best success with traditional lines that have more tradtional cores. I may learn to regret it one day but if you can land 200lb tuna on 20lb tippet why the need for the 65lb core? Like Sean said I have been using his RIO Outbound with good success. I understand they don't make that line anymore so I am also looking around for a substitute. I like the SA Clear Tip line but they only go up to 13wt so I am not sure if it will load the TFO Bluewater HD.

I use a basket to store the line between pods but not during the actual presentation to the fish. Keep some water in the basket to help keep the running line lubricated so it won't stick to itself and tangle. However, don't try and put it back in the basket when you are presenting to the fish. Strip the line onto the deck so you can concentrate on getting tight to the fly and making the right retrieve.

Not line management related but I think it will prove usefull if you are new to casting the big rods. When making your back cast lock the rod butt against your forearm. This will help give you the leverage you need to power the cast. These are big rods with heavy lines and you will get tired in my experience.

Good luck.

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Old 07-31-2007, 03:05 PM
BigDave BigDave is offline
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500 grain Leviathan is a perfect match to my 14wt. Also very castable on a 12.
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Old 07-31-2007, 04:56 PM
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Sean, the Leviathan lines are tropical. I think if you stetch them the memory should go away for our coldwater fishery.

Boat/trailer up and running?
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