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Stripers and Coastal Gamefish Stripers, Blues, Inshore tuna!

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Old 12-06-2003, 02:03 PM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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Lines for the Atlantis

I believe you had the TT 11/12 wt. Tarpon line on the Atlantis when I tried it in October. I've never been a big fan of TT lines and, based on some suggestions here, I'm going with the Airflo intermediate. But?? 11 wt. or 12 wt.? As there isn't a body of knowledge out there already on the rod, I don't want to be the one buying all sorts of lines to do the knowledge accumulation. :eyecrazy:

Also, if I go the shooting head route, what's the best grain weight overhead and also for underhand?
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  #2  
Old 12-06-2003, 03:43 PM
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Hi Peter -

I am placing an order for AIRFLO lines so will be able to comment more after testing. So far I have tested the 44' shooting head in high-density sinking (12wt rated no idea what the grains are) and it's a rocket. Sinks second only to the LC-13, amazing how fast it gets down. With a braided running line or any of the monofilament shooting lines, it's going 150ft. With a "real" shooting line you will get 125-135 ft with practice.

Dennis Worley of Kaufmanns' Streamborn (as seen in postcard) was using the Airflo floating shooting head in a 12wt , which led him to ask the question re: trevally poppers... "how many pops can you get in a 150ft cast?" (answer: a LOT) I would recommend that for a floating application.

Of course you need a PhD in line mgmt to handle all that running line, even with a stripping basket. Sticking to 120ft casts or shorter makes more sense while fishing IMHO. A fly's swim time at 120ft is still a LOT as well.

Conclusion: Airflo's 12wt rating works on the Atlantis 1111, shooting heads in sinking and floating field tested.

I really like the Wulff Saltwater Triangle Taper for this type of casting (beach casting) because it behaves so well even when going long. The head is only 30', overall line 105' plus a 12' leader and the backing that will fly out into the stripping guides makes for a comfortable 120ft. The loop form stays clean as it flies through the air and then the drag chirps when the backing gets pulled thru the strip guide. I like that.

For beach fishing short heads are the rule: after strip-teasing the fish to the shore you can flip it right out again for it's big brother. It helps you get over the rejection. The T/T intermediate tarpon line has been so good for me it's stalled my experimentation with other lines.

BTW - folks should be careful to avoid confusing this rod's 11/12wt AFTMA style rating with a spey 11wt line. In fact AFTMA 11wt lines are only as heavy as many 7wt or even 6wt spey lines!

Atlantis covers it's rating well for 11wt and 12wt AFTMA lines common in tarpon and other saltwater applications... but please don't try an 11wt SPEY line on this rod. Tells ya just how "unique" the spey line rating system is! Yet a 7/8 spey line does in fact "feel" like a 7/8 to me, perhaps it's conditioning or maybe the distribution of those grains over a longer length... but I digress.

Anyway the Atlantis 1111 is NOT a spey rod. It's designed to throw shorter denser lines overhand. I have not tried my spey lines on it, but plan to run through my spey lines with it - but again it's not a spey rod. Curiosity's got me though and it would be funny if it worked as a spey rod with some lines!

If so it would be pure coincidence, the rod has no intent to be a spey rod in it's concept, design nor manufacture. It's just a flyrod for the beach angler that will take him/her to the next level.

I will end with this question... if a spey 7wt line is a single-handed 12-13wt line in grains, then what would a 9wt AFTMA line be in spey? Probably about a 3-4wt spey!

YET 9wt rods are the most commonly used on the coast. That would be a 3-4wt spey rod or so I would guess. You can see why coastal flyfishers need a tool that takes them to the next level out there, and the fish can be gnarly and large.

Therein lies the need that drove Atlantis.

If it has application elsewhere, GREAT!
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Old 12-07-2003, 04:26 AM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by juro
Hi Peter -

I am placing an order from Tim Rajeff so will be able to comment more after testing Airflo lines on it. So far I have tested the 44' shooting head in high-density sinking (12wt rated no idea what the grains are) and it's a rocket. Sinks second only to the LC-13, amazing how fast it gets down. With a braided running line or any of the monofilament shooting lines, it's going 150ft. With a "real" shooting line you will get 125-135 ft with practice.
I have two Airflo 12 wt. 45' Expert heads, a Type 3 and the Type 6. According to the kitchen scale and the conversion, they're about 575 and 600 grains respectively.

Quote:
I really like the Wulff Saltwater Triangle Taper for this type of casting (beach casting) because it behaves so well even when going long. The head is only 30', overall line 105' plus a 12' leader and the backing that will fly out into the stripping guides makes for a comfortable 120ft. The loop form stays clean as it flies through the air and then the drag chirps when the backing gets pulled thru the strip guide. I like that.
I had a lot of trouble with that line in October even though I did a backing knot/drag chirper with it. Probably because I had no idea where the head ended and I tried to aerialize too much line.

Quote:
For beach fishing short heads are the rule: after strip-teasing the fish to the shore you can flip it right out again for it's big brother. It helps you get over the rejection. The T/T intermediate tarpon line has been so good for me it's stalled my experimentation with other lines.
Well, what are you waiting for - get testing.

Quote:
BTW - folks should be careful to avoid confusing this rod's 11/12wt AFTMA style rating with a spey 11wt line. In fact AFTMA 11wt lines are only as heavy as many 7wt or even 6wt spey lines!
Oh, I'm very well aware of this, especially after living through the same problem with the Daiwa 11 wt. I have no intention of putting regular spey lines on it, however, I'm hoping it'll handle shooting heads underhand as well. I want to try and establish its ideal grain weight then build a set of heads around that. My currrent 11 wt. overhead casts and spey casts the same grain weight -- that doesn't make a lot of sense, but it's a fact. It too was designed as an overhead rather than as a spey rod.

I spey cast all of my trout single handers and there's no doubt that some do a better job than others. It establishes that good overhead rods can be good spey casters provided the tip isn't too wimpy. The best ones seem to the fast, progressive ones -- a description that fits the Atlantis, IIRC.

As I do not get too many chances to fish stripers in a year, I want to find as many applications as possible for the rod. I have a hunch that it will prove to be a good shooting head rod for the GLs as well. BTW, I guess a standard WF-11-I isn't going to cut it.
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Old 12-07-2003, 08:43 AM
2HandTheSalt 2HandTheSalt is offline
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After only having cast Juro's rod for a few minutes, I have a suspicion that it might work pretty well with some portion of Rio's new scandinavian head in maybe an 8/9. This head's full weight is 580 grains, compared to a 30' 12-weight, ( Around 380.) If the full 580 works with the spey/underhand style, you can overhead cast it with maybe something like 8' of the head inside the rod tip.

Matched to a SlikShooter or Rio intermediate running line, you could do a lot of neat stuff with a setup like this.

Experimentation may show that you want to take a few feet off the back of the head, of course. That is the first thing I would try with it.

I think there is a whole slew of ways to work these two-handers in the salt that have not even been thought of yet. We are really at the bottom of the learning curve still.
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Old 12-07-2003, 09:27 AM
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juro juro is offline
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Thanks for the clarifications, I think I see where you're coming from.

Yes, the lack of a color change is a real missed opportunity for most line makers out there. Rio is really on top of that and although T/T did it for the floating lines of the series the clear and semi-clear intermediate lines remain one color. I know what you mean, it's a shooting head in disguise and there isn't much of a margin for error.

Nick Wilder of Hunters gave me a good suggestion the other day on how to mark a clear line. Magic markers don't work on them. He suggested taking some flourescent backing and threading it onto the running line, sliding it up to the desired spot and coating it with a thin layer of aquaseal or other flexible durable adhesive. I'm going to try it.

The hope was for the rod to provide a new tool for coastal applications around the world (stripers, trevally, roosterfish, NW ocean salmon, inshore tunas, yellowtail, jacks, permit, etc) yet to your point I'm sure it will have great freshwater applications especially in a gamefish-rich region like the Great Lakes.

In fact I'd like to get it into the hands of pioneering flyanglers who are exploring GL surf for staging salmonids to reach the next level, and as you do I also believe there is an underhand spey angle to be found yet with the right line for rivers.

Per freshwater gamefish, I've received emails asking if it would be appropriate for exotic African species - not sure how to answer that question, having seen some of those fish on National Geographic :eyecrazy:

A production Atlantis 1111 is leaving in the hands of a friend down to South America for a peacock bass expedition tomorrow afternoon.... without me unfortunately. These are the big ones and should be a good test.

I see it as an excellent pike & muskie flyrod because it will throw those big flies much easier and handle fish of that size as well.

I am very interested in hearing about your adventures!
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Old 12-07-2003, 09:36 AM
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Jay -

We must have been typing at the same time! It's good to have collaborators in this realitively new arena. Your study of two-handed saltwater applications has been impressive and your articles have opened a lot of eyes to the possibilities I'm sure.

I would run out and determine the spey possibilities rather than give excuses but....
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Old 12-08-2003, 01:55 AM
2HandTheSalt 2HandTheSalt is offline
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" I would run out and determine the spey possibilities rather than give excuses but...."

Wimp!

I am just in from Highbank. A little brisk out there, and what gigantic tides this weekend. I think if I had stayed a little longer I could have spey cast in the parking lot.
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Old 12-08-2003, 12:39 PM
Smolt Smolt is offline
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From everything you all have posted about the Atlantis 1111, it sounds like it would be a good rod to test the inshore flyfishing possibilities on the big island of Hawaii, where everyone seems to think the fishing is poor.

After hearing all the negative reports about the fishing, I did not bring a rod when I visited there last week. I may have missed an interesting opportunity because the water I saw looked too good not to hold fish.

I stayed on the western shore of the island, about 15 miles south of Kona. For five of the seven days of my visit, there was virtually no wind. My room was literally no more than 40 feet from the water which was, in my estimation, 10 to 20 feet deep.

I could see submergerd rock formations from 50 to 80 feet out from shore. Casts in that range sound like they would have been a piece of cake for the 1111. The water was definitely deeper 100 feet out. I wonder what a well placed Clouser would have dredged up? The fact is, however, that if one were to hook a fish from were I would have been casting, getting down to the water to release it would have been an interesting challenge.

BTW, I don't recommend that anyone go to Hawaii. You might never come back.

CK
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Old 12-11-2003, 08:37 AM
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juro juro is offline
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Observation on the preferred grains for the Atlantis which applies to all rods/lines but I thought I would post it here to avoid any misconceptions from my previous posts. The grains this rod (and any rod) can carry effectively increases with the length of the line and perhaps more importantly the taper from body to tip and ranges comfortably from 450 grains to well over 600 grains depending on the length of the head and taper.

Specifically, I've tested 26', 28', 30', 44' heads on it. The 26' 450 grain feels quite substantial yet the 44' 630 grain feels quite comfortable.

For instance the Rio Scandinavian 8/9 casts beautifully on the rod and is 580 grains uncut at 44'. I've yet to explore the underhand spey potentials due to a general lack of liquid water around these parts lately but it overhand casts great. I am going to cut back the 10/11 to see what the top end match with a shorter head will be, since the practical application of this rod requires aggresive strip retrieving and the closer to the leader you can move the fly the more fish you could potentially hook. I will be exploring the underhand spey possibilities this weekend even if I have to plow my way to the water

I just found out that the 12wt type 7 shooting head from Airflo I have been testing (which makes for an easy 130+ft cast with a store-bought running line, further with braided or mono shooting lines) weighs over 600 grains and is not too much for the rod at all. This is the expert model is over 40' long - so again the extended length helps the extra grains as it does in spey lines. I've since ordered other airflo shooting heads for exploring the 28' lengths which were designed w/ striper fishermen in mind by Tim Rajeff.

For more compact head lengths than the 40+ heads like the standard 30' Wulff tarpon lines, 438 grains takes the whole line out with relative ease and the factory running line manages well in a stripping basket in moderate temperatures. I will experiment with their cold water lines soon but their intermediate tarpon lines rock.

I hope to spend some time with a Skagit line this weekend, which I suspect will handle very nicely on this rod.

In summary, for overhand casting the comfortable range for the Atlantis 1111 ranges from 438 to almost 650 grains with the top end being over a longer length head and taper and the low end compacted into a short head. I am confident that this will extend into higher grain weights for 50-65 foot spey heads, etc.

Keeping in mind the most important thing, the fishing, the shorter heads will suit more coastal flyfishing applications due to retrieve methods, quickfire casting, and ability to carry bigger more wind-resistant flies.

That being said it's possible that the skagit/underhand casting potential will be more on the 580-700 grain end of the spectrum based on head length and taper.

I will post what I learn this weekend.
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Old 12-13-2003, 09:57 AM
Jazzman Jazzman is offline
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Floaters

All very interesting, especially to a guy who's never even tried a two-hander more than for a few minutes. Question for Juro -- I like to use floaters in the salt, especially for the quick pickup and line handling/mending capabilities. Have you tried any one piece floating lines with the Atlantis? I've never been a big fan of shooting heads, although I suppose one of Rio's Scandinavian heads plus a reasonably thick fly-line type shooting line might feel enough like your typical saltwater taper. Thanks -- these ideas sound really exciting.
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Old 12-13-2003, 11:50 AM
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Welcome jazzman -

As you say, the very accomodating behavior of floating line makes them much easier to work with for sure... my problem is I use big poppers on floating lines which kind of balances things out a little

For factory lines I really like the Bermuda Triangle 12wt Wulff lines in the 105' factory length. I've had great luck with the intermediate but the floaters I've ordered haven't arrived yet. Not like I would be able to run out and test them right now (snow/ice) but I am hoping to play with them before the winter shows start.

The floating BT wulff comes with a color change at the back of the head, major plus. The intermediate does not - but it is very stealthy albeit not clear (semi-clear).

I had an aversion to loop connections in striper country from my initial trials (1995ish) with sink tips /looped. They'd clunk into the guides then when a following fish hit they'd clunk back out. Then as the fish neared, they'd clunk in and out until the fish was subdued.

After further experimentation urged by the general lack of big lines with compact overhand heads in the market today and the need to make my own. I am starting to warm up to loop connections in strip-retrieve fisheries, by necessity.

It's just a matter of the quality and durability of the loop. With overhand casting hinging is not nearly the problem that it is in spey casting, so durability games can be played and won.

Another critical factor is the stripping basket - they just don't run big enough to match the amount of line that can be cast with the two-handed rod overhand.

Lots of discovery left to be made, the next few seasons should be very interesting in this direction.
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Old 12-13-2003, 04:05 PM
Jazzman Jazzman is offline
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I bet you some of the Rio Clouser or Lumalux floaters in a 12 (actually they're slightly heavier than AFTMA regs.) would work well. They have a medium length, heavy head, and the finish on the Lumalux floater is really slick. Some of the Rio guys, whom I fish with on occasion, told me that, for whatever reason, the glow in the dark materials actually coincidentally make for a very slick-shooting finish. I love the thought of launching a popper a long way. Very curious to check out your rod design. I also like the idea of mending line easily in inlets, etc. I like swinging flies in current.

By the way, Juro, I think we may fish a lot of the same water. Although I live in NYC, my mother in law lives in Yarmouthport, and every summer/fall, I fish Chapin, Barnstable Harbor, Corporation, Sesuit/Harbor View, etc. Maybe we'll run into eachother one of these days. Last summer (02) was great for me, but this summer was abysmal!!! Till next year!!
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Old 12-13-2003, 04:24 PM
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Yes those are home waters to me but since I started guiding in earnest I've focused on the soundside waters due to the tide differentials on that side (roughly half the flood level). I still love and fish the bayside and know it very well, albeit not with clients with few exceptions when the tides are just right.

This community is known for big cape cod gatherings not to mention north shore, rhody, etc. I am sure we will hookup this summer, can't wait in fact - this weather is for the birds. No I take that back they flew south.

Peter - see my post on the spey casting testing I did today.
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Old 12-25-2003, 02:20 PM
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Atlantis can cast like a dream

With very little persusion required I was fortunate enough to get Juro to meet with me in the rain at a local football field for a casting lesson with my new Atlantis Christmas Eve. Santa was good to me this year . I found the Wulff 12wt Bermuda to be quite forgiving of my many mistakes and found I consistantly cast to the 30 yard line, with a decent cast going to the 40 yard line easily. It wasn't as critical to have the exact amount of running line out from the tip to the head as it was with the LC13/running line combo. I too experienced difficulties with the LC13 shooting head set-up that Peter described. My problems seemed primarily due to having too much running line out and poor timing and 2 hand technique on my part. But watching Juro consistantly shoot line out to the 40 or 50 yard mark showed it's potential quite clearly. I just have alot of practicing to do to fix my techniques and timing. I will try marking the appropriate sweet spot near the head for reference as suggested above, that should help me alot.

I'll be at the football field this afternoon trying it out with my 11wt SA tarpon and striper lines just for fun to see how well they work by comparision and to get some more practice. Hats off to CND Spey on a first class rod, the measurement markers on the blank were a nice touch, awesome handle cork and overall design. Sweet rod the Atlantis is...

I can't get over how long it takes to strip in a 120 foot cast... Awesome!

Tight Lines,
Greg.
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Old 12-25-2003, 02:58 PM
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Greg,

The pleasure was all mine! That long strip time has translated to very high percentages of fly-in-the-water time to quick distance casts for me during field testing, up to 10:1 in fact (a cast takes 3 seconds and a 120' twitch retrieve takes 30). The net effect of this is more fish on the line for a beach-roving fish like the striped bass especially during tide changes.

As you know the LC-13 is just a flirtation with the possibilities. next I am going to start experimenting with:

a) Rio T-14 at lengths of slightly greater grains, based on my experimentation with the 44' Airflo heads I believe the grain capacity of the rod is higher than initially suspected

b) hybrid head systems like those I built in steelhead country but with intermediate bellies of high mass / diam tapering down into clear and high-density forward tapers. If loops are a pain I will blind splice them.

As well as continuing my testing of off-the-shelf saltwater tarpon style lines from Rio, Airflo, etc.

It's good to have a collaborator nearby. As I mentioned, I am working on an Atlantis "users group" concept where people share what they have tried out for better or worse as we enter into the next season of coastal angling.

A season of discovery is ahead!
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