Assembling a Fly Rod

Those of you who are new to fly fishing might want to know what to do once you’re all kitted up, and have found that ideal fishing spot. And if you’re worried about looking idiotic when you make your first casts, don’t be…everyone was a beginner once. And chances are another angler will offer you some advice.

Okay, you’ve got your rod, reel, line and leader. Don’t put the rod together yet, though. First, rub some of the paraffin from a white candle on the male parts of the rod where joins together to stop the sections coming loose or getting stuck. Next, put the reel on, one 'foot' sliding into a slot in the reel seat. The reel is secured to the rod with the sliding or screw rings. There are two types of real seat: “uplocking” and “downlocking”. As for how to use the reel, a right hander will have the handles on the left side (and visa versa). Check to make sure your reel is set-up for the left hand retrieve by pulling out some line. You will notice if the drag engages going out or coming in, and should be “on” Note that most reels can be converted for right or left hand retrieve.

When you assemble the rod start with the eyes misaligned and twist the sections together, twisting about 90 degrees. Then make sure they are all aligned, as this will seat them correctly. Check the sections often to make sure they still have some paraffin on them, as paraffin can wear off over a season. Put the rear end of the rod on the ground and after folding a small loop in the fly line, and feed it up through the guides. (Don't put the line through the tiny little loop near the cork – that's a hook keeper.) To get the line through the higher end (the rod is taller than you), just angle it and walk toward the end with the line. Now hold onto the tip of the rod. With your other hand carefully pull out about ten feet of line. Now your rig is together. Take up your rod and pull line straight off the reel -- toward the stripping guide, not down and against the edge of the reel. Now that you’ve done all that you’re ready to cast on your day’s fly fishing.

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