Your Fly Fishing Questions Answered!

Thursday, 26 May 2022  |  Sarah

Your Questions Answered!

We are starting a new series of emails lead by your questions so keep an eye out for them, and have a think if you have any questions email us at:
I’m new to fly fishing and have been told that my fly line rating must be the exact same as my fly rod, otherwise the rod might break. Is this right?
 
Fly lines are rated by the AFTM (Association of Fishing Tackle Manufactures) on a scale of 0-14, with 0 being the lightest and 14 being the heaviest.  This works by weighting the first 30ft of line in grains.

For example a fly line rated as a #5 weighs 140 grains with a plus, or minus tolerance of 6 grains. 
This means a 5-weight line can weight as heavy as 146 grains, or as light as 134 grains.
 
Generally speaking, it’s wise to marry your fly line to the rating of your rod.  For example a 7-weight rod should be loaded with a 7-weight fly line, be it a floating, intermediate, or full sinking line. 

These fundamentals apply to both weigh-forward, or double taper profiles.
Royal Wulff Triangle Taper fly lines incorporate award winning continuous forward taper, which provides the most efficient transfer of your cast as the heavier section of line is continually turning over the lighter lines.
Each Triangle Taper fly line is coated with Royal Wulff signature J3 coating, which ensures your line shoots better, floats higher, repels water efficiently and has the benefit of expanding the life of the line.
What happens if you use a heavier fly line?
For example using a #7 line on a #6 rod.

Due to the extra weight in grains your fly rod will actually flex deeper, making it a more through action.  This obviously affects how the rod behaves though it’s unlikely the rod will break. 
 

In essence then, if you have a stiff rod and find it difficult to use then going up one line size will make the blank flex more readily

Conversely, if your rod is say a little “soft”, with a through action and you struggle with this, try dropping down one line size which will make it behave a little more stiffer.

Beginners in particular often benefit from loading their rod with one line size heavier as this gives a great sensation when learning to cast.


Do bear in mind too that rarely do beginners achieve great distance, so the rod blank is not stressed

The same rings true for those fishing on rivers when close range casting of less than 20ft is necessary.  Again as you’re arialising less than the designated 30ft (according to the AFTM rule) there will be no increased stress on rod.
When it comes to distance, because you’re carrying (arialising) more fly line outside the rod tip of up to 50ft, seasoned angelrs will often drop down one line size now as the more you carry when false casting the heavier this is, especially with distance lines that often have a longer front taper/head. 
 
To summarize then, ideally, it’s best that rod and line rating actually correspond. That said, stepping up one line size is definitely a benefit when learning to cast.  As discussed, this can be the same when river fishing. 

The only real time you might consider using a lighter line is when distance casting though in truth, only the most experienced of caster will benefit by doing this.

The Essential Fly