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justfishin

Float and fly,will flyrod fill this niche?

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I am a predominate river fisherman. I do although like to fish for smallies in lakes as well. It is just not the same and I will admit I am not that good at catching them in the winter on the deep clear lakes of Western Maryland. I love a challange though and I always leave myself open to new ways to catch smallies. I use tubes, hair jigs, flukes,senko's,mojo rigs,Bomber 7A's, Huskey Jerks and drop shots mostly on the lakes here in the winter. I am usually in 30-80' of water and have had some excellent days. I have been reading about this "Float and Fly System" for a few years now and I can see where it would work on suspenders. I guess my real question is could I use my Battonkill LA and my 7wt fly rod with floating line and a extra long tippet to get the same results. I am curious. Thanks. And yes, in my old age I just started using a flyrod on occasion for smallies on the Susquehanna in Pa during the summer months on the grass islands and after all these years of making fun of fly rodders I have to admit that it is a blast on occasion to do this. A 3 or four smallmouth on a fly rod is a blast. One thing though, any one around me should stay back about two zip codes as I am  a admitted novice with this setup,lol.

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I am an adament fl fisherman for spotted and large mouth bass bud, but if you would please xplain the float and fly set up to us and I am sure we could answer your question much easier and with more accuratcy. You say you use a seven weight huh, I like a 9 myself. Anyway lets us know something and we'll see what we can do.

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Float-n-fly is basically hanging a jig under a bobber. Usually a hair jig, 1/8oz or so, and a small float. It is a good technique for suspended fish in cold water. As far as the fly rod goes, if that's all you have then I guess you could make it work. You'd be limited in depth to the length of your leader. Unless you wanted to make a slip float that would slide on the fly line. It would be a bear to cast. It's much easier on a spinning rod.

I like fly rod bassin myself, but 30+ feet of water pretty much rules out the fly rod for me.

CHeers,

GK

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Thanks anyway. I guess the float and fly system is a Tenn.,Kentucky and Cumberland lake tool. It has been in the bass news for the last few years. It has become popular in the gin clear lakes on suspenders and evidently works well.I guess I will research this system more myself and make a decision. I just thought I could get some reasonable help from this post for a honest question. By the way Peter, my name is Jim or Mr. Blair, not bud. Maybe its not slang in your neck of the woods and I am taking it wrong but " Bud " in my neck of the woods means "stupid" or is meant to be used in derogatory terms. Hopefully you did not mean it in those terms. Just thought I would let you know. Have a good day sir.

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Yes as a matter of fact it works wonderfully! I use a quil float, and light jiggs like that for crappie. As long as your jig is not to heavy it works great! You can roll cast that quil float and jig into all kinds of places. That quil float is extremely sensative. I normally use this for crappie like I said but if you can increase the size of your jig without increasing the weight then your fine. It is like making salt water and bass flies, you want the size with out the weight. Also if you can find the way cut down the wind resistance, then go for it. I have caught a few bass doing this for crappie.

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Jim, Sorry if you took my reply to be non-informative. I just gave you my opinion. I'm a beginning fly fisherman. Got about three years under my belt, so, I'm NOT the expert here.

When you indicated 30-80 feet of water, I just drew a blank about how to fish that depth range with a fly rod. For me, anything over about 10' is out of range.

If you can find the smallies in 10' or less, then a fly may be the ticket in cold water. A big part of the float-n-fly appeal in cold water is the subtle movement of the hair. The closest you're gonna get to that is a fly, slowly drifting down through the water. It may even be better, at least on some days.

A big wooly bugger, Bouface, or a rabbit strip should have a similar appeal, if you can get it down far enough. That's gonna be the problem.

Maybe some more experienced fly guys can jump in here with a solution.

Peter, how deep are you able to fish with your quill float system? The only time I tried a float on the fly rod, I managed to create a tangle that nearly took a knife to rectify. The quill makes a bit more sense than the plastic float I tried. Thanks for the tip.

Cheers,

GK

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I thank you for your opinion and it made sense. I guess when you live in different parts of the country different slang means different things. Where I am from " Bud " is a bad term to call someone. I took it wrong and I am sorry for being so rude. Thank you sir for your opinion. I have to practically hide my fly rod from my friends around here, lol. But, I have been guiding so long and doing the same things year after year I thought that fly fishing for those big smallies on the Susquehanna would be a new and fun experiance to try. I am a secret occasional smallie fly fisherman and it is a blast. I bought the 7wt as I did not really know what to buy. You said you use a 9wt. I will have to try one. I do really like the Battonkill Large Arbor Reel. Any suggestions on the 9wt as in what brand? I only want to spend about $200.00 for one. I did like some of the Lefty Kreh's. Maybe I should contact him as he use to go on guide trips with an old friend, Butch Ward, whom passed away a few years ago. Thanks again, and again, I am sorry for my rudeness.

Good fishing, Jim.

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I bought the 7wt as I did not really know what to buy. You said you use a 9wt. I will have to try one. I do really like the Battonkill Large Arbor Reel.

Hey Jim,

I am glad we all don't think alike and everyone likes their own style. I have been fly fishing for bass for over 30 years. I am sure Peter is a fine angler and catches a lot of fish with his 9 wt flyrod and I don't want to start a big debate about the proper size fly rod for bass fishing. However, my opinion is, that you have the perfect rig in a 7 wt rod & Orvis Battenkill LA reel. I use a 9wt rod in the surf for big stripers & my experience is, a 9 wt is a much bigger rod than I would perefer for freshwater bass. There's no bass in Maryland that you can't catch with a 7wt rod properly rigged. Also if you want to go a little deeper for smallies when it's cold, consider a sinking line or a sinking tip line and use some tiny split shot on your tippet to get your bug down a little deeper. I hope this is helpfull.

Ronnie

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*** Moderator Note ***

As someone who grew up in the Midwest, spent 17 years in the West (Denver) and now is going on 10 years in the Mid South..."Bud" is NOT a derogatory comment...Maybe in context it can be, but I am SURE in this instance it was not intended to be. BassResource.com is VERY interested in moderating "tone," not just content, but c'mon...we all need to be a little bit flexible and thicker skinned.

Play nice, that's all we ask.

-Kent  a.k.a. roadwarrior

Global Moderator

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Thanks Ronnie. Your info was very helpful. As a matter of fact, yesterday I went to a fly shop and  had a 9wt in my hand and I think it was a little much for smallies because I want that fight on my rod not a overpowering feeling like I have in my regular fishing. I think for now I will stay with the 7wt. I have a lot to learn about lines as in the double taper, wt. forward and so on and what applications I will be needing them. This is fun for me. Its like starting all over again. I am as thrilled as a kid going fishing for the first time. After sixteen years of being a guide on the weekends, and almost 35 years of fishing this makes the old heart pump again. Now only if I could get a date with a 23 year old raven haired beauty, I would be good to go, I am willing to up my blood pressure medication!,LOL.

Peter, again, thanks for your info as well. It was very helpful.

Roadwarrior, I guess I just have to understand that this post covers all of the country and different people use different slang. Trust me, I do play nice but, if you understood how derogatory " Bud " is in my neck of the woods you would have spoken up as well. I like this post and would never use it to vent my anger on anyone. I am here to maybe pass some info on to the young un's and to other people just starting out in the sport as well as attempting to learn some new things myself. Heck, even though I have been doing what I do for so long it helps me to get others opinions and to refresh my outlook on fishing. Sometimes we  get stuck in a rut and I am always open to new techniques and venues. In my opinion fishing is a continued learning process. I have been in the Health Field for a number of years and I have to constantly go back to school because of the ever changing techniques and discoveries. Fishing is no different. Good fishin to ya.

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Jim Blair,

I'm glad you joined the Forum and appreciate your contributions.

Now about that 23 year old...

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Thank you for the link " Keithscatch ". This was  a great help. I think I got the jest of the reason for the float and fly system and with some tweaking with my fly line I think I can achieve the same goal and give it a try. You were very helpful.

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Guest whittler

Jim,

I have always believed that when trying a new method, use what ya got. A spinning reel on a fly rod will get you some strange looks but should work fine for a test period to see if you like this method.

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I just finished wrapping a 7' 1 piece 'Lamiglas' 4 wt fly rod with spinning guides and a seat to fit my 1000 shimano spinning reel for ultra light fishing and techniques such as this.

Ronnie

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Thanks for the links Paparock. As that goes, thanks to all. I recieved a wealth of info on this post. Also, ingenious work there Alpster. Sounds like you may have created a Frankenstein. It also sounds like one heck of an idea. Let me know how it works. You just might have created a whole new system! You know you just have to name it,lol. Again, great thinking outside of the box. Thanks again to all.

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Jim, If I had to pick one weight for bass it would be a 7. I use a 6 for smaller flies and an 8 for the larger, wind resistant flies, like deer hair bugs. I can't seem to get those bigger ones to turn over with the lighter setup. But the 6 is more fun when the fight is on.

For around $100, Temple Fork Outfitters has their Series One rods. I have a 3wt I use for panfishing, and I think it may be the best bang for the buck in fly rods. My 6 is an Orvis and my 8 is  reddington. If I'd found the TFO's before I bought the others, I'd have bought TFO's.

I use a bass taper line on the 8 and a rocket taper on the 6. I can't remember which brand is which. One is Cortland and one is Scientific Anglers's. One thing I would suggest is a furled leader.

http://www.feather-craft.com/2006Summer/fcpage.asp?page=6

These leaders are a bit pricey, but worth every penny. In the long run they pay for themselves.

Good luck,

GK

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I also use a 6wt unless I am throwing big wind resistant bass bugs in which case I use an 8wt Orvis clearwater. however, I beleive that a 7wt is a really good weight for bass. If you don't want to spend too much money for a good rod try a St Croix Premier. They run about $90 which is pretty good for a fly rod. I have the 6 wt Premier and really like it. I use the Scientific Anglers Mastery line on it.

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Alpster. Sounds like you may have created a Frankenstein.  

Hey Jim,

Here's "FRANKENSTEIN" 7' Lamiglas 4wt Flyrod with titanium guides and carbon fibre seat.....

noodle003.jpg

noodle005.jpg

fly001.jpg

noodle002.jpg

fly002.jpg

noodle001.jpg

fly003.jpg

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Alpster, cool pics 8-). How does she fish?

Haven't fished it yet, the glue is just barely dry. I will get it out sometime this week, if it gets above 40 degrees. LOL I'm anxious to try it, it's something I have been thinking about for a while.

Ronnie

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Thats a fine job Alpster on Ol' Frankenstein. I really think it will be the Cats A**. Keep me informed when you get time as I want to see how it performs and how that first 5 smallie felt on it. You do good work, thanks for the pics. Good luck.

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Jim B, the new issue of In-Fisherman has a good article on the Float-N-Fly, with some alternatives. According to at least one of the contributors, you are right on the money with the idea that the fly rod could fill this niche.

One of the  fishermen quoted said that a lot of smallies taken on the float-n-fly actually come up from much deeper water to take the jig. To me, this means if you can get a woolie bugger, or bunny strip, down to the 10-15' range, you can draw the smallies up. At least that's the way I took it.

Interesting article anyway.

Cheers,

GK

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