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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have somewhat drifted away from fly fishing but I am starting to get back into the game. Most of my experience is with trout and shad. I would like to try for Rockfish this year.
Many years ago I bought a 8 Wt St Croix Pro-Graphite road with a Scientific Angler System 2 78 L. I loaded it with a floating line for Bass fishing in ponds.
Last year we picked up a 19' Carolina Skiff and had a blast chasing Rockfish all over the Bay. I am thinking my 8wt would do the trick on the 14 - 25" fish we typically found ourselves in.
Fly wise I began tying dropper flies last year that were simple bucktail and saddle hackle I made up as I went along. The fish really liked them. (more then the spoons below them)
So my question - Should I load the rod with a sinking line and if so, what type??? I have only ever used floating lines so I know nothing about them!

Thanks!
 

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Hedda,
I would suggest a 300-350 grain line for an 8 weight. These lines have a 24-30' sinking head that is connected to an integral floating or intermediate running line depending on the manufacturer. Various companies make a version of these lines which include Scientific Anglers, Rio, Orvis, Teeny and Corland. My favorate happens to be the Cortland Quick Decent QD 325. This is my go-to line for the bay because I can over cover ~20' of the water column with one line.

Good luck,

Kirk
 

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I agree that a sinking line would be a good choice. And that Pro graphite is a good rod. But it's is a moderate action and a little to soft for any thing over 300 grains. By the way that is a very good rod. I've cast a number of them and really like them. But if you have any friends or are close to any of the guys on this board. Go with what most of us will tell you. Try before you buy. See if you can get together with guys that have different lines and try one to see what works for you. I know most on here prefer grain sized lines. But if you have trouble with them in the beginning. Try a straight sinking line in an 8wt. You may find you like that just as well. It will all depend on just how deep you will fish this line. Also learn to do a roll cast pick up or these types of line will become very frustrating to use. Sinking lines also do become the main stay line for most in salt water even for breaking fish.
Also if you are in Delaware and close to me. You would be well come to try any of the lines I have. I have a 300 tweeny a 325 qd Cortland as well as a 300 Cortland rocket taper qd and I also have a number of sinking lines in 8's as well as 9 wts. I should also add all of the same lines in 225 to 250 grains.
 

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Hedda: Yes, you have to use a sinking line to get with the program. You'll catch some fish with your floater, but not many, and on many days, you won't catch any.

I'm with Saltfly, I prefer full-sink lines because they keep the fly deep longer than the lines with a 20-30-foot sinking tip and a floating or even intermediate running line, although they will catch fish. I recently tried a 30-foot fast-sinking head with an intermediate running line that I like and I might try that. Some people do well with a lead-core head because it gets down so fast.

You can handle any striper you're likely to hook in the bay with an 8-weight rod, and I think I'd be inclined to try some sinking lines with your rod before you go out and buy a 9-weight, but a 9-weight is my go-to rod for the salt much of the time, including the bay.

Good luck.

FF
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Some very cool advice! Thanks

I meant to ask about backing - Any preference of what to load on the System 2 7/8L??

Leader I always used a loop to loop set up (home made for shad) - Anything unique for connecting leader to the line?? (I was thinking a 4 to 5' length of Flourocarbon for the leader)

Now I have the itch enough that I am putting away the ultralight to go chase shad again

Thanks!
 

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That reel will hold 125 yds of 20 lb test backing plus a 8 wt. line. Most companies use Cortland micron as a standard to determine their capacities. Not all but most. Micron is the thinnest normal braided backing. There are other backings that are thinner like micronite, which is thinner. Ex; 50 lb. Micronite is about the same as 20 lb. Micron. So your reel could hold 125 of 50 lb. Micronite as well as 125 yds of 20 lb. Micron.. 30 lb. Micronite would be smaller in dia. Their for you could us more of the 30 lb. Test then you could 20 lb. I think it would be about 200 yds. Of 30. So as you can see some people will go to the smaller dia. Just to go to the 30 to get more as well as stronger backing. There are some braw backs to really thin backing. Cuts to your hand can happen if you are not careful. Also if you are going to a sinking line most take up less space on the reel they a floating line. That will also let you put more backing on. As for the bay I don't see why you would need more then the 125 yds of 20lb backing. I use loop to loop as well. As for the flourocarbon is a personal choice. I never have needed it in the bay. But there is all way that time where it will be good to use it. I use it for albies. But their not in the bay. I have found it usefull when the stripers are very spooky. But again that is your choice. I hope some of this helps.
 

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I agree with everything Saltfly said. Go with 20# Micron backing. The only time I might have had more backing out than 125 yards--and I did say "might have"--was one time when I caught a nice false albacore from the beach. But I was using a Bauer M5 and I had maybe 300 yards of backing in addition to the 30+ yards of fly line and leader, and so I wasn't worried.

One trick I like is to make the bottom 20-30 yards or so of backing, that is the backing closest to the reel arbor--a different color from the rest so I have a warning when I'm getting close to running out. But you can make a similar warning with a magic marker, and so far I've never seen the warning.

FF
 

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Well I found what I was looking for. I knew I had it some where.
Backing dias.

Micron 20 lb. Test approx. .012
Micronite and spectra
20 lb. Test approx. .006
30 lb. .008
50 lb. .013
so you can see how this would inpact how much backing a reel will hold. I hope this will help.
 

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Saltfly's additional helpful information reminds me that you need to think what it is that you want to break if you have to have something break. The worst thing to break is the backing or the connection between backing and line; in that case, you lose your whole line. The next worst thing is the line; then the connection from line to leader, and finally if something has to break, you want it to be the connection between leader (tippet) and fly, or close to it. So if you're using 20# test backing, then you don't want to be using 20# or greater test leader.

FF
 
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