Friday, January 3, 2014

Redfish Saltwater Line from Rio

Photo Compliments of Rio
Recently I was in Sanibel Island, a part of Florida that is known for its fly fishing. Among the snook, tarpon, and other saltwater species, Sanibel Island is home to a population of Redfish. I also recently received a TFO Mangrove 9' 9wt. I realized that I needed a line fit for the job. I was delighted to open up a package from Rio Products that included a Redfish line. This is one of their Tropical Series Saltwater Lines, and I can't say enough good things about it.
        The line is a total 100' in length. Starting from the back of the line, there is 64.5'  of tan level running line. The head of the line, 35.5' in length, (which begins to turn light blue) consists of a 7' back taper, a 14' body, and a 14.5' front taper. The measurements of a line only goes so far, so after waiting a week I was finally in Florida, the warmth, I put the line to the test.
        I first started off casting this at close range. At short range, this line loaded the rod exceptionally well. It allowed me to make quick casts and easy pick up...something crucial in Saltwater Fly Fishing. Furthermore, the short head allows for roll casting. I'm not sure if roll casting is a thing frequently used in saltwater fly fishing, but when in Mangrove Creeks and Canals where there isn't room to back cast, this line lets you do it. In regards to the short, quick casts: I realized that I was putting a lot of power in my cast. After all, I was going for speed, but that much effort wasn't even needed. Regardless, I guess you could say right off the bat I was extremely impressed.
Photo Compliments of Rio
       Okay, so this line was designed to excel with short casts. But what about long casts? I slowed down my casting stroke. I soon realized that I was effortlessly casting 60, 70, 80 feet. With the use of a double haul I easily cast 90'. This being said, I'm not a very good caster. Paired with the 9wt TFO Mangrove, a nice easy casting stroke yielded a nice loop, great turnover, and a soft presentation.
        As previously stated, the line has a tan section of running line and a nice light blue head. According to Rio this line has an AgentX coating. Let me tell you what this means. This means that the running line floats, and the head floats even higher. All. Day. Long. The line is slick, it shoots through the guides. With some of the head out of the rod, I could make one cast and shoot over 40 feet.  The line is durable, hitting oysters that were stuck everywhere this line didn't show hardly any signs of where...even after a full week and a half of constant rigorous fishing.
        Bottom line (get it?), this line is great! There is absolutely nothing wrong with this line. It performs any task imaginable and at a superior quality.  It's a dream to cast, it's rugged and durable (yet slick and elegant). If you want a line for redfish, or a general floating saltwater line, this is the line for you. Head on over to Rio and check it our for yourself!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Hook and Hackle Solarez UV Cure

Loon UV Clear Fly Finish was what I was using. When I first got it I was putting it on everything that I possibly could. Chances are if you saw me tying at a show I was using it on most flies there as well. It was good, except it dried with a slight amount of tack. To get rid of that, some people said to use rubbing alcohol or put Hard as Nails on. I opted for the latter. Now, wait a second, using something that takes a while to try defeats the purpose of having something that takes seconds to dry. To me that was a major downfall, but at least I could build up a nice wing case or something along those lines. I tried multiple lights and there was still some tack. A lot of the UV curing glues do dry with some sort of tack to them.
        Then I got an email from Hook and Hackle. They are carrying a UV Cure of their own, Solarez. It comes in 3 gram tubes  ($3.00) as well as 2 ounce bottles ($21.95). For right now, there is a thick and a thin. If you compare the price per gram, the leading competitors are nearly 3 times the cost of Solarez. As for the light, Hook and Hackle's light is essentially the same light as the competitor's (not naming names, but it merely lacks a color and a logo) but is only $12.95.
        I got the products a couple weeks back. My immediate reaction was that the thick, was very thick. The thin, well, was thinner than the thick. The thick is awesome at building up large quantities of the glue, like for eggs, heads of streamers, or large wing cases. The thin is great for covering quills, smaller wing cases, etc. With the UV Curing glue, you are pretty much limited by your imagination. When I went to cure it I noticed that it takes a little bit longer than other similar products. However, once it was dry, there was absolutely no tack. I was extremely excited. A cheaper and better product than the popular name brands is always a plus.
        A line of truth that you may not hear in a lot of blog posts is this: This particular review took a really, really long time. I wanted to thoroughly test this product out. Sure, it's one thing if I go and write up a review about how this product performs at the vise. But I wanted to tell you guys how it performs on the river as well. So I have been fishing, and fishing, and fishing...what a problem to have. What I had noticed about this product was something that actually made me make sure it actually happened. One of the tests I did was leaving some flies, created with Solarez, in a closed box in the heat and sun. All flies had fully cured UV resins on them. Here's the interesting thing, most of the other resins besides Solarez exploded or melted in one way or another. Solarez stayed hard as a rock. Not only that, but I fished with nymphs and streamers tied with Solarez. I banged them on the bottom, whacked them against shore, off of rocks and not one bit of damage showed. At one point, I whacked the side of a boat with one of my flies during a cast (the fly was really moving) and it put a slight crack in the head of the fly, but it did not affect its fishability.
        Here's the bottom line. If you are going to get a UV Curing substance, go with Solarez. It's cheap, the light is cheap, and it's an all around great product. You really can't go wrong with it. Try it out and I hope your experience with it is as good as mine. Here are some different flies and ideas for you guys:

Solarez Thick was used to create large durable heads on these minnows
When tying quill bodied nymphs, protection of the quill is vital!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

WINNER ANNOUNCED - Summer Giveaway - 2014 Fly Girls Calendar

Trout Porn's Fly Girls 2014 Ad
Hey everybody! Together, me and the creators of the Trout Porn page on Facebook put together a little giveaway. This is a super simple giveaway. There is only 1 winner! The contest ends at 11:59 pm July 31st. Please keep in mind that this calendar is mostly grip and grin photos, so anyone of any age can enter!

  • You must be following Fly Only Zone (this blog)
  • You must "like" the Trout Porn Facebook Page
  • You must email me saying you have fulfilled the requirements with the subject Trout Porn (I will confirm the email was received).
August 1st, a winner will be chosen AT RANDOM from those who I received emails from. The winner will be emailed and announced on this blog. The winner will then provide their home address and Trout Porn will send over the 2014 Fly Girls Calendar.

And the winner is...Shane Becker! 
Thanks to everyone who participated in this giveaway.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Bighorn River Youth Adventure 2013 Pictures

Hey everybody. As you know from my previous posts I went to Montana for a week. I plan to do a full write up, however I figured I would post up the pictures from the trip. Click read more after the first photo to see the rest.