Fly Reel?

Discussion in 'Fish on the Fly' started by Rooster, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. WARNING! There are a ton of newbie questions!

    What size reel would you suggest for a 6wt (smallmouth fishing the local rivers)? My tentative plan is to pick ONE fly in ONE color (Clouser Minnow or Wolly Bugger), and fish it until I know what I'm doing. However, my plan may change as I'm seeking the advice of some local experts once I get some time off work.

    I'm sure that I'm over thinking this (working too much and not fishing), but some of the factors that I'm considering/ have question about:

    Will moving up to a 7wt line make it easier to cast (learn)?
    A lot of lines are actually a half size+ heavier than rated, sill move up to a 7wt (7.5wt)?
    Large Arbor....does it really matter? Seems to me adding more backing has the same effect?
    Is backing capacity even a factor for smallmouth fishing? Drag?
    Should reel weight be a consideration (lighter is less tiring for blind casting)?
    Would you suggest an extra spool (will I ever need more than one type of line)?
    WF or DT? DT takes more capacity, should that be a factor?

    So, should I be looking at 5/6, 6/7, 4/5/6, 5/6/7, 6/7/8 reel? Does it really matter?

    I miss my baitcaster!

    If you made it this far................Thanks!
  2. knowing the rod would help
    I would not bump up to a 7, to much to throw all day for me, as for lining, you could line up but I wouldnt recomend it unless you got an extra long rod. if you got a fast action 6wt rod line it with somting like the rio grand if you think the feel will help, the clouser is another good option if you plan on throwing big uglies. personally, unless you plan on fishing the gmr only, if its smallies your after I would suggest a fast 5wt and hit the smaller creeks. however you will have trouble when(not if) you decide to fish for say carp or hybrids.
    one fly is tough, go with three, a chart/wht clouser, a black bunny leech(a meat whistle is a good one), and a medium sized black popper, I take bigger fish on poppers than with sneaky peats. those three will cover most situations for smallies in the area year round.
    now to you reel question.
    I personally like a smaller reel, so for a 6wt I get a 4/5/6 or 5/6, large arbor is not needed for smallies, I would get a mid arbor. the orvis mid arbor, reddington makes a few, or if you wanted an awesome reel, get the ross CLA get a 6wt with a cla and you could use it for steelies and light hybrids if you ever got the urge. witch you will!

    goodluck! and hope this helps

  3. Clayton

    Clayton Fly guy

    I love my 5 wt rod/reel/combo, and it's light enough to trout fish... however I'm already searching for an 8 weight so I can go steelheading with a little less fear in my heart lol.

    I second what riverKing said; orvis mid-arbor or a ross. In my opinion, bar stock reels are crap unless weight is REALLY an issue... the line curl that comes with them bothers me. You're right, you could add more backing - like 500 yards, lol. And the price between the 2 is usually about the same.

    You're gonna love fly fishing, and soon you'll forget allll about your baitcaster :) Promise.

    one thing you didn't mention: Buy a good, honest quality line. If you get 25 dollar line, you're gonna hate it and hate yourself for it :p plan to spend at least 50-60 on a real line.
  4. Fishaholic69

    Fishaholic69 Fly Fishing Addict

    for smallies I use a 5wt tfo with large arbor orvis reel. I also use a lighter 3wt also with standard arbor reel for smaller bass and gills. both get the job done. the 7wt and 8wts I got for steelie fishing both have mid and large arbors! I don't see a smallie taking you to your backing around here really but you never know what your gonna hook into. my opinion tho is any reel with some decent drag will work just fine for ya. just make sure your fly line weight is rated for that rod and reel and you should be in business!
  5. Sorry, the rod is an older (long discontinued) model Scott heliply 8'8” 6wt. It is a saltwater model w/small fighting butt, fairly fast, and has no problem with 7wt line (or at least I have been told). It is listed at 3.9oz, not sure if that has any bearing on your reel recommendations.

    Thanks again!
  6. In case anyone is interested, I have a Lamson Radius 3 (standard arbor rated for 7-8 wt) I am willing to sell. I just don't use anything heavier than my 6 wt & got rid of the Orvis TLS 7wt rod I had matched this up with. This reel is in "as new" condition...has been used TWICE for a TOTAL of maybe 1 hour. Here are the details...

    Lamson Radius 3 reel
    Spooled with backing & RIO Clouser line (WF7F)..Clouser line is up weighted for throwing heavy/bulky flies...line also used for an hour..NEVER lawn cast. This is a $60.00 line, backing was $12.00 or so.
    I can post pics later today.
    First $125.00 gets reel spooled with the backing & line.
  7. "technically" the balance point is just above where your index finger rests when casting..the reel should balance the rod at that point...again, "technically"....

    Practically, buy what you like (within reason), don't buy the hype of fly fishing being so confusing or technical.

    Any 5/6 reel will do until you really use it and understand what you expect from it, then buy up.

    If in the Columbus area, send PM happy to help your "converson" to fly!
  8. fishing pole

    fishing pole Off the beaten path

    I know that the "gear junkies" are going to be all over me for this but for a beginner I would go with a Cortland rimfly or something similar. I started with that reel and still use it today for smallies. It is VERY durable and for smallioe fishing you are really just looking for a "line holder". I even used ita few steelehead seasons and it taught me how to palm and play a fish. As far as a rod I used to use a 5 weight but found that in order to throw the BIG wind resistance flies that I like to throw as well as some of the heavier stuff to get down in the summer I needed a 6/7 weight rod. There are some decent rods out there for the money (cheap). I do not know if anyone here remembers Fly Rod and Reel doing an article about 7 - 10 years back where they took non branded rod blanks of several high end companies and mixed in a few low end rods. The low end rods held their own against them. There are advantages to casting a high end piece but as a beginner I found there are some decent rods for $50-100. Just don't impulse buy because you "have to" get a flyrod. You have plenty of time to search around. Again take this for what it's worth.