new floater a genuine breakthrough in fly line technology? We test
the line on the banks of Grafham and Rutland.
The launch of
any new fly line from Airflo is an event, especially a unique floating
line. Tackle designer Gareth Jones, from the Brecon-based company,
promised us something different. And he was right.
Their Ridge Line uses a new concept in floating line technology
- ridges running along the complete length of the line. Not only
does this dramatically lower the friction by reducing the surface
area of line in contact with the rod rings, but it also retains
sufficient water within the grooves to lubricate the line and improve
Said Gareth, "One of the Airflo team is an ex-racing car driver,
so when Richard Wothers came up with the Ridge concept based on
tyre technology, he was the perfect choice to help develop the idea.
Wet-weather tyres lose grip on a dry track. That gave us the idea
of introducing ridges in the line to reduce friction.
"Currently we've two versions, the long belly Distance version
in sunrise yellow and an olive green Presentation series for river
fishing. In time we hope to extend the technology to other floating
We took the new floating lines along to Grafham and Rutland Water
to let the bank regulars have a cast...
Ex England Team Member and Troutmasters Champion
impressions are important so it's vital that the line performs straight
from the box. It comes with factory-welded loops at each end, allowing
easy spooling of the line and attachment of the backing.
"I opted for an 8wt Distance Ridge line with the longer belly.
The casting qualities of the line are exceptional. It loads the
rod quickly, allowing you to present flies accurately at short and
long range with little effort.
"It is at distance where the line really excels. In a flat
calm, casts of 35 yards posed no problem and the line was perfectly
straight without memory. The ridges are noticeable only on the thicker
head section and aren't rough to the touch. It's only when you roll
your fingers around the line that you notice the ridges. You feel
a noticeable smoothness, due to water in the grooves acting as a
"This is a significant development in fly line construction,
and the biggest advance since the Midge Tip."
on the line is smooth to the touch and when I would it onto the
reel for the first time, showed no visible memory.
“When you lad the rod, you have that feeling that the line
just wants to go – and go it does. Shooting the line is a
pleasure and it wasn’t at the expense of presentation on the
water which is where it counts.
“Airflo have produced a very polished line which has minimal
friction passing through the rod rings, making for superior distance
casting. They have also designed a head and rear taper which achieve
“The line is stiffer than most which helped achieve distance,
but supple enough to retrieve.
“I felt it added yards to a good cast. The Teflon coating
adds to its high floatability and allows you to lift off long lengths
of line, covering fish faster.
“In my opinion, this is the best floating line Airflo has
produced so far. Can Ridge Line technology be married to the Sixth
feels nice and supple and goes out well, even though I can’t
feel the ridges. It loads my 8wt rod perfectly and shoots like a
rocket. At Rutland from the bank, you need to get some distance
and this line does just that. I don’t normally use an Airflo
floater but I will be buying one of these lines.”
feels very smooth to the touch. If not exactly slick. It certainly
casts and shoots well, loading the rod quickly. It punches well
into the wind and lays nice and straight on the water. The welded
loop is slowly sinking the tip but that still makes it excellent
casting line helped by that long belly and chunky head. No memory
problems with this Airflo floater. The line offers a good compromise
between distance and presentation.”
and Review reproduced with kind permission of Trout Fisherman magazine