Introduction to Fly Fishing by Tony Scott
your Fly Reel
explained the AFTM weight system in the page dealing with rods
and lines, and so it is with reels too. You should purchase a
reel which will hold the correctly the weight of line that you
have bought. You will see many reels with a two number rating
i.e. Reel for line weight 6/7. This simply tells you that the
reel will hold either weight of line combined with the relevant
the reel is normally used to hold the line that you are not fishing
with at the time, and to keep it tidy when you are not fishing.
There are situations when you may play a fish “ off the
reel” but unlike freshwater fixed spool reels, which winch
the fish in, you generally tend to play the fish using the fly
line by hand. This gives a very dynamic and more sensory experience
as you feel much more of what the fish is doing and react accordingly.
The human hand is one of the most sensitive “drag systems”
in the world. That having been said, a drag or braking ability
on the reel can be a real bonus sometimes.
the reel only holds the line most of the time, should you buy
an expensive one?
I would have to suggest that spend more on your fly line initially
than your reel, as the rod and line work together, the reel being
secondary. Although, there are some very attractive reels on the
market now that are also very practical, and very angler wants
a nice reel don’t they? Once again though, as with rods,
quality can bring its advantages, up to a point.
choose a reel that has the same rating as your rod and line. Buying
one with spare spools can be a great advantage, as you will find
on the chapter on fly lines.
your rod, a little cleaning and maintenance can add years of life
to your reel, so a small investment in a reel case is always money
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