If you have just purchased a new fly line or are new to fly fishing there are a few things that need to be accomplished so you can begin to catch fish. If you want to know how to set up your fly line then this guide is for you.
How to attach backing line
The first thing to do is attach the backing line to the reel. This is usually done by using the Arbor knot which is very simple to do and takes no time at all. You simply take the backing and run it around the reel pass it over itself and and the tag end then through the loop you have formed and then on the tag end form another simple knot so if it slips this knot will catch and not slip any further.
You then need to run onto your reel approx 100ft of braided backing for a 7-8 weight reel. Each reel has its own specifications and should say on the box what the capacity is. However there are several types of line and each with varying dimensions. Be careful not to over load it or there will not be enough room for the fly line.
Join Fly Line to Backing
Once you have the backing on its time to connect the reel end of the fly line to it. The reel end is usually the one with a label saying it is that end when you buy the line as most manufacturers have them reversed ready for winding on. There are a few ways to attach the backing and fly line together but I usually go for the nail knot which has always been good to me when I take my time and get it on correct. The last thing you want it for it to come off when playing a fish and lose not only the fish but your expensive fly line.
To join the fly line to backing get a small tube (I use the cotton bud tip) with the ends cut off leaving it about an inch long. Lay the fly line and backing beside each other from different directions. Place the tube along side, take the tag end of the backing and working towards the tag end of the fly line loop around all three. After about 6-8 turns take the backing tag end and place it into the tube and push it through until it shows at the other side of the loops formed. Slowly pull the tube off and keeping the loops in order slowly pull the backing two ends until it tightens.
Connecting a Braided Loop
So now we have the fly line connected and wound onto the reel all is left to do is attach a braided loop. These little loops are made with braided monofilament line and when pushed onto the end of the fly line and pulled the braid bites down on the line to keep it in place. To put it on you have to place the fly line in the opening of the loop and slowly snake it up into the loop until you can go no further. The loop will have a rubber sleeve on it and this will need to be pulled into place as close to the fly line as possible. Just before slipping it to the end I usually put a drop of Stormsure adhesive to make sure it doesn’t slip.
Now you have your line set up all you need to do is attach your leader and flies which has too many variables to mention here that’s for another article. Enjoy your fly fishing!
I hope you enjoyed my simple guide on setting up your fly line and that you learnt something from it. All comments, questions or critiques are welcome.