Category Archives: Rigging Reels and Lines

Fly Fishing Nuts & Bolts Video – Fly Rod Repair

Fly Fishing Rod Repair Tip-Top from Murray’s Fly Shop on Vimeo.

Have questions? Give us a call (540-984-4212) or drop us an email info@ murraysflyshop.com.  We are here to help.
Contents of my “Rod Repair Kit“: Ferrule Cement,  Emory Board or 320+ grit sandpaper, Lighter or Matches, Variety of sizes of Tip Top Guides and a Razor Blade.

New Scientific Anglers Fly Line, Part Two

Scientific Angler Sonar Sink 30 Warm Fly Line

Part Two Blog on Scientific Anglers Sonar Sink 30 Warm Fly Line

The new Scientific Anglers Sink 30 Warm is an outstanding fast sinking head line.  The thirty foot head sinks at 4.0 to 8.0 ips (sinks four feet to fifteen feet) which has an intermediate running line.  The 200 grain line for five to seven weight rods is great for trout and smallmouth bass. The 350 grain line is excellent for eight to ten weight rods in saltwater. I find the 350 grain line ideal for my saltwater fishing at the Outer Banks. I use my Murry’s Fluorocarbon Sinking 6 foot Leader with these lines.  These lines replace the Teeny 200 and 350 grain sinking head lines.

See our next blog for more information on new Scientific Anglers Lines.

MFS Foam Leader Keeper – Make changing flies on the water easy!

MFS Foam Leader Keeper
Make organizing dropper rigs easy!
Make organizing flies and pre-tied tippet easy!

Murray's Fly Shop Leader Board

Organize your dropper rigs, tandem nymph rigs or your pre-tied fly/tippet rigs with this lightweight foam leader keeper.
Dimensions: 2.5″ X 5.5″ with pre-cut grooves to securely hold your leader material.
This will easily fit into the pocket of a vest or a pouch to keep your flies organized and readily accessible.  All while keeping your tippet and flies from creating one of those all too familiar bird nests that create those wonderful cuss-able moments!
Check out our video on how to make changing flies easier on the stream with the loop to loop system.

Fly Fishing Tip – Loop to Loop Tippet and Fly

Fly Fishing Tip – Loop to Loop Tippet/ Fly

An easy method of changing out tippet/ flies is by switching to a loop to loop system at your leader/tippet connection.

Loop to Loop Connection for Tippet and Fly – Fly Fishing Tips from Murray’s Fly Shop on Vimeo.

1. The tippet is part of the leader. Leaders are manufactured with the tippet attached.  Often marked at 2x, 3x, 4x, etc – this is the size of the tippet (not the entire leader).
2. The tippet (end of leader which attaches to the fly): 24 inches long on a new leader.  For knotless leader you will need to measure and place a mark at 24 inches to keep track of where the tippet ends and the mid-sections start (or you can use a micrometer for an exact measurement).
3. I place a Double Surgeon Loop in the end of my tippet and the end of the mid-sections of my leader (section of leader which attaches to tippet).
4. I like to go a step further and pre-attach several flies to individual pieces of tippet which I have already tied a loop into the end of while I am at home.
I find this especially helpful when it’s cold out or I plan to fish into the late evening.  We also teach this technique in our schools to aid anyone who is having difficulty tying knots.

Fly Fishing Tip: Selecting a Fly Line

Choosing a Fly Fishing Line

Murray’s Fly Shop Quick Fly Fishing Tip: Loop to Loop Connections

Quick Fly Fishing Tip: Loop to Loop Connections from Murray’s Fly Shop on Vimeo.

Murray’s Fly Shop Quick Fly Fishing Tip: Loop to Loop Connections – Loop to loop connections are a standard affair in today’s fly fishing arena.  Many fly lines come with loops pre made in the end to ease attaching your fly fishing leader.  Love loop to loop connections or hate loop to loop connections, there is a time and place for just about everything.  When that time arises in your fly fishing, you need to make sure you connect your loop to loop correctly.  Learn to tie the Double Surgeons Loop in this Quick Tip Video.

Caring for your Fly Fishing Reels – Murray’s Fly Shop Blog

Fly Fishing Reel Care - Winterize your fly fishing reels
Many of my reels are over 40 years old and they work as well as the day they were made

The fly fishing reels we have today will last a lifetime and give wonderful service if you take good care of them.  I’m now fishing with a Hardy Pre-Reissue Perfect Reel that has been in heavy use for over 30 years and it has never let me down.  Be sure to follow the manufactures direction on the cleaning and care of your reels.

Here is the way I clean my fly fishing reel.  I remove all of the fly line and backing.  I remove the spool and scrub the whole fly reel (back, front, inside and out and the spool) with warm water and soap using an old soft toothbrush.  I dry it with a soft cloth and set it aside for several days to dry completely.  I then apply a thin coat of reel oil to the center pillar, drag, drag screw and all moveable parts inside the back of the fly reel being very careful no to get oil inside the spool where it might contact the line or backing.  Next I put on new backing and replace the fly line.

Next week I’ll discuss how to take care of a fly line so it will perform well and last many years.

Quick Fly Fishing Tip: Learn to tie the Improved Clinch Knot

This Quick Fly Fishing Tip: Learn to tie the Improved Clinch Knot and you will have mastered one of the strongest and most reliable knots to attach a fly to your tippet.  From heavy 50lb. fluorocarbon to 8x tippet material, the Improved Clinch Knot will provide a secure connection between your leader and your fly.

2014 – Learn to Fly Fish

Murray's Fly Shop 2014 Catalog - Learn to FlyFish in 2014! 2014!! – Make it the year you Learn to Fly Fish!!

Our 2014 Catalogs just arrived at the Fly Shop and if you’re on the mailing list you should be receiving yours in the next week.
Our theme this year is “Learn to Fly Fish!!”  The great outdoors is full of opportunities that don’t include the – “enter your chosen obsession with the techno world”.  The fishing world is a great way to experience the great outdoors; alone or with companions.  Have you already mastered flyfishing?  Teach someone to fly fish!  Need equipment? Give us a call and we probably have some loaner gear you can use to teach a friend or child or spouse or parent.
Fishable water can be found within 10 minutes of 90% of the population of the U.S.A.  –  To help you Learn to Fly Fish we have many opportunities from fly fishing articles to fly fishing classes which are available throughout the year.
Bring your Student ID or Military ID to any of our Winter Workshops and it’s FREE!  Don’t have one of these ID’s?  Bring a friend and it’s FREE for one of you!

Learn to Cast a Fly Rod

Learn to cast a fly rod Learn to Cast a Fly Rod (or brush up on your skills) perfect your double haul, steeple cast, slack line mend, puddle cast or maybe you need to work on your Backing/ Fly Line knot. We will cover these and more in our Fly Casting and Rigging Workshop.
Sign up for the Fly Casting and Rigging Workshop Saturday February 16, 2013 from 10:00 – Noon at the fly shop in downtown Edinburg, VA.

Three Bass Fly Lines

Fly fishing at the water temperature we have in October (50’s) using the correct fly line wil help you catch the largest bass.

At this time of the year I make sure I carry three different style fly lines in order to fish my flies at the depth required to catch bass at all depths in which they might feed.

1. I use a floating fly line in order to catch them in shallow water and when they feed on the surface.
2. I use a Scientific Anglers Mastery Sink Tip III Fly Line to fish the fast runs and moderately deep water.
3. I use a Teeny 200 Sinking Head Fly Line in order to fish the deepest pools.

Fly Line Leader Connection – Needle Knot

Fly Line Leader Connection – Needle Knot.  We will cover the Needle Knot here for the line- leader connection.  I personally prefer for my fly line leader connection to be a Needle Knot as opposed to the Loop to Loop (either manufacturers or home made) connection because it is a smoother, lower profile connection.  Both connections are quite strong and provide very similar results when the line and leader are matched correctly.  The classic example where the Needle Knot shines over a loop to loop connection is when you are landing a large fish which requires the line-leader connection to enter the tip top guide on your fly rod.  I have witnessed many lost fish and even broken fly rods on several occasions because the “loop to loop” connection became hung up on the tip top when a fish decided to make another run after the angler thought he/she could land the fish.
To tie the Needle Knot you will need to cut the existing loop off of your fly line if one is present.

Step 1
Tools needed for the Needle Knot
Tools needed: One large eyed needle for the nail knot, one small eyed needle for pulling the leader through the fly line core, sharp razor blade, pliers, leader and fly line.

Step 2
Shaving down the butt of the leader so it fits in the needle.
Shave down the butt of your leader (approximately 1/2 to 1″ long) with the razor blade. Â The butt of the leader needs to be small enough to fit through the eye of your small needle.

Step 3
Insert the needle into the core of the fly line.
Insert your small needle into the core of the fly line and out the side. Â I like to run the needle out of the core of the fly line approximately 1/4″ from the end.

Step 4
Place the Leader Butt into the needle and pull it through the core of the line.
Place your leader in the eye of the needle and pull it through the core of the fly line.

Step 5
Pull the needle/ leader butt through the line.
Once you have pulled the leader through the core of the fly line, snip the shaved part of the leader off.

Step 6
Tie a Nail Knot around the fly line with the butt of the leader
Nail Knot: At this time, you will tie a nail knot to finish your connection.  Place your large needle beside your fly line and wrap the butt of the leader around the needle five times. Once this is completed, run the butt of the leader through the eye of the needle.  Place needle as shown and wrap from the point to the eye.

Step 7
Tying the nail knot
Pull the needle through the wraps you just made.  I like to hold the wraps snugly while I pull the needle out.  If your knot loosens up and looks like this, don’t panic, simply push the wraps together with your thumb nails as you gently pull on the leader and the tag end.

Step 8
Cinch down the Nail Knot and snip the tag end.
Place your wraps (nail knot) close to the point at which the leader comes out of the center of the fly line. Once you are happy with your wraps, cinch down on the knot by pulling on the tag end and the leader.
Snip the tag end off and you are ready to fish.  I like to place Pliobond or Aquaseal to this knot to create a smooth transition from the fly line to the leader.
Carefully inspect your line-leader connection often throughout the season.  If you notice the fly line coating starting to crack at this connection, simply snip off the old connection and start over with step one of this post.
The Needle Knot is preferred by many anglers since it pulls through the center of the fly line and does not leave as large of a knot as just a Nail Knot alone.  This knot works very well for most types of freshwater fly fishing.  To tie an “Improved Needle Knot”, simply add a second nail knot above the first nail knot.  This improvement allows the leader to create more friction on the core of the fly line and therefore creates a stronger connection.  I prefer an Albright Knot or Bimini Twist in most saltwater situations and when targeting large salmon, steelhead or trout.
We, along with many guides and serious fly fisherman, strongly discourage the use of the barbed eyes, that are marketed for the line-leader connection.  These work by inserting them into the end of the fly line and tying the leader to the eye.
Another less than desirable line-leader connection is the Braided Loop connectors that work by cinching down (think Chinese Finger Cuffs) on the fly line as tension is applies to the loop, the problem is that they can fail completely without any warning.
With the Needle Knot, Nail Knot, Bimini Twist and Albright Knot you can easily inspect them for damage and replace when necessary.