Author Topic: Questions regarding fly fishing dropper rigs  (Read 895 times)

Breathegood

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Questions regarding fly fishing dropper rigs
« on: September 09, 2015, 11:32:04 AM »
I used to believe that two-fly and dry-dropper rigs were a gimmick used to show off casting acumen, until this past weekend when I tried a Copper Jon tied ~15" behind a PMD using a clinch knot around the hook bend.  It was the only setup I tried all day that got any attention and kept me from getting skunked. So I'm becoming a believer in the two fly rig as a functional way to catch fish.  My questions are regarding the best way to set these rigs up (assuming some degree of knot tying proficiency and patience). 

What is the most friendly to cast?

What is the least likely to snag or tangle?

What is the most reliable for setting the hook?

What provides the cleanest presentation?

1) A clinch knot tied to the bend of the hook of the first fly.  This seems to be the most common method in my searching for answers, but the only reason given seems to be it's ease of setup.  I imagine that actually landing a fish that takes the lead fly could be tricky.

2) Tie a second piece of tippet with the dropper from the eye of the lead fly.  This is the second most common method I'm finding, but I've seen comments about tangles and the lead fly not having the most natural presentation in the water.  It does eliminate any obstruction on the hook and should the dropper become snagged behind the fish, the leverage is applied to keep the hook set rather than rotate the hook out.

3) Using the tag end of a blood knot between the leader and tippet to attach a second fly.  I'm not finding much information on this rigging other than people seem to consider it "old school" and find it difficult to tie or have problems leaving so much tag.  I'm getting much better at field tying a blood knot, so this method intrigues me.

4) Tie a simple dropper loop some distance above the lead fly and attach the dropper there.  I have not found any information on this setup.  It seems like this would be a good way to quickly add or remove a dropper without affecting the lead fly.  I'm guessing presentation and turnover may be issues with a setup like this. My intuition says it would keep the flies separate and simplify casting.

Has anyone tried more than one of these riggings?  Comments?     

Shoe

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Re: Questions regarding fly fishing dropper rigs
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2015, 12:30:10 PM »
I haven't tried #4 very often.  The loop can result in more tangles.  If I use 2 dry flies, I use #2.  If I am stripping streamers, I use either #1 (if I am lazy) or #3.  When fishing with 2 flies under an indicator on lakes, I have used a tiny crane swivel lately.  I can easily tie a dropper.  A tippet ring works for that too.  Just a few more thoughts for you.

s

Breathegood

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Re: Questions regarding fly fishing dropper rigs
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2015, 06:38:29 PM »
I haven't tried #4 very often.  The loop can result in more tangles.  If I use 2 dry flies, I use #2.  If I am stripping streamers, I use either #1 (if I am lazy) or #3.  When fishing with 2 flies under an indicator on lakes, I have used a tiny crane swivel lately.  I can easily tie a dropper.  A tippet ring works for that too.  Just a few more thoughts for you.

s
Thanks for the feedback.  I've been trying to do a lot of fishing this year and my casting and knot tying have improved by leaps and bounds.  I've become comfortable enough with both that I really want to refine my technique.  Understanding how different rigging affects presentation and landing the fish is the next logical step in my progression.

 

Iasgair

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Re: Questions regarding fly fishing dropper rigs
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2016, 08:37:17 PM »
Hello Breathegood, hopefully I can help.

1. The most friendly to cast would be where the dropper would be tied to the bend of the front fly. This is because everything is in-line with each other.

2. The least likely to snag, is none. I have done this many different ways, and snags happen to all rigs.

3. Hook setting, they all are pretty equal in my opinion.

4. Presentation is key. If I'm fishing fast pocket water with many seams that twist and twine all over the place, I go back to using one fly, or shorten the distance between flies like 8 inches to prevent drag. But I never use 3 flies in fast water. Slow currents you can get away with it.

5. The problem with tying the second fly to the bend of the first fly is, if you fish barbless ( which I recommend ) the dropper can slip off the first fly when a fish is being played. I try to use this set up on barbless hooks that have a swell where the barb usually is so the line doesn't come off. It's a popular set up in Colorado and works well.

6.Tying a second tippet from the eye of the first fly. No. Not friendly.  That's the one I get most tangles with.

7.Instead of a blood knot, I use a water knot, also called a surgeons knot. Easy to tie, and leaves a tag end to tie the dry fly, and then you tie your dropper on the end of the leader tag. Simple. This is my go to set up. Unless you get crazy with your casting, it shouldn't tangle. Leave the tag end for your dry fly about 4 inches long.

Here's a video to help you.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAKKRtuxIHY   

Hope this helped.