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Casting Help Please

redjimredjim Senior MemberPosts: 774 Officer
Good Morning

I have been throwing the long stick for about 4 months now and have a BIG problem with not having a straight line path. I have no problem catching a mess of fish providing there is not any wind and fish are within in 45 feet :) to accommodate my big wide open wavy loop. It is not pretty.

I can not seem to keep my hand going in a line straight line resulting in a convex in my casting stroke. I have been attempting drills for the past 5 weeks to reteach my muscles. I have given up fly casting in an attempt to teach myself to make it straighter but not making much progress.

Might anyone know a person that could help me out? I live in Rockledge and am not afraid to drive for help and do expect to pay someone accordingly for their time.

Thank you, Jim


  • Permit RatPermit Rat Senior Member Stuart, Fla., Veracruz, Mx.Posts: 2,283 Captain
    I don't know anyone in Rockledge, and you are very correct in not asking for specific help need to have a competent caster/instructor watching you. I and several others here can diagnose the problem(s) as you described them; both are pretty straightforward. You need a coach to help you with your power stroke, which is way too long. I will only say that it appears you have become another victim of "video-itis." A lot of people try to get casting basics from the myriad fly casting videos that are out there. You see a competent caster make a cast where the rod moves from almost the 9 o'clock position, to almost the 3 o'clock position, behind him. What you DO NOT see, is that somewhere in there, is a "power stroke." It is very brief, but most of the line speed is developed here. The rest of what you see in the cast, is just follow-through. You really need someone watching you, to get the basics down, before your bad habits get worse.

    But you can help yourself in keeping your entire casting stroke in a straight line, if you can find a HIGH set of power lines near you. The wires should be at least 20 ft. off the ground for safety. Standing beneath a line, but slightly to one side, start a casting motion and visibly watch and make your rod tip follow one of the wires above. After all, the wire is going in a straight line, so if the rod tip follows them, then it will be going in a straight line as well. Your fly line will go where the rod tip goes. You can also stand slightly sideways, so that you can observe the backcast portion of the cast. Doing this repeatedly will "train" your arm and shoulder to move in that straight line.

    Other than that, there must be a tackle shop or fly shop in your area, where people know fly fishermen. Also ask on the (West Central?) forum. I know for a fact that there are guys in Lee County.
  • redjimredjim Senior Member Posts: 774 Officer
    Thanks Permit Rat.

    Internet casting help is not the best! :)

    Spoke with a buddy of mine and going to join the local Fly Club.

    Been doing the false casting thing with rain gutters on a house, but like you idea of power lines better. That is what you were speak of with the power lines. False cast in an attempt to retrain to the correct form?

    I just yesterday spoke with the folks at Orlando Outfitters and they may have a person that could help me too.

    Thanks for you reply!
  • Permit RatPermit Rat Senior Member Stuart, Fla., Veracruz, Mx.Posts: 2,283 Captain
    There you go.... Fly club is perfect. On land, you'll be casting 60-70 ft. almost overnight and maybe your coach will fish with you, at least for the first few times. Casting on the water in the presence of fish is always "different." Rain gutters are fine....even better if they are high enough!
  • shadowwalkershadowwalker Senior Member fort walton beach floridaPosts: 2,200 Captain
    Its really very simply, change your expectation of were you want the line to go. If you look down you will throw down, what your most likely doing now. Throwing to the point you expect the fly to land. When you look down at a point thirty feet in front of you, that's were your going to aim the energy path. Fix your eye at a point straight ahead and cut your rod stroke by two thirds when the line is in the air. If you will continue look forward within a few strokes you will start to make the adjustments that will cause the line to appear were you expect it to appear. Do-not follow the line with your eyes make the line come to your point of sight. The higher you aim the line path the smaller the loop will become.
  • Carolina FlyCarolina Fly Member Posts: 72 Deckhand
    Jim, you are wise to get some instruction. I still battle bad habits that I developed before getting help. The closest certified instructor to you appears to be in Cape Canaveral. If you want to go farther then I can highly recommend David Lambert in Jax, one of the best in the country. [email protected] I also know and recommend David Hulsey in Ocala. [email protected] Both are Master instructors.
  • redjimredjim Senior Member Posts: 774 Officer
    Thank you guys for the suggestions!!!! I will use them.
  • SUPER DSUPER D Senior Member OrlandoPosts: 737 Officer
    Jim the above advise is right on, get pro help. But one thing I do when I start casting bad, is kinda like Shadowwalker said. I aim at a spot 10 feet above the target, this will tighten up your loops. Big loops mean dropping rod tip. When you aim high, you keep rod tip high. If you try this, you will get instant feedback. When aiming at target, it is easy to drop rod tip. Once you shoot the line, then you can lower rod tip. One more thing to consider, is the longer the cast, the more time it takes to straiten out behind you. Fly choice changes your timing, so practice with a fly. Hope this helps, good luck Jim.
  • redjimredjim Senior Member Posts: 774 Officer
    Thanks D, will give it a shot!
  • clampmanclampman Senior Member Fl. KeysPosts: 130 Deckhand
    Here is a link to the Fed. of Fly Fishers certified casting instructors. Just type in Florida in the "state" box and the one from Canaveral will be the 5th one down. Likely, the fly fishing club will also have very good casters in it and they will probably know who is the best at teaching and spotting faults. Not all good casters are good teachers.

    For example I started fly casting at age 11 or 12, long before ther were any casting instructors, and by 15 or 16 could cast the whole line with most fiberglass and bamboo rods . But I used to hate it when people asked me to help them with their casting because I hadn't a clue where to start, and really hadn't ever even bothered to figure out exactly what I was doing.

    So, just saying, if you are not getting it with help, the help may just not be that good at teaching.

  • saltybumsaltybum Senior Member Sunny Central east coastPosts: 1,696 Captain
    Nobody has said anything about your back cast. A good back cast must precede your forward cast.
    It is very important that your line straighten out completely behind you before starting the forward cast. Not only will it tighten the loops but also increase line speed by loading the rod better to increase distance and accuracy.
  • sparse greysparse grey Senior Member Cudjoe KeyPosts: 1,751 Captain
    Harry Goodes in Melborne. Good fly shop & some good people. Try to find Bill G. & good luck.
    Ron Conner Release the fish, keep the memories. Once a Knight is enough.
  • miaanglermiaangler Junior Member Posts: 6 Greenhorn
    dont move your rod tip as far back not even as far back as you shoulder,also do long hard hauls.
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