tippet to fly knot, the unimproved clinch knot.
I have quit digesting the results of knot tests regarding the knot used to tie a fly to your tippet, being the results conflict so much from one test to another, and accepted year's ago these results of the clinch knot: if you improve the clinch when it breaks it will break where you bend it back through improving the knot. AND, if you do not improve it, and snug the knot up tight in your hand, and it does not slip out in your hand it will not slip out when using it. That has been my experience fishing it, and use the not exclusively for several reasons. I have never broken off a fish at the knot. Secondly it is very easy to tie, and most importantly to me is the fact I can tie it with very little tag left over to trim off meaning I can tie more flies to a tippet without having to tie on a new tippet producing less down time. But I also seldom rely on much mechanical reel drag rather relying on rod angle, and finger pressure.
Martinlf on Aug 2, 2013August 2nd, 2013, 9:45 am EDT
I often used the clinch for the same reasons for years, and Gary Borger was a champion of this knot over the improved clinch unless the hook wire was a lot bigger than the tippet. IMHO, it's a better knot than the improved clinch when the tippet size and hook wire are compatible. It will slip with too big a hook. To each his (or her) own. :)
Oh, one place where all the tests seem to agree--the Double Davy is one of the strongest knots. This doesn't matter so much at times, but for some applications I think it can be a boon.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"
Sayfu on Aug 2, 2013August 2nd, 2013, 11:03 am EDT
Martinlf..Your point on hook/unimproved knot leader diameter relationship is well taken. Not that long ago I demonstrated the knot in the local fly shop, and how to tie it with minimal tag end needing to be trimmed, and the employee pulled out a large hook to demonstrate with. My knot slipped every time I tied it, with no knowledge as to why it was happening.
Huh? The key for me was the realization of how much pressure I apply to the tippet through the pressure of the rod, and it isn't much. Take a 5 wt rod, and you can't pick up a 3 lb bucket of rocks fully flexed. I just never reach the lb breaking point of the knot with the rod. Hook up in the bushes, or on some bank grass, and I can't break off under the flex of the rod, but I can easily break off the grass stem, or the knot, usually the tippet connection, and not at the fly with a straight line pull.
Martinlf on Aug 2, 2013August 2nd, 2013, 7:00 pm EDT
Joshua, if you're breaking at the tippet to leader connection, try the ligature knot. It never, ever breaks for me. Use water to wet it, though. Spit doesn't work. It takes a while to learn, but is incredibly strong.
Gutcutter on Aug 3, 2013August 3rd, 2013, 7:06 am EDT
?..Take a 5 wt rod, and you can't pick up a 3 lb bucket of rocks fully flexed...
All men who fish may in turn be divided into two parts: those who fish for trout and those who don't. Trout fishermen are a race apart: they are a dedicated crew- indolent, improvident, and quietly mad.
Sayfu on Aug 3, 2013August 3rd, 2013, 10:58 am EDT
You got my competitive juices flowin. I went, and dug up one of those 5 lb rolls of lead, cut two lbs off, weighed it on my 4 lb scale, and proceeded to tie the butt section of a 9ft 5 wt that I haveto the lead roll. With rod extended near parallel to the ground I lifted, and the rod bent with big time pressure down into the corks, and the lead never flinched. Maybe your 3 lbs. of rocks are lighter than my 3 lb lead. :)
Rod action may have a slight play, but any 5 wt is designed to load up with 30 ft of line out past the tip. Guys like the tarpon guys that are good at it know how many lbs of pressure their rod can apply, and they use it.