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Keeping Fly Line Clean

As much as we try to abuse our fishing tackle with screaming drags, doubled-over rods and the like, taking care of your gear at the end of the day will determine whether it will ready the next time you need it.

As much as we try to abuse our fishing tackle with screaming drags, doubled-over rods and the like, taking care of your gear at the end of the day will determine whether it will ready the next time you need it. Integrating a few easy steps into your routine will ensure your investment will be up for the next Go-Pro worthy event.

fly fishing

Saltwater is corrosive and causes rust because electrons move more easily in saltwater than they do in freshwater. This is an electrochemical process, and when in contact with seawater, all metals and alloys have corrosion potential. Furthermore, the water in which you are fishing may be dark, tannic or contain sediment that can leave residue on your reels and especially your fly line. We will go over the care of all components in three easy steps.

The Simple Spray Bottle

Saltwater will start decaying your gear as soon as your line hits the water. A spray-bottle of fresh water is the simplest way to counteract that damage. You may have traveled to a destination to fish, and have three hours to travel until you are home. A quick spray down before you get on the road is a great preventative measure to take until you can spend more time taking care of the finer details. Use the water bottle to spray a mist on everything that was exposed.

Fly Line

Keeping your fly line clean is absolutely crucial. Even when fishing in clear water, the porous surface of the line will pick up salty residue. Grime will affect the overall manageability and handling characteristics of the line. A rinse every few times is sufficient, but a more regular schedule of cleansing will substantially prolong your investment.

fly line

Fill a bucket with warm water and add a bit of dish detergent. Strip your line off the reel and place into the bucket, allowing the entire length of line to the backing to get a soak for a few moments. Grab a clean, soft towel and pinch the line between your fingers and the towel. Pull the line through the towel in small sections, repositioning the towel as necessary, until the entire length of line has been wiped clean. Then, restack your line so that when you go to wind it back on to the spool, it will be in sequence. Furthermore, taking an extra moment to restack your pile of line prevents twisting.

The Fly Reel

While your line is off the reel, it is a good time to open your spool and mist the internal components with fresh water. It is not recommended to submerge the side containing the drag system as it may put too much pressure on the internal components and force particulate (small pieces of dirt) inside small openings. Mist the reel with fresh water and allow it to dry before closing it back up and reeling on your clean fly line.

RS2291 fly reels

Small Steps Equal a Big Payoff

Carrying the freshwater spray bottle and applying these simple techniques will absolutely prolong the life of your gear and help it to perform at its best. Clean fly line will sail through the guides, gliding toward your intended target – and with any luck, putting to test all of your sophisticated gear on that trophy fish.



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