The debate continues
The thread now appears to have left the 'triangular / multi-taper' beginnings and has evolved into something, on one level, rather more technical, and on another, simply more general. So with this in mind I have emailed the remaining manufacturers. Shakespeare quickly respond with this:
The ability or otherwise to throw a narrow loop is in my view not solely down to the profile of a fly line. Technical skill is undoubtedly an important attribute necessary for excellence with casting.
So, at what level of expertise does one attempt to answer the first part of the question? Based on a novice, the average fly caster or the expert? These are just the elementary questions; one needs to be conscious of the rod, reel and other accessories attached to the line. What are the environmental conditions? These will also have an effect on the performance of the products, and the individual using them!
Therefore while Mark's initial question to Paul may seem a relatively simple one, when looking for an answer one has to decide whether or not a broad brush answer is appropriate? Or is a more detailed technical answer desirable? On the other hand, does one rather act as a politician and give the answer liken to one own political affiliation?
I think that perhaps a couple of simple analogies at this stage might explain where I am coming from:
If we were talking about the performance of a motor car, and driving at capacity while cornering, then it is perhaps easier for the average person to appreciate the difference with different products. If the penny has not already dropped, a highly tuned rally car will perform totally different to a family saloon! Now, despite having membership of the Institute of Advanced Motorists, and driving a fair few thousand miles per annum, I am unlikely to drive into and out of corners like a rally trained person…and neither would I want to put my brain and other organs under such g-forces.
Thus, getting back to Mark's question, my view is that it is true to say that products that are of a similar nature will perform unquestionably different when fine tuned. Fly line products manufactured with advanced profiles are fine tuned products.
Another analogy that I shall make also uses motor sport. Excellence in motor sport can be achieved with finely tuned equipment, along with highly skilled drivers. Products may differ slightly, and have a bearing on performance. More than likely, the environment and the individual driver's ability will have specific gravity on the overall performance of machine.
I assume for a moment that the reader of this contribution is a driver of an ordinary motor vehicle. Taking this further then, and making the assumption that the reader is an average person, drives in all weather conditions. The question is do they change tyres if it starts to rain? I would suggest not? Why then do expert drivers racing high performance cars around a track without any oncoming traffic need to change their tyres? Well because they are so expert that it gives them a competitive advantage and enables optimum performance. I would rather suspect that the average driver would not have the skills to push their own car to optimum performance…let alone enhancing this with a tyre change. Most would be happy for a set of wipers that cleared the front screen without smearing!
The simple and short answer therefore is; yes line profile does affect the ability to throw a narrow loop. However, at the same time it has to be recognised that Mark's ability level will have significant effect on whether or not he is able to get a better performance with a fined tuned product. Then add to the equation that the rod will also have a significant relation on the ability to throw a narrow loop or otherwise.
Specialist Fly Lines designed and manufactured for specific types of fly-fishing will undoubtedly perform better than a non-specialised product.
What on earth is this contributor talking about, may be going through your mind? All right then maybe you are not? You may however, already be considering the fact that I am a politician and have been trained at great expense by the taxpayer, on how to give a full and complete answer, but not to the question asked? Alternatively, it may be considered that I have only recently become involved with fly line and wanted to hide this fact by talking about motor sport. Assuming that you are of average intelligence then you will have grasped my stance; the question is subjective and there is far more to say than a simple yes or no.
For the record, I have very strong political views or affiliation, but no desire, even under the influence of alcohol to be a political agitator. Yes, I am interested in political science, but then I think that every taxpayer should take a healthy interest in the management of their country.
Equally for the record, while not considering myself to be the world authority on fly line, I have spent more than twenty-five years manufacturing fly line. Not just manufacturing, but research & development in terms of raw materials used with construction. Profile, aerodynamics or otherwise of fly line. As sad as it may seem, the reason I get out of bed in the morning, is to continue with a personal goal of achieving Six Sigma with fly line. Nothing short of excellence is acceptable. What does this mean? Well I am just as fanatical about the research & development of fly line and then the manufacture of the products as any would be world champion fly fishers or casters.
Truly I have fished, and I can cast, but do not consider this to be my forte. Even more truly, my casting ability does improve marginally when Michael Evans is stood about seven or so centimetres (sorry…three inches) away from me bellowing instructions! To conclude my personification, fly line is not just a job, or a career, it is a way of life for me.
Paul, I would guess this particular section of the great deliberation has been bounced around for maybe two or even three months? I really would have liked the time and the opportunity to further explore Mark's question and look back at the chain reaction. Ultimately, I would suspect that the question is the ascendancy of two or so years of electronic communications. Interestingly, I would rather suspect that in another two years or so, the debates will still be assisting BT shareholders realising their full profit potential!
Michael W Gormley
Shakespeare Company (UK) Limited
Thank you Michael. It does indeed seem that we have disappeared off into some technical dark corner :-) , however what seems to be coming out of this corner, is the fact that although flyline profiles do play a very significant role in the speed of the unfurling of the loop, they do not appear, in fact, to have an effect upon the narrowness of the loop itself. OK everyone has answered differently, but the actually physics involved indicate for this to be the case. Shortly I shall try to make sense of all this stuff. There have a few comments made in this thread which are actual physical impossibilities. I'm hoping that the nameless manufacturer reply - they have indicated that they may do so. I'm also waiting for Cortland... - best wishes, Paul
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