Modern Fly Lines Part 3


This is #3 in a series highlighting teaching points from Bruce Richard’s MODERN FLY LINES.


Unlike a spinning rod, in fly fishing, the fly line weight is what loads the rod.

In 1961 the American Fishing Tackle Manufacturers Association (AFTMA) standardized a weight-based line numbering system. The weight of the line would be based on the first 30 feet of the fly line minus the level tip section. All fly rods are now labeled with the weight appropriate to the corresponding fly line.

Since a specific number fly line weight must follow industry standards, the fly line diameter will vary depending on whether the line is designed to float or sink. This so-called line density will be discussed later.

Fly lines are presently labeled with letters before and after the weight number to indicate the type of line taper and floating/sinking rating, respectively. For example, a WF-6-F denotes a weight-forward number 6 floating line. Likewise, a DT-5-F indicates a double taper number 5 floating line.


Richards admits the subject of color is controversial, but feels that it makes little difference for the majority of anglers. It comes down to personal preference.

Doc Frangos, MCI

Modern Fly Lines Part 2

This is the 2nd in a series discussing fly lines summarized from Bruce Richard’s MODERN FLY LINES.


Primary Basic Coating
PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride)

Micro balloons/air bubbles-decrease line density, improve floating lines
Powdered tungsten-adjust density for sinking characteristics of sinking-type lines
UV inhibitors
Hydrophobic compounds
Stiffening/softening agents

Different core and coating combinations and their interactions allow for designing specific fly line characteristics. For example, both braided monofilament and multifilament nylon are very limp. However, braided monofilament can become stiff when combined with the coating making it ideal for warm saltwater fishing.

Doc Frangos FFI MCI

Modern Fly Lines Part 1


This brief article is the first in a series highlighting important points taken from the seminal book on fly lines written by Mr. Bruce Richards titled MODERN FLY LINES.
This is a must have book for the serious fly fisher.

Five types of cores
1) Braided Multifilament Nylon-made of braided filaments.Tensile strengths of twenty to forty pounds. Limp material suited for freshwater fishing.
2) Braided Monofilament Nylon-made of braided single strands of monofilament. Very limp but becomes stiff with added coating. More line memory and designed for saltwater use.
3) Single Strand Monofilament- with clear coating creates a clear line. Can be designed for fresh or saltwater.
4) Dacron- made of braided multifilament polyester.Used for off-shore big fish or tournament distance casting. Most commonly used as backing attached to fly line. Less stretch.
5) Kevlar-no stretch leading to memory problems. Poor coating adherence.

Doc Frangos, FFI MCI
Summary from Modern Fly Lines
by Bruce Richards

The Inaugural Gulf Coast Classic

The inaugural Gulf Coast Classic was held May 4-6, 2023 at the Learning Campus of Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, AL. The successful event was orchestrated and hosted by the Gulf Coast Council of Fly Fishers International. Chairperson for this FFI region council is AJ Rosenbohm.

There were over 200 attendees. The event kicked off with a sunrise mixed-bag fishing tournament. From there the conclave offered a wide range of activities ranging from instructional fly tying to fly casting. The FFI Board of Directors was strongly represented conducting business and interacting with participants.

Renown regional and national fly tyers provided demonstrations and participant hands-on opportunities. Tyers included Dr. Ed Lash, Jerry Coviello, Tom Logan, and Fred Hannie.

Over the two-day conclave more than six hours of personalized fly-casting instruction was given by four FFI certified instructors. These talented teachers provided instruction for beginner to advanced casters.

Workshops were presented including fly fishing from a skiff and targeting specific salt water species. An introduction to the FFI fly casting instructor certification program was given by Dr. Jonathan Walter, retired physician and Chair of the Casting Board of Governors.

Exhibitors from volunteer programs Project Healing Waters and Cast for Recovery were present to answer questions and promote awareness to their valuable resources.

A large number of fly-fishing manufacturers donated merchandise for raffles and auctions with proceeds benefiting charities. With so many donors to list please refer to the Gulf Council’s website and show them your support.

The conclave finale was the showing of the FT3 Fly Fishing Film Tour. The film has been described as “a traveling roadshow of the best fly-fishing films in the world”.

Make your plans now to attend next year’s event in Gulf Shores, AL from May 31-June 2, 2024.

Doc Frangos
FFI Master Certified Casting Instructor