Trout Fisherman magazine review the outstanding new Airflo forge floating fly line!!
”A slick, stable & high floating line” – TF tackle tester Robbie Winram
Robbie says: I was looking forward to trying out the new Forge fly-line as its taper is very similar to my ‘go to’ floating line for stillwater fishing– the Airflo Elite – with a head length of 40 foot and a running line of 50 foot. The main differences are that the Forge is half a line weight heavier to make it easier to load, it is built around a stretchier core of braided multifiliment and the coating is ultra-smooth.
As with any line used straight from the box a little memory was present, but after an initial stretch everything was good to go. As I stretched the line I could feel it had a good amount of ‘give’ and it felt supple and smooth through the hands.
The initial lift and load was trouble-free with the line aerialising well, and the resulting forward cast and line shoot delivered the line onto the water with crisp turnover and equally good presentation.
This same performance was produced over short and medium ranges in varying wind conditions. When pushing for more distance, even though the head length is not especially long, it hit the mark with little casting effort. It has great stability in the air, especially when false casting or double-hauling, and the accuracy and delicacy it achieves at these ranges make it perfect for dry fly work and for fishing a team of nymphs, making for a very versatile floating line.
I liked the two colours of the line, which are a tactical olive for the head length and a brighter sunrise yellow for the running line, making it easier to track across the water in difficult light conditions.
The surface coating that Airflo use makes for a very buoyant floating line that not only sits high on the water but allows for easier and cleaner lift-offs. The noticeably softer feel to the line, especially when retrieved over cold wet hands and fingers, was a real bonus. And even though it doesn’t have ridges it is very slick through the rod rings allowing you to cover moving fish quickly and accurately. From experience the polyurethane base material that Airflo use produces a strong, hard-wearing fly-line that outlasts many others.
This line will appeal to anglers of differing skill levels because it’s so easy
to cast and at this price won’t break the bank. As a side note the line has a small, neat welded loop at the front end. To get the best from this, combine it with a polyleader using a loop-to-loop connection. This will give improved presentation, especially when fishing
dries. If welded loops are not your cup of tea, cut this loop off, seal the end and add a small braided loop instead.
“The surface coating makes for a very buoyant line that not only sits high on the water but allows for easier lift-offs.” – TF contributor Peter Gathercole
Peter says: It’s an absolutely brilliant line – slick, flats well and lifts off the water smoothly. It has a little stretch, which is preferred by some as they believe it helps with more hook-ups, avoiding the dreaded ‘bounce off’. And it’s forgiving when playing fish. It also casts well and lands beautifully straight on the water. There appears to be a slight increase in rigidity in the running line which aids shootability while reducing tangles – the line drops into open coils while retrieving. But there’s a softness in the head section, which I like. Will it be robust enough long term? I see no reason why it shouldn’t. I enjoyed fishing with it.
Airflo’s sales director Gareth Jones talks about the Forge Fly line
Gareth says: With all the fly-lines available on the market today, it’s often a case of ‘where do I start’ when it comes to deciding on the correct taper, coatings, cores, etc for your floating line?
Add to this the fact that £50-plus is a significant investment in something that you may or may not get right and you can see there could be some hesitation, unless you’ve had a chance to find something you like.
At the other end of the scale, you have your lower priced fly-lines and mill ends, but sometimes these cheaper options can lack in performance and age quickly, making them a line that ends up being replaced often.
The Airflo Forge seeks to address these issues and give you a fly-line you can enjoy at a price level that won’t break the bank.
Taper: With a total head length of 40 feet and a working head length of between
33 to 42 feet, the Forge is an extremely versatile line that will work for all levels of casting ability. A relatively long front taper of eight feet (including tip) allows for smooth turnover and precise deliveries, superb for nymphs, dries and any top of the water presentation.
Colour: The line has a pleasant warm olive head colour that will help reduce line flash in the air. A sunrise yellow running line allows you to easily see the transition at the rear taper and help you gauge the optimal amount of line to aerialise when going for distance.
Coating: The surface on the Forge line is ultra-smooth to the touch and holds a dry lubrication system that not only improves casting performance, but also helps significantly with water repulsion – a key factor in improving flotation. It also helps with smooth lift-offs when covering rising fish.
Core: The core is a braided multifiament, similar to those found in top end PVC fly-lines – if you’re already used to stretchy fly-lines, this will have a similar feel to the lines you may have used previously.
Why the price? At only £29.99, the Forge has pushed the barriers of performance for this price point of fly-line. Being launched globally, this has allowed us to run very large volumes and reduce the cost of manufacture significantly. We’ve also saved by making the line with only two coatings (Super-Dri has three!). Finally, we dropped off the loop at the reel end, so you still have a great factory welded loop at the tip, but can still connect backing with your regular nail knot or similar.
Colour: Olive/sunrise yellow
Recovery speed: 1.5 inches per second for high buoyancy
Airflo Forge fly lines are available here.
Reproduced with permission from the November 2016 issue of Trout Fisherman magazine.