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Thread: Gelspun backing

  1. #1

    Default Gelspun backing

    Unless you are buying miles, 50lb gelspun backing typically costs 20 per 100 yards/metres. Braid sold for spinning typically costs half that.

    What's the difference and what what type do you recommend?

    (I do like the look of the Rio multicolour backing, which reminds me of the multi-colour trolling braid available in the US).

  2. #2

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    Seeing as you were the first to reply to my Bloke thread....

    There is braid and BRAID. if you want decent stuff in UK start at Power Pro and work up from there. You can get PP in UK for 30 quid for 300 yds of 50lb. I like the 65lb version best.

    Tuf Line XP is fine and Sufix Performance braid is really nice (I tend to buy them when on holiday in Florida). I have also bought red Spiderwire from Veals mail order fairly cheap and it is fine (as in good) in 50lb.

    Some of the very recent 8 strand braids are super expensive and to be honest too expensive for me to even try! If you want info find a site about bass lure fishing.

    Conversely I have tried some of the Chinese (ebay) Power Pro copies and they are okay. They are VERY cheap. But be prepared to be sent spools that contain less than they say (so order 500m plus) and that you will get braid that is probably going to be thicker than you asked for. It works just fine for serious saltwater fly fishing backing.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    OC, my reading of your post is that you are looking for a fly line backing rather than spinning braid? Good spinning braids are designed to be very hard wearing due to the repetitive stresses of casting and retrieving - they are therefore more than adequate as flyline backing. Power Pro comes in various colours too. However unless you are looking to do some destination SWFF or heavy duty salmon fishing where you expect rather than hope to see your backing then they are probably way overspec'd for requirements. If you are simply looking to squeeze a bit more backing onto a large arbour spool then the chinese braid from ebay mentioned by Squimp is good. Recently the Glasgow Angling Centre were selling cheap braid in 100m spools which I got to fill a few trout reels.

    One thing to think about - some cheaper braids don't hold their dye so well so can stain the fly line. If this is a concern choose white

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    London & SW Wales

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    I have just got an alleged 500m of 30lb fluorescent yellow Spectra from a Chinese supplier on the big Brazilian river for 12.50! They quote 18.80 for 1000m of 40lb; perhaps I should have ordered that!

    I will do some rather rudimentary breaking strain tests, but it looks utterly ideal for SWFF backing: FAR thinner than 30lb Dacron.

    I am sure the dye will leach bit, but it does that from terribly expensive branded gel-spun braids, too: I can show you the tastefully-coloured fly line ends, but the fish don't mind one jot.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    The backing is for a second tarpon set-up. Having just bought a spare rod I thought I'd turn it into a full outfit as I already have a suitable reel but it's currently loaded with 20lb dacron.

    Power Pro sounds the way to go. Why 66lb (0.36mm) rather than 53lb (0.32mm) ? No-one seems to quote Dacron diameters.

    I note it comes in 275 metre spools so I'll probably back that with some 30lb dacron I already have - or am I not being optimistic enough.

    I have several lines with leeched colouring on the back end, seems to me this is normal and not an exclusive feature of cheap backing.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    I use 66 lb or thereabouts simply because the extra diameter suggests that it may be a little more abrasion resistant. There is room on the reel so why not? I don't worry about the extra drag in the water.

    I don't worry too much about the length either - I have never had a tarpon go more than a couple of hundred yards and few go that far.....These days we follow them in the boat anyway - you land them much quicker that way.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    I use 50 lb Power Pro.

    The biggest problem with all Gel Spun is knot strength. I use a double bimini to attach the backing to the fly line. Most knots break very easily.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Dorset Wilts Borders & Baja
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    Have a look on UK Hooks website.Good braid for backing flylines and other rigs.


  9. #9

    Default Re: Gelspun backing


    I do use a double bimini for all my saltwater and a single for most of my trout backing to flyline connections.

    In anticipation of loading new backing this is how I do it.
    To get backing on under good tension I have an old reel that weighs a pound without any line on it. First I wind the backing onto this reel and then wind it from there onto the destination reel.
    I put the old reel on the floor and set the drag so that when winding onto the destination reel the old reel is just lifted off the floor i.e. there is constant tension of one pound plus the weight of line remaining on the old reel. Does that make sense?

    As the weight of line on the old reel reduces the drag needs to be reduced. Fortuitously the tension on the backing wound on the destination reel is greatest at the centre and consequently the possibility of upper layers digging into lower layers is minimised.

    It takes time, but I've never met anyone who has firmer backing than mine!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Dorset Wilts Borders & Baja
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Gelspun backing

    You might just want to put a layer or two of mono/nylon and join braid/gelspun with a slim beauty knot doubling the braid used to make the join.Nylon will eliminate any possibility of whole spool spinning under not a lot of pressure especially if ''brick hard''.Another method is to make several wraps around the spool with the braid before making a uni-knot and pulling it up.Spool on a length of dowel rod wedged in a bucket of water and wind on 50lb braid/gelspun ''wet'' criss crossing at regular intervals should secure it.Several well proven documented ways to join the braid/gelspun to the fly line.Whatever but will always catspaw the gelspun if using a doubled bimini or spider hitch type join.Have to add I do not use Bimini with braid/gelspun.There is a weakness if braid/gelspun is burned in the twisting process and knot can slip using braids.Have found a 6-12 spider hitch and then doubling the loop with another 4-turn spider hitch has gone the distance.Good information passed on by a seasoned professional.Still good today as it was 12 years ago.The only other method I have used in recent years are custom spliced connectors.Have a look at BHP Tackle.This chap has forgotten more than most of us know about heavy duty leaders etc.

    Best JP
    Last edited by JCP; 09-08-2017 at 01:20 PM.

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