Let’s Talk About Bottoms

We’ve all got bottoms, and sometimes we all treat our bottoms in a rough manner. We grind our bottoms, we slap our bottoms, and on occasion we’ve even been known to penetrate our bottoms. Yes, boat bottoms can be problematic. Lucky for all of us bottom abusers, Todd Gregory and the boys over at Towee Marine has come up with the solution for all those abused bottoms out there. Total bottom makeovers are not just a dream anymore, I’ll let Todd explain…

Towee Boats and Towee Marine and Industrial LLC have released their new “T2 River Armor” coating for your drift boat or jet sled. Developed in conjunction with a major coatings company, T2 River Armor is the first coating developed specifically for adding significant protection for river craft that operate in rocky, harsh service environments.

Towee owner Todd Gregory explains that, like most great ideas,  T2 River Armor was born from a great need.  “Owners of drift boats and jet sleds, whether they are fiberglass or aluminum, have always faced the same issues.” “First, the hulls themselves can only take so much abuse due to the nature of both the materials themselves and the construction techniques – this had been the state of the art so to speak for a long, long time”. “After a few years of service, the owners are usually forced to bring the boats in for a bottom service or to have tears welded on an aluminum hull” . “The problem here is that not only is this expensive and inconvenient, It only brings the boat back to “original condition” at best and will need attention again in a few seasons. At Towee, we chose to address this issue by developing our proprietary hull material lamination schedule that produces a far tougher and lighter hull” .  “However, we routinely receive requests to repair great boats built by other builders that just weren’t quite so resilient. The second part of the problem, according to Gregory, is that there just weren’t any good options available. Builders and owners have tried most everything conceivable from heavy HDMW sheets to epoxy mixed with various fillers to bedliner sprays, air boat bottom coatings and the like. Each have their own issues and none have adequately addressed the needs of the hard core river angler.

Over the past year, Towee has worked directly with one of the worlds largest industrial coatings manufacturer’s Research and Development departments to develop the first coating designed specifically to greatly improve the protection and performance of boat bottoms in harsh service applications. “From the beginning, we didn’t want an off the shelf solution, we wanted something specifically formulated for what our clients do” said Gregory. “We had to have it meet all four of the basic criteria: Extreme impact resistance, abrasion resistance, light weight and low drag coefficient (slickness)”.  The team at our partner supplier really knocked it out of the park on all four criteria and provided us with a proprietary product that will change what is possible with river craft .”  “We have actually had a sheet of simple 1/8′ fiberglass in the shop all winter that was treated with an early variant of T2 and I’ve been just wailing on it with a 2 lb hammer for visiting Pro Staffers and collaborators.” ” It has had to taken at least 500 hammer strikes and I finally got a small crack with an 18 inch pipe wrench the other day – the crack was in the fiberglass, not the coating.”

After a winter’s worth of R and D and Spring testing, Towee is ready to add performance and reliability to your drift boat or jet sled and add years to its life. For traditional fiberglass drift boats and sleds, Towee will repair existing damage, build up the chines with additional layers of material and coat the bottom and chines of the boat to provide the owners with  super tough hull protection system for little more than a traditional “rebottom” service from one of the major boat builders.   In addition to improved service life, the slickness of the coating combined with the reduced surface area achieved by the glass smooth crinkle finish result in a hull that not only takes the abuse of a rocky river but slides over rocks and logs with ease without reducing motoring performance.

Available only from Towee, T2 River armor is applied in a two coats, a base coat and a top coat then baked at a specific temperature to ensure a proper cure. Gregory can be reached directly with questions and inquires at todd@toweeboats.com.

I’ve already had my bottom T2 armored, and I’m loving’ every minute of it. Don’t you owe your bottom the best? Give Todd a call and let him work out your bottom problems.

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Now Or Neverglades

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This video was released about a week ago, and I’m sure plenty of you have already seen it. But we decided we’d play the clean up role on this one. So if you’ve seen it, then sign up to support it. If you haven’t seen it, watch the video and then sign up to support flows going back to the Everglades. The time is nigh and I don’t know about you, but I for one think it’s time that big sugar takes a backseat to the people of Florida, and the rest of the country, that want our natural resources back.

SCOF Winter 2017 “Diplomatic Immunity” Issue is Live

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We here at SCOF are not a proud people. We may not shower regularly, or use deodorant, or even know what a lufa is, but every three months we put out an issue despite ourselves. So here it is, the SCOF 2017 Winter “Diplomatic Immunity” Issue. Now leave us alone for three months, we stink. Oh yeah…head on over to our Facebook page to Like, Comment, and Share this post for a chance to win a Simms Dry Creek 2 Sling Pack. We’ll pick the winner next Monday February 2oth. But after you do that please explain the concept of a lufa to us. We’re dying to know.

southerncultureonthefly.com

SCOF Fly Tying Potluck Tuesdays

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From the genius minds that brought you Mystery Movie Night, we are proud to present to you, the SCOF community, our latest excuse to get drunk and tie flies on a Tuesday. SCOF Fly Tying Pot Luck Tuesdays will not only be the greatest tying night of the week, it might just be the thing to clear up that rash. We will be running the pot luck at both of our main office in Asheville as well as SCOF outpost FL. At our Asheville night we will have a limited number of seats for an hour of instruction with local guides and fly tying celebrities. Comment instruction on the Facebook Event Page. All materials will be provided and space will be limited. Now to the potluck part. Everyone that shows up will be asked to add a material to the potluck. Once all potluck materials have been assembled all willing participants will be asked to tie one fly using solely the potluck materials. Best fly as judged by someone in charge will win some pretty nice stuff given up by our sponsors, Patagonia, Costa Del Mar, and Hunter Banks Fly Fishing…with some SCOF swag peppered in for good measure. The rest of the time feel free to spin up whatever you want, or more importantly whatever my boxes might need. The bar will be in reaching distance at both locations to make sure everyone’s creative juices are properly lubed. This event will run the second  Tuesday of the month until further notice. Y’all are now officially invited to our potluck…make sure you bring some dead animals.

– Dave

SCOF Summer 2016 “Blood Oath” Issue is Live

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Here we are again folks. The SCOF Summer 2016 “Blood Oath” Issue is live and like all blood oaths, not to be taken lightly. This time around we’re celebrating the release of the new issue by giving one lucky winner a free pair of Costa Del Mar sunglasses of the winners choosing. Go over to our Facebook page and like, comment, and share to enter to win. We’ll pick the winner next Monday. Until then please feel free to peruse the fruits of our summer bounty.

Click the link. Read It.
southerncultureonthefly.com

SCOF Summer Mystery Movie Series: TONIGHT

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Come one, come all…The SCOF Summer Mystery Movie Series (SSMMS for short) is upon us once again. Food will be provided by Farm To Fender food truck, drinks by the Cascade Lounge, a pair of Costas of your choosing to be raffled off provided by Costa, and some pisctorial film noir provided by your friendly neighborhood SCOF. Show will start around 8:45 but the loitering will get going around 6:00. See you tonight….

XOXOXXXXXXOOOOX,
Dave

The Great Re-Lining: Part Deux

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Sooooooo, we left off last time right about here The Great Re-Lining. This time I thought it might be good to get into the nuts and bolts of spooling your own reels. Notice I said spool your own, that is in direct contrast to letting whatever shop monkey happens to be working that day do it. I’m not trying to be mean, as I was formerly said shop monkey, but you wouldn’t let a stranger give you an enema so why would you let one spool your reel. Bad knots, reels spooled backwards, and sloppy line distribution plague many shop spooled reels, the numbers climb exponentially when you take into account big box spooled reels. So here’s how I spool, because mama didn’t raise no fool.

Backing

For trout, panfish, both small jaw and large jaw bass, amongst many other smaller fair I use 20lb dacron. For your apex predators , and for those fish that really pull (tarpon, bonefish, big striper, etc..) I prefer a 30lb in a gel spun if at all possible. Don’t trust manufacturers recommendations on backing capacities. I have a sneaky suspicion both the backing companies and the reel companies have been conspiring together (much like a cabal) with the sole purpose of driving me bat shit crazy by having to either re-spool backing or cut a bunch out based on their ridiculous “manufacturer” recommendations. My general rule of pinkies is leave about one pinky width of space on the spool for line. If you have gigantic pinkies adjust accordingly. Go ahead and attach you backing with an arbor knot. Click here to see it animated…like a cartoon…about a knot.

Backing To Line

There’s a million ways to skin a cat and then serve it as a rabbit. Nail knots are fine, but a pain in the ass. I really prefer a loop to loop connection here for the ease of switching lines. The only acceptable way to put a loop into backing is the Bimini twist or the fabled double Bimini. Yes, on your lower line weight reels this is killing a fly with a cruise missile, but once you learn to do the twist with the ease of Fats Domino why do anything else. I move up to the double Bimini when I go up to my big game gear because I dig redundancy.

Click here for the Bimini and here for the Double.

Now  to the line. Most manufacturers have started putting loops on both ends of the line direct from the factory. I never used to trust these loops as I have seen them explode at the worst moments all too often. These days I tolerate them on my lower line weight reels as a byproduct of my laziness. In general though I am a big fan of whipping my own loops. Whipping loops also comes in handy when there’s not a loop on either end of the line to. Check out this Gink and Gasoline post on proper loop whipping technique and whip it good.

A Note On Winding It All Up

I found a shop spooling machine on ebay for a very reasonable price and it is choice. Short of that, put a nail in a wall, put the spool of line or backing on that nail and go to town. In a pinch a buddy holding the line spool with a pencil through the hole will achieve the same result.

So now you know, and knowing is half the battle. Look out for the next and final installment: Line Selection

The Great Re-Lining

After 20 plus years fly fishing I have accumulated some tackle. By some tackle, I mean a whole room full. Over the years I have bought rods and reels at full retail, guide discount, and magazine editor discount. I highly recommend the magazine editor discount.At this point in my life I fish o a lot of different species, in a lot of different situations. My dream is to have a rod, reel, and line ready to go, with no re-rigging needed. I’ve finally got the rod and reel end covered, so the last piece of the puzzle will be line.

Fly lines are the most important least understood part of a fly fishing setup. You can spend $1500 on the highest end nano carbon rod and anodized reel with an arbor size more reminiscent of Flavor Flav than Lee Wulff, but if you put a dog of a line on it, it’s gonna cast like what comes out the back of said dog. Some rods want a line a size up, just like some redfish pop up and require a quick short loading line. Rods only work the way you want them to when the right line for the right situation is running through the eyes.

With a lot of help from our friends at Scientific Anglers (fine purveyors of fly fishing lines and other piscatorial oddities), I am now attempting to put together my ultimate species specific, situationally astute, Southern fly fishing quiver. I figured my journey to tackle nirvana might make for interesting fodder on the topic of rod and line selection for the modern day obsessed angler. So let’s get started shall we…

The first step in undertaking a project this size is to organize, and organization without a table is like pb with no j, or koolaid with no sugar. I compiled all my most important earthly possessions into a neat little word table.

Dave’s Bangin’ Rod/Reel Catalog

Rod Reel New Line Species/Setup
Sage 7 ½ 3 wt Lamson Radius X Blue Line
Orvis Superfine Glass

7 ½ 3 wt

Peerless X Blue Line/DH
Orvis H2

9’ 4wt

Orvis

Battenkill II

SA Wavelength

Trout 4wt

Dry Fly/Dry Dropper
Sage 99

9’

Ross Evolution SA Wavelength

MPX 4wt

Boat Nymph/Dry
Mystic

11’3” 4wt Switch

Lamson Litespeed SA Adapt Switch

280 grain

Euro/Trout Spey
S. Fork Rod Co.

8’ 5/6 wt

Pflueger (old) SA Wavelength

MPX 6wt.

Smallie/Largemouth

Top Water

Orvis H2

10’ 5wt

Plueger

Medalist

(new)

SA Wavelength

MPX 5wt

Boat Nymph
Scott S4

9’ 5wt

Lamson Litespeed SA Wavelength

MPX 5wt

Wading Trout
Sage Z Axis

9’ 5wt

Lamson Guru SA Wavelength

MPX 5wt

Wading Trout
Clutch 9’ 6wt Orvis Hydros II SA Wavelength

Titan 6wt

Topwater Bass/Carp/Floating Streamer
St Croix Bank Robber

9’ 6wt

Pflueger
Buelah Platinum

9’9” 7wt

Ross Gunnison

(new)

SA Sonar Triple Density

7wt

Trout/Bass Streamers
Orvis H2

11’3” 7wt Switch

Ross Gunnison Salt X Smallie Swinging/Steel Head
Orvis H2

8’9” 8wt 1pc

Nautilus

NV 10/11

SA Mastery Redfish

Cold/Warm

Redfish/Carp
Scott G

8’8” 8wt

Lamson Konic SA Sonar Titan Intermediate 8wt Intermediate

Striper/Small Mouth

TFO Mangrove

9’ 8wt

Cheeky SA Sonar Triple Density

8wt

Big Streamers

Trout/Striper

Echo Prime

8’10” 8wt

Tibor

Back Country

SA Sharkwave Saltwater 8wt Carp/Redfish

 

Sage RPL+

9’ 8wt

Tibor Everglades SA Mastery Saltwater 8wt Travel salt
Orvis T3

9’ 9wt

Galvan Torque SA Mastery Saltwater 9wt Florida/Louisiana Rod
Buelah Bluewater

9’ 10/11 wt

Cheeky

Thrash 475

Sonar Triple Density

10wt

Musky/Striper/Tarpon
Echo Prime

8’10” 11wt

Loop

Opti Big

X Tarpon/Musky/Shark

Now besides giving y’all an exact list of things to steal, this table helped me answer some questions of what I fish, how I fish it, and how many rods do I need dedicated to it. Really a nifty little exercise. Once I sorted out all the sorted details, the next step was making the call to the boys at SA to make my OCD a reality. FullSizeRenderIn our next installment we’ll get down to dirty business of re-spooling all these reels and in the third installment I’ll give a rough outline as to the method behind my line madness.

-Dave

Movie Night Y’all

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Less than a week to go till the first installment of The SCOF Summer Mystery Movie Series. A couple of updates:
  •  The movie is free, but a portion of all bar, food, and vendor proceeds will be donated to the French Broad Riverkeeper for monitoring, improvement, and over all well being of the French Broad River right here in our backyard.
  • The featured vendor for the first installment of movie night will be our good friend Danny Reed of Crooked Creek Holler apparel. He’ll have a table set up with his new spring line of gear and the best thing is you won’t have to pay shipping.
Festivities start at 6, the movie starts at dusk on the trailer. Cascade Lounge will be providing the hooch, and Ron’s Taco Shop will be slinging’ tortillas.
We also have a pretty sick swag raffle for you folks to. Come on down to the Asheville Food Park, and remember to bring your own chair.
– Dave