S3:E40 Extending the Life of Your Fly Fishing Gear

Fly fishing gear can last a long time, if well cared for. Steve just retired a pair of 20-year-old waders. Of course, he isn’t fishing 50 days a year, but just a modicum of care can prolong the end of fly rods, reels, waders, nets, and boots. In this episode, we offer up some simple tips for making your fly fishing gear last.

Listen now to “Extending the Life of Your Fly Fishing Gear”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the end of each episode, we often include a feature called “Great Stuff from Our Listeners.” It’s the last segment of each episode, where Steve reads one of the comments from our listeners or readers. We enjoy hearing from you, and appreciate your advice, wisdom, and fly fishing experiences.

How do you maintain your fly fishing gear? What sort of tips or hacks help prolong the life of your fishing gear?

More Episodes on Fly Fishing Gear

    Which Is the Best Overall Fly Rod?

    Gearing Up for a New Fly Fishing Season

    Fly Fishing Gear We Use


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The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists

We’ve published a book for regular-Joe-and-Jane fly fishers called The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists: Life is short. Catch more fish.

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To switch metaphors, perhaps it’s more like a handful of potato chips. It’s an entire book of lists. The goal is to help you find practical help quickly and in an easily digestible format!

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4 Replies to “S3:E40 Extending the Life of Your Fly Fishing Gear”

  1. Great podcast.
    A comment on extending the life of your of fly lines –
    If you fish in areas that have sand or fine dirt along the shore, you probably need to clean your line more than a once or twice per year. After a day on the water where my line is picking up grit, I give the line a quick wipe-down before the next time out. No line cleaner solution is needed — that can be the twice a year treatment. For a quick wipe-down, an inexpensive product that works well is the Wonder Cloth made by Rio. You can clean 2 or 3 lines on one sheet of the stuff. Then you throw the sheet in the washing machine and use it again (although the darn things get lost in the laundry easier than an old sock). A clean line definitely casts better, and some of us need all the help we can get in that area.
    Steve in northern Indiana

    1. That is hugely helpful. Definitely something for our “Great Stuff from Our Listeners.”

      Thank you so much for commenting. Terrific!


  2. Lighter fluid on cork handke yikes sounds scary . I use dawn dish soap and water. Cleans up nice . Now for wax on furrels use caution. Sometimes the wax will attract dirt and sand . Now this may sound gross but I learned from an old timer rub a finger to the outside of your nose the oil from the skin works well in a pinch . I like your advice about turning the waders inside out to dry . If you ever fish bamboo the maintenance is just a bit more involved. Never ever put your bamboo rod away wet . It will mold and destroy the rod . Always clean and dry the line after use . A mild soap water solution works fine . After completely dry apply mucilin red label . At the end of the season clean dry and hang loosely in a dry dark area . Hang the tips out of case in a safe place . Proper maintenance your rods will out live you . Oh and the rod in the car door thing . Yup I did just that . Trying to get out of a severe thunderstorm and downpour. Thought it was clear but wasn’t. Not a good way to end a fishing trip.

  3. Great tips about gear care. My local TU chapter recently published some tips including keeping your neoprene wader patch kits. Even though neoprene waders seem to be moving towards the way of the dodo, the stocking foot in our more modern waders are still neoprene.

    P.S. I nearly wet myself when Dave talked about, “a fly in the crotch.” I don’t know why but I know I would have needed one had I laughed much harder.

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