Fly Fishing Glossary, the Saga Continues . . .

Jay Nicholas’ Fly Fishing Glossary.

This is a peek into the dark and dusty corners of fly fisher’s heads.  This has nothing, repeat, nothing to do with the inner workings of my own considerably tidy and conventional thinking.  No.  These are crazy ramblings, pure incontrovertible evidence that my friends, the people I hang with, are – well – over the top.  Like Brad Pitt in 12 Monkeys.

He had it right (Brad). Everything, and I do mean everything, is designed by powerful economic interests to entice us into buying stuff.  Stuff on top of stuff.  New stuff to replace our perfectly old stuff.  Like our Pflueger Medalist fly reels of the good ‘ol days.

Then too, our lives are ruled by a committee of powerful heartless trolls.  These individuals, I am sure, manipulate our every move.  They send us on missions to purportedly accomplish something important.  Like collect spiders and cockroaches.  They put us in harm’s way.  All for their own purposes.  They hear all, see all, call all the shots.  The committee’s mission is to ensure our obedience, to make sure that each of us follows orders.  We spend our life struggling against their imperative.

Pardon for just two minutes. There, just tore out my front teeth so they will not be able to monitor my next few statements.  Ha ha.

God.  I just had a scary thought.

Rivers without salmon.

Shudder.  More on that topic when I remember.  Who am I?  Why am I here?  Am I a paranoid delusional schizophrenic?  No, my diagnosis is different, I think.  Meds, must take meds now.  Ahhhh.  Feeling much better.

The fly Fisher’s Glossary. I started to ramble on the Oregonflyfishingblog and you can catch up on previous glossary entries at:

Here, continuing after Elmer Fudd, is the continuation of Nicholas’ Fly Fishing Glossary, for the hours when you are bored out of your skull reading about hatchery fish and wild fish and conservation and global climate change, and how we need more research to figure out how to save salmon (duh), and how BP will pay for all legitimate claims, as if such a thing was possible – – – –

BTW: I will start with a few entries that were not included on the Caddis Fly blog at on the first go-‘round.


Air Cell Supreme (noun)

Fly line manufactured by Scientific Anglers.

Back in about 1962 or 63, I tied parachute flies for Norm Thompson’s at their Southwest Portland retail store.  I charged them 35-cents per fly and they were tut-tutting at me because that was more than they paid for any other fly they sold at the time.  I don’t remember how many dozen flies I tied, but I used every penny to purchase a Pflueger 1494 reel, a Phillipson six-foot, five weight glass rod, fifty yards of backing, a full box of a dozen (dark green) Gladding tapered 6X leaders, and a SA Ivory Air Cell Supreme fly line.  I was in heaven.

I went fishing on the Metolius and caught a mess of trout.  Norm Thompson’s sold all the Parachutes in about fourteen seconds.  Peter asked me to tie them up four-hundred dozen Parachutes so they could sell them through a catalog.  I laughed and went back up to the Metolius to catch another mess of trout.  In retrospect, sadly, I am pretty sure that many of these were hatchery trout, but who knows.

I remember those trout gliding up out of the deep blue, opening their mouths, and wondering what the heck was going on when I jerked my high-floating Parachute out of their open mouths before they could chomp it.

Positively, all fly lines sold today are re-dyed Air Cell Supreme lines.  I learned from diligent Internet research that SA manufactured approximately seventeen thousand trillion of these lines back in the 60s, and had them secreted around the globe in secure warehouses for future use.  These fly lines cost about .000003 cents per each to manufacture, so even with instlflaltionary computations intact, these would represent about .05 cents per each in today’s pretend stock market imaginary currency or about .0000056 Euros per each fly line.

My Internet research also revealed that Cortland, Rio, AirFlo, Teeny, Wulff, Loop, and all the other arcane fly line marketers do not have any manufacturing capability whatsoever.  These shadow companies have simply bought up the original supply of SA Air Cell Supreme fly lines, are dying these different colors, and selling them as new and improved technology.

Bah. Nonsense.  They did figure out, however, to melt four DT5F lines together to make a Skagit compact head.  In fact, they cut these four lines in half before fusing them and therefore obtain two Skagit Compact heads from the 4 SA DT5F fly lines.

Then too, these slick hide-the-pea artists soak old SA lines in mercury to make them sink.  Toxic they are.  But we flock to buy them.  Ahhh, we never learn do we.  Hot orange, lime green, aqua blue, pale pink, and bright yellow fly lines are all simply dye jobs over the original SA Air Cell Supremes.

Clever. Pure genius.  What a money-maker.

All of the fly lines pictured above are re-dyed or re-molded SA Air Cell Supreme fly lines manufactured in about the mid-1960s.

Us unsuspecting and dull witted fly fisher consumers drool at each year’s fly line catalog, setting aside our food and house payment money so we can increase our chances of catching an actual salmon, steelhead, or heaven forbid, trout.  Then we buy the new lines, not understanding that they are really the old lines we tossed in the dumpster.


5 thoughts on “Fly Fishing Glossary, the Saga Continues . . .

    1. Lots of borderline insanity to follow. Possibly followed by ostracizification of author/storyteller. We shall see. JN

  1. They used to make a killer type 1 sinker as well. What anyone would use that for is a mystery. Or is it. By the way if you have any in a 9 or 10 wt cut at 30 feet and don’t want them I will gladly dispose of the nasty things for you. 🙂

    1. Andy. Interesting. Can’t say I have ever heard of a T-I and certainly could not imagine any practical use for same. JN

      1. Yeah they used to make a type 1. They quit making them a while ago. There are a few out there still on ebay and such but they are rare. I don’t know why they called it a type 1 instead of a intermediate but it’ s a great line that sinks nice and slow. Its not much different then a modern SA intermediate or Cortland intermediate but sometimes it is the perfect line for certain unmentionable activities. Good luck. Andy

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