Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wulff Ambush Line


The Wulff Ambush line is my go to line for Switch rod for good reason. It is ridiculously easy to roll cast and make Spey casting a lot easier to learn. It has a 20ft tapered head joined to an integrated running line. The key to this line success is its concentration of mass near the butt end (the part joining the running line). When the head just overhangs the rod tip, most of the mass is right at rod tip making it very easy to  load  with a D-loop.

This line was not specifically design for double-hander. It was meant as a line for tight quarter roll casting and  single hand spey casting. However, with the rise in popularity of shorter Spey rods and Switch rods, this line found its niche. Gary Sandstrom designed the line for Royal Wulff. You can read more about his design philosophy and inspiration here in this newsletter:

 http://www.flyfishusa.com/newsletter/030710/

For Spey casting with Switch and shorter Spey rods, this line match well with RIO versi-leader from 10ft - 15ft. For floating and intermediate tips, I typically use 15ft versi-leaders. For faster sinking tips, I stick to 10ft versi-leaders. The Ambush line is now available from 195 grains all the way up to 600 grains.

Here is a chart I created to reference Wulff Ambush line grain weight:









37 comments:

  1. Nice review on the Ambush Line, have you tried the 10' 3WT TFO BVK with the 5wt Ambush for single handed spey?

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    1. I have not tried 5wt Ambush (215 grain) but I have tried a custom 150 grain line on the 10' 3wt BVK and it cast great. I have also tried Ambush 6wt (235grain) and it is on the high side of the grain window. 4wt and 5wt Ambush will most likely be nearer to mid point of the grain window and should cast great. If you are going for single handed Spey, my recommendation would be to go with Ambush 4wt (195 grain).

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  2. What grain would you recommend on a sage one 4wt switch rod?

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    1. I have tried the Sage ONE 4wt Switch with 350 grain Ambush and like it for Skagit. You may want to go lighter if you are doing Scandi. Anything from 300 - 350 grain is good for this rod.

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  4. what grain would you recommend for the sage one switch 5wt?

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    1. RIO's recommendation for Sage ONE Switch 5wt is 325 grain - 375 grain. I will not hesitate to use Wulff Ambush 400 grain on the Sage ONE 5116-4 because I know it is a lot stiffer compared to the 4wt.

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    2. I am assuming you are doing Skagit of course. If you are doing Scandi, you can go lighter. You can find the link to RIO's Spey line recommendation at the top right corner of my blog.

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  5. Hi and congratulations for your blog!.

    I have an Orvis Access Switch #6 and a Loomis GLX Switch. For this rods and two hand over head, which Ambush Fly Lines do you advice me?.

    Best and thanks a lot.

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    1. Thank you!
      For #6 Switch rod and two hand overhead casting, I would recommend Ambush line #7 (265 grain) + RiO 10ft versileader (60 grain) making a total for 325 grain @ 30ft

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  6. I got a 5/6 at switch that is rated for 230-270 grains for shooting head and 400-440 for 50-60ft heads. I have the ambush 7wt that I use with 10ft veesileader. Which would be a total of 325 would that be OK for a light skagit?

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    1. Hi Justin, for Skagit, you don't have include the versileader into the grain weight calculation. From the description of your rod grain window, I estimated that it will need about 270 grain to 350 grain for Skagit. Ambush 7wt is 265 grain, so I think it should be OK for light Skagit.

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  7. hello, ex blog, can you advise on which ambush line is suitable on a tcx 5119. thanks.

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    1. If you are Skagit casting, go with 350 - 400 grain (9-10 wt Ambush line). If you are Scandi casting, then go lighter... 290 grain (8wt Ambush) is OK.

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  8. Hello,
    I'm considering this line for my Sage VPS 890 for single hand spey and some overhead casting. Am I safe to assume I should be going with the 8wt Ambush if i'm using 10ft Versileader? Thanks!

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    1. If you are predominantly doing single hand spey, then I would say go with the 8wt Ambush (290 grain). The RIO 10ft Versi-leader is about 70 grain. Added together they will be 360 grain. For overhead casting, it is a little heavy and you will need to slow down and cast it like a shooting head (pick up and shoot). Alternatively, you can choose 7wt Ambush (265 grain) + 10ft versileader (70 grain) making a total of 335 grain, which should overhead cast better with your 8wt rod. 265 grain should still spey cast pretty well with your rod.

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  9. Hi there, I think you are the right guy to ask about the Ambush.
    I have a custom 6 weight 11FT switch rod with the grain window 325-425 and have custom made line in 26.5ft 348 and 27.5ft 367 for them. It was made from a 51msi Gary Anderson blank. Do you think that I could cast Ambush #6 or the #7 would be the lightest that I can go with.

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    1. If your rod lowest grain window is 325, I suggest you go with Ambush 9wt (350 grain). Ambush 8wt (290 grain) is probably the lightest I will go with that rod.

      You can certainly cast with a 7wt Ambush but may not like the feeling that it is not loading optimally.

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  10. Great review. I just got the 265 grain 7wt for my 8wt rod. Do you think I could use this same line on an 11' 8wt switch? Check out my review I did on this line.
    www.swinginpnw.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Charlie,
      Nice blog and review of the Ambush line on single hand rod. For 11' 8wt switch rod, it depends whether you are doing Skagit or Scandi. If you are doing Skagit, you should go with at least a 500 grain Ambush. You can go one or two line size down if you are doing Scandi.

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  11. Hi. Thanks for an extremely useful blog.

    I'm in the process of setting up a light switch set up for trout (brown) and grayling, with a Sage One #4 11'6"/Ambush - I was thinking two lines, one lighter for overhead/presentation and one heavier for twohand spey. Would 6 & 7 wt make a decent combo if run with 15' Versileader float?

    Also found the piece on TFO BVK #3 interesting - will do the same to my 10' #3 and 10' #4 - I'm guessing that a 4wt and a 5wt would be ideal for those rods?

    Br.
    ./Daniel

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    1. You can certainly Spey cast Ambush 6wt on ONE4116. I have done that before. The advantage of using a lighter grain wt for the rod is that you can both overhead and spey cast with the same line. Good for trout fishing in small rivers where you sometimes need to overhead cast to drop the fly.

      For maximum enjoyment, go ahead and convert the 10'#4. This rod will be nearest in terms of power level to a single hand 5wt rod. I have done that recently with the Cabela CZN 11' #4 and I like it.

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  12. Hi, how are you.
    I need a good line that match for this Orvis Access switch #7 rod.
    I really like the triangle tapered 20’-29’ head Ambush line, a shorter head line that would be something easier to cast.
    Wulff recommend #9/350gr (for overhead cast) or #10/400gr for #7 switch rod.

    1- What number do you thing that will match better to avoid having to buy two lines.

    2- Also I wonder if due to its shorter head and the need of more weight in the body this line will be too much bigger (in diameter) than others made for switching rods.

    Regards,

    Hector.

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    1. Hi Hector,

      Go with the 350 grain Ambush if you want to still be able to do overhead casting. Don't worry about the thickness of the Ambush head....it is thick at the right place...which is nearer to the running line. Make sure you put on a versi-tip or poly leader and your business end presenting to the fish wont be so thick anymore.

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  13. Hi Yuen..! It's me again, Héctor.
    Thanks for your last answer...
    I am waiting for an Orvis Access Switch #7 rod that I bought some days ago and I am trying to get the best line/s I can.
    I' d go with #9 Ambush line for my #7 rod.
    Now, I would want to know what are the differences between using the Ambush line or the Shooting Head with a running line instead.

    Regards,

    Héctor.

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    1. Hi Hector,
      The Ambush line is special in the sense that the weight distribution is ideally suited for roll cast and Spey cast. You can refer to my blog post " Anatomy of a good spey casting line" to understand better.

      http://yuenmah.blogspot.com/2011/12/anatomy-of-good-spey-casting-line.html

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    2. Hi..!
      Perhaps I did my question not well.
      I wanted to know if there was some difference between using the Ambush line (that is an integrated line, that comes with its running) or the Ambush Shooting Head (where I had to match a running line to handle it well).

      Thank you for show me the link anatomy-of-good-spey-casting-line.
      I'm reading it now..!


      Regards,

      Héctor.

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    3. Hi Hector,
      Both Ambush integrated and Ambush Shooting Head essentially have the same taper. Some people like to use their favorite running line or even mono running line and its more economical to buy head only. It also gives them the flexibility to change head right on the stream when situation arise.

      So far, I like the integrated running line that come with the Ambush. I have no problem using it in the tropics or cold country like Mongolia. It performs well for me. The bonus of integrated line is that you won't have the annoying click click when the loop to loop connection goes thru the guides.

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  14. Hector,
    I purchased a 10'6" 3/w Echo Switch. I am wanting to use swinging for trout. What is your suggestion for the Ambush line. Usually fish the Deschutes River in Oregon.

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    1. I have no experience with the Echo 3wt but Reds flyshop seems to sell the Echo 3wt package paired with Ambush 4wt (195 grain).
      http://www.redsflyfishing.com/Echo-SR-Switch-Rods-Best-Switch-Rod-for-the-Money-p/echo-sr-combo-mp.htm
      I think that is correct is you plan to mix overhead cast with spey cast with this rod. Otherwise if you plan to do mostly Skagit cast, you can certainly go with the 6wt Ambush.

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  15. Hi Yuen, really enjoy your blog and videos. I already have 5wt ambush line for both my 4wt deer creek switch rod and single hand 8 wt rod. Now I want to get a heavier line for longer distance and bigger fish. Do you think I should go with 8wt or 9wt ambush? I know you've used 9wt(350gr) on the deer creek, but I'm afraid it might be too heavy for spey casting with my single handed 8wt since I would like to use the line on both rods.

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    1. Hi. Thanks for liking my blog. Since you have a single handed 8wt, I suggest you go with 8wt Ambush (290 grain). The Deer Creek 4wt will cast great with 290 grain.

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    2. I'm also looking at skagit head + a running line such as Rio Max Short designed for shorter spey/switch for the Deer Creek. So what are pros and cons of using this setup vs an integrated line like Ambush? Doesn't separated running line offer me more flexibility down the road to add more heads?

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    3. Max short looped to a running line of your choice definitely has its merit in flexibility and cost. However some people have issue with the click of the loop to loop connection running through the guides. If you have no issue, then go for it. It is definitely more cost effective in the long run.
      Having said that, I like the running line of the Ambush very much. Not too thin or stiff...so its a joy to handle. Make sure you choose a running line that you know you are comfy with. Some folks I know chose too thin a running line and ended up not liking it.

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  16. What do you think about the new Rio Switch chucker? I know it's similar to Ambush.

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    1. I have no experience with the Switch Chucker. From the description that it is meant for tight quarter roll casting, then I guess it will be similar to Ambush. Not sure if the taper is as aggressive as Ambush. The think I like about Ambush is that most of the weight is near the rod tip and it excels in tight quarter roll cast or spey cast even when there is hardly any room for a good D-loop.

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  17. I don't have any experience with the Ambush but I do have a Rio Switch Chucker paired with a Redington Prospector #5 for trout fishing. Very pleased with both the rod and the Rio Switch Chucker. Also have a Chucker paired with a Sage One #7 and Redington Prospector #7 for steelhead. Would recommend these combinations to anyone that Spey casts or indicator fishes and prefers to use an integrated line rather than a Scandi or Skagit head in combination with a running line.

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