Building Your Own Sink-Tips

Category Fly Fishing

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Building your own sink-tips can seem intimidating at first glance, but its actually quite easy. All that you need is bulk lengths of the sink tip of your choice (we use Rio’s T-series), braided loops to fit and some 15 lb Maxima Ultragreen. The shop sells T-8 through T-17 in both 30 ft lengths of bulk sink-tip and T-11 & T-14 by the foot. Pick up some bulk sink-tip, braided loops, 15 lb mono and you’re ready to go. Here are two different ways to go about making your own tips. This will enable you to customize the length of tips you wish to carry, and assures the highest quality of craftsmanship completed by yourself.

When swinging for anadromous fish on the Kanektok, I carry two each of the following sink-tips:

  • 5′ & 10′ of T-8 
  • 5′ & 10′ of T-11
  • 5′, 10′ and 15′ of T-14

#1- Strip and Knot Method- This method uses no braided loops, only the mono core.
(this is my preferred method and a great way to fix blown loops in the field)

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Take 18″ of 15lb ultragreen and tie a perfection loop in one end. You will use this to strip the tungsten sheath off the mono core of the sink-tip. (Any 12+ lb mono will do the trick.)

Cut sink-tip to desired length. (We are using 10′ T-14.)

Take tag end of mono and pass through perfection loop creating a “girth hitch” around the sinktip.

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Place loop 10″ from end of sink-tip, tighten on tip (enough to cut tungsten coating) and pull.

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Tungsten will have stripped right off, leaving behind the mono core. The leftover tungsten coating makes great ribbing for stoneflies and weight on steelhead flies.

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Now simply tie the loop knot of choice in the mono (we use non-slip mono loop). Repeat on the other end of sink-tip. Attach to shooting head and fish.

#2 Braided Loop- This version uses braided loops and nail knots.

img_0235Take regular size braided loop and slide onto end of sink-tip of desired length.

img_0237Tie 3 nail knots on sink-tip, over top of the braided loop. Add Zap-a-Gap or UV knot sense to knots/loop. Repeat to other end.

You’re all done and ready to swing.

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