Ask Ian Illustrations and Schematics

The Official Ask Ian page of diagrams, illustrations and schematics.
Reading through the Ask Ian Questions you might find "a link" at the end of some of my answers. The illustrations, diagrams or schematics will appear only on this page. The question, and my response will also be posted. I know this is duplication, but sometimes it is for the best.

Don't Forget:
If you want to use an Ask Ian in your club newsletter - many clubs are - please ask me first. You also need to send me two issues of your newsletter before I make a decision on the use of my material. Yup, I can write an Ask Ian specifically for your newsletter.

More Ask Ian Archives:
Archives #1. | Archives #2. | Archives #3. | Archives #4. | Archives #5. | Ask Ian Schematics.

These folk Asked Ian

Dear Max the Rottie.
I have seen your photo on Ian's Website and on the banner for Idiot Out at the bottom of an Ask Ian Page. So, I thought I should send you a note, which is tough to do as I don't have an opposing thumb and this keyboard was not designed to be used by the paws of a Staffordshire Bull Terrier, but, what can you do? I live in Cambridge, Ontario and I was wondering if you would like to take the Greyhound Bus over here from London, Ontario so that we could get to know each other over a bowl of Nibbles. I like long walks in the park, having my ears scratched, rolling on the grass, digging holes in the backyard and when no one is home, sleeping on the sofa. I don't chase squirrels or cats, (that is for ruffian, uncouth and uneducated dog breeds) I am good with kids and I love going for a drive and having my ears flapping around in the wind. I have a bunch of old Lassie movies we can watch, but I am sure that she was wearing a wig and she had a stunt double for most of her work. Don't worry Max, I won't keep you on a short leash.
Thanks. Truffles.

Dear Truffles
I will call you on my Fido. What can I say? You look smashing. I hope this not just a Puppy Love and that we are not barking up the wrong tree. I am a blue-collar dog (my collar is blue, but I also have a red one) who likes the simple things in life, like being first to the fire hydrant after a good rain. There is nothing I like more then performing a splash of impressionistic artwork on a canvas of crisp and freshly fallen snow. I am a huge fan of the movie: Wag the Dog, and I will bring my copy of it over for you, however the edges of the video box are a bit dog eared. Some call me an Alpha dog, but you can call me anytime at 1-555-big-paws.
Max the Rottie.

Dear Ian:
After going over your site and reading your book, it did not take me long to realize that beneath your tough Glaswegian exterior, there is a conservationist at heart. Did you know they are planning to wipe the Ruddy Duck off the face of the UK? Surely as a kid growing up in Scotland, you must have seen these magnificent birds. Can you offer any suggestions or help?
Laura, in Liverpool, England.

Dear Laura:
Here are a few more points which might be of use. The ruddy ducks are only following their instincts, and like most folk, they like to do a bit of breeding when on holiday. As I said, the simple solution is to get the UK Government to with hold their travel documents. Failing that, I suggest you start a waterfowl celibacy campaign. Personally, I can't see it working, but, if for example, they were 'rubber duckies' then there might be a decline in the whitehead pregnancy numbers. As for a nation wide hunt in the UK, I can't see that going over too well. The first time 'collateral damage' starts showing up - coots, (the birds, not the hunters) avocets, herons, swans or large chunks of low flying aircraft - then it would soon put an end to the shotgun solution. Of course, they could always issue flack jackets to all the other species of waterfowl to keep them safe. You should also consider that if there were no baby ruddy ducks, the UK pike population would plummet, and being unchecked by this toothy preditor, the roach and perch populations would sky rocket.

Dear Ian:
You frequently mention that you use a 10 to 12 foot level leader of, say, 4 or 6 pound Vanish fluorocarbon for most of your fishing. Could you please give the formula for this and maybe sketch a schematic so I can build some of my own. This is the only thing your sight is missing. Otherwise it is very informative and motivating.
Dan, from Downtown, Dunsville, Ontario.

Dear Dan:
Obviously you are a dry fly fisherman, but you make a good point. I will type this very slowly so you can follow along. Snip off about 10 feet of the leader material from the spool. (Note: if you need a 20 foot leader, snip off about 20 feet.) Put an overhand knot in the end of your fly line. (The fly line is the thick stuff that looks like string.) Now, take ONE end of the leader, the thin stuff, and put it behind the overhand knot in the fly line. Wrap it back over itself and make an improved clinch knot exactly as you would if you were tying the leader to a fly. As there is no eye in the flyline, the knot in the fly line becomes the eye. Wet the improved clinch knot when you snug it up. I developed this system years ago and it works just fine. The bonus is, the overhand knot in the fly line becomes a strike indicator, I mean a sight bob, I mean a float, I mean a bobber. And, above all, don't forget to tie your fly onto the end of the leader which is not attached to the fly line.

Here are two of my favorite leader set ups. In fact, these are the only two systems I ever use.