As a Pro-Staffer for Scientific Anglers since the late 1990’s, I occasionally have been asked to test new or developing products.  About 6 or 7 years ago some new tippet spools arrived in the mail. I was told the tippet was stronger per diameter than previous products. The letter in the package explained how the tippet spool was redesigned larger, to reduce coiling, and to spin more freely when nested with other spools of the same type. They product included spool bands to tame unruly small diameter tippet. The spools also incorporated a new feature, a built in cutter. I must admit that after being in the industry for over 25 years I had heard many claims from manufacturers in regard to bigger, better, faster, stronger, more accurate, limper, stiffer, more abrasion resistant, ultra-sensitive  and so on. It seemed no matter the product, each year, manufacturers claimed some sort of improvement. I get it. Competing products, growing markets, chasing numbers. It is a competitive industry. There needs to be a hook. Sometimes the hook is dull and there is no real advantage to be realized for the angler. Sometimes the truth is stretched. Sometimes the truth is realized!

Already sold on SA Fly Lines and using a wide variety of tapers and configurations on my guide and personal equipment, I was hopeful this new tippet was half as good as the claims. I must admit I was using another brand of tippet at the time. SA was focusing more on the development of their textured and AST coated lines and all was good in that market. Tippet seemed of little consequence. When the package arrived I ripped the top off the box and commenced testing.

At that time my system for nymphing was to run 4x fluorocarbon to my lead fly and 5x fluoro to the trailer. I never used 6x. Too tedious to tie. Also with my overactive hook set plus fishing around wood piles, the chances of breaking off $2 flies seemed certain. Weaker tippet would surely cost me more money There was another transition I had also just begun, my breakaway from fluorocarbon. After reading about the harmful effects to the environment in both processing and lack of degradation in nature, I began running mono to my trailer. It seemed like a small but meaningful contribution to the environment. I am now completely out of the fluorocarbon market.  I am noticing no less fish catching(don’t know how you would study that anyhow)…. And the breaking strengths per diameter of both materials seems to be getting closer together.

I jumped in with both feet and began running 5x mono to lead, 6x mono trail. No inordinate break-offs while fighting fish. No noticeable difference in snag retrieval break-offs. The spool bands preformed as billed keeping the small diameter tippet in order and spools buried in the middle of the stack unwound without turning the whole group. And then there was the cutter. Believe it! As a guide, I go through a boatload of tippet each year. New folks to this sport can go through a lot of flies, a lot of snags, a lot of rocks and a lot of branches equalling a lot of break-offs to procure the “magic first trout”. To achieve that goal may require a small moving van full of replacement tippet.  The cutter installed in each spool makes a difference in ease of installation of said tippet. After years and years of testing products to try and simplify this crazy, cluttered, gadget filled pass time, the tippet cutter works! The noticeable difference is that it is no longer necessary to go to my nipper for cutting each piece of tippet from the spool. In a 5S, lean manufacturing world, eliminating an entire step from the process is a big deal. Unbelievable!

A few years ago SA began calling this product “The Truth”. I suspect this stemmed back to the fact that there is no industry standard for labeling the actual breaking strength of this product category. There are no breaking strength police. Some manufacturers use the value of the highest breaking strength of a tested batch for their product labels. Some use and average breaking strength value. SA has always labeled their product with the truth, the lowest breaking strength tested. This assures the consumer there will be no deception or skulduggery in the labeling of their product. This is the truth. I liked it.

In the end, Scientific Anglers tippet and tippet spool has been a welcome addition to my fishing and guiding system. The product has lived up to all the claims. With fake news all around us and few places to turn to find out whats real,,,,,, Long Live The Truth. Here’s how to get some free stuff.


  • This limited-time promotion will run throughout the spring and summer—from March 15 until August 31, 2018.
  • Cashing in on this screaming deal is ridiculously simple: just mention this email at your nearest SA dealer. That’s it. If they do ask to see anything, just show them this email.
  • This deal applies to Freshwater and Hard Mono AR 2-pack leaders (9’ and 7.5’) and 30 meter tippet spools.
  • Sorry everyone, Fluorocarbon leader and tippet does not apply.