Leaders

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Leaders

Postby blankenship » Fri Aug 24, 2012 7:53 am

When I was throwing plastics (riverpirate style) i was just using a flat flouro leader about 10ft long and it worked pretty well. My biggest stick is a 5wt so traditional casting was impossible w/ fluke jr's, etc and I didnt need the leader to "roll over" per say.

I bought some poppers for my last trip and switched over to the leaders I use for dry fly trout fishing; 5x or 6x 9ft tapered mono. They worked like they should. We were at Academy last night and I told my brother I need to get some stronger leaders and he suggested I just run flat mono/flouro for a leader off spools of line I already have. Does anyone do this regularly?? I can't imagine it would be equal casting and the "leader roll over" at the end of the cast wouldn't be as nice using a flat leader vs. tapered.

I'm gonna try it both ways this weekend and see as well.

Thoughts?
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Re: Leaders

Postby drycreek » Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:01 am

I would prefer at least a 2X tapered leader over the 5X unless you're casting Brim poppers. Flat mono just ain't gonna give you much control.
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Re: Leaders

Postby blankenship » Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:09 am

Yeah i'm definitly going w/ a stronger leader (or line). I'm throwing size 8 and 10 poppers for shoalies but half the catch ends up being bream. I am just curious if anyone was using regular line for their leaders and what they thought about it. I guess I could build my own knotted tapered leader if i really feel the need to save 4$ lol..
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Re: Leaders

Postby nokinrocks » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:08 am

I'll use a couple of ft of stiff butt, like 30 lb Hard Mason, and build of of that. If it is a streamer leader I might just add a few ft of mono. If I am throwing a 11 ft double nymph rig with a lot of weight, I'll taper it down using stiff enough to turn over the fly. Honestly, I am to the point where I never buy tapered leaders unless I am dry fly fishing.
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Re: Leaders

Postby nielson » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:34 am

Be interesting to hear you findings so please share them with us. But consider this:

Size 8 & 10 poppers are small, not very wind resistant and I can understand how you can still get them to turnover with 5X or 6X trout leaders. It also explains why you pick up so many bream. (Yes, you'll catch bass now and then and some big ones too but, by and large, you won't interest most bass and just be bothered by the bream)

Typical bass topwater bugs are sz 6 and above. At these sizes they have a lot of drag and resist turning over at the end of a cast. To overcome that, you need a thicker tippet or leader. Personally, I use 0X (.011") or 1X (.010")tippet for bass bug fishing.

I also use a tapered leader but do know it's not essential as long as you're using a short leader. 5 to 7' of 15lb mono (probably with a diameter equivalent to 0X or 1X, depending upon the manufacturer) will turnover a sz 4 popper just fine. If you want a longer leader, it probably will need to have a heavier butt section.

If you continue to just use a 5wt rod/line rig and don't want to mess with tying up knotted tapered leaders, I would recommend that you limit your popper size to size 4 and go with a 7' piece of 15-20lb mono. When the leader gets down to 4 or 5' long, tie on a new piece to get it back to 7 foot.

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Re: Leaders

Postby dhatch » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:18 am

I've used furled leaders, straight mono, tapered leaders, and hand tied leaders. In my opinion the tapered leaders are best for big poppers on long leaders. However, I don't buy them. I think the hand tied work great and are much cheaper, so that is what I use. The furled leaders are great, but if you want to use a longer piece of tippet then you'll have trouble turning over big flies. I guess you could tie in a couple of sections after the furled portion, but that kinda defeats the purpose. I use a single length of mono for streamers as the knots tend to pick up trash.
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Re: Leaders

Postby nokinrocks » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:26 am

Casting style probably makes a difference as well... I will adjust my technique keeping flies closer to the water surface using more of a side-armed cast, the lower trajectory of the fly makes it a little less prone to the wind. I can get away using a lighter leader this way.
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Re: Leaders

Postby nokinrocks » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:31 am

dhatch wrote:I've used furled leaders, straight mono, tapered leaders, and hand tied leaders. In my opinion the tapered leaders are best for big poppers on long leaders. However, I don't buy them. I think the hand tied work great and are much cheaper, so that is what I use. The furled leaders are great, but if you want to use a longer piece of tippet then you'll have trouble turning over big flies. I guess you could tie in a couple of sections after the furled portion, but that kinda defeats the purpose. I use a single length of mono for streamers as the knots tend to pick up trash.


Ok, I will admit the leaders you built for the saltwater trip cast nice.
"wind from the north, stay home, of courth." — Blackwater Bill

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Re: Leaders

Postby goshawk » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:48 am

I'm pretty new to fly fishing and well don't really know much. But mostly due to ignorance, plus being on a budget, plus living out in the boondocks where there are no locations to to buy fly fishing equipment, I generally use just plain old mono with some florocarbon line. I generally tie a 15lb test short piece to my fly line with a loop knot and then generally tie a section section of mono that is between 4 and 6 lb floro carbon line with a loop knot on one end and tie directly to my fly or popper to that floro carbon line.

Then as it gets shorter, I just cut it off and get another piece and start over. That way It's pretty rare for me to have to re-tie directly to my fly line.

But I have noticed that the loop knot connections seem to be a bit of a problem with wind drag and casting in some situations.

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Re: Leaders

Postby Blackwater » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:00 pm

I attempt to cast some heavy poppers, frogs etc, big lures trying for big fish. I usually have 4-5 ft of 15 lb Pline flouro looped to 3 or 4 feet of 8-10 flouro, just regular flouro off a spool like you would put on a spinning reel. Workks fine for me with the large lures on 9 ft 6 or 8 wt.

With my 7 ft 3 wt and small poppers I use about 4 ft of 8 lb leader and loop that to a 3 ft of 4 or 6 lb flouro or mono again just using regular line.

My casting is nothing to brag about so I don't think it it pays for me to be too specification oriented when i set up my rigs.
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Re: Leaders

Postby nokinrocks » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:18 pm

goshawk wrote: But I have noticed that the loop knot connections seem to be a bit of a problem with wind drag and casting in some situations.

Pat
I prefer loop to loop between fly line and leader / blood knots for the rest..... Throwing tight loops is easier with blood knots, less chance of the fly snagging the leader.
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Re: Leaders

Postby nielson » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:56 pm

A few more thoughts in response to the more recent posts:

I've convinced myself that when trying to successfully toss wind resistant topwater baits (or similarly wind resistant unweighted subsurface baits) with a long leader, 8-10 feet, it's best to have a leader with a stout, long butt section that is at least 2/3 the length of your leader, including the tippet. Such a leader configuration allows for a better transition of momentum from line to leader before the drag stops your fly and you get a pile up.

To my knowledge, you can't buy such a leader that is knotless so you have to build one. A few years ago, that's all I used and here's what it was:
Butt section: 6-7 feet of .021" or .019" mono. (usually they were .021")
Transition: Total length no more than 12" comprised of 1-1.5" sections of successively smaller diameter mono down to 0X (.011"). On the last section, 2-4") I'd end it with a perfection loop.
Tippet: 2-3 feet of 0X (with perfection loop on one end to connect to the leader).

It's a funny looking leader with what I believe to be an unconventional formula but it works like a champ for tossing big (size 4+) topwater bugs.

I don't use them anymore because for the last couple years I've been using hand furled leaders. However, those are pretty similar in that they have a long, heavy butt section and then a relatively short tippet section. I've gone to these because:
1. They are simple and quick to make and neat to do (I think).
2. Only require a spool of inexpensive 10-12 lb mono to build to include tippet. (Uses 20-30' of line per leader so with a 100 yd spool you can make 10-12 leaders)
3. No tools, jigs, etc needed. Only need your bare hands and the dexterity to tie your shoes.
4. Works like a champ.

Your pal, Jim
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Re: Leaders

Postby Blackwater » Fri Aug 24, 2012 2:13 pm

That's why I wear Crocs, I can't tie my shoes where they will stay tied.
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Re: Leaders

Postby blankenship » Fri Aug 24, 2012 2:16 pm

A wealth of info here; thanks.

I'm definitly gonna try a stiff butt section and taper down from there. I have tied up knotted leaders alot for trout fishing and never had an issue w/ them. I always just used double/triple surgeons knots.

i guess i consider a size 10 a huge fly since i'm used to chasing trout. I'll pick up some larger flies and see how the 5wt throws them.
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Re: Leaders

Postby blankenship » Fri Aug 24, 2012 2:28 pm

nielson wrote:A few more thoughts in response to the more recent posts:
I don't use them anymore because for the last couple years I've been using hand furled leaders. However, those are pretty similar in that they have a long, heavy butt section and then a relatively short tippet section. I've gone to these because:
1. They are simple and quick to make and neat to do (I think).
2. Only require a spool of inexpensive 10-12 lb mono to build to include tippet. (Uses 20-30' of line per leader so with a 100 yd spool you can make 10-12 leaders)
3. No tools, jigs, etc needed. Only need your bare hands and the dexterity to tie your shoes.
4. Works like a champ.

Your pal, Jim


Any links out there showing this?
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